The Problem Encyclopedia: Idea Generation Based on Consumer Problems.
Your sales team can't convince people to purchase.
Prospects take their own decisions through what they see, read, and hear of your brand through Google.
SiriusDecisions claims at least 70% of consumers decide by themselves. Pardot states that 72% of buyers head to Google to research an upcoming purchase. Others claim that around 57% of people won't need to interact with a company to decide. While the percentage might change, the common denominator is that most of the purchase decisions happen without direct interaction between a brand and a potential customer.
People realize they have a problem. So they grab their phone and look for a solution. Sometimes, they don't even know they have a problem. And while it might take some time to define it, they always do.
In today's world, you have one mission: Be the brand that solves or helps people define a problem.
Consumers rule their journey.
Consumers want to direct the process, or at least control a portion of it.
Control means having a word on the outcome and where it leads. It suggests freedom to choose the road and pace.
Giving our customers control doesn't imply separating ourselves from potential customers. It means reframing how we act. It's a call to place our knowledge as a guide in our customer's journey and not as a way to convince non-believers.
Guides place their customer's needs on top of theirs.
If their customers don't know a term, they define it. They debunk industry myths, defeat well-known objections and solve all questions.
As long as it makes the customer's journey better—educating around the sales process or solving a doubt better than anyone else—Writing about it is worth the trouble.
Content is the archenemy of a car salesman.
Car sellers fail because they are self-centered. They focus on commissions, not on the customer.
Because of this, customers swim in a pool of fear. Fear of the wrong choice, the existence of a better alternative, or overspending.
Content eliminates all of these fears:
- Pricing pages segment people that can't afford us.
- Comparison pages show we are (or not) the right choice.
- Top X pages introduce potential clients to competitors.
Content makes us trustworthy. It shows people that we focus on them and that we don't care about exposing our weaknesses as long as we help with their purchase decision.
If seeing your price scares a lead, well-done. You just saved your team from an unqualified one. Now, they can use that time to talk to real, ready-to-purchase individuals.
But remember, these leads need to come from somewhere. For them to arrive at your website, you need content: Not too much, but enough for a potential customer to find you instead of your competitors.
Discoverability is as important as production.
Unless it is a life or death situation, visitors won't go through your website searching for a solution. If they can't find an answer in one click, potential clients will go back to the search results and pick the next search result: Your competition.
To avoid this, turn your brand's website into a problem encyclopedia.
Sit down with your team, or alone, and brainstorm every objection, fear, pain point, worry, question, and concern that has become a barrier between you and a sale.
Most brands don't solve these on their websites.
As a result, their sales team solves the same ten objections on each call, and the onboarding team explains the same process multiple times a day.
All because of a lack of empathy in your customer's problems and your team's time.
Proximity solves unawareness
If you are struggling to name a few fears or objections, you need to get closer to your customers. Talk to your customer support team and see the problems that current clients face and how they describe them. Tell your sales team to send you a recording of the last ten sales calls.
Spot patterns, brainstorm answers and publish them.
The tendency to solve questions needs to become a habit. So does the inclination to write down any concern that arises during each interaction with the customer.
If you hear it once, write it down. If you listen to it five times, gather your content creation team and start writing an answer on your blog. Be so obsessed with your customer's needs that you fill entire notebooks with their struggles. If you don't like writing on paper, choose your favourite note-taking app and create a database of questions.
It doesn't matter what you use. What matters is becoming an encyclopedia filled with solutions to your customer's problems.
It won't happen overnight, and it won't be easy. But it will be worth it. If you are ready to start and have any doubts, follow me on Twitter and send me a DM so that I can become an answer to all your content-related problems.