The reason most of the times businesses fail to acquire users and convert them into costumers is simple, they push sales too hard. There’s no need to do that. There’s a way of doing it and it rests with the right framework of marketing. You need to prepare a systematic plan served by the right flow of marketing and communication events to ‘process’ visitors into customers.
Consider an example, you walk down to a shoe store, and you are received by a salesman asking you for the payment options upfront. No reception, no orientation, nothing, straight sales. Your next move should be walking out of the store.
What you expect as a customer when you enter the store is you will be seated at your comfort and helped with exploring the shoe options. You will be helped with choosing brands, colors, and designs. And then as you make up your mind, you will be escorted to the billing desk where the payment is done with a parting communication or maybe with some CRM or reward activity.
That’s how things work in real life. And we miss on this considering/creating this journey most of the time while doing the stuff online.
Understanding the fact, you can well relate to the concept of the marketing funnel.
Now, how do you create a marketing funnel that assures your business? It takes a step-by-step process to nurture a lead by taking the user through a strategically framed process of building awareness, assisting consideration, and driving decisions. These take into consideration different lead capturing tactics and customer acquisition strategies built right to serve the conversion goals.
Building the right marketing funnel for your business takes a lot of research over different marketing and communication factors. You may need to work on different aspects of the presentation and service interface. It may even require you to revisit your purpose. You may require to explore metrics, derive actionable data, create marketing content, plan the course of action, design a service process and work on various campaign options that might attract and persuade the users with the right marketing pitch and an effective reception to get you the optimum closure.
There are more events and ideas that need to combine with these factors to reach a high-performing process. And this is where you need a streamlined framework of marketing that delivers it with great effect. And you need the right marketing funnel to support you with this.
So, let’s find out how to build a marketing funnel that drives business growth taking all the factors one by one.
Define the Customer Persona
You cannot create a rewarding marketing funnel when you don’t have the clarity of your target audiences. So, the first thing you need to work on here is knowing who your ideal customer is. You need to create a matrix of needs, preferences, behavioral reflexes, buying patterns, service aspirations, engagement traits, and other factors based on demographics and statistical trends. With this, you get to sketch out the buyer/customer persona for your products and services which helps you to move into the direction of creating the marketing funnel more effectively and assertively.
These would help you effectively map out the stages that best complement their journey and optimize your service interface to best support the plan. The more efforts you put in at knowing your user, the better you get with building your funnels.
Determining Your Marketing Funnel Stages
Every business works on creating the marketing funnel stages. Knowingly or unknowingly. But not all of them are able to make it deliver. These need to be well defined with their strategic roles and should work in a functional tandem and should be complementing each other to best serve the underlying purpose. For this, you need to assign proper roles, attributes, and actionable entities to each defined section and the intermittent service layer of the funnel. This further goes on to define the objectives of each stage of the funnel referring to a set of metrics, derivative reports, and business stats concerning the underlying purpose and goal of the business.
Here, you need to keep it best complementing your business situation, the idea of marketing, and industry trends. For many marketers, it is just the three stages (Awareness, Consideration, Decisions) that are sufficient while others may go with up to six levels (Awareness, Interest, Consideration, Intent, Assessment, Purchase). With which the form and approach take a different shape. So, you have to follow what goes well with your marketing agenda and how it fits with your end business goals.
Building The Content Strategy
Before you work on building your customer funnels, you should have your content strategy in place.
This is because you need strategically planned content to drive every plan of action, communication, and promotion, which is a part of the course of events of the marketing framework you design.
It starts right from the time you reach out to a cold lead. Here, you need to have your pitch ready. You have to create informative and engaging content for your users to get them involved in the dialog. As you go on to convince them of your service, you have to take the role of a problem solver and a guide, being the expert in the field offering them valuable suggestions and tips. As you move ahead in the funnel, you have to keep them trusting on you more by pitching your value proposition. You further appoint and affirm your authority by emphasizing on how you compare better over the competitors. A perfect closure is as important as you get return visits and loyal customers when you plan the parting act right.
All this needs to be supported with a well-defined and rightly crafted content. For which, you need to have a content plan prepared right in the beginning.
Building Awareness: The Top of The Funnel
The top of the funnel is the place where the leads enter. This is a very sensitive and crucial moment of interaction that is about building the first impression. You are scanned for your authenticity as a service (looking into the credentials and acknowledgments), your quality (presentation and branding), your market presence (range and depth of service), functional status (activity on site), and other factors that determine your value as a business.
You need to build awareness covering all these points at the top of the funnel first, as a stranger landing on your website is not ready to buy your sales talks. You need to nurture the lead first, provide them with some valuable information about the industry, keep them engaged with some service insights, talk about the solution, show them your use cases, and help them build the perspective of the service. The idea is to convince them about your knowledge and expertise in the field and build a reputation that gets you into their consideration zone. And you need to do this with subtle and nimble efforts without being pushy and giving any verdicts about your business.
So, What Do You Need To Do Here To Make The Users Engage With Your Brand?
- Write blogs related to the latest trends and industry insights
- SEO activities that get you at the top of search visibility
- Creating engagement value through Podcasts, Videos, and Infographics
- Apply social media tactics – plan contests, quizzes, forum discussions, offers, and giveaways
The ultimate idea is to build awareness and subsequently take it to empower brand image and credibility.
Assisting Consideration – The Middle of The Funnel
Once you have made your leads aware of your services and they are paying attention to you, its time to move to the consideration stage. Here, your users are in a receptive mode and can be convinced of the need for the solution. In this process of taking their attention towards considering the solution, you can highlight their pain-points, address their problems, enumerate the benefits of the solution, create a sense of necessity, and provide supporting information, facts, and cases to further reinforce the pitch.
Once they are convinced about the need for the solution, its time you should show them how you can help. Take them through various aspects of the solution and the options they have to go with. Tell them about your expertise and back it with facts and details. Put across the comparison with the competitors and prove how you can be a better option to go with. The objective here is to convince them of your ability to deliver.
Different Content Types That You Can Leverage On While You Connect With The Users In The Consideration Stage:
- Write White Papers to offer a deep insight (on challenges, needs, and solutions) about the concerning topic related to your services.
- Conduct educational webinars based on the latest trends and topics that cover your service agenda.
- Prepare e-books that aim at delivering an exhaustive and detailed idea of your solutions while translating and connecting it to your word of offerings.
- Plan drip-campaigns, e-mailers, newsletters that keep the users connected with your consideration pitch.
The goal of the mid-level funnel is to let your potential customers know that they have a problem (in the first place) to which you have a viable solution that stands out in the category.
Driving Decision: The Bottom of The Funnel
A user/lead reaching the bottom of the funnel has matured as a prospect and is having all the ideas of your brand and the services you offer. They have built a perception about you as a business (favorable, most of the time) and are all ears to your plans. You can call them ‘hot leads’ who are on the way to make their decisions.
There are chances they are comparing different providers and services with you. This can include various factors like authenticity, reliability, industry experience, relevant expertise, work record, knowledgebase, engagement plans, turn-around-time, and pricing. You need to cover all these factors highlighting your value proposition to assure them of a great solution. Here, you need to keep your pitch competitive that demonstrates and establishes your edge over the competitors.
This stage is crucial, as this is the time when you are almost reaching your marketing climax, where you see things converting. And this is the time when things happen at a fast pace. If you fall short of the right execution and lose the track, you may face the repercussions. So, maintain your trait, maneuver your BOF plan to the best effect, and hit the conversion cord right – with the decision drivers and transition events planned and executed well.
Here, You Need To Leverage Bottom-of-the-funnel Marketing Tactics To Help Your Prospects Take Confident Decisions:
- Offer case studies to help them learn about similar client projects in detail to get the idea of how they have been helped to achieve their goals and can relate to their situation.
- Share customer testimonials that feature words of appreciation and are proof of a happy client base you have and the successful projects you have delivered.
- Put free product demo on offer, so they get a chance to make an easy and quick decision.
- Provide a proposal with detailed specs and feature lists to help them get complete elaborated information on what they are getting as a solution.
You just need to plan and execute the decision stage well and you will be able to convert your long-invested prospects into customers.
It is always important to measure your performance at different levels and intervals to be in control of the entire process of events falling in the marketing funnel. Here, you get to make data-driven decisions and get to make better choices with planning/reviewing your strategy, picking the marketing channels, curating the content, designing the campaigns, and executing the tasks.
Here you can take the help of CRM reporting, and keep a check on the leads across the stages. This can help you understand the pattern and degree of performance. You get to see through the metrics and track the results, do your analysis, and take decisions aiming at optimum results.
If you want to get the most out of your marketing efforts and attain better conversions, you need to create an effective marketing framework for your business. And the most effective way to do this is by going by a well-appointed marketing funnel that gets you the power to reach, nourish, and acquire leads and convert them into high-paying customers. Going by this guide you have a broad idea of how you should go about planning and executing it right. Just make sure you have the funnel designed to meet your marketing idea and business goal right to make it best serve your situation – and you will have the best results coming in!