The Perfect User Journey - How Context Reinvents Inbound Marketing

September 14th, 2017 |
Anders H. Hansen

Imagine a large crowd of people. Every individual in that crowd has their own tastes and preferences, their own histories, their own relationships with other people and with the products they like.

How do you, as a marketer, appeal to a crowd that large and diverse using one unified message?

For decades, the answer was to be as broad and “safe” in your messaging as possible. Cater to what you know people already like based on past successes.

That is no longer good enough - the modern generation demands reinvention and freshness, things they are not used to seeing. But also not something new and alien to them - sometimes this means taking old ideas and presenting them in entirely different ways.

Today, being broad isn’t just about reaching the largest amount of people, it’s about being broadly specific and inclusive in your inbound marketing efforts.

We see this trend everywhere, the biggest companies are trying to be much more personal and direct in their marketing, which in turn influences their products.

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Diversity: A New Hope

As an example, Star Wars: Episode VII. On its face, it is almost a direct remake of the original 1977 movie. A hero on a desert plane gets entangled in a greater conflict, leading to the climax of a death star being destroyed.

The difference is, now we’ve got a more diverse cast to appeal to a more modern audience as well as the oldies that fans of the old movies loved. This philosophy of the new and the old is core to Episode VII, even weaving it into the fabric of the story.

What the people behind Episode VII did was more than double their market potential, not just by appealing to a broader audience, but doing so in specific ways by looking at the context of prospective viewers and figuring out exactly what they wanted.

Of course, not everyone can be Star Wars, but the same principles apply to all forms of inbound marketing. To avoid stagnancy, you need to reinvent yourself based on what people actually want rather than what you think they want. This is what context provides.

userjourneystory1

 

Understanding Context

We are who we are because our context defines us, and the most successful marketers know this and know how to incorporate it into their strategy.

Context is worthless on its own, however, the content needs to follow the lead. Which sort of factors are most important to a person if they live in Guatemala instead of, say, Austria, and how can you tailor your content based on that kind of context?

Inbound marketing is about earning the interest and respect of your audience, to make them come to you. But people have vastly different interests based on their context - so it should be impossible to cater to all of them at once. But is it really?

People are more complex than just liking one thing over the other, there are many factors of their lives that define their contexts and form their behaviours when engaging with your inbound marketing efforts.

That is why being able to observe that behaviour in real time is such a crucial tool. Your content might attract a solid amount of visitors, but you won’t know why unless you have insight into the way they interact with your website or product.

Having that context means you can attract many more visitors by making your inbound marketing more personal and meaningful.

But how? In terms of inbound marketing, what exactly does context mean, how is it tied to user behaviour, and what can you do with context once you have it?

 

The Perfect User Journey

In order to show you how Aesir answers these questions by analysing user behaviour through context, let’s create a quick persona and go on a user journey.

Laura is a marketing manager looking to optimise effectiveness in her department. She is aware of your product, but is not yet convinced it is right for her business.

To make a decision, she decides to look up some of your content. The steps of her journey are as follows:

She googles your website and enters. This is not the first time she has visited, so her personal context shows a higher engagement level than a complete newcomer. Maybe her search leads her to go directly to the content section, in which case we already know what the purpose of her visiting the site is.

She clicks on a topic that interests her. This tells us something about her preferences, and the amount of time it took her to find it tells us something about how much she prefers that topic.

She begins reading the article. Any number of factors can determine her engagement level during reading:

  • How much time does she spend on it?
  • Does she click any of the embedded links?
  • Does she continue on to read related articles?
  • Does she continue on to other areas of the site?
  • Does she share the article through social media?
  • Does she save the article for later and continue on another device?
  • Does she pursue any of the calls to action that are embedded in the article?
  • Does she sign up for your newsletter?

 

What You Can Do

In Aesir, any of these factors that go into Laura’s user journey raises or lowers her engagement level. She might have entered at 10% and left at 45%. All this data is entirely objective, so the Aesir engagement rating gives you a reliable and factual indicator of where every user is at on their personal journey.

But what can you do to make that number even higher? Based on the info you’ve gained:

 

  • You can set up an A/B split test for Laura with different visuals and images to see if she responds more favourably to a different design.
  • Your calls to action could be tied more directly to her situation based on the topic that interests her.
  • Your article could be presented in her native language if she is from a non-English speaking country.
  • The related articles could be tailored to her needs to create a longer, more effective user journey that keeps her interested.
  • If she signs up for your newsletter, you can send her articles related to her preferred topic without her having to tick any boxes beforehand.

 

Any of these factors could increase Laura’s engagement on subsequent visits, making her more likely to seek out an offer and eventually converting into a legitimate customer.

userjourneystory2

 

 

Catering to Infinite Users

Now Imagine that your content management system had already gathered all this data based on Laura’s previous visits and had already tailored your content automatically in order to maximise her engagement.

Then, imagine that you could automatically notify your sales staff once Laura’s engagement reaches a certain threshold, allowing them to reach out to her directly in an even more personal way.

And lastly, imagine that all this could be done automatically for thousands of vastly different visitors from all across the world. That is how you can appeal to a large audience of diverse individuals without sacrificing your core message. That is the power of context.

That is the power of Aesir.

Micro-segmentation based on actual, real-time behaviour, automatically tracked at all times. Aesir dynamically adapts your content based on each user’s preferences to maximise their engagement levels, leading to higher conversion rates and more valuable leads through intelligent prediction.

Aesir nurtures content to make it more personal and meaningful, relevant to the right people at the right time, and grants you an understanding of what drives those people to make a choice to engage with your business or product. Context won’t do your work for you, but it will allow you to work better and see greater results for your inbound marketing efforts across the board.

If you are curious about the possibilities of Aesir and how you can improve your content with the perfect user journey, you can request a free demo or just drop us a line and let us know.

 

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