There’s a big difference between website visitors that are interacting with a business for the very first time, compared to someone that regularly visits a website. These two types of people have different questions, which means they expect different things from a business. To ensure that both types of website visitors get the right experience, or content at the right time companies need to create marketing funnels. With the help of a marketing funnel companies can get a better understanding of what the target audience wants to see at different stages of their buying journey.
According to studies, most companies tend to create marketing funnel content for the awareness stage of their customers whether via direct mail campaigns or public relations campaigns compared to the middle or bottom stages of the buying journey.
Before a potential customer can even consider a company’s product, they first need to discover that company, which happens at the first stage at the beginning of the marketing funnel. During the awareness stage, most potential customers have a pain point they need to solve or a question, and when a company provides them with an answer it starts developing a relationship with that customer. However, that potential customer doesn’t have an affinity for the business, which means the company needs to grab their attention and continuously keep them engaged.
Once a company has grabbed the attention of its customers, it’s time to start building a relationship with them based on trust before they can convert. During this stage, companies need to position themselves as a trustworthy source of information that can help customers solve various pain points and build more interest with those customers. To do that, companies need to demonstrate that they care about the problems that customers have, and understand what those problems are, while also providing an answer that’s going to solve those problems. This is best done with educational and targeted content that’s going to drive the potential customer toward the answer to their pain point.
The action stage comes at the end of a marketing funnel and the goal of a company during this stage is to get a customer to convert. To do that companies need to be direct and provide potential customers with strong calls to action that are going to lead them to the purchasing page. It’s best to use content that’s going to guide the potential customers throughout the buying journey, but the content during the action stage is slightly different. During this point of the buying journey companies have helped the potential customer better understand their problem and should have managed to convince them that they need to get help in solving that problem. At that time companies should ensure that it’s them that the customer is going to be turning to for help instead of its competitors. To do that companies should provide consumers with webinars, case studies, demos, free trials, and social proof.
The marketing funnel doesn’t end once a company has made a sale. Since companies invest a lot to build a trusting relationship with consumers they should maximize the value of that relationship. To do that companies have to get an understanding of post-purchase marketing because repeat customers are a lot more likely to convert in the future too. The best way to do that is to continuously engage with that customer, solve any issues they might have, and ensure that they’re getting the most out of their purchase.Ronn Torossian is CEO of 5WPR, a leading PR firm.