While trends are constantly evolving, one thing that remains an effective way to craft a campaign that not only brings brand awareness but also transactions is the marketing funnel. Some businesses are shying away from the concept of the marketing funnel as it seems to be a dated way to describe a consumer’s path to purchase but it is still a useful way to describe, as well as visualize, a complex process from start to finish.
So what is a Marketing Funnel?
A marketing funnel is essentially a way of breaking down the customer’s journey all the way from when they first learn about your company to when they are ready to buy your product or service. The first step of any marketing campaign is to drive traffic to your website. This can be done organically by creating SEO-friendly content, getting backlinks, etc. Or it can be done through paid advertising!
Once leads begin to progress through your funnel, your outreach strategies will start to get more and more personalized until the customer finally makes a purchase.
The Six Stages of the Sales Funnel
Regardless of the type of purchase or the amount spent, we all as consumers follow a similar path when it comes to deciding on what to buy. Here is an overall breakdown of the six stages:
At the top of the marketing funnel, awareness is the beginning of overall lead generation where potential customers are drawn to the business through marketing campaigns and consumer research. Building brand loyalty and trust can then be established through website content such as blog posts along with social media marketing, local search, and online advertising. And as information is collected, consumer leads should be pulled into a lead management system for nurturing further down the funnel.
Once leads have been generated, they will then move into the interest stage of the sales funnel where consumers will learn more about the company, the product offerings, and any other helpful information that will help their purchase decision. At this point on the path to purchase, this is a good opportunity for a business to develop a relationship with their targeted audience through different forms of consumer communication. Some marketing outlets that a company can nurture these leads could be through emails, content with an emphasis on the business specifically, classes, newsletters, and more.
At this stage of the marketing funnel, leads are seen as prospective customers and more helpful information about the products, services, and different offers should be provided. Whether it is through automated email campaigns, free trials, and more, you want to make sure that you are still nurturing this potential consumer.
Arguably one of the more critical points of a customer’s journey as this is the stage where prospects demonstrate that they are interested in buying a brand’s product or service. This can simply look like a product placed in a website’s shopping cart, expressed in a survey or even after a product demo. Whatever it looks like, this is an opportunity for a business to make a solid case as to why their product or service is the best choice for a buyer.
Once buyers are making a final decision to buy a brand’s product or service, this is typically where marketing and sales efforts work together to nurture that decision-making process and overall convince the customer that what they are offering is the best choice out there.
As the last stage in the marketing funnel, this is where a consumer has made the final decision to buy and convert from lead to prospect to customer. A transaction is made and if that customer feels like they had a positive experience with the company, then referrals could potentially be directed to the top of the funnel and the process can begin again.
Creating Content for Every Stage of Your Marketing Funnel
When creating a marketing funnel for your particular business and determining what type of content best serves your ideal client, you want to ask yourself a few things. How will customers at this stage find me? What kind of information can I provide to help move them on to the next stage? How will I know if they have converted or even moved to the next part of the funnel?
At the start of the journey to purchase, you want to drive more traffic to your company’s website. Marketing tactics that pique interest and stir awareness without overloading consumers with information, such as social media posts or pay-per-click advertising, are a good way to collect leads at the beginning stages of your sales funnel. You also will want to establish the company as an industry expert or thought leader in a particular niche, which ultimately builds trust. This could be writing helpful blog articles that answer your target market’s questions.
Similarly, blog articles can help a consumer learn more about your specific product or service offerings and give them a better idea of what they can expect when working with your company. This can ultimately influence purchase decisions so it would also be beneficial to utilize other creative content options to show that your business is the best option out there.
Feeling a touch overwhelmed? Planning and implementing an effective marketing campaign can be daunting, which is why we have a team of Maui marketing professionals that can help you establish a solid marketing strategy. Sit down with us in a free consultation and let’s talk about how you can create a campaign that successfully guides customers through the path to purchase!