Digital Marketing Funnel: How to Create Content for Each Stage7 min read
When marketers plan their digital marketing campaigns, they plan unique content for every stage of the marketing funnel. A marketing funnel is a journey a person takes before becoming a customer. Most people go through a process before they purchase something. When businesses fail to understand the buyer’s journey, there is a disconnect between your business and the potential customer.
Marketing begins with understanding your audience –
how do they think? What information do they need?, Map the journey they take to find solutions.
What is Marketing Funnel?
The marketing or sales funnel are the phases a customer goes through before purchasing your product or services. It may begin when they look at your website for the first time and subscribe to your email list to interact with your sales associate.
Marketing experts have divided the marketing funnel into 3 distinct stages :
- TOFU (Top of the funnel) attracts attention
- MOFU (Middle of the funnel) generates leads
- BOFU (Bottom of the funnel) drives payments
When you plan your content workflow, you have a detailed content strategy for every stage of the marketing funnel. Marketers’ job starts with attracting your buyer at the beginning of the journey and handing off qualified prospects to the sales team, who engage with them.
After they have purchased your product and become customers, the service team must delight them to make them loyal customers.
Also, see How to calculate email marketing ROI
This is a preliminary stage, and you are trying to spread the word about your brand. Awareness stages focus on the number of people who know about your product or services.
The goal is to create content to reach your target customer search online and generate interest in your brand.
Begin your campaign by creating awareness-level content to improve your organic search ranking by matching the target customers’ search intent. Your focus should be on solving their problems by creating content they can discover and consume.
Buyers are looking for concrete solutions to their problems, to get answers, or meet a need, and may be looking for educational content to lead them to possible solutions. At this stage, buyers may not be viable leads as there is no guarantee they will buy your product.
The best content has low barrier engagement. Buyers who found your content helpful may journey further up the marketing funnel.
Content for the awareness stage includes
- Informative videos
- Educational articles
- IGTV Video
Metrics to measure: Measure customer awareness of your brand on different social media platforms. You can track metrics like shares and likes.
It is one thing to educate your audiences, and you require additional skills to keep their interest. Marketers often offer valuable content behind a form that asks for an email address or a lead’s professional details like designation and company name.
Generally, companies provide more valuable content to customers when they are further down the marketing funnel. At this stage, information like email addresses will help you keep in touch with the target after they have left your website.
To acquire potential customers, you can concentrate on content like ebooks, email newsletters, guides, and linked stories on Facebook, Snapshot, Instagram, and YouTube.
The content is more valuable than content in the awareness stage, without demanding a high level of commitment from the customer. In the acquisition stage, your audience may become smaller, but they are more willing to engage with you. Aim to give a more in-depth understanding of how your product will help their lives.
Content in the Acquisition stage
- Email newsletter
- Stories with links
Metrics to measure – Social media page follow, organic reach, clicks, conversion rates, number of leads, or number of newsletter subscribers.
The activation stage aims to increase engagement with the lead. The engagement could take place via social media channels, webinars, emails, and live videos. At this stage, you need to provide customized content and may need to refer to the lead’s past actions to decide what to do next.
You may need to optimize the landing page and check different elements of the page, like test if changing the color of the call-to-action button improves results. You may want to relook and modify the signup form.
Tools like Optimizely and Google Optimize are just some of the optimization tools you can use.
The content in the activation stage should encourage signups.
Content for activation stage –
- Customized emails
- Webinars and live tutorials with a limited signup period.
- Free consultation
Metrics to measure:- The number of signups for your offer can be an activation parameter.
The marketing and sales teams work closely at the conversion stage. You need to influence your target customer to purchase your product. In this stage, you finally talk to the customer and tell them what you can offer.
Digital marketers curate persuasive content like case studies and heavy product demos. You can include customer testimonials or influencers who advocate your product and services and go beyond Ad placements on customers’ social media pages.
You could send a message on Facebook messenger.
In the conversion stage, you may have to message customers who have abandoned their carts online. Recart has an excellent abandoned cart campaign using Facebook messenger. Videos are a great way to help customers visualize products and services.
Content for Conversion –
- Case Studies
- Video Demos
- Product Comparisons
- Influencer videos
- Direct Message Ads
Metrics to Measure – You focus on conversion metrics at this stage and depending on what you are selling and the platform you use – there may be other metrics you need to consider. You can track customer acquisition rates. Google Analytics is an excellent tool to track conversion through your social media pages.
An E-commerce website can analyze the percentage of customers that abandons their carts before checkout. If you have an e-commerce site, you must investigate why customers abandon their carts. It may be UX (user experience) issue you need to resolve. You can remind the customer about their carts, through emails or direct messaging.
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Once you have won a customer, you need to work to retain them. This is important when they pay a monthly charge for your product or services or if the product needs to be replenished frequently.
Focus on creating content that entertains and is useful.
You can offer them exclusive access to product reviews or tutorials and give incentives by offering loyalty rewards.
You need to get customer feedback on the product or services and assure them you are always looking for ways to improve your service.
You may need to make training and maintenance content, to improve the experience as much as possible.
When a customer begins using a product, there is a learning curve. A company can simplify the process, with video or written tutorials and tips.
Content for retention stage
- Personalized newsletter
- Helpful articles
- Exclusively preview
- Product tutorial
Metrics to measure: Check out your client’s retention rate and their engagement with the content you provide. Proactively learn more about your clients and anticipate their requirements. According to SalesForce, 50% of customers switch brands if they feel their requirements are not met or ignored.
Satisfied customers recommend your product, and become brand advocates. Encourage your satisfied customers to post their reviews online, as online reviews influence purchase decisions. According to researchers, 85% of customers trust personal recommendations.
You can get your customer to fill out a satisfaction survey after purchase and send your loyal customers something special on occasions like birthdays or major holidays.
You can invite them to special events and continue to engage with them by sending them useful and engaging content.
Content for referrals
- Limited time
- Reviews and testimonials
Metrics to measure – Net Promoter Score helps you track, how much new business is driven by referrals. This may be tracked, by giving unique customers referral codes.