The Stress of Decision-Making
Research has determined that there are seven steps we typically go through in the decision-making process. First, we must recognize that a decision needs to be made. Then, we need to gather information, identify alternatives, evaluate possible outcomes, make a choice, implement that choice, and evaluate our decision. The amount of thought we put into the process and the amount of associated stress is directly proportional to the costs involved and the magnitude of the outcome. Specifically, decision-making developers who have responsibility for big projects feel the weight of their decisions long after the decision is made.
Software and Marriage
Purchasing software is a significant commitment, and in some cases, the importance of the decision may feel as serious as committing to marry your partner. Going down a particular path in both software and in marriage can lead to joy, serenity, and productivity, or heartache, sorrow, and misery. A foundational decision of any kind inevitably leads to other — unanticipated — decisions.
Once a decision is made, it can be difficult and costly to unwind. A committed decision has the element of trust at its core, and trust is based on reputation and branding. In the case of marketing software to developers, reputation and brand equity can be built using a pragmatic approach of establishing your brand in developer newsletters, on community websites, and in social campaigns, using trusted references.
Developers Are Curious, So…
Are your campaigns creating awareness, and arousing the curious nature of developers? Do your headlines tease them to want to read further? Is there just enough information to whet their appetite, or does your content leave them feeling bloated and weighed down?
The key is to develop your campaigns by first creating a state of awareness so the developer is interested enough in your product to gather information, read the reviews, check the references, and ask for a trial. This element of discovery can be incorporated into your buyer’s journey by positioning your product so the developer always wants to learn more about it. Self-discovery of this kind mitigates fear and distrust because it’s a firsthand experience, and you are making the buyer’s journey personal.
It could be said that one definition of quality is “never having to say you’re sorry.” But mistakes happen, deliveries are delayed, and sometimes there is a glitch. The important thing to remember is that you must recover and maintain a trusting relationship with your customers. Relationships are not built on a single sale. They’re built on consistent delivery of what you and your brand promise.
Buyer’s remorse happens when there is no path to recovery, and it will kill a product and damage a brand. Developers thrive on details, and loading them with specs and technical information presents two possible outcomes: either they ask for more information, or they ask for a trial. Either outcome has a good chance of leading to a sale and a long-lasting relationship.
Decision-making developers who have responsibility for big projects feel the weight of their decisions long after the decision is made. To avoid putting your audience through “developer’s remorse,” put yourself in their position, and create the most enticing value proposition you can. Follow this up with a product that solves their problem, and enhances your brand. Then, follow up with excellent customer support and service. Finally, do not forget to thank them for being a customer (or even a curious prospective customer). If you need help creating a curiosity-inspiring customer experience, contact the folks at DeveloperMedia. They know the market, they know the buying process, and they can help you get meaningful results from your marketing campaigns.
Umass Dartmouth – 7 Steps of Decision-Making
DeveloperMedia – Brand Awareness
Deverelx – Developer Marketing