Whether you’re launching a new product or service and want to get the word out — or you’re looking to improve your existing business, videos can bring a new level of engagement and sales.
But publishing videos without a strategic customer journey won’t bring the desired results.
So, in this article, we explore the customer journey in-depth, as well as its five key stages. Plus, we take a look at the benefits of using videos in each stage, as well as the types of videos best suited for each step along that journey.
What Is The Customer Journey?
Customer journey describes the path a customer takes to research, purchase, and use a product (or service).
It can also include how they get to your website in the first place.
If we consider its technical marketing definition, it refers to the process and interactions a customer goes through when engaging with a company or brand, from the initial awareness stage to the final purchase or beyond.
So, the customer journey map involves every touchpoint and experiences a customer has with a business, including online and offline channels.
The idea is to understand where your customers are at each moment in their purchase process so you can be sure to deliver the right (persuading) message at the right time.
As more people start working from home, customer journeys have moved primarily online. The journey starts when someone first discovers your brand through social media, Google, or paid ads.
And it continues as they research different options before deciding which one best meets their needs.
Finally, it ends with them taking action by purchasing something from you or your competitor (oh the dreaded zone!)
The Five Stages Of A Customer Journey
Customer journey maps are complex, and each stage may have a different set of goals and objectives.
When potential customers first encounter your brand or product, they may be looking for information. At this stage, your goal is to answer questions and build trust in your brand.
And when they’ve decided to purchase from you, their goals are likely to be more specific — such as receiving the product quickly or instructions on how to efficiently use it.
So, there’s no single step that represents all potential outcomes for every type of customer.
Instead, there are five different stages (in total) that customers go through before and after becoming your customer.
Please note that these stages may vary depending on the industry and business model.
But here is a common framework for the customer journey:
This is when your brand or product comes to the attention of the customer. It is precisely the stage where they realize that a solution exists for a specific need or problem they have.
It can happen through —
- paid marketing campaigns
- content marketing
- social media influencers
- random online research
If you are a sales-driven organization, you may also account the various segmentation profiles in your organization, and the various ways you can reach these target groups (cold outreach, conferences, etc.)
It is important to understand where they’re coming from so you can plan your hunting strategy appropriately.
The goal of the awareness stage is to capture the attention of potential customers and create interest in the brand or its products.
If you plan and execute this stage well, it helps you make the brand memorable and distinct in the minds of consumers, laying the foundation for further engagement and consideration in the customer journey.
This customer journey stage involves the potential customers considering whether your product will meet their needs and wants based on their existing knowledge about your brand or company.
Here, customers start actively considering the options available to them. They may compare different products, read reviews, seek recommendations, or visit the company’s website for more information.Featuring solid social proof and launching a user-generated content campaign (if possible for your brand) on Instagram works great.
You must continue building awareness throughout this phase because people often start out with a negative impression based on previous experiences with your competitors.
The consideration stage holds paramount importance as this is where potential customers narrow down their options and make an informed decision.
You need to provide relevant information (like features, benefits, pricing) in every place that matters, proactively address customer concerns, and showcase your USP to stand out in a sea of other similar brands.
Once someone has considered if they want to buy from you, they move on to the purchasing stage where they make the final decision to buy a product or service from you instead of another brand or company.
The customer completes the transaction and makes the actual purchase. This can happen online, in-store, or through other channels depending on the business type.
The purchase stage is a critical point in the customer journey, as it represents the conversion of interest into a tangible transaction.
Providing a frictionless checkout experience is key here as otherwise customers will simply get frustrated and abandon their purchase.So, it’s important for you to streamline the purchase process, remove any barriers or friction points, and provide a seamless and satisfying customer experience.
And remember, a positive purchase experience can lead to repeat purchases, and even advocacy for the brand (like good word-of-mouth publicity).
The retention stage is the customer journey phase where a business looks to build long-term relationships with its existing customers.
It focuses on strategies to maintain customer satisfaction, encourage repeat business, and promote loyalty (most often in exchange for lucrative incentives).
Prioritizing personalized communication, excellent customer support, and ongoing engagement is key here.
You may implement loyalty programs, offer rewards, and seek active and continued customer feedback to increase customer engagement, and as a result, heighten the probability of brand-stickiness.
This stage focuses on creating a positive customer experience, ensuring customers choose to stay and continue their relationship with the brand.
By emphasizing retention, businesses can:
- increase the customer lifetime value
- benefit from repeat purchases
- potentially gain advocates who spread positive word-of-mouth.
Serve customers so well that they feel compelled to volunteer to be your brand ambassadors.The advocacy stage in a customer journey is the final phase where happy and (most importantly) satisfied customers become active promoters and advocates for a brand.
They voluntarily share positive experiences such as video and textual reviews, recommend the brand to others (colleagues, friends, and family), and engage in word-of-mouth marketing.
Advocacy often occurs when customers have developed a strong emotional connection and loyalty toward the brand.
The advocacy stage is highly valuable for businesses as it leads to:
- organic growth
- increased brand visibility
- the acquisition of new customers through the trusted recommendations of existing customers.
The customer journey is not always linear, and customers may move back and forth between stages or skip certain stages altogether.
Understanding its above-mentioned framework helps:
- businesses identify opportunities for improvement
- deliver a seamless customer experience
- build a community of satisfied customers ready to represent your brand.
Benefits Of Using Videos In The Customer Journey
Video is a powerful tool to engage with customers at any stage of their journey, whether it’s during the initial contact or after they’ve made a purchase.
Brands can use videos to:
Build Brand Trust
Videos help build trust by showing consumers how your business operates in real-life situations.
This makes them feel more comfortable and reduces the risk of fraud or other types of problems that may occur when they’re first trying out your products or services.
It also helps you stand out from competitors who don’t use videos as part of their marketing strategy.
Consumers often associate a company with its products, so when they see something new pop up on their newsfeed, they’ll remember where they got it from — even if it wasn’t actually advertised by the company itself.
Videos help boost brand recall, which means that it will stick in the minds of potential customers long after they leave your website and never come back again — sometimes even years later!
Storytell — Powerfully
Video marketing is a a powerful storytelling platform, and allows you to convey emotions, showcase real-life scenarios, and create a connection with your audience.
By telling a story through video, you can make your audience feel like they’re part of a larger narrative, injecting a sense of belonging and engagement.
Demonstrate Product Functionality
You can use video as a way to educate and inform your audience about how your product works or what it can do for them.
Through step-by-step demonstrations or real-life examples, you can effectively communicate the value and benefits of your product, helping potential customers visualize its potential in their lives.
Types Of Videos For Each Customer Journey Stage
These are videos that show real customers talking about their positive experiences with your company and its products.
They can be used in marketing materials, social media posts, and email campaigns.
You can use these videos to share the history of your company, its mission, and vision, as well as its products and services.
This video type is ideal for use on your website or blog, but it can also be shared on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Short and visually appealing videos can be used to offer glimpses of your upcoming product or service. Teasers or promo videos generate curiosity and anticipation, creating buzz and excitement around your offering.
These videos provide educational (or how-to) content — like explainer video presentations related to your industry or niche. By offering valuable insights or teaching viewers something new, you position yourself as an authority in your field, building trust and interest around your brand and product(s).
Product Demo Videos
Using these videos will help people understand how a product works so they can make informed decisions about buying it later on down the line during the purchasing stage of the customer journey.
These videos should include a demonstration so viewers can clearly see how this product works before making a purchase decision.
These videos compare your product or service with competitors, highlighting the unique advantages and value it offers. By presenting a side-by-side comparison, you help customers make informed choices based on their specific preferences and needs.
You can also include case study videos showcasing real-life examples of how your product or service solved a problem or delivered results for a customer. These videos demonstrate the value and effectiveness of your offering(s), building trust and credibility in the minds of potential customers.
Customer testimonial or review videos provide social proof, instilling confidence in potential customers and helping them gauge the benefits and credibility of your products.
Product Walkthrough Videos
These videos provide a detailed walkthrough of the product, showcasing its features, functionality, and how to use it effectively.
They help customers gain a deeper understanding of the product and its value, building even more confidence in their purchase decision.
You can also show your product being used by someone else, either influencers or someone who has actually bought and used it.
The idea here is that showing other people using your product will increase its perceived value (and thus make people more likely to buy), while also giving them an idea of how their own lives could benefit from getting their hands on your product.
Juicy Limited-time Offer Videos
Videos that announce and promote limited-time offers, discounts, or special promotions help create a sense of urgency and FOMO and encourage customers to take action right away.
User-Generated Content (UGC)
UGC videos feature customers sharing their experiences with your product or service.
These authentic and relatable videos can be highly influential in the purchase stage, as they demonstrate real customers benefiting from your product or service.
Using videos in the retention stage helps you connect with customers and provide them with a much-needed emotional connection that can make them stay loyal to your brand.
Showcase Your Brand Values And Personality
Visually showcasing your company’s personality, values, and culture is a great way to connect with customers at this stage in their lifecycle. This will make them feel more comfortable about buying from you and want to stick around for the long term.
Show Off Your Product Benefits
Videos showing how your product or service solves a problem for customers is another great way to show off what makes you different from other businesses out there. It will also help you convince them that what you offer is worth paying for. Remember to not be shy!
Customer Success Stories
Feature how your product or service has positively impacted customers. These videos highlight real-life examples of success, demonstrating the value and effectiveness of your offering and reinforcing the customer’s decision to choose your brand.
Share exclusive videos with your existing customers, providing them with insider information, previews of upcoming features or products, or access to special events. This exclusive content strengthens their sense of belonging and enhances their loyalty.
Affirmative action, testimonials, and video content are all great ways to show how much you care about your customers and what they can expect from your brand.
A few video ideas that you can use for the advocacy stage:
- use real-life stories from happy customers who have used your product or service.
- demonstrate how your company stands out from the competition by offering unique features or benefits.
- express gratitude for past purchases or show how happy customers feel about returning for future purchases.
- highlight successful case studies that depict how your product or service has solved a specific problem or delivered exceptional results. These videos showcase the value and effectiveness of your offering, inspiring others to instantly become customers and brand advocates.
With AI video generators, businesses and content creators can save significant time and resources that would otherwise be spent on complex video production processes. These tools provide pre-built templates, animations, and effects, making it easy to create professional-looking explainer videos, among other video types, without requiring extensive design or animation skills.
The reason videos perform well is that they give the users the necessary answers to their questions and meet their requirements visually.
The better videos you provide to your customers, not just at the product and service stages but also at the earlier stages, the better will be your conversion rate and customer loyalty.
By implementing a video strategy right at each stage of the customer journey, regardless of whether it’s a product purchase or even a one-time consultation, you can gain continued sales and happy customers who can’t stop raving about you.