It is important to understand the consumer journey to map the communication plan to maximize the return of investment.
Before buying a product or service, consumer experience couple of steps and brand needs to have proper plan to give positive experience in each and every step.
In the very first step, consumer finds the product intentionally or unintentionally. I mean, consumers search a product to fulfill certain need or they discover a product from advertisement in TV or print or digital etc.
In the 2nd stage, they interact with brand to understand the advantages and disadvantages. In this stage, consumer try to learn about the brand (from their website, making call to customer service, having discussion with sells person and many other way), compare with other similar brands available in the market and try to get recommendation from others(using social media or review site/blog etc). In the interaction phase of consumer journey, they try to be convinced about the brand.
3rd stage is nothing but buy/subscribe/activate/consume. In this stage consumer try to experience different feature or usages of the product to get full benefit of the product.
The next stage is Share; based on experience, consumer started to talk about the brand to the F&F, in the social media or review site/blog etc. To get positive conversation about the brand, it is important to give positive experience to the consumer, sometime proactively.