For my way of thinking, the Awareness Cycle on its own, is way too egoistic! It tells us how the customer progresses through a process of discovering our company, getting informed about the details of our products and becoming convinced that we should get his or her business. Which is cool if you're "us", but it's not all you need if you're the customer.
Similiar to a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) view of the world, the Awareness Cycle is an "inside-looking-out" view of what's happening. You don't believe me? Just look at the process diagrams for any of the major CRM systems. The logic is consistently that of "when the customer does A, then we do B and C or ocasionally even D". We define how we react, when the customer does something that we expect - better: have planned - he or she will do. Then we go on to monitor whether the customer has responded properly to our action, which is where all the event handlers come in: "Send proposal and create follow-up task for 10 days later"
Without getting into the details of every possible B2B interaction - different industries, different products and services and different customer types - we can draw a fairly generic Customer Activity Cycle that provides an adequate basis for most B2B discussions.
For instance, as you progress with the analysis of the Customer Activity Cycle, you will need to add an appropriate level of detail to document your understanding of what exactly it is that the customer is doing in each phase.
For specific activities, you might find it useful to add an entirely new phase, which in turn can be documented to the required level of detail.
But no matter what line of business you're engaged in, you'll probably have the need to distinguish between various different types of customer (OEM, Wholesaler, End-User etc.). Some of these may be strategically more important than others, or it may simply be that the 80:20 rule applies - 80% of your revenue comes from just one of your five different customer types.
My bet, however, is that when you begin to examine the different customer types you will dicover huge differences between them, both in terms of the dynamics within the Activity Cycle and in the leverage that can be achieved by providing appropriate support in different phases of the respective activity cycles.
For instance, where an OEM customer will probably have made all 3rd party product decisions by the end of the R&D phase, an Installer type customer will be making the same decisions while repairing some equipment in the field. The "convinced" button might be pressed in the first case by some incredible technology advancement that you can offer, in the latter case it may simply be that you offered a better and quicker way to source a necessary replacement part.
I said earlier that the Awareness Cycle on its own is too egoistic. It needs the Customer Activity Cycle as the environment in which to operate. Only then does it have conext - customer context.
Now we have a scenario where the customer is pursuing her activities to the benefit of her business, communicating with us where it makes sense and evaluating the interaction we provide in repetitive cycles of awareness. The model reflects the possibility her being totally convinced on functionality and pricing, but becoming "no longer convinced" when we don't, for instance, live up to our promised delivery times.
We'll discuss these effects in more detail later, but first we'll look at how Content - in the widest meaning of the word - can support the Customer Activity Cycle too.
[The only rule - more a sanity check - that I'd ask you to apply is that the diagram fits on a PowerPoint slide and that the minimum text size is 8pt for labels.]