Archive for the ‘Decision making’ Category

Zero Moment Of Truth

August 15, 2011

Google have published an ebook about the ‘Zero Moment Of Truth’, a term they’ve coined for all the consideration and research that now goes on before people get to the ‘shelf’ or actual purchase situation (typically called the First Moment Of Truth apparently). Clearly they have a major vested interest in drawing attention to the importance of this stage, because much of it happens online (whether on a desk computer or on mobile phones), but they’ve done some new research (although only in the US) which has a few interesting bits in it that illustrate the scale and breadth of influences before decisions are made.

For instance, they asked people who had purchased fairly recently in a variety of categories (cars, insurance, grocery, toiletries, …) which from a long list of sources they used to help them make a decision (then Google have categorized them below into Zero Moment Of Truth vs. First Moment Of Truth sources). You can see that many people are doing a lot:

Obviously it varies significantly by category, but even for decisions you would think are largely unresearched, like fast food restaurants, there’s some form of consideration phase for some people:

I often hear clients say ‘that’s not really happening in my category’ but this data indicates that it probably is, and it will be growing fast. It’s so easy now to find a bit more about before you buy – you can do it on your phone while you’re waiting to pick the kids up or in the store itself and what you get is often really useful, now that sales popularity ratings, experts’ opinions and user reviews are often readily available.

As marketers we expend loads of effort getting our ‘marketing stimuli’ right – the ads or other marketing that will trigger some interest from a consumer – but then do we expend enough effort thinking about what people will do next and how our brand can facilitate that process and have a relevant presence?  Almost certainly not.