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How Startups Strategically Develop Their Content For The Entire Customer Journey?

How Do You Strategically Develop Content for the Entire Customer Journey?

In the world of marketing, discussions about content are omnipresent. As the backbone of your marketing strategy, it's essential not to view content as isolated projects. Instead, it should be seamlessly integrated into an overarching strategy. The importance of content extends beyond the Awareness, Consideration, and Decision stages of the customer journey, which are often emphasized. In fact, we advocate for a more comprehensive approach by introducing the Marketing Hourglass—a seven-stage model: Know, Like, Trust, Try, Buy, Repeat, and Refer. This model guides individuals from their first interaction with your business to becoming not just customers but loyal advocates.

As individuals progress through the customer journey, it's crucial to engage them with tailored content at each stage. Aligning your content development with the various phases of the Marketing Hourglass is the key to success.

Mapping the Customer Journey

To effectively map the customer journey, it's essential not to jump the gun. Small businesses frequently make the mistake of attempting to solve prospects' problems before those prospects even realize they have an issue. To map out the customer journey, you must have an in-depth understanding of your audience, including their desires, needs, pain points, and the questions they ask themselves before seeking a solution like yours.

Understanding your customers' journey is critical for developing content that resonates with each stage of the journey. Let's break down the stages and explore the corresponding content that aligns with the Marketing Hourglass.


The Know stage marks the initial awareness of your business. At this point, your goal is to capture the audience's attention.

  • Types of Content:
  • Blog posts addressing common client challenges (to enhance SEO)
  • Advertising (consider paid search and paid social) promoting content upgrades to boost lead conversion
  • Presentations at speaking engagements
  • Social media


The Like stage is reached when you've attracted individuals to your website. In the Marketing Hourglass, this is the second phase. Your objective here is to keep them engaged and obtain permission to continue the conversation.

  • Types of Content:
  • eNewsletters for lead nurturing and to demonstrate expertise, knowledge, and resources over time
  • Blog content on specific topics
  • Social media
  • Webinars
  • White papers


Trust is the most critical yet time-consuming phase. Building trust is not a sprint; it's a marathon. The more trust individuals have in you and your company, the more likely they are to make a purchase.

  • Types of Content:
  • Reviews
  • Success stories
  • Client testimonials
  • Webinars
  • Ebooks
  • Custom presentations
  • How-to guides
  • Client readiness packets
  • Proposal documents
  • Customer-generated videos
  • Case studies


Once trust has been established to the point where individuals are considering your solution, they enter the Try stage. This phase is often overlooked as businesses are eager to leap to the purchase. However, it can be the easiest phase to convert prospects into customers.

  • Types of Content:
  • Ebooks
  • Online or offline seminars
  • Webinars
  • Workshops
  • Audits
  • Evaluations
  • Video demonstrations
  • Frequently asked questions (FAQs)


The Buy stage is what all businesses aspire to achieve, but it's not the final destination. It's another step in building a roster of satisfied customers who become advocates for your brand. To continue delivering an outstanding customer experience, you must educate through content.

  • Types of Content:
  • New customer kits
  • Quick start guides
  • Customer stories
  • User manuals


To ensure customers return repeatedly, you should actively engage with them. Waiting for them to initiate contact isn't enough. You need to stay top of mind by providing high-quality content.

  • Types of Content:
  • Start an autoresponder series that provides education on additional solutions
  • Send handwritten notes for no reason
  • Systematically send press clippings
  • Customer-only newsletters


The ultimate goal of the Marketing Hourglass is to turn satisfied clients into referral clients. To achieve this, establish processes and campaigns that facilitate referrals from your brand champions.

  • Types of Content:
  • Co-branded ebooks, videos, or gift certificates that your customers and strategic partners can distribute
  • Feature your client success stories in your marketing materials
  • Create a list of top prospects and share it with clients for introductions

Remember, you don't always have to create entirely new content. Repurposing existing content, such as turning educational videos into written blog posts, and optimizing and republishing previously successful content can breathe new life into your content strategy. Developing content may be time-consuming, but with a well-planned approach that aligns with themes and the customer journey, it becomes more manageable and effective.