The 5-step decision making process of:

1.     Need Recognition or Problem Awareness

2.     Information Gathering

3.     Evaluation of Alternatives

4.     Purchase

5.     Post-Purchase Evaluation

The model implies that customers are extremely rational beings who pass through all stages in every purchase. However, in more impulse type purchases, customers often skip or reverse some of the stages.

We also now know that people are extremely emotional beings and they use logic to justify their emotional reactions. In the B2B arena many marketers have made the mistakes over the years of assuming that emotions play a smaller or non-existent role, yet nothing could be further from the truth.

Although the purchasers may be for an organization and may appear to be based purely on logic, clear benefits, price etc., people are people and they buy from people they like…

Our objective is to provide our prospects with all of the emotional reasons first, as these will have appositive “halo” effect on the rational reasons for purchase.

Hence the above buying process is most useful in designing your sales process and customer brand experience, making sure that each of the ‘touch points’ or stages of interaction with the customer is providing the most optimal experience and leaving the best possible impression.

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