AIDA – understanding your client

Table of content

We will disappoint opera fans, but this article is not addressed to them. AIDA is a marketing model that, if learned and understood, can bring many benefits to people involved in this field. Find out more in this article.

AIDA – what is it?

AIDA (an abbreviation of four English words: attention, interest, desire, action) is a hierarchical model that defines sequential steps in consumer decision-making.

According to this pattern, a potential customer goes through a series of cognitive processes (concerning reasoning) and affective processes (concerning emotions or feelings), which culminate in taking action – ultimately, of course, purchasing a product or using a service.

This model is attributed to the American advertiser and salesman Elias St. Elmo Lewis, who created it over a hundred years ago. Since then, several extensive variations have been created (we will briefly look at them later in the text).

AIDA diagram

This model consists of four components:

  • Attention (attention) – our potential customer must initially be aware of the existence of our brand or product.
  • Interest – having gained a person’s attention, we should then familiarize them with the benefits of our goods/services.
  • Desire (aspiration) – the consumer has a desire or need to reach for our products.
  • Action (action) – i.e. implementation of the previous point; the customer will come to the store, start looking for offers or explore the goods we offer.

These are four stages that separate the average person from becoming our customer. However, the success and prosperity of each of them depends on the actions we take. Let’s look at what we should do to ensure that this process follows this model.

How to use the AIDA model

Each of these expected consumer reactions must be the result of our actions. They will not come from our pious thinking – we must, as it were, “guide” each potential customer through the steps described above. How to do it?

First, describe the client. Parameters including: age, place of residence, belonging to a certain niche, perhaps also gender, will largely depend on the thing we offer. It is equally important to determine the company’s value and image to gain credibility. Having a specific consumer profile, we can proceed to the first stage assumed by AIDA.

Build brand awareness among potential customers

People who fit our characteristics should be the main target of our marketing activities. We should also consider the choice of communication medium. We can gain the attention of younger audiences through SEO and social media activities. If we want to advertise – for example – among people aged 60+ from smaller towns, it is better to consider other, perhaps more conventional, forms.

Address the problem they are facing

It is important to maintain authenticity – many people associate marketing with illusion or, proverbially speaking, promising pears on willow. If we want to be taken seriously, we have to prove that we are not that different from our recipients. Moreover, we should approach the problem individually and demonstrate that it may concern each of us.

Offer a specific solution

Let’s present our product or service as a comprehensive answer to similar situations. Thanks to this, the customer should be convinced that our product will make his life easier, more efficient or even better. Of course, it also depends on the specificity of our product – not all products can be given such a “missionary nature”. Of course, you need to be tactful so as not to disregard the authenticity built by the two previous stages.

Encourage them to buy

Finally, if the above steps have been successfully completed, the customer should take action to purchase our goods. Most importantly, he will have a sense of independent decision-making, which is especially important for people who are very reserved towards marketing techniques.

Variations of the AIDA scheme

Although the model presents measures to induce purchase, it does not say anything about subsequent possible processes. Over the years, criticism has mainly focused on its omission of consumer satisfaction, willingness to recommend or repurchase. For this reason, several variants and alternative approaches have been created. Below we present selected:

  • modified AIDA model: attention, interest, belief, pursuit, action;
  • AIDAS, i.e.: attention, interest, striving, action, satisfaction;
  • AISDALSLove: attention, interest, search, pursuit, action, like/dislike, share, love/hate.

AIDA – application

Although originally intended for planning actions, the very scheme of triggering a reaction can also be transferred to another area. AIDA can also be a model layout of advertising text, regardless of its type – from short leaflets to extensive texts for landing pages.

Language has a number of means that can be used – such as call to action or benefits language. The formula has been guaranteeing effectiveness for over a century – so there is no reason not to try its implementation


  • AIDA is a marketing model presenting four stages that a customer goes through before purchasing our product;
  • These stages concern acquiring awareness about our product, interest in the offer, creating a need and persuading to take action;
  • AIDA, however, does not take into account subsequent relationships such as consumer satisfaction;
  • The schema itself can also be used for other purposes, such as advertising content.

Lordson Okpetu

I'm many things rolled into one; I'm an ex-journalist, a content strategist, digital marketer and 'rockstar' direct response copywriter. I've written tons of copies to sell thousands of products and services across diverse industries in Nigeria. In my occasional spare time, I play chess or spend time with my family. I am the Chief Operating Officer of Content Writer, Nigeria.

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