I just finished reading this really interesting EBook by Jim Lecinski from Google. The concept discussed is the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT). Google’s definition of ZMOT is,
“It’s a new decision-making moment that takes place a hundred million times a day on mobile phones, laptops and wired devices of all kinds. It’s a moment where marketing happens, where information happens, and where consumers make choices that affect the success and failure of nearly every brand in the world”
We are all familiar with the traditional marketing model of the stimulus (when you first see the ad), the First Moment of Truth (when you hold it at the store), and the Second Moment of Truth (your experience with the product or service). Living in the digital age, we must now add the ZMOT. But how exactly does it fit into the traditional marketing model? The ZMOT fits in between the Stimulus and the First Moment of Truth (FMOT). The FMOT was an idea created by Procter & Gamble in 2005 and defined it as, “…that moment at the store shelf, when a consumer decides whether to buy one brand or another.”
The ZMOT is the time you take to research a product or service before you’re in the store. For example, looking up a car before you enter the dealership, comparing printer prices online before heading to the store, or researching user ratings and reviews before buying a hotel reservation. The ZMOT is now common practice because the majority of consumers do not spontaneously buy large products without researching them online first. Here are some interesting statistics;
• 70% of Americans research products online before making a purchase
• 79% of consumers use their Smartphone to help them make buying decisions
• The average shopper uses 10.4 sources before making a purchase using tv commercials, magazines, and numerous online references.
The Second Moment of Truth, or your experience with the product, becomes someone else’s ZMOT – after you experience a product you’ll tell your friends about it on the web or create a consumer review which will help someone else research that product in the future.
Google found that the ZMOT has the highest affect on a buyer’s decision. There is no doubt that the ZMOT is powerful in its ability to influence a consumer. The question is how do you win the Zero Moment of Truth? You need to be there when the consumer is looking for you. Word of mouth is no longer a face-to-face medium but a digital one. Have an active presence online. Regardless of good reviews or bad reviews, be there and engage.