Let’s imagine a situation –
You go to a shoe store or clothing brand store and you like a pair of shoes. Immediately after you enter the store, a salesperson asks you if you’ll buy and pay with cash or credit card. Now, you have not tried the shoes, you have not seen the other color options, you have not seen other shoes in other stores of your size, but the salesperson is just behind you and keeps asking you for your payment information. Of course, you will feel annoyed and leave the place.
It is obvious that this strategy does not work in the real world. But, what one should have done was to set up a Marketing Funnel.
To earn higher sales or generate revenues is a multi-step process. It requires you, to have progressively nurture people before they purchase to buy any product or item. Same as a shoe salesperson or any salesperson from the jewelry store, bakery shop or hypermart is nurturing you when they ask you about your preferences, choices and range. Also when they give options regarding it, help you try a few pairs, taste the flavors, or let you know about the different deals available. It gives you the information and support you need to make the decision about buying.
In simple terms, Marketing Funnel is a framework businesses use to turn strangers into customers. It is a system/ process that introduces new leads to your business through the different type of business strategies and content. These leads are then converted into possible customers by progressively funneling them through more types of content. It is a process of breaking down customer from the “awareness” stage to the “purchase” stage. Marketing Funnel passes through 5 different stages-
- Awareness: At this stage, customers read about or get awareness about a certain product through advertisements, Word of mouth, blogs, online portals advertisements, radios, newspapers, etc.
- Interest: Recognizing a problem or a need is the step that triggers a search and interest for more information. Once the target audience is aware of the product or particular item you need to know what types of content they are interested in.
- Consideration: This stage is a perfect step way to expand upon the value in the lead magnet, and give your leads more stretch and preferences.
- Evaluation: Once the consideration is done regarding a particular product or service, a final push or request can be done to make them purchase the final product or services. One needs to get the customer into the evaluation stage, where they’ll be working out what benefits await them should they sign up.
- Purchase: The purchase decision is the natural conclusion of the previous 4 stages. The potential customer who was aware of the product, investigated their options, considered the particular product or service the best option among others, evaluated it and now they are ready to pull out their wallets.
In short, the whole stage of Marketing Funnel can easily be broken down into a three-layered model.
Top of the Funnel: (Awareness & Consideration)
Goal: Attract new target visitors
The top of the marketing funnel is about expanding the visibility of your business or services and making the audience more aware and considerate about the fact that this particular product or services are available and exists in the market. People/ audience under this marketing funnel is not many adamant to buy products or services from you, as they are still getting aware of it.
Middle of the Funnel: (Interest)
Goal: Capture and nurture leads
The middle of the funnel is when people start building up more interest in your product and services and build enough trust in what you do and what you have to offer. This is the important time when you indulge in providing enough value to your customers who are willing to give a piece of information, it is when the marketers say that they have become leads – that one can later use to nurture a relationship with them.
Bottom of the funnel: (Evaluation & Purchase)
Goal: Turning leads into customers
The bottom of the funnel is the stage where a sufficient level of trust is built and is ready to be presented with the final offer or the product. The most important job of an individual at the bottom of the funnel is to present their product or services in a lucrative ways /style that inspires them to action – the customers should feel the service as a final solution to their requirements and need.
Powerful ways to create Marketing Funnel –
Let’s know about it in a stage-wise manner. As we already know that there are three stages,
- Top of the Funnel (Direct Emails, Press, Social media, SEO , Paid advertisements, Influencers)
- Middle of the Funnel (Mini-courses, demos, Popups, Webinars, Communities)
- Bottom of the Funnel (Launches, Upsells, Remarketing, Use scarcity, Presales)
The ways to create a Powerful Marketing Funnel in STAGE 1 – Top of the Funnel
The main goal in Stage – 1, is to attract as many targeted visitors as possible with relevant content. In this stage, one should create content about topics/ products or services related to industry or business that aims to entertain or educate the visitors. Direct emails, Blog posts,press, videos, advertisements, social media posts, and infographics – anything can be used as a way to create awareness and provides free value to the users. Let’s see a few of them –
- Direct Emails –
Direct mails works best if have a list of people who are interested in your business. For example a list of current customers, a group of community you are a part of or manage. Gather a list of contact from all the common groups you are a part of and share the content you have created. Now, if your contact list is big, try to keep a loop by giving them the option to “subscribe” and add-on notifications so as they will be updated and we will also get a target audience to make leads.
- Social Media –
Social media is a great channel of marketing. It is the best way to gather a good amount of content and share with other people who are having and serving on the same social media platforms. One can grow social media audience and share content with followers, or also participate and contribute to the existing communities followed. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Quora, Twitter and Pinterest.
- SEO – Search Engine Optimization –
This means that when people search for a particular term, article, news or information to any matter and your web page is the first result and ranks number one in search engine result page (apart from the promoted ones, featured or advertised). It is mainly getting traffic from websites like Yahoo, Google and Bing to your site.
- Press/ Paid advertisements –
Media outlets and publications have built a large audience through an interesting way of advertisement. It is widely used for commercial advertising. Huge gathering of people can be addressed at a time by press media. Attractive slogans, words, figures, charts, etc. can be used for advertising the products colorfully and artfully. This mainly involves newspaper, magazines and other publications.
The ways to create a Powerful Marketing Funnel in STAGE 2 – Middle of the Funnel
The main goal in Stage – 2, is to convert the number of visitors and customers from the top funnel into leads for the business. In simple term, it means that once the visitors have given you a piece of information, you will have the opportunity to nurture the relationship and build trust among each other and the company. Let us see a few of them –
- Mini-Course –
A mini-course or a mini-workshop on your products provides additional value to your business and also helps to build your own image.
- Webinars –
Webinars are currently a very popular marketing tool. It is like a mini-course, but it allows one to showcase their knowledge on a certain topic to the audience, it is more like a live event, which gives the opportunity to leads to having direct contact with you. Webinars are time-consuming but the amount of engaging of people and addressing them increase because of the live sessions and workshops.
- Trials / Demos –
Free trial is great to help tool to discover the value of the service and products whereas, is a way to tell in form of a video, a walkthrough, presentations, etc. in whichever way it is depicted it allows viewer to listen, ask questions and understand the value of the offer. Business firms usually prefer a demo because it gives your audience a chance to speak, share their valuable feedbacks and also give suggestion for the betterment and up-gradation of the services or products.
- Private Communities –
By starting a community, you commit to be active and regulate it regularly for the medium/long terms. Private communities are the best way to establish a continuous channel between your customers/ your leads/ business and yourself. Private communities’ help in starting a conversation, get feedback, to share updates and news.
- Popup / Forms –
Creating a form or popup surveys, you can ask visitors for their opinion and polls through email addresses at the right time and right place.
The ways to create a Powerful Marketing Funnel in STAGE 3 – Bottom of the Funnel
The main goal in Stage – 3, is to get the purchase of your product. This is the final moment of the truth. Total revenue, Number of new customers, Customers lifetime value, and conversion rates these are the simple metrics one should look for during stage 3. Let us see a few of them –
- Use Scarcity –
It is one of the most powerful ways to acquire more customers. Creating scarcity allows you to add a sense of urgency to the purchase. Many ways can be opted to use this – example – limit the availability of a product, or a service, discounts or bonuses.
- Presales –
You have not created the product yet, but know exactly what the product is like, then preselling is the best option. The several benefits of preselling include – generating revenues before the product is launched, validating demand, testing different pricing points, gathering feedback before its launch.
- Launches –
A launch can help you gain the initial sales for your business needs to grow. Great launch strategy involves warming up the communication with the audience and sending them the right content so as they get convinced to purchase it.
Now, as we know the different ways/ tactics it’s time to do the work and build your own high converting marketing funnel.
- Choose and decide the stage to start the funnel
- Creating content for each tactic/ ways
- Connect and build continuity
Lastly, to wrap up, Marketing funnels are powerful tools every individual it takes several them over the years and seeing them at work is one of the most satisfying things about the job!
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