• The Five Stages of the Marketing Funnel
    The Five Stages of the Marketing Funnel

The Five Stages of the Marketing funnel

The content plan below follows a traditional marketing funnel – but every company should create their own.

Find it

Did you know that 80% of purchases start with an online search? At this stage the prospect is lost and looking for direction or inspiration. If your potential clients can’t find you, they’ll find your competitors instead. Create optimised content, which engages your audience leaving them yearning for more.

Typical ‘find-it’ content:

• Engaging blog posts

• Top 10 tips / advice guides

• Infographics / video

• Issues-based editorial

Want it

By this point the prospect has found you and consumed several pieces of ‘engagement’ content. They like your style, they have a feel for your company and they are beginning to trust your opinions. They want to gain a deeper understanding of what you’re all about.

You should embed signposts via links from all ‘engagement’ content to deeper level material, designed to put more meat on the bones and generate greater buy-in. Deeper level content includes meatier report style material that requires an email sign up to download or unlock the content. As well as name and contact information, you can ask the prospect to confirm their business sector or job title in order to receive your content. You will need to build data capture landing pages to simplify this process, leading to the development of an ‘opted-in’ lead nurture database.

Typical ‘want it’ content:

• Exclusive industry research

• Whitepapers

• In-depth interviews or video

• Webinar

Prove it

Your prospect turns into a lead the moment they ask for evidence to support what you are saying e.g. by downloading marketing material or a case study. They are looking for evidence and want to find out what other people are saying about you. You can anticipate these requests by embedding links to content offering proof-points and success stories. At this stage you can begin your email lead nurture and conversion programmes using the data captured from the ‘want it’ stage.

Typical ‘prove it’ content:

• Product guides

• Case studies / client videos

• 3rd party product reviews

• Industry standards

• Industry awards

• Positive editorial

Buy-it

When your prospects have received everything they need to make a decision and purchase, all it takes is a little encouragement in the form of a telemarketing call to prompt an action. By now you will have tracked online engagement and content downloads for each lead that enters the ‘buy-it’ stage and can provide contact details and engagement history to a telemarketing agency or in-house sales team to convert the lead.

More, more, more

Hoorah - your lead is now a customer. Based on the old adage ‘it costs 5 times more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one’, it’s essential to keep communicating with clients by sending them relevant content and offers. Think about your retention and loyalty programmes – make sure they’re designed to engage existing clients, thereby securing long-term loyalty. Keeping clients on side will save your business money by reducing the amount you need to spend on costly acquisition activity.

 

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