Marketing Funnel: What You MUST Know to Get More Leads and Sales!

Do you know what a marketing funnel is? Do you know the stages involved in a marketing funnel?
What a marketing funnel does is describe your customer’s journey with you; from the first stage where someone learns about your business up to the stage where they purchase your products or services. It shows the conversion process and can help you in mapping out a very effective sales strategy that will help your brand attract new customers. By evaluating your marketing funnel, you can drive more sales, customer loyalty, and brand awareness.
To know how to apply the marketing funnel to your business, read on till the end.

What is a Marketing Funnel?
A marketing funnel, also known as a purchase funnel, is a roadmap for understanding the process of turning leads into customers, from a marketing perspective.
This roadmap usually consists of social media, SEO, paid ads, content marketing, and so on. If people are purchasing your goods and services then you have a marketing funnel; even if you haven’t sat down to write one.
One thing to keep in mind is that although your marketing funnel might seem straightforward on paper or follow a particular progression process on paper, it is not always that way in real life. There can be regressions, and people may also jump steps on the marketing funnel on their journey to become customers.
A marketing funnel casts a broad net to capture leads and nurture these leads through all the stages until they become loyal customers. Note that companies don’t follow a specific marketing funnel, they draw up a funnel that fits their lead conversion journey best and uses it instead. However, there are similarities generally in every marketing funnel’s progression.

The Evolution of a Marketing Funnel

There is a general marketing funnel that was drawn up at the end of the 20th century by Elias St Elmo Lewis. It was the first marketing funnel and it highlighted only 4 stages:

  • Awareness. The prospect is aware of their problem or need and seeks a solution.
  • Interest. The prospect shows interest in some goods or services.
  • Desire. The prospect evaluates a certain brand.
  • Action. The prospect decides whether to purchase or not.

All the different variations of the marketing funnel came from this original version. Some companies prefer to keep their funnels simple by using the TOFU-MOFU-BOFU strategy. It refers to the Top of the funnel, Middle of the funnel, and Bottom of the funnel.
In this article, this strategy will be combined with a revised version of the original marketing funnel drawn up by Elias St Elmo Lewis. A post funnel stage will be added to better explain the marketing funnel. It will be explained and broken down by explaining in detail the marketing strategies that can be carried out in each particular stage before moving on to the next one.

Stages of the Marketing Funnel

1. Awareness (Top of the Funnel).
Being the first stage of the marketing funnel, this is the most important stage. The awareness stage is the stage where prospective customers notice your brand for the first time. It can be through any of the marketing techniques applied to your digital marketing campaigns eg paid ads, SEO, social media ads, and content marketing. It is at this stage that you focus on getting your brand to the path of every prospective customer out there.
The top of the funnel (TOFU) is where you apply strategies to generate brand awareness and interest in your goods and services. These strategies are known as TOFU strategies. This stage of the marketing funnel is the most popular stage that most marketers focus on.
Creating content for this stage has to be done with creativity because you are trying to get the attention of your prospective customers first, before trying to make them patronize your brand. Create content that is educational, informative, and interesting. Use storytelling and humor to attract your readers or viewers, remember that an average user’s attention shifts easily so you should try to grab their attention fast and make them interested in what you have to offer. You can also use emotionally-driven languages. By doing this, you will generate more leads and sales at every stage of the marketing funnel.
Some TOFU marketing strategies are :

  • Share stories about your brand that highlights the company’s culture, vision, values, and mission. Make these stories interesting. You can do this through writing blogs, sharing videos, making podcasts, and creating social media content. Make your stories relatable and interesting
  • Paid ads. This is an important marketing strategy because it exposes you to a larger audience. You also get to pick the demographics and interests of the audience you want to target, even their location. Paid ads involve social media ads, YouTube ads, Google Ads, and so on. While deciding where to run your paid ads, consider the target audience’s age group and interests so you pick the best platforms to reach out to them.
  • Advocate for causes that your brand and customers care about. Align your marketing efforts with causes that your customers care about, it will help you connect with them better and build brand loyalty. You should find out what causes your customers care about. It could be giving back to society, environmentalism, or social justice.
  • Create SEO Blogs. Blogs are an effective way to connect better with your prospective customers. Use relevant keywords in your blogs, and include subtle CTAs in your blogs. A Call to action (CTA) is anything in your blog that encourages your readers to take a particular action such as signing up for newsletters, downloading documents, booking a consultation, and so on. Blogs help you to attract readers who are not yet familiar with your brand and also showcase your expertise in your field.

2. Interest (Middle of the Funnel)
At this stage, prospective customers already know about your brand through social media content, paid ads, blog posts, and so on. This is the stage where you have to work towards keeping their attention through valuable content to help them learn more about your goods and services through blog posts, infographics, webinars, and so on.
This MOFU marketing is about nurturing potential leads towards being customers and filtering the ones who don’t fit. This is the point where you have to focus on ways to keep them coming back for more. You can do this through retargeting, email marketing campaigns, offering free trials or discounts on your products, and so on.
Some MOFU strategies are:

  • Retargeting. What retargeting does is that it showcases your ads to people who have previously engaged with your brand in the past through visiting your website or following you on social media.
  • Show social proof through customer stories. This has been proven to persuade leads to convert because 91% of people read reviews online before making a purchase and 40% follow brands based on recommendations. This is why it is very important to post customer testimonials on your website and product reviews on product pages. It builds customer trust and improves your credibility and authority.
  • Put case studies on your website. Case studies help provide real-life examples of how your product or service helps businesses achieve their goals, or how it helps customers get what they want. This helps in enabling trust and credibility, which in turn helps you convert your leads into customers.

3. Action (Bottom of the Funnel)
At this stage, prospective customers are interested in your brand and are considering making a purchase. Your goal here would be to get these prospective customers to take the desired action.
Some BOFU strategies are:

  • Publish blog posts that are relevant to their needs and interests. This is the stage where you should be providing as much value as possible to your prospects. Doing this will increase the chances of them purchasing with you.
  • Offer coupons and discounts. These are best offered in the middle of your marketing funnel. It is a sure way to increase conversions.
  • Be transparent with your pricing. Clearly state the prices of what you offer, plus state the discounts clearly too. Pricing is a delicate part of this marketing stage so you have to be careful and as clear as possible because you don’t want customers to reach the bottom of your marketing funnel and be turned off or confused about your pricing.
  • Create a demo of your product in use. At this BOFU stage customers are almost ready to patronize your brand but might have slight reservations since they haven’t seen your product or service at work. You should create a demo of someone using your service or product, to give them an idea of how the value you offer them. It could be a video or an interactive tool that simulates the experience of using your products.

4. Loyalty (Post Funnel Stage)
It is the fourth and final stage. It is at this stage that customers have made a purchase and are now using your products or services. All you have to do in this stage is to keep providing them with valuable content and support to ensure that they come back for more and become loyal advocates for your business.
Here are some strategies to help you make this happen:

  • Make use of surveys to give you valuable insights into customer behavior. Include these surveys on your website, in your email marketing or newsletters, or after a customer makes a purchase. A survey can help you know what works and what does not in your marketing campaigns, can help you know what went wrong so you can improve the customer experience, and help you to see how a customer’s in-store experience went. You can also use surveys to create buyer personas. This way, you can target your marketing more effectively and see better results from your campaigns.
  • Create a referral program. You can offer them a discount for every new customer that they bring in for example.
  • Offer excellent customer service. This is a big secret to retaining customers and having them recommend you to others. Make customer service a priority to increase sales and conversions from your marketing funnel. If you have poor customer service you will lose customers and damage your brand’s reputation.

What is the Aim of a Marketing Funnel?
The ultimate aim of a Marketing Funnel is to drive more sales by increasing the number of leads and conversions and driving higher brand awareness. It is important to know your marketing funnel and apply it to your digital marketing campaign.
This is why your business needs a digital marketing agency (read more here). We offer every digital marketing service at very affordable prices at Dik3n. We have helped several high-flying companies increase their ROI by providing them with our professional services. Book a consultation with us here.

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