It’s rare for a consumer to see something for the first time and immediately purchase it. If and when that does occur, that’s wonderful! But, most customers work their way through a purchasing process that includes several different stages. From reviewing a website for the first time to walking through the door to talking with a sales associate, most customers go on what’s often referred to as a “buying journey.” And that journey directs the majority of marketing decisions most business owners make.
The digital age has created many opportunities for businesses to find and communicate with their customers. While these avenues provide incredible access, it is still challenging for business owners—as well as their marketers and salespeople—to find the exact right way to engage consumers at each of the various points within the customer journey.
The Value of Content Marketing Today
One of these best ways to do that is with targeted content. Now, most businesses know and understand the importance of content marketing. When content marketing adopters and non-adopters are compared, the adopters have conversion rates that are nearly six times higher than their competitors. 73% of major organizations hire someone to manage their content marketing strategy.
However, most of these organizations remain focused on the written word or visual content when it comes to content marketing. That leaves a gap that smart business owners of brick and mortar stores or franchises can add to their content marketing arsenal: audio. In-store music and on-demand announcements can target various types of customers, regardless where they are in the buying process. Below are a few tips and tricks to help businesses use in-store music and announcements to resonate with each group, regardless of where they might be in the buying journey.
We Have a First-Timer!
First-time consumers include anyone who is walking through the door for the first time, but it can also include anyone visiting a website, calling a representative for help, or even interacting with a brand on social media. For this instance, let’s look at how audio can influence first-time customers within the brick and mortar shop. This particular potential buyer has few (or no expectations) and this provides the prime opportunity for a business to build the experience. Playing a specific, licensed soundtrack will immediately “set the mood.”
A recent study showed that out of those shoppers who noticed in-store music, 40% will stay longer in a shop if they feel the music is well-chosen for the environment. That way, first-time consumers can walk away—whether they purchased something immediately or not—with a sense for the tone of that particular store, gym, restaurant, or other business. In addition, hearing a custom announcement allows the individual to be aware of what sort of offers they may expect in the future. Those types of tactics can be the tipping point to encourage a purchase and, better yet, a return visit.
“Thanks. I’m just looking around.”
These are some of the most common consumers businesses see. They have likely been in before and have an idea of what they want and what the store sells, but they may want to see what else is available or they haven’t solidified whether they want to actually make the purchase. And, as the earlier statistic mentions, the right music can make them feel comfortable enough to stick around or even be more receptive to a sales associate’s guidance. Even more critical with this group is the use of in-store announcements. If they aren’t sure of what they want and hear about a sale or special offer, that could encourage conversion even sooner. Or, for non-retailers, it could be the thing to make them go from “just-visiting” to booking an event.
One group no business can afford to neglect are the tried and true customers who come in regularly and buy frequently. Retaining these customers is cheaper than any other segment as they already have a positive view of the brand and have demonstrated a willingness to buy. While they expect a certain ‘soundtrack’ to the store, on-demand announcements around loyalty programs or frequent shopper discounts can keep them coming back again and again.
Impacting Consumers At The Right Time
While each of these examples can influence consumer types at specific phases, the tactics are also flexible. For example, knowing that a loyalty program exists may encourage the first-timer to sign up after they are happy and satisfied with their first purchase. Keeping a consistent musical vibe can be comforting for a loyal returning customer—imagine if your restaurant regular came in expecting soft jazz and heard hard-core rap! At each phase in the buyer journey, in-store audio can underscore and enhance the experience, influencing their overall buying journey for the better.
Interested in learning more? Request a demo of Vibenomics today and learn how you can start creating on-brand music and messaging for your in-store customers.