Hey, welcome back! Today we’re going to look at how our buying habits and expectations have changed. And how those changes affect the way we decide whether to apply for a job.
From social media to mobile devices, technology has given us unprecedented powers to compare prices, complain loudly, and find the best deals.
It’s also made us more sceptical than ever - and transformed the way we buy and make decisions:
And these habits don’t only affect how and what we buy for ourselves. We don’t suddenly change our approach when buying something for work. Or deciding to apply for a job.
Below you’ll find the latest thinking on how people buy. And what that means for your candidate journey.
P.S. Got a tip or something you’d like to share? I’d love to hear about it - you can send me a note by replying to this email.
Before the digital revolution, the sales process was simpler. Companies controlled information about products, services and jobs. As customers, we had to ask them for it.
Also, the process was linear. Customers moved through a series of steps. One at a time. At each step narrowing down their options. Getting closer to making a purchase. And the goal of sales and marketing teams was to move customers through this funnel.
But in 2009, McKinsey declared that the traditional “funnel” model was no longer relevant. In its place, they developed the “customer decision journey”.
This journey involves shoppers using technology to actively evaluate products and services. It also has a feedback loop - where customers keep evaluating products after they buy them. Putting pressure on companies to deliver a superior ongoing experience.
But with the rapid pace of change, just six years later they realised the model was outdated.
From their work and research, McKinsey found that companies can do more than just react to customers as they make buying decisions. Companies can actively shape customer decision journeys. And that doing so can deliver value to customers and their brand.
In particular, they believe that companies which can compress, or even eliminate, the consideration and evaluation phases will have a competitive advantage.
To do this, companies need to deliver value through four separate, but linked capabilities:
The same lessons can be applied to people deciding whether to apply for a job.
For example, think of how much more helpful you could be if you understood why someone was looking for a job. What mattered to them. And what they do, or don’t, know about your job or company.
This article has a good infographic of how people buy, covering:
Now you understand how people buy - how do you win them over as they decide what to buy?
This article covers 9 things that can influence customers buying decision. The ones most relevant to recruitment are:
Changes in buying aren’t limited to consumer goods and services. They’re affecting business-to-business as well.
In any industry, buyers can now easily find quality information through digital channels. Meaning sales teams have fewer opportunities to directly influence them.
This doesn’t mean buying is easy. As everything has become more complex, this article believes customers now have a set of jobs to complete before making a purchase. Jobs that they approach simultaneously - and revise along the way.
The result is a buying journey that is anything but predictable or linear.
All of this looping and bouncing from one job to another means that customers value companies that make it easier for them to advance their buying jobs. Research shows that customers of companies providing useful information at the right time were 3 times more likely to buy a bigger deal with less regret.
It’s an interesting concept. And one that isn’t too difficult to translate into the jobs a candidate is trying to complete before applying for a job.
But at the end of the day, candidates are people. And they don’t suddenly change their behaviour, or what they want, when they look for a job.
Which is why following the best practices of marketers can give your recruitment an edge.
That’s all for the moment. I hope you’re enjoying the warmer weather. And if you’ve found this newsletter useful please spread the word and this link!