The marketing funnel, the original day one, is a visual representation of the stages/milestones in your customer journey. Your customer’s journey is broken down into categories, from the moment they learn about your business to the conversion, often a purchase. Your funnel can also include post-purchase stages, like upselling or retargeting.
How to create your own marketing funnel in 5 steps:
The marketing funnel is wider at the top, with the idea that in the early stages of marketing you cast a wide net, raising brand awareness and gaining as many leads or potential customers as possible.
As you move closer to your goal, not every prospect will follow your journey to purchasing, and you may lose some people along the way, meaning your funnel gets narrower until you have your shoppers who are most likely to convert, and ideally, become loyal customers. Here’s how:
This is where your potential customers are drawn to your brand via marketing campaigns. To create brand awareness, consumer research has to take place in order to attract your target audience and just as importantly, be memorable. Awareness could include the knowledge an audience has of your brand, from your brand’s tone to the name, style, or values. The ultimate goal of awareness is to be top-of-mind for customers when it is time for them to make a purchase.
How: Generate leads via social media, content, adverts, trade shows…
Now that you have your leads, the goal is to increase the likelihood of consumers considering your business to solve their problems. Your prospects may not know much about you at this stage, apart from the fact that you have what they want. This is an opportunity to build a relationship and educate your audience. Let them know how you can solve their problem.
How: reviews, testimonials, display ads, targeting
Congrats! Your leads have now graduated from being an audience to being prospective customers. Your customers are making a final decision, and you’re worth considering. Typically, you want to persuade your buyer that your brand is the perfect match for their needs. Send them more information about your products and offers. Nurture them with targeted content and how your business stands out from the rest. Do you offer free delivery? How about after-sales service? Or, perhaps you offer a coupon for first-time buyers…
How: newsletters, case studies, free trials
For some companies, depending on their marketing strategy, this could be the final stage of the marketing funnel. You have successfully encouraged your audience to make a purchase that they (and you) believe is the perfect fit for their needs. It’s not over yet, though! Ensure that your buyer experiences a user-friendly, hassle-free checkout with exceptional customer service. A positive buying experience can lead to referrals, and your process starts again.
How: Easy checkout process, various payment options, immediate order confirmations, detailed delivery details
Pair a flawless purchase experience with your equally important product or service of high quality accordingly, and you will achieve customer loyalty. Follow up on your connections and nurture relationships, even after the sale has gone through. These are people who believe in your brand, so it is important to stay engaged with these investors of your product or service, and you have won yourself a brand advocate and loyal, lifelong customer.
How: loyalty programs, referral programs, social media activations, email campaigns
It is encouraged for businesses to add the 5th stage to their marketing funnel, as it is sensible to retain an existing customer, in addition to acquiring a new one.
Designed to reach shoppers at every stage of the process, a marketing funnel is a necessity in your strategy.