In today’s climate, the internet gives businesses all over the world the ability to reach and connect their products and services with consumers. But just because the internet gives your business an advantage like this doesn’t mean that’s all there is to it.
Implementing effective marketing techniques is the most efficient way to reach those potential customers and turn them into real clients. Providing solutions to your customers through every step of their journey is exactly how you can achieve this.
The truth is, you could have an amazing product or service, but chances are people won’t buy it the first time they see it. This is why attracting new leads is very important. However, attracting leads is really only the first step when it comes to generating new business.
As a business owner, it’s crucial for you to not only generate qualified leads, but also move those leads through the sales cycle smoothly. Every customer your business encounters has to go through some type of marketing funnel.
That’s where having an optimized Marketing Funnel comes into play.
Why Is A Marketing Funnel Important?
Even if you have no marketing set up, have minimal marketing experience, and or have a tiny budget, Creating a marketing funnel will help you prioritize, organize, and implement your marketing strategy. Having a marketing funnel will allow you to get the most out of your marketing efforts, giving you the opportunity to grow your business.
The best part? It really works and it really helps businesses just like yours!
Ultimately, utilizing a Marketing Funnel will give your business the ability to dramatically increase the rate of repeat purchasers you have. And with repeat customers comes sustainable business growth.
That said, let’s begin to breakdown the basis of a Marketing Funnel and the importance of each stage in the process.
What Is A Marketing Funnel?
A Marketing Funnel is an idea that the customer journey, or actions a customer takes before becoming a purchaser, can be broken into 4 distinct but interconnected sections.
A marketing funnel aids in connecting the dots between your marketing strategy and lead generation. It’s the process each of your leads go through before fully becoming a conversion.
Essentially, having a marketing funnel is step 0 in developing a marketing strategy that works. This is because in order to sell people a product or service you have to understand how they interact with your business. As well as, what the steps are that actually turn people into customers.
A marketing funnel will not only help you understand those key points, but will also lead you to increased revenue, increased traffic, increased ROI, and, most importantly, increased repeat purchases.
Real Life Benefits of A Marketing Funnel
Did you know companies that utilize the full Marketing Funnel, will see a much higher conversion rate? This means that if your business has been struggling to convert website visitors in to paying customers, you have the chance to change that by utilizing a Marketing Funnel.
For example, we consulted both a local restaurant and an E-Commerce business using full digital marketing funnels. Both saw great results all from implementing the proper tool to help boost their marketing efforts.
By implementing even the most basic of Marketing Funnels, we increased the revenue for our established E-commerce client by 2128% and their average purchase value by 8.3%.
Both the E-commerce brand and local restaurant were able to see their website traffic increase, more engagement on their posts, and, most importantly, more conversions. All factors they weren’t able to increase without an optimized Marketing Funnel.
So, we have covered what a Marketing Funnel is and looked how it has worked for other businesses, but you may now be wondering “How do I develop a Marketing Funnel for my business?”
To answer that question, we have to do some more digging. In this next section, we will further breakdown each step of the Marketing Funnel and explain how you can optimize each step to your business’s advantage.
Let’s take a look.
The 4 Stages of A Marketing Funnel
There are 4 steps in the Marketing Funnel. Awareness, Engagement, Conversion, and Advocacy. Each step helps heat up traffic and move those leads down the funnel to turn them into repeat customers.
Let’s begin to breakdown the stages of a Marketing funnel starting with the first stage of the process: Awareness.
The first step is awareness. And it makes sense. This is when people first start learning about your business. Realistically, consumers cannot become purchasing customers if they aren’t aware of your business in the first place.
During this stage, it is important to have an engaging offer or introduce your value proposition to your leads.
Why? Because this is how those potential customers will know what your business stands for and if you can offer them the solutions they need.
Your goal here is to get people interested enough in continuing to explore your brand offerings further. Whether that take place in the form of providing information on a landing page, liking a post, or following your social accounts.
Popular platforms that can be used to generate awareness are Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, and search engine like Google and Bing.
Seeing as social media platforms are so powerful in helping us make connections with others, it’s also a great tool to use to reach your target audience, increase your impressions, and generate brand awareness.
The next stage is Engagement. After you have created awareness for your business with your target audience and have gotten them to start exploring your offerings, you have to engage with those leads.
During this stage, you will want to build trust with your audience by providing value that will nurture those leads further down the funnel.
This is an important step in the process because this is where your audience is deciding to trust your brand or not. Through the content you develop, you can nurture your leads by positioning your brand as knowledgeable and trustworthy.
This can be done by using those same social platforms we used to generate awareness (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn) and encouraging your audience to provide more information.
For example, alerting your followers to subscribe to your email list or even the other way around–alerting your email subscribers to follow your social accounts. Not to mention, automated email campaigns are a great way to keep your email subscribers engaged with your brand and what you have to say.
At the end of the day, implementing communication that provides value to your audience is how you will get them to the next stage of the process–Conversion.
Conversion. Every business’s favorite word. The ultimate goal you want consumers to take when they visit your content is to convert.
In simplest terms, conversions are when customers make an initial purchase from your business. Today, conversion intuitive features on social media allow conversions to take place across any platform.
Popular platforms that generate conversions are emails, Google Search and display ads, Facebook, Instagram, and naturally, your business website.
Two of the most effective strategies businesses can use to generate conversions are tripwire purchases and introductory offers.
Both are great initiators of encouraging your leads to want to spend money with you.
One part of the process that oftentimes is forgotten is the after-purchase process. Many times businesses don’t have the proper tools setup to increase those repeat purchases and encourage returning customers. That’s why the Advocacy stage is so important.
During this stage, consumers will be so pleased after making a purchase, that they and sing your praises from the roof tops, resulting in them continuing to purchase from you.
In order to effectively implement the Advocacy section, you have to use tools on your email campaigns or website that encourage an up-sell.
Popular tools that can be used to encourage repeat purchases are social media campaigns, email campaigns asking to review or checkout more products, and even Google reviews.
Why Each Step Is Important
When creating and even implementing each phase of your marketing funnel, it’s important to remember how you will efficiently move customers through each stage of the funnel.
That means you have to design and manage every single piece of content, social media post, and email campaign, so that it provides enough value to your customers to move them down the funnel.
“How does this help my audience?”
“How does this move my audience closer to the next section of my funnel?”
These are important questions to consider when looking at the content you produce for your campaigns and how it aligns with your marketing strategy as a whole.
The Marketing Funnel Is Like A..Relationship?
To give you a better view of a marketing funnel, let’s look at it from a different perspective.
Let’s imagine the Marketing Funnel as a relationship. More specifically, a relationship leading to marriage. Instead of purchases, marriage will be the core offer in this example.
The first meeting would be the awareness stage.
When you first meet someone that you’re interested in learning more about, you are going to want to get to know more about them.
This leads to you asking for their information, like their phone number, so you can communicate with them more. Even if your ultimate goal is marriage, you would never instantly ask someone to commit to you the very first time you meet.
This is the same for the Marketing Funnel. Great awareness generators allow you to collect important information that can be used later on.
After you meet someone and get their number, you might want to go out on a date to interact with them some more. This first date can lead to other dates and helps establish a trusting connection between the both of you.
A good first date should be “I really enjoyed this, would you like to meet up again next week?” Not “Let’s get this over with, will you marry me?”
Again, even though your goal is to get married, you still can’t jump right into it because you more than likely will scare some people away.
This type of engagement will help push you further into the process, or relationship if you will, to the next phase.
That brings us to dating. Now, you and the other person have realized they want to continue seeing you. This is where you consistently go out on dates to continue developing an emotional connection in a serious relationship.
To continue moving the relationship forward, you have to be consistent. That means only calling them when you want something or not reaching out after you guys go on a date, won’t help your relationship move forward.
In this stage you want to get them to commit to you, or make a purchase in regards to your business. Having your toothbrush in their bathroom is similar to a Trip Wire Purchase. And an introductory offer would be them giving you the spare key to their place.
As you can see, yes there is trust and commitment here, but we’re still not at the ultimate goal of marriage quite yet.
However, if everything continues to go smoothly, then that will move you to the next stage of the process.
In this stage, you will continue to provide value to the other partner and give them a great connection that they find meaningful. When you do this, only then will it make sense for you to finally ask the question “Will you marry me?”
If they say “yes,” then you can provide the core offer of marriage. If the answer is “no,” then you might have to move back to the engagement section to figure some things out.
Just like in your business, the Advocacy stage is where you want to continue to nurture those individuals even after they make a purchase.
Even if a customer isn’t interested in your offer, their no should not be met with “okay, thanks for that, I’ll see you when I have a new product for you” and failing to contact them again. That won’t lead you to repeat purchases.
That’s why reviews and upselling are so beneficial for businesses, whether they offer a product or service.
The important part is to continue listening to your audience and providing them with those solutions so they can continue to return to your business in the future.
In summary, the digital Marketing Funnel is an integral part of the customer journey, and a necessity in any marketing strategy.
Yes, we know how easy it is to jump into marketing your business without having a clear strategy on how you will get your customers to covert. But that method won’t help you create a long-lasting customer base and sustainable business growth.
Each time you develop any type of content for your business, remember the 4 stages of the Marketing Funnel and we can guarantee you’ll see amazing results and conversions!