How Your Customers Make Buying Decisions

How Your Customers Make Buying Decisions

February 17th, 2021 // 1:17 pm @

How Your Customers Make Buying Decisions

Last week, we discussed how to present the investment to your customers by redefining value and repositioning the buying perspective.

Most businesses describe a product or service based on what a customer perceives it to be instead of the real value it delivers.  The more you redefine the way your customers make decisions about your products and services, the more you create that famous “category of one” that every business strives to become – void of any competition or comparison.

For my doctors, there are a couple major repositioning points that we want to make in the minds of patients deciding about their dentistry.

We want to replace the preconceived idea in a patient’s mind that something must be broken, causing pain, or urgent in order to need some form of dental treatment.

Once you accept the idea that most patients believe dentistry is reactive, then and only then can you begin to reshape the patients’ mindset.  “We are a practice that doesn’t wait until you have a problem to fix something, in fact we want to prevent you from having problems which means you will need less dentistry in the future.”

Now, there are a dozen different ways to illustrate this and to even say it – that isn’t the point – the more important point is that we flipped the normal conception of a consumer to better match our objectives and of course it happens to be in the best interest of the customers at the same time.

The critical thinking question for you and what you should be pondering is how do your customers, clients, or patients make their buying decision and rationalization of the investment?  And what can you do to redefine how they see and justify value in their minds?

Everything you do in your customer experience should be about building your value proposition and establishing “reasons why” (the justification).

Here are the three most important ways to elevate the customers’ awareness…

Telling more stories and showing more people like them.

Showing them the crystal ball and future value.

Educating them both emotionally and logically.

To illustrate this point of redefining how decisions are made and the investment is valued, we’ll use our doctors – who are comparing the long-term value and benefits of optimal health instead of just triaging problems in a patient’s mouth.

Why is this so important…

Because only the doctor has the authority to set the benchmark for what ‘optimal health’ is.  Therefore, we have taken control over the single most important part of engaging a patient – how are they to know what acceptable or optimal is, and thus the criteria they use for making a decision.

They know their mouth – that’s it.

Think about listing a house for sale.  You trust the realtor to help you set the price.  Sure, a buyer and seller have some market research and the public listings to use, but why wouldn’t you take the advice from someone who sells housing for a living.

The same goes for literally everything – the consumer is not the expert – the business is supposed to be.  That is the difference between being an authority or an order taker.

You don’t ask the drive-thru worker about meal pairings, but you certainly would a fine-dining chef.  Authority vs order taker.

Of course, the goal is to make this experiential and help the customer arrive at the best outcome and buying decision for them just from following your process.  That’s when you know your experience is dialed in – when it yields a confident and comfortable conclusion for your customers.

If you want to take this to the next level, you can actually layout your experience in stages and tell the customer exactly what is going to happen and how you work with them to arrive at the best decision for themselves by following your approach.

Some mattress stores have ways to determine the right mattress for you, same with specialty footwear stores or high end shops for men’s suits or wedding dresses or paint colors.

Think about any buying experience you have gone through recently or are going to go through and no doubt – because you are you – you critique what they do and you think about how you would make it different and better.

The past year, everyone wants to shortcut everything with the virtual stuff – but guess what – it’s the ones with the most experiential, most customized, and most customer guided that are the ones that are thriving because they aren’t just becoming websites people shop and click.  Instead, they are experiences and they are taking the customer on a journey, nearly an adventure, to get them involved in the buying experience as much as the actual product or service.

That’s the final answer and the most important takeaway for you in these past few weeks on price and value creation – before the customer buys with their money they must buy with all other parts of themselves… their needs, wants, desires – then their time – then their money.

Ultimately, your process is a means to deliver to them a more appropriate, fitting, customized, and specific solution that has no value comparison because you have achieved putting yourself into a category of one.  You will have successfully redefined their perception and the justification of price because you will have reshaped their expectations and therefore how they make their buying decision.

Lastly, in regards to everything we’ve been working on together lately, know this: once you think you’ve done enough – do more.  Your customers will thank you for it.

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