July 2016

Matthew had a large, sandy backyard, but what he really wanted was a grass lawn for his dogs to play on. He used his smartphone to research laying sod on YouTube, so he could economically transform his dirt yard into a garden.

Even when consumers are not ready to buy, retailers can still influence perceptions and shape future purchase decisions by providing helpful content that meets consumers' needs in their I-need-some-ideas moments. In this case, a brand Matthew may not have been aware of had the perfect opportunity to reach him by providing a solution to his problem through useful video content. By doing so, this new brand could become the frontrunner in his consideration set when he's ready to buy.

When creating content, marketers should consider consumers' intent and context, and deliver relevant information in appropriate formats. Here, a video was the perfect tool, but in other instances, a step-by-step text guide—for example—might work better.

1 in 3 smartphone users have purchased from a company or brand other than the one they intended to because of information provided in the moment they needed it.

Source: Google/Ipsos, "Consumers in the Micro-Moment," Wave 3, U.S., n=1291 online smartphone users 18+, August 2015.

How shoppers get inspiration: Consumer search trends in I-need-some-ideas moments