Support Marketing Funnel Stages with Helpful Information | Clarke Inc. Creative Marketing & Print Communication
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Support Marketing Funnel Stages with Helpful Information

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The marketing funnel is a process designed to guide prospects towards an eventual buying decision or stage them for the sales process.

The best marketing content to share is focused on helping the prospect experience value in their personal or professional life first. (Click to Tweet) Then more content is shared to help them make informed decision on their situation (relevant to your business of course) and options they can take. This is what attracts and then moves prospects down their buying journey.

A marketing funnel strengthens your marketing operations because it guides your staff on how to help consumers at each stage, such as follow-up telephone calls, emails or sending prospects positive press reviews.

If you are fairly new to marketing strategies the idea of a funnel may seem like an alien one. It can help if you ask yourself what information you would want to know about your business as a prospective buyer and when.

Here are some tips to support your marketing funnel stages:

1. Provide Helpful Content

Provide marketing content that helps the buyer by focusing on their areas of interest, rather than your background or how great you think your company is. Initially their interest will be to solve a small problem, something they don’t need to hire your company to solve. But when your content gives them a viable solution, and they apply it, they start to see your company as a resource. This positions your business as top-of-preference and not just top-of-mind when your services or products are truly needed.

2. Tailor Your Information to the Stages of the Buyer’s Journey

It’s important to give the prospective buyer the correct type of information relative to their position in the funnel. For example, a prospect might still be trying to figure out how big or important their problem or challenge is. They aren’t going to make any buying decisions until they know the scope of the situation and have some criteria in place for making a choice. Trying to sell anything to a person in this stage is a complete waste of time, and they won’t appreciate the pressure.

A piece of marketing content such as a checklist or a simple diagnostic tool can help them walk through the issue in a thorough manner so they understand what they are really up against. Then they are ready to enter the decision-making phase of their buying journey armed with the information needed to make value-based choices. And guess what, when that information was sourced from your website, it makes your company look like a really good option.

3. Get Up Close and Personal

You should do everything possible to ensure your prospect’s experience with your company is a positive one. Do this by making your marketing personal.

Personal means that emails come from real people in your company, not just the “info” email address. It can also mean they are connected on social media to people in your company, not just following the company page.

Most importantly it means your help-based marketing content really addresses their needs and it’s delivered in a timely manner. This shows your business puts the prospect’s interests ahead of it’s own.

4. Use a Range of Media to Retarget

As many as 90 percent of visitors to a website never convert to sales or clients. Most of them won’t return. If you retarget through advertising on a wide range of mediums you will be more visible and it may help entice visitors back to your site. Retargeting allows you to bring traffic back and convert it later on.

Offer helpful content they can subscribe to or download when they complete a form. Then email them to come back to get more helpful information. You can see how this easily translates into the design of a marketing funnel supported by a drip email marketing campaign.

If potential leads also see you on Facebook, Twitter or Google+ you may end up in their subconscious thoughts. Link posts on social media back to your website, ideally a landing page that will channel them down the next step of your funnel – for example an ebook, promotion, trial or a purchase.

5. Use Automation

Recent research suggests in the future 85 percent of buying decisions will be made without the involvement of a human being. Use automation in your email and social media to reach more people faster. For instance with email, you could embed a video from the business owner in an initial email and follow up with testimonials from happy former clients or customers. A qualified lead can be enrolled in a few clicks.

6. Answer the Questions of Prospects

Research suggests more than 50 percent of an experience is based on emotions. Emotions shape the attitudes that drive decisions and behavior of prospects. We have all been turned off by a cold, robotic reply that we cannot question. It’s important to be able to answer the questions and concerns of your potential customers online as well as in person, to give them helpful information at any stage of the marketing funnel.

If you have run a traditional business for many years, you may find the idea of the marketing funnel confounding.  However, the key is to use those principles that have stood you in good stead in years gone by. Just as a smiling face and a willingness to help went a long way in the past, a helpful and informative approach to your marketing will pay dividends.

Related topics 

Consumer Buying Habits are Changing. Is your Marketing?

The Value of a Website in Business Marketing

Demand that Your Website Becomes a Lead Generating Machine

Victor Clarke

Victor began a 30+ year career in sales and marketing with Xerox Corporation following his graduation from the College of William & Mary in Virginia. He has sold copiers, word processing systems, computers, print, mail and graphic design. In addition, he advanced from a street wise sales person, to the Director of Federal, State, Local and Education Sales, to the owner of his own company. He has been the owner of Clarke, Inc. for 20+ years evolving it from a dedicated print shop to an inbound and outbound marketing firm. We deliver epic marketing truth every day for our clients. We provide real solutions for real businesses. If you want the marketing pretty boys, we’re not it.

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