It begins when you use emotion to capture their attention (maybe they feel a certain way or identify with others that do), once you have their attention you need to use logic to show them you’re good at what you do and can address the requirements they have. Finally, to seal the deal and make them a loyal customer you need to use emotion. Emotion is a powerful tool in getting prospects across the line once they have reached the penultimate stage of your funnel.
Intent: To get to the intent stage, prospects must demonstrate that they are interested in buying a brand’s product. This can happen in a survey, after a product demo, or when a product is placed in the shopping cart on an ecommerce website. This is an opportunity for marketers to make a strong case for why their product is the best choice for a buyer.
At such a point, work on making the potential customer feel confident in their decision to buy your product. Let’s take the previous example of a fitness center. Here, develop a case study showing a customer’s success story including before-and-after pictures along with testimonials. This can be related to either weight-loss or gaining substantial muscle-mass—whatever’s appropriate based on the client.
Now, before we begin I should state that this funnel is for illustrative purposes only. There is no such thing as a marketing funnel as drawn above, only a series of interactions people go through with your company (and other companies) as they make their way from being a complete stranger to a loyal customer. In short, each marketing funnel is unique.
Your prospect’s goal: To determine which class of products or services can solve their problem, then to begin evaluating businesses within that class. If we’re using the tax example, this would be when the prospect decided to use a DIY tax software solution over a hiring a CPA. Afterward, they’d start evaluating specific software, like TurboTax or QuickBooks, for example.
For example, a complex purchase funnel might include steps like this: searching a pain point in a search engine, getting to a content piece on a website, clicking to a landing page for a white paper download, receiving several pieces of email in a lead nurturing campaign, deciding to speak to a sales rep to learn more about the product, going through several stages of a sales process with a sales rep, and then ultimately making a purchase. This may happen over several months.
If they pursue this valuation this takes the customer further down the funnel into the Evaluation/Trial phase. At this point they are offered the opportunity to market their property on a no-win-no-fee basis. The homeowner will have already done their research on the company (the Evaluation phase), and so this relatively frictionless offer where no money exchanges hands is an easy way to move the homeowner further down the funnel to the Trial phase.
First, though, you want to map out all the potential interactions users can have with your brand and assign them to the most relevant stage of our marketing funnel. For example, a first-time visitor on your site will fit into the “awareness” category while someone who has repeatedly visited the same product page probably fits in the “consideration” stage.
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It is important to identify your potential or target market, what their pain points are and where do they hang out online. Why would they want to buy your product or service. And why from you? What difference will it make to them? You can create buyer ‘Personas’ to help you focus better on the who and the why. Nowadays, it is easier to measure the results of any investment, especially in digital marketing activities. The idea of marketing funnels or sales funnels is to try and create the perfect business generator, which relates to transaction density, increasing sales and margins and increasing the lifetime value of a client. A funnel might be used as a way to generate leads, a Lead Conversion Generator or to generate actual sales, a Sales Conversion Generator. Nowadays, funnels are also used to upsell products, during the transaction checkout – no doubt you have seen this when you have been shopping online.
For example, that funnel may consist of freely available content published on a website aimed at the overall pain point a potential customer has. That content then includes a call-to-action to sign up for email for more information. That email list includes a lead nurturing campaign that answers key questions as customers have them, ultimately leading customers to talk to sales reps to answer their most specific and complex questions.
However, there are even some who see the funnel as being split vertically, with both sales and marketing owning the full funnel. They argue that the sales people are increasingly becoming thought leaders to drive awareness by doing outbound outreach. In this scenario, both marketing and sales would work to nurture leads and prospects from awareness to purchase.