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Give your buyers an awesome search experience

Show up. Be top of mind.

"There are no bad leads – just early or ready leads."
Dan McDade
Dan McDade - President & CEO
PointClear

Your buyer is out there... dealing with issues

He may not know that tech can help them

He maybe just looking for something that opens their minds and challenges them

Or he may be already feeling the pain, but not actively looking for a solution...

Or he may already be comparing solutions...

But you're invisible. You have to earn his trust, little by little...

Market8-Search-Experience
Here’s the journey of an actual buyer who’s in the market for “remote collaboration software”
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Cheese
Boom

You must add value.

At every stage.

It’s about love.

And you still wonder why we can’t just flip the switch on a PPC campaign and get demo requests.

We call this Search Experience

Anywhere your company appears outside of your website – in search listings, online marketplaces, review sites, LinkedIn, Facebook, wherever – that’s your buyer’s search experience.

BUT – you’re not trying to boost search rankings, social media followers, or outbid competitors…

You need to optimize your buyer's experience

To make this happen, you need to align three core capabilities:

Organic Search Experience
  • Build expertise through content, authority, and relevance via backlinks.
  • Build trust through review generation, directory optimization, and other off-page tactics.
Paid Search Experience
  • Influence buyers who are either educating themselves or actively looking, while driving down the cost of customer acquisition.
  • Control search results by bidding on key high-intent terms
  • Secure the conversion with high performance landing-pages
  • Through paid advertisement, get in front of people that may not be actually looking for you.
Content Machine
  • Drive engagement of larger relevant audiences that may fit the customer profile, but aren’t actively looking.
  • Create a system that builds awareness and generates analytical insights.
  • Build trust through value driven content.

Let’s look at it from the buyer’s standpoint

Status Quo Unaware
Experiencing Problem Awareness of problem
Needing Consideration
Considering Consideration & Qualification
Trying Evaluation (PQLs)
Purchasing Purchase
Activating Activation
Loving Expansion
Recommending Renewal & Referral

SaaS Growth Funnel by Buying Stage

Status Quo

Buyers are not even aware that a problem exists. They are stuck in the status quo and still need to acknowledge there’s an opportunity.

Search Experience Role

Drive engagement of larger relevant audiences that may fit the profile, but aren’t actively looking. Create a system that builds awareness through value driven content.

Your goal:
To put you on the map: build an audience that trusts you. 

Your primary skills:
Content Machine: Reach people interested in related topics; build a following and instill trust with value-driven content that’s promoted and boosted on social media.

Your challenge:
Your ability to build a repeatable process. Make an awareness machine, vs. an ad-hoc unsurmountable project every time.

Examples of things you can create:
Stream of short educational videos on social media.
Podcasts
Blogs

SaaS Growth Funnel by Buying Stage

Experiencing Problem

Buyers are feeling the pain, but have not made it a priority to solve it.

Search Experience Role

Get in front of people that acknowledge they have a problem but may not be actively looking for specific solutions. 

Your goal:
To help buyers solve their problem. To be a God-send.

Your primary skills:
Organic Search Experience: Show up for educational & how-to search queries
Paid Search Experience: Promote educational & how-to content through paid search & ads.

Your challenge:
Prioritizing your content output based on the actual needs and challenges of your buyers. Keep the mindset of driving practical how-to content as opposed to hard-selling.

Examples of things you can create:
Awareness campaigns leading customers to download relevant content (Linkedin, Google, FB, Quora, ….)

SaaS Growth Funnel by Buying Stage

Needing Solution

Buyers are actively looking for a solution to their problem. They focus on discovering solutions and coming up with a shortlist to consider.

Search Experience Role

Be in the top results for high-commercial-intent search keywords in both paid and organic search results. Show up for competitor related searches. Engage in high-intent conversations on social media.

Your goal:
To get on the shortlist. To get buyers to trial your product.

Your primary skills:
Organic Search Experience: Show up for high-commercial-intent search queries
Paid Search Experience: Convert buyers looking for high-commercial-intent search terms (or direct competitors) and get them to trial your product.

Your challenge:
Your ability to identify the top list of high-intent commercially relevant keywords, rank for them organically, and bid on paid search. Your ability to identify high-intent conversations across the entire socialsphere, and identify where you should be participating.

Examples of things you can create:
Trial/Demo landing pages
Landing pages comparing your SaaS to top competitors

SaaS Growth Funnel by Buying Stage

Considering Solutions

Buyers are comparing a shortlist of solutions before they move forward with one.

Search Experience Role

Tell your (buyer’s) story: “why you, now?”. Present your value proposition clearly, answer questions, address hesitations, paint a clear picture of success, and provide sufficient proof that your solution will actually solve the problem.

Your goal: To get buyers to trial your product, already thinking this will be the final choice.

Your primary skills:
Organic Search Experience: Show up on the top-10 lists, marketplace listing sites, & reviews sites.
Paid Search Experience: Retarget buyers who have shown interest on paid social and display. Advertise on top marketplace and listing websites.

Your challenge:
Gather reviews. Your ability to craft a clear and crisp value proposition and substantiate it. Not only sell what you do and why, but also how you do it, and why your approach is unique.

Examples of things you can create:
Industry directory listings optimized for internal & external search
Explainer videos
Case studies
Offer guides with common buying criteria
Retargeting campaigns on all platforms
Offer assessment calculators that drive urgency

SaaS Growth Funnel by Buying Stage

Trying the Solution and onwards

Buyers conducting a hands-on evaluation of the product, buying it and experiencing it.

Search Experience Role

Help your buyers solve specific questions: “how-to”. Present helpful content in different formats to help the user do their job better and get value form the tool.

Your goal:
To get buyers to buy, experience, get value, and love the product. By successful using the product, they will turn into evangelists.

Your primary skills:
Organic Search Experience: Show up for how-to type content through a rich knowledge base.
Content Machine: Reach people interested in how-to content, on different platforms and content formats: videos, blog articles, forum discussions, etc.

Your challenge:
Your ability to produce a continuous stream of helpful content, optimized for search, and organized in an intuitive way.

Examples of things you can create:
User friendly knowledge base
How-to videos
Microsites presenting specialized content via an academy
Subscription feeds for product updates
Actionable tips blog articles

You need to address your Search Experience if…

  • Your current lead acquisition rate won’t get you to your growth target
  • You don’t have a predictable lead flow
  • Your lead generation relies on one source
  • People aren’t talking about you
  • User still don’t think about you as a go-to resources when they have a problem
  • There is a clear market leader that’s eating up the whole market
  • Your solution is awesome (you have happy customers), and the world needs to know about it
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