ZMOT – How to Apply the Concept in Your Business
ZMOT – How to Apply the Concept in Your Business
In business success, marketing has always played an important role. It is an essential process that drives future sales and profitability by promoting and positioning products or services in the market that makes customers choose them over all existing and alternative products or services available.
Originally, marketing is a 3-step model that involves stimulus, shelf and experience, which mirrors the process from promotion, to buying experience to using the new product/service. But ever since the internet, smartphones and other mobile devices have become part of daily life, a new step in the process has been introduced – ZMOT.
What is ZMOT?
ZMOT stands for Zero Moment of Truth. It has been studied and presented by Google’s Managing Director of US Sales & Services and Chief ZMOT Evangelist – Jim Lucenski. He says “ZMOT is the critical new moment between Stimulus and the First Moment Of Truth.”
Google has recently produced an ebook on this subject. If you’ll search it up on Google you’ll find a free download in an amazing number of different formats. This very well-produced document is worth downloading not only because it’s a great book but it’s got videos fully embedded in it and is a great way to see what the future of ebooks will be.
The interesting thing about this ebook is that it outlines how social media and traditional marketing fit together into the new world that we’ve created that’s been driven by internet, smartphones, iPads – tools that fit in this environment very perfectly.
When we’re talking about ZMOT, we’re saying that the traditional marketing process has changed.
In traditional marketing, there will be some sort of stimulus – either advertising or word of mouth, then a customer would come to your shop (let’s say you’re a TV retailer) based on your stimulus to buy a TV. They race in the door, they see the product on the shelf and then they would engage with your salespeople to get some more information, negotiate and buy the product.
In this process, the first moment of truth is when they’re walking to your store and the second moment of truth comes when they get the product home and realize that the product either does or doesn’t live up to the hype and expectation, etc.
The guys at Google are saying that today, there is another moment of truth called the “Zero Moment of Truth”. Customers still have that stimulus whether it’s a referral or advertising but instead of racing into your store to see what you’ve got to offer, they will jump on the internet and start to search.
They will look at your website (and the competition), they’ll look at keyword searches and they’ll look at social media. They’ll look at a whole range of things and they will ask their friends in social media about particular products or where they bought it, what particular store, has anybody used this service before – those sorts of things happen before they pick up the phone or before they come in and see you to make an appointment. Then the first and second moments of truth follow on from that.
As you can see, with ZMOT our buying patterns have changed.
What can you do to leverage ZMOT in your business?
1. Have online presence.
It’s not only an option that you have a website but you really MUST have a website. A good quality website that attracts people’s attention, that ranks highly for the keywords that pertain to your business. You need to invest some money into search engine optimization (SEO) services to get your rankings up in Google and other places. Look at things like Google Places to get your rankings up. There’ll be strategies for getting your rankings higher in Yahoo, Bing and other search engines that you might use but Google is certainly where the money game is.
There is no excuse for not having a simple website for your business. A DIY WordPress template site can cost you less than $200 including web hosting and domain name registration. If you don’t have the skill or inclination to do it yourself then there are plenty of people willing to help.
2. Have social media presence.
We’ve reached the tipping point now and social media is important because people want to find out what other people think about you as opposed to what you write about yourself on your website and what you post. They want to see live testimonials. (LinkedIn for me as a professional is quite a good site because I can ask people to recommend me by writing reference that is posted on my page and theirs!)
It’s important you have web presence, social media presence, and it’s also important you integrate traditional and social media to give a consistent message across all channels. Take the time to make sure that if you’re running a traditional media ad campaign that it is also reflected on your website and in your social media networks.
Select the social media platform that links with your target market. I don’t think it matters – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube or whatever social media platforms you use but that needs to be something that caters to your target market and where they spend most of their time. Think about an integrated approach and make sure you do have presence. You’ve got to put some time and energy into it but it is well worth the results in the long term.
Do yourself a favor, get ahold of the ZMOT ebook and have a look at it. Then work out how you’re going to start to apply it in your business to make sure that when your clients and prospects have their ZMOTs – you’re there – on their smartphone or tablet or web browser!
Russell Cummings, Director Strategic Business Development