Hubspot has made a name for itself by selling what it calls an “inbound marketing” strategy. This is not the place to clearly evaluate this strategy but it is the place to evaluate one of the core components of this strategy – what they called the “buyer’s journey”. In this article we will discuss this useful concept and relate it to another way to approach the same issue: the AIDA model.
Hubspot Buyer’s Journey
One of the most famous descriptions of the AIDA model is Hubspot’s distinction between the Awareness Stage, Consideration Stage and Decision stage. These concepts are really broad but serve Hubspot’s purpose – to sell the software they are promoting.
This is how Hubspot describes the “Buyer’s Journey”:
Awareness Stage: Prospect experiencing and expressing symptoms of a problem or opportunity
Consideration Stage: Prospect now clearly defined and given a name to their problem or opportunity
Decision Stage: Prospect has now decided on their solution strategy, method or approach
Hubspot proposes a content marketing strategy to “attack” these three stages. One needs to read this description of the buyer’s journey alongside this content strategy. But this description sounds to me a bit like the AIDA model. And it is to this description of buyer’s psychology that we now turn.
The AIDA Model
In short AIDA stands for Attention (A), Interest (I), Desire (D) and Action (A). Hence the AIDA model. And the description attached to each of these letters can be summed up as follows:
Attention – The consumer becomes aware of a category, product or brand (usually through advertising)
Interest – The consumer becomes interested by learning about brand benefits & how the brand fits with lifestyle
Desire – The consumer develops a favourable disposition towards the brand.
Action – The consumer forms a purchase intention, shops around, engages in trial or makes a purchase
Comparing “Buyer’s Journey” with AIDA
Hubspot and the AIDA interpretations are two ways to understand a buyer’s journey. They fundamentally are trying to reply to that particular question: what leads people to buy? What stages are there? If we understand these stages then we will be better marketers.
The problem with Hubspot solution is, however, is that it is too obscure and serves the purpose of a content marketing strategy – and does not clearly relate to an overall understanding of buyer’s psychology.
The AIDA model, despite emphasising issues such as raising awareness and attention and, on the other hand, an internal predisposition via desire to buy something, it is also very broad in its goals to clearly identify what goes on inside a buyer’s head – and what we should do has marketers.