Not all prospects are the same. Some will need more time and education to move through your funnel before they buy.
The Five Stages of Awareness is a model that encapsulates how aware a prospect is of the problem they need solved, and the potential solutions out there.
Here's how you can use this model to get more prospects buying from you. We'll use the example of a new water purification device to illustrate:
Step 1 - Problem Unaware
All prospects start here. In this stage, they have no idea they even have a problem - and thus they obviously have no idea about the different possible solutions on the market (including yours). The objective here is to make the prospect aware they have a problem that needs resolving.
EXAMPLE: As a water purification firm, you need to educate prospects in this stage about the importance of clean drinking water. To do so, you may talk about the prevalence of water contamination or its harmful effects on health. The exact medium (social media, blogs, podcasts or paid ads) depends on where your prospects spend their attention and time.
Step 2 - Problem Aware
They now know they have a problem, but are still not yet aware that solutions exist (and what those solutions are).
EXAMPLE: Here you introduce water purifiers (not necessarily yours) as a solution. To do so, you can use statistics and research studies on how water purifiers can make contaminated water drinkable. The objective is to establish the need for a water purifier.
Step 3 - Solution Aware
They're aware that there are different relevant solutions on the market that can resolve their problem.
EXAMPLE: Water purifiers have been established in the mind of the prospect as a viable solution to contaminated water. Now you want to position YOUR product as the solution. To do so, emphasize (for example) the effectiveness of your purifier's filter, ease of use or longevity.
Step 4 - Product Aware
Aware of your solution but they don’t yet want it.
EXAMPLE: They're aware of your product (as well as competing solutions) but they haven't decided to go with you yet. In this stage, you may want to use testimonials, compare your solution with alternatives to demonstrate superiority or offer a free trial to push them to your side over your competitors.
Step 5 - Most Aware
They've decided your solution has the necessary features that solves their problem in the way they desire. Now all you have to do is present them an acceptable price.
EXAMPLE: The prospect is essentially ready to buy. You can push them over the edge with discounts, special offers or value-added bonuses (including warranties and after-sales servicing)
Keep in mind that not all prospects you encounter will start at the first (Problem Unaware) stage.
Some of them will already be further down the funnel (for eg. at the Problem Aware or Solution Aware stages) when you first encounter them.
In any case, your objective is to move your prospects through the different stages by making them aware of their problem, establishing your product as the ideal solution and then giving them the right incentives that make them buy.