by Nathan Joynt, Product Marketing Content Director, Oracle
Ever heard of “micro moments”?
Google defines them as actions that “occur when people reflexively turn to a device—increasingly a smartphone—to act on a need to learn something, do something, discover something, watch something, or buy something.”
Let me give you an example.
You’re the newly-hired chief marketing officer for a fast-growing small to medium business. You’re working late on Friday night. Bummer—so much for your plans to meet up with a few friends for pizza and beer. But as any leader knows, these are the burdens of the SMB executive.
Demand for your company’s products has been spiraling upwards, so you’ve been looking at cloud solutions to help you scale the business effectively as you grow. You’re on your computer looking at several top suppliers.
But it’s past dinnertime. Your stomach begins to grumble, and you really wanted that pizza. You grab your smartphone and do a quick search for nearby pizza restaurants. They deliver, and when the pizza arrives, you take a quick break from your research.
While eating, you realize that you forgot to compare pricing for the suppliers—so you use your phone to continue your research. Watch out for greasy fingers on that touch screen!
On your way home from work, a slow leak in your tire finally causes a flat. Great—just what you needed at the end of a long week. You’ve changed tires before, but it’s been a long time and you need a refresher. A quick search on your phone brings up a helpful how-to video from a retailer you’ve bought tires from in the past. 15 minutes later, the spare is installed and you’re on your way again.
After you get home, you receive an alert with a coupon for 15% off your next purchase from the tire retailer. You know you need a new tire, so you immediately call the retailer and schedule an appointment to replace it.
In this scenario you researched a business-to-business (B2B) purchase, located a pizza restaurant, and found a tire retailer—all using your nearby devices.
This type of customer and brand interaction is becoming the norm. Nielsen reports that, in the U.S., more than 70% of people over the age of 18 own a smartphone. As such, the selling environment has changed. Your customers aren’t going to wait for your sales reps or marketing messages to reach them. They’re going to use their devices to solve their needs on the spot.
In order to win customers in this new environment, SMBs must understand that customer journeys are a sum of micro-moments. Here are four best practices to help your business improve the customer experience during moments like these.
In order to win, you need a cross-channel engagement strategy. When your customers—especially your business customers—start researching online, they’re searching for a solution, not a particular brand. Google found that 71% of B2B researchers start with a generic search. People do 12 searches on average before interacting with a brand’s web site.
Make sure that your web site is sharing solution-based information and that you are showing up in relevant searches. This can raise your unaided brand awareness by 7%.
Now that you’re in the game, you need to provide relevant information to potential customers. You get one shot at capturing a customer’s interest during a micro-moment.
First, you have to target the right people. B2B companies often target C-level executives, but 81% of non-C-suite employees have a say in purchase decisions.
Once you have your target audience identified, you need to send them the right message through their preferred channel. Think about which devices and channels your customers use throughout their buying journey. An Annalect study found that the majority of customers use their computers to make purchases, but they also use their phones to compare and check prices.
Winning the game requires great teamwork. Your customers interact with multiple departments and employees as they move through their buying journey. Those in contact with customers need to have accurate and complete information in order to provide consistent interactions and delight the customer. McKinsey notes that consistent interactions are a better indicator of customer satisfaction and churn than individual experiences, at 35% and 32%, respectively.
Winners are able to anticipate moves and scenarios ahead of time. Connected customers are increasingly in charge of their buying journeys—but once they become aware of your brand, you own the customer experience. You can’t afford to wait for them to find you.
It’s important to be present during your customer’s micro-moments—but it’s equally important to anticipate what they may need next. Think about how the tire retailer sent you a 15% discount coupon after you watched their video about how to change a tire.
All of this might sound like a lot for a small and medium business CMO to worry about. But with today’s connected cloud solutions, even SMBs can implement a customer experience process that flows delightfully—at an affordable price. To learn how, GO chat with us.