Content Marketing: What’s Your Buyer Mindset?

One of the many challenges I face with my clients is creating content that is visually appealing and informative, while motivating them to make a purchase. While many seminars, professionals, and books will tell you there are “five steps to success” or best practices, ultimately knowing your customer’s buying mindset will give you the most great leverage.

I’ve found over the years that in most cases buyers break down into the following mindsets:

The hunter:

The hunter, usually male and middle-aged, is too busy or doesn’t need the support of critics and social support to make a purchase. You succeed with this customer by using globally deployed images and basic product facts, with a clearly visible “buy” link. Commerce quick access includes things like big buttons with labels like “buy in store now” or, in many cases, content images designed to look clickable in an effort to incentivize the action. You do not mess with this type of consumer. Just give them the facts and give them trusted assurances like 100% guaranteed; free delivery; “will match competitors’ prices.”

The mother of the lair:

The Den Mother, often the mother or head of household who oversees a larger family collective, wants to be attracted to the product or service in such a way that it satisfies all parties involved. Therefore, the voice of your text and images should support initiatives that go beyond mere consumer needs. This content must reflect the fact that it is useful; loved by all; and ensures success. In addition, this consumer is often tied to limited time and an obviously busy schedule. Therefore, the construction of contextual scenarios that reflect time savings can also support the purchase.

Novelist :

The novelist, as the name suggests, is usually the household planner and, in many cases, a woman. This type of consumer wants to experience your product through the eyes of testimonials, stories, ratings, and reviews. They want to feel confident in their purchase, but also want to have an experience before the actual purchase. Large sites such as zappos.com use video to show products in such a way that they not only convey the usage, but also the sentiments, styles, and supportive advocacy creating confidence that the decision is correct.

This style of consumer is very typical in the travel industry. Therefore, as you would expect, you will find images that promote comfort, privacy, luxury, and accommodation in an effort to persuade that user to purchase.

The searcher:

Exactly what you would expect from a researcher mindset are content marketing goals like comparisons, charts, and testimonials from previous users. Keep in mind that ratings and reviews used to do a lot of good. However, ratings and reviews aren’t as reliable as they used to be. People are savvy enough to realize now that a lot of this content is actually made on behalf of brands or their competitors. That said, building authenticity around your product or service will benefit you as the searcher. Suggestions can include aspects such as “pros and cons” or product levels such as small business, large business, enterprise, etc.

Once you start seeing how different companies market and position their content, you’ll understand the type of mindset THEY BELIEVE their consumers have.

But how do you ensure success with the consumer mindset? Test, test, test. Whenever you have the opportunity to send emails, do social media, or create visuals and messages, be sure to test each delivery with its own unique guideline. “Calls to action” or hero visuals don’t have to be dynamically opposed to each other. However, it is best if you have different messaging styles to ensure success.

A/B test any of the following (always):

  • Email subject lines

  • Duration of social media posts

  • Hashtags

  • Videos versus photos

  • Single photos versus galleries

  • Varying amount of detail as it relates to your product specifications

  • Differentiate your commerce by flow

  • Vary your call to action

  • Reports about your UI/UX touchpoints based on your consumer’s journey through the commerce component

  • Complaints and offers

  • Types of coupons

  • Rewards programs

Obviously, this list can go on and on. There’s no end to prototyping and testing to ensure you connect directly with your best guess of your consumer’s mindset.

Only you will ultimately know the mindset of your consumers. I would also suggest that you dig deeper into the demographic, psychographic, and personal mapping of your ideal customer and your secondary customer. Once you have this in place, it will allow you to fully understand whether or not the visual and contextual guidelines you create will create the appropriate perception and lead to sales.