The zero moment of truth (ZMOT) is an important step in the buying process that all businesses should be aware of if they wish to get an edge over the competition and increase their client base. Marketing has become a battleground where millions of businesses compete against each other for potential clients using different mediums such as print, online advertising and word of mouth. The most successful companies are often the ones with a clearly defined marketing strategy that ensures their brand is put in front of the right demographic at the right time. Marketing giants Google have broken down the buying process to help companies identify different marketing opportunities that can be used to attract new customers while increasing brand recognition online.
What Is The Zero Moment Of Truth?
The ZMOT is a marketing term that was coined by Google in 2011 and formed the basis for their ebook ZMOT. The term refers to the period of time where a potential buyer begins researching a new product or service online before deciding whether or not to make a purchase. The concept is based on a model created by international management consultants McKinsey and Company that can be broken down into three parts.
1. Stimulus – A stimulus can be an advertisement or recommendation that inspires a person to want to purchase a product. It can also be a need to purchase something such as a mother requiring a larger buggy for a growing child.
2. First Moment Of Truth – The first moment of truth occurs when the customer is confronted with a number of different purchase options. This can be while browsing the shelves at a department store or comparing goods online.
3. Second Moment Of Truth – The second moment of truth takes place after the customer makes a purchase and refers to their overall experience of buying and using the product or service.
Why Is The Zero Moment Of Truth Important To Companies?
Understanding the marketing potential of the ZMOT is essential for companies that want to attract the maximum amount of customers to their business. Before making a purchase, approximately 81% of shoppers will perform online research that includes reading customer reviews and watching video tutorials on sites like YouTube. By making sure their brand is available to customers in an attractive, easy-to-read format, businesses can increase the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns instantly.
The Zero Moment Of Truth In Action
In order to understand the ZMOT in action, consider the following scenario:
A truck driver watches an advertisement for a spray on bedliner that can prevent scratches and chips to the paintwork of truck beds. He then goes online to research the different options available in his area including DIY products and professional services. The truck driver will most likely search for customer reviews from others that have used the product or service as well as pricing information. He may even consult YouTube videos to see product demonstrations and before and after photos. This research is considered the ZMOT and is a crucial moment in the buying process and occurs even before the company is aware the customer exists.
How To Embrace The Zero Moment Of Truth
In order to make the ZMOT work for them, companies need to make sure that information on their product or service is always available online. Customers search for product reviews, customer ratings, case studies and product demonstrations when performing online research as well as visiting consumer service websites. Establishing an online presence is an important part of any marketing strategy, but ensuring that detailed information on products and services is readily accessible takes it a step further. The vast majority of customers also begin their research using a smartphone before transferring to a tablet or laptop to actually make the purchase. Therefore, companies should also ensure that their website is mobile friendly so customers can easily access the information from any electronic device.
The internet has made it much easier for customers to fully research potential purchases to ensure they get the best possible product or service. This can also benefit companies as it gives them the opportunity to promote their products and increase their brand recognition online. However, it is important to ensure that online marketing campaigns are professional and attractive to avoid deterring potential clients.
Danny Rios has been in the truck spray on bedliner business since 2005. His experience stems from owning a shop and also training other shop owners on how to be successful in the truck bedliner business.