Many people know what marketing funnels are but they don’t know how exactly it works. Chances are you’re thinking that you won’t have to understand it, or you just don’t have much time for thinking about it – but this would be wrong! Knowing the marketing funnel structure that you’re using will be helpful for you in employing great strategies to attract customers, and increase sales while establishing a loyal customer base.
SALES OR MARKETING FUNNEL
Some people can differentiate between sales and marketing funnel, but both these are considered fundamentally as the same: they can illustrate different stages along the journey of the customer from first exposure to the brand (the funnel top) to final steps of finishing a conversion (the funnel bottom). The funnel top includes the audience who learned about the brand and need the service or product you’re delivering. As prospective customers progress towards the funnel bottom, they go through various interest phases and considerations before buying the product.
The digital marketing strategy would be vital to help prospective customers become aware of the business at the funnel top and learn more about the brand as they’re moving down through the sales funnel. Some inevitably drop out along the way, so the interested consumers are in a smaller proportion, due to which the system can be visualized like a funnel.
MARKETING FUNNEL PHASES AND STRUCTURES
A lot of marketers categorize the marketing funnel stages depending on the 4 stages renowned AIDA model. The model keeps follow up with the journey of a customer from the first interaction point to conversion.
However, these funnels are customizable and the stages are possible to group or are divided as per the requirement. However, the most popular and useful model is the AIDA, so let’s closely consider the 4 AIDA stages of the marketing funnel.
Here people start developing an interest in the products or brands. They consider the product in addition to those of other brands while learning about the benefits or features. From this perspective, they look at other brands as well and learn about their benefits or features. From the perspective of marketing, the goal must be about informing them about the benefits, features, and how it would be better compared to other products. This makes the product more attractive for them. For a service company, the goal must be conveying how the brand is different from others and is a perfect fit for the prospective customer.
In this stage, they want the service or product and have the intent of high purchase. The stage can note the difference from “I like it” to “I want it,” from the perspective of the customer. From the perspective of marketing, in this stage, you have to ensure that you provide the nudge and convert high-intent leads for the customers. You’ll have to interact with prospective customers to increase the desirability of the product.
Also, quite often, the Desire and Interest stages go hand-in-hand while happening almost simultaneously and in close succession. The two stages, therefore, get combined to become the lead nurturing stage. The key goals here are to involve consumers while making them want your product compared to others.
MARKETING STRUCTURES FOR IDEAL FUNNEL STAGES
In the current section, you can discuss different marketing techniques usable at each marketing funnel stage. As the Desire and Interest stages go hand-in-hand and typically need similar tactics, we club them together.
STRATEGIES FOR LEAD GENERATION (STAGE AWARENESS)
As it was earlier mentioned, the marketing activities in this stage are aimed at spreading brand awareness. As it is the funnel top, the more people reaching direct down the sales funnel, the better it is. Therefore, the focus here should be on quantity rather than lead quality. Here are the most reliable funnel marketing tactics to help you reach more people.
Campaigns and PPC are among the most common top-of-the-funnel marketing structures for the generation of leads if you’re having a budget. These ads are meant for many people relevant who enter search queries of the niche. So, while using PPC ads, it’s possible to get quality leads.
STRATEGIES FOR LEAD NURTURING (DESIRE AND INTEREST STAGES)
For the desire and interest stages of the marketing funnel, two strategies are there that work just fine:
At this funnel stage, there is a requirement for good content for engaging the audience. People who are being introduced to the brand would be ready for exploring more and get targeted with engaging and relevant content. Therefore, an effective strategy for mid-funnel marketing is using content marketing.
Here are different content types that work fine for each marketing funnel stage. Like a rule, whitepapers, case studies, and other informative content are generally preferred to draw the middle of the funnel buyers.
It is another working strategy to develop product interest in people and direct them further within the sales funnel. Customer reviews can be showcased on the website. Also, you can get influencers to write detailed product reviews while sharing these with their audiences. These are helpful to alleviate all concerns of people before purchasing the product and grabbing their attention.
STRATEGIES FOR LEAD CONVERSION (THE ACTION STAGE)
In this stage, you’ll have to convince the prospects to take action and make the purchase. Therefore, all marketing strategies at the stage focus on creating urgency and make it simple for people to fulfill the purchase. Here are a few effective strategies for lead conversion that are usable:
PROMOTIONS AND DISCOUNTS
Just like demos and trials, product companies can use discount and promotion strategies for encouraging people to buy more. Limited time coupon or discount or any offer can make sense of urgency and help in speeding the process of purchase.
TRIALS AND DEMOS
Providing a free trial or live demo can improve chances of prospect converting. With a demo, consumers can easily know the product better to notice the user interface. It aids in the decision-making process, mainly in the case of complex tools and software. Similarly, with a free trial people are motivated to try the service or product before putting in their money.
CRO (CONVERSION RATE OPTIMIZATION)
These are strategies for Conversion Rate Optimization and focus on getting more conversions. These typically include web page optimization and adding the right call-to-action (CTAs) for ensuring that taking the desired action is simple.
Including the CTAs such as “try it now” or “buy now” etc., you can provide high intent users with simple ways of buying. These CTAs can direct people from the website to buying pages.
Now you know about the building blocks of a marketing and sales funnel and the right strategies required at each stage to target prospective customers. However, the job of a marketer doesn’t only end with the customer buying. It’s vital to have a customer retention strategy for ensuring that the hard-earned customers will trust your brand for a long time.