Why Do You Need a Digital Marketing Funnel?
The journey that potential customers take on their way to a purchase is what we like to refer to as the sales funnel. The problem is, while most businesses employ some sort of funnel, they’re rarely managed well. Things come up, appointments are missed, and lead lists are left in folders and forgotten about.
When done correctly, development and management of this funnel can help streamline and boost your sales process, and turn near-misses into done deals. It’s important to realize that the large group of potential customers you set out to target won’t all be reached. The group you start out with is called the “awareness” level. They’ve heard of you, either through advertising or word of mouth. While awareness is good, it’s not interest.
Interest kicks in for those in the next stages of the funnel. These are the people who will take one final step and actually become customers. If you spend all your time and energy targeting everyone you’ll never reach that lower level – the ones who might actually become customers. That’s where we come in. We can develop a funnel, where the stages might include:
Prospecting: Collect contact info, including name, email, phone, etc.
Approach: Case studies, drip campaign emails, newsletters, events, direct mail, targeted gifting, etc.
Objectives: Trials, demonstrations, etc.
Closing: Calls to references, quote, sale.
We will work with you to create this funnel, consulting with your leadership and sales staff to figure out which strategies work best for you and your company’s specific needs, tailoring our approach as we go.
To put it plainly, if the end goal of your marketing efforts is to sell your service or get your products into the hands of people who need it, (which it is) there is no excuse for not using a digital marketing funnel.
Not only does a funnel filled with content help you to find and get the attention of potential users and targets, it helps to convert and – hopefully – retain them as brand-loyal repeat customers. Of course, the question as always is, “Where do we start?”
We’ll start by stating the blatantly obvious – there is a lot of content out there. But on the flip side, there are a lot of people searching for new content. As quickly as you can hit refresh, there will be a new blog post covering a similar topic to this one. I can almost guarantee it.
It might sound like I’m saying that’s a bad thing, like there’s a vacuum of ideas or a lack or originality that plagues our Google searches. But that’s not what I mean.
What I mean sounds much more positive. People are hungry for information.
If you have some to give, they will engage.
Here at encite, we encourage our clients (and our team internally) to prioritize four characteristics in each piece of content marketing we promote: engaging, entertaining, inspiring, and educational. If it’s not one or more of these things, we know that it won’t hold our audience’s attention.
The reason we’ve found this to be so crucial is that it frames the relationship we have with our audience in a much less transactional way. Sure, we’re asking them for something – whether that’s a sale, an email address, or a phone call – but we’re also giving them something in return. More importantly, something that’s potentially useful to them whether they choose to engage with us or the client we are speaking on behalf of or not.
Just like you build relationships in your personal life and professional network, we view content marketing as a way to strengthen ties between a brand and its target market. And, like any relationship, there are stages.
First off, attraction. This takes place at the “top of the funnel”, so to speak. Think of this as an introduction. If you’re looking to expand your audience, you have to position yourself to be of interest to them in the first place. This is a great opportunity to showcase your values, throw in a little humor, whatever it is that will keep you top of mind for your target customer.
There are an almost endless amount of tactics that will help you reach this goal, but we’ve found video ads to be one of our most effective storytelling tools. YouTube, TikTok, Facebook – whatever your platform of choice is, videos help to familiarize your audience with what it is you do and why you do it.
Now that they’re interested, we work to convert them. This is also where we pare down our list and start to talk to the people that actually want to be talked to. Through retargeting efforts, we can pinpoint exactly who has engaged with our messaging before and reach back out with a dialed-in CTA. For instance, asking for an email address in exchange for a relevant whitepaper or some other exclusive offer.
And finally, the finish line. To successfully close business, you’ll need one more arrow in your quiver. The good news is, you already have it.
This is the time to drive home the value of what you’re selling, regardless of that is. Don’t be shy, really brag on yourself here. Tell me what your product is, why it’s worth a purchase, and what you can offer me to make sure that I don’t click away and move on to the next best thing.
Now, on to the hard part – keeping people interested after the initial purchase. Yes, this means creating new touchpoints, offering up fresh insights, and staying ahead of the curve. But we promise, it’s worth it.
A content marketing funnel is a key component of any successful business’ marketing plan. For more help, reach out to our amazing team of marketers today.
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