Marketing tools may change, the way consumers discover products may change, and consumer behaviors may change, but one thing that remains constant is the consumer adoption process. In my years of business, my days in school, and my experience at WeLink, I have learned about numerous companies and how they market their products. I have seen some failures and I have witnessed some successes. What is interesting to me is how important it is for businesses to truly understand the 5 stages of the consumer adoption process and the important role this process plays in creating a successful marketing strategy. The 5 stages are: product awareness, product interest, product evaluation, product trial, and production.
Companies work hard to create a product and they need to work just as hard to create a process that walks their consumers through the consumer adoption phases.
It is important that you create a successful avenue for your consumers to become aware of your product. If consumers don’t know your product exists, then it might as well not exists. This is the stage in which the consumer becomes aware that your product is in the market, but the consumer lacks enough information to really understand your product. I recommend creating a strong social presence for your product. With social discovery on the rise companies must use social channels to create product awareness.
In this stage consumers are ready to learn more about your product. As a company you must ensure that when a consumer is in the interest stage they can find further information on your product. It is important to have a website, blog posts, videos, and other sources of info that potential consumers can discover and review.
In this stage the consumer is evaluating if they should purchase your product or not. They are in search of information. We are now finding that consumers go online and utilize social discovery tools to ask other individuals about your product or service. In addition, they find online reviews and recommendations. If possible, I suggest creating information that outlines the difference between your product and other similar products. Outline what separates your product from others.
This is when the consumer “kick the tires”. Nothing helps a consumer make a decision about your product, than actually trying your product out. There are many ways this is accomplished. For example, your company can provide your consumer with a free trial or your consumer can see a live demo.
When your consumer has entered the product adoption phase he/she is ready to make use of your product. This is the stage that businesses need to get their consumers to. This is when you can take money to the bank!
Whether you have a new business or an existing business the consumer adoption process is the same. It is important to create a process to successfully take your consumers through these stages. If you can nail this, then you are in business. Remember that marketing your product is as important, if not more important, than creating your product.