The classic buyer funnel is a tool that marketers and sales professionals have used for years as a roadmap to customer acquisition. It indicates buyer needs at the top of the funnel (TOFU), middle of the funnel (MOFU) and bottom of the funnel (BOFU). But in today’s buyers’ market, prospects are taking the TOFU or awareness stage into their own hands by researching solutions to their needs online. Now marketers are tasked with meeting leads wherever they are on the web via full funnel marketing.
This approach maximizes the effectiveness of inbound and outbound marketing tactics by leveraging them at each stage of the buyer’s journey – including at the TOFU when consumers are looking for brand-neutral information. Learn the three best ways to execute full funnel marketing from the top-down.
1. Full Funnel Content Marketing (Inbound Tactic)
68% of marketers say they struggle with generating leads1 – here’s why. At the TOFU or awareness stage of the Buyer’s Journey, consumers use the Internet as their main research tool. With the web being a saturated and highly competitive space, companies are challenged with getting in front of consumers to generate awareness for their brand. To combat this TOFU paradigm, B2B companies need to top the search engine rankings with quality content.
At the TOFU or awareness stage of their journey, consumers are seeking solutions to their problems and getting a feel for what’s available. They might be searching for a term like “How to integrate an EHR into my healthcare organization” or “Best EHR software.” Smart companies use this as an opportunity to build trust by providing helpful, brand-neutral information in the form of blog posts, eBooks, checklists, whitepapers, tip sheets and how-to videos. Even smarter companies, however, take this opportunity one step further and enroll these prospects in lead nurturing campaigns that guide them to the MOFU and eventually BOFU stages of their journey.
For example, if your company produced a helpful and brand-neutral checklist called “6 Simple Steps to Successful EHR Integration,” it would be advantageous to gate the content and offer it to prospects in exchange for their contact information. This is often accomplished through a form on a landing page. Once the lead provides their contact information, they can be automatically entered into a workflow that will nurture them with appropriate content at the MOFU and BOFU stages.
2. Full Funnel Email Marketing (Outbound Tactic)
If your company is maximizing the use of its marketing budget by tapping into the resources of an integrated marketing agency, then you already know how valuable email marketing can be in amplifying your content, promotions and key messages. Email marketing is one of the most cost-effective, low-risk marketing channels available today, with the ability for constant optimization. Simply put, it’s a distribution channel that easily relays your TOFU, MOFU and BOFU content to the masses.
Unlike content marketing, which is an inbound technique that makes your company and content available to leads when they choose to search for it, email marketing is an outbound technique. This means that you are proactively marketing to leads whether they have expressed interest in your service or not. Modern marketers are bridging the gap between content marketing as an inbound tactic and email marketing as an outbound tactic, combining the methods for maximum return on marketing investment (ROMI). Use email marketing to distribute your latest awareness stage content marketing asset to the appropriate buyer persona. In your email, direct people to a landing page where the gated asset lives. If the lead chooses to download the content, he or she can be enrolled in your content marketing workflow and overtime, receive MOFU and BOFU content.
3. Full Funnel Paid Advertising (Inbound and Outbound Tactic)
Paid advertising, also known as search engine marketing (SEM), is a dynamic tactic that can be considered both an inbound and outbound method. It’s inbound because it ensures your company is visible to leads when they proactively seek out your products or services, yet it’s also outbound due to its ability to retarget leads with advertisements on the web, even when they are no longer searching for your offer. See where I’m going with this?
At the TOFU, your company can use paid advertising to reach a highly targeted group of people with online ads that get pinned to the top of Google’s search results. After a lead clicks on your ad and gets taken to a landing page or your website, your campaign can use this data to automatically move them to the MOFU stage and retarget them with ads on other websites. Beyond that, Google Analytics can determine which pages of your website a lead is looking at – be it your about page, product or service section or pricing page – and determine which stage of the buyer’s journey certain leads are in and retarget them online or engage them with your sales team.
While these three examples of full funnel marketing are a great way to get started, it’s also important to consider your marketing goals and determine the role that these tactics will play in achieving them. If your company measures success by the number of marketing qualified leads (MQLs) generated each month or by total monthly revenue, you’ll want to target your marketing efforts accordingly. For example, if your goal is to obtain MQLs, you may want to put more effort into landing pages with conversion forms. If you’re measuring revenue, you’ll want to consider developing referral marketing programs. Schedule a free consultation with the experts at Sagefrog to discuss your biggest marketing goals and how an integrated approach can help you achieve them.
Are you interested in B2B marketing services? Contact Sagefrog Marketing Group today.