My name doesn’t matter. I’m a hired gun. An outsourced writer.
My assignment: Write a blog article about Online Marketing Training that encourages you to enroll in the MEMO Marketing Academy’s online video course about the buyer’s journey. The course is designed to help you learn the 6 Buyer’s Steps that will change your sales and marketing process forever.
I figure the best way for you to understand the nature of the course is for me to enroll as a student and write about the experience as it is happening. Kind of like an on-the-scene report by a local TV news reporter – without the TV part. But before we begin…
I’m a professional marketer and I did not pay for access to the course. I’m old school, so I prefer written marketing information over video lessons. But it is important to know about what drives a buyer’s decision-making process, so I’m definitely open to new insights on the subject of converting prospects into customers.
That said, I’ll keep an open mind and objectively report my impressions of the class as I take it. I’ll let you decide if the experience I describe would be helpful to your business marketing efforts.
First Impression of Online Marketing Training
So here goes. My first impression when I land on the MEMO Marketing Academy’s home page is that I like the clean presentation and the limited, easy-to-find options for my next required step. I can click the Login link, but I am not already registered. I can also click a button to Sign Up For MEMO Marketing Academy.
The process to enroll in the Academy was quick and easy. I signed up for the current featured course, which is The Buyer’s Journey: How to Take Prospects from Not Interested to Now Buying! I can now watch the 10 video lessons at my convenience.
Lesson 1: Introduction to The Buyer’s Journey
Here are my notes from the first video course (12:32 runtime):
- This course overview introduction makes me want to jump to Lesson 9 about the template a business would use to improve marketing and increase sales. But I’ll be patient and go through each lesson in order.
- Though a bit lengthy, this first lesson explains the concept of the Buyer’s Journey and each of its six stages. The concept of looking at the sales process from the perspective of solving the problems of buyers is compelling. As I recall from an era long ago, millions of expensive electric dishwashers and mountains of detergent have been sold because consumers were convinced by effective marketing that washing dishes by hand was a problem.
- By the way, the Academy’s online dashboard is intuitive and very easy to use. The playback screen is large, with good controls. I’m able to quickly stop and start the video without any lag time or buffering. I can quickly and easily go back to a specific spot within the lesson to replay a section. The video and audio quality are both excellent. This is a top-notch online marketing training platform that nicely accommodates all of my needs. So far, so good.
Lesson 2: Awareness Stage of the Buyer’s Journey
- Entrepreneurs start new businesses for many reasons, but in most cases it’s not because their specialty is marketing. This lesson is for business owners and sales managers who fit in that category, as well as anyone involved in marketing a business. It helps you recognize the need to look at the sales cycle from the buyer’s perspective rather than your own seller’s point of view.
- This lessons explains what your prospects really need and the proper place to begin a conversation with them.
Lesson 3: Determine Need Stage
- Not everyone sees the need to fix every problem. People washed cookware, plates and eating utensils by hand for centuries before the electric dishwasher came along in an era of prosperity. It was up to appliance marketers of that era to convince homemakers their time and energy could be better-spent than washing dishes. Those marketers did a very good job. Today, we take it for granted that our kitchens will include a dishwasher.
- This lesson explains how to focus the conversation with prospects, so they see the need to fix the problems you can solve.
Lesson 4: Sense of Urgency Stage
- This is the most critical stage because consumers never make a purchase until they have a sense of urgency.
- This lesson teaches the 4 things you can talk about to help create a sense of urgency.
Lesson 5: Match Capabilities Stage
- This is the stage where you can talk about the features and benefits of your products and services.
- This lesson teaches a tip to help you focus your message around the problem the consumer is ready to address. You’ll also learn the 4 things the buyer wants to know.
Lesson 6: Evaluate Choices Stage
- This is the stage where buyers consider alternate solutions and the unique differentiator of each option.
- This lesson will show you the appropriate way to compare and contrast your offering to those of your competitors.
Lesson 7: Resolve Risk Stage
- This is the stage where buyers eliminate the risks of making a purchase.
- This lesson reveals the best thing you can do to help close a sale.
- You’ll see examples of how to satisfy the buyer’s need to resolve risk during this final stage of The Buyer’s Journey.
Lesson 8: Application
Note: It’s been a day since I last used the video player and in just a few seconds it picked up right where I left off.
- This lesson is where marketers take the information learned in the previous lessons and put it into action.
- The example sales scenario in this lesson takes you through the process of aligning your conversation with your prospect’s location in their own personal buyer’s journey.
Lesson 9: The Buyer’s Journey Template
- This lesson is where you learn how to integrate the Buyer’s Journey process into your business.
- The Buyer’s Journey Template is an Excel spreadsheet (.xlsx file) that’s easily available for download right below this lesson’s video screen.
- This lesson uses a fictitious small business to demonstrate how to complete the template. The premise of the template is to solve the problems of consumers (buyers). The spreadsheet matches the 3 elements of the sales process with the 6 stages of the Buyer’s Journey.
Lesson 10: Tips for Success
- This lesson is where the presenter, Matt Maudlin of MEMO Marketing Group, shares a few parting thoughts about the Buyer’s Journey, along with a few tips to remember going forward.
- The key take-away from this lesson is that actually using the template will help you adjust your selling process – your sales messages and tools – to match the likelihood your prospect is ready to buy. From there you can create a weighted sales pipeline, with appropriate marketing strategies for prospects in each stage of the Buyer’s Journey.
Summary of Online Marketing Training
So, there you have it. A new way to approach sales in 10 easy lessons. Not a bad deal, if you actually implement the suggested program and use it to help grow your business.
The video presentation was actually rather convenient. I was able to keep the browser tab with my Academy dashboard open for several days, which allowed me to view the lessons whenever I had the time. I can log in and out of the dashboard as needed. It was more convenient than having a teacher present, because I could pause and rewind the videos to write my notes. I could also brew a fresh cup of coffee without missing any of the lesson.
The concept of The Buyer’s Journey makes as much sense or more than any other approach to converting prospects into customers. The basic concept is to join buyers on their path to making a decision (or even to create the path) and to control or influence the buyer’s conversation about identifying and solving a problem. That’s what dishwasher and detergent manufacturers did a half-century ago when they targeted housewives watching soap operas on TV.
The Buyer’s Journey Template is a tool that separates this sales approach from most of the rest. If you complete the spreadsheet Template, you will end up with lots of useful insights, plans, and material for your focused and targeted marketing efforts.
Planning For Sales Versus Hoping For Sales
Here’s the reality of the situation: If you need a better way to convert prospects into customers, you should invest $97 to view the course’s 10 lessons and then invest the time to complete the Buyer’s Journey Template for your business. You will create a working document with many poignant ideas, targeted messages, and effective sales tools – all of which can be incorporated into the strategies and tactics of your marketing plan. In today’s competitive marketplace, that sure beats the “hope & prayer” method of trying to survive without a viable plan to sell to your prospects – when they are ready to buy.
My assignment has been completed. The next step is up to you. To learn the six buyer’s steps that will change your sales and marketing process forever, click below now to enroll in the MEMO Marketing Academy’s course, “The Buyer’s Journey.”