WHAT IS A MARKETING FUNNEL & WHY DO I NEED ONE?

The marketing funnel is simply a set of steps a visitor in your target audience needs to go through before they become a paying customer.

A familiar example would be with eBay;

• Visit eBay.com.au

• View a product

• Add a product to cart

• Purchase

Stepping through the funnel
The narrowing shape of the funnel indicates a filtering of your audience as they move through each stage. During each stage, your audience is presented with content specific to their interests as you lead them through to the bottom of the funnel and a decision to purchase.

And I need this because?
Having a marketing funnel is a great way to organise your marketing activity into a logical, targeted and successful approach. Moving your audience through each stage of a marketing funnel confirms a continued interest in your product or service.

It allows you to filter out those with only a passing interest and avoids bombarding someone with unwanted content. Once you have the data from your funnel, you can identify any roadblocks and make the necessary adjustments to improve your conversions.

Source: http://www.shopify.com/partners/blog/content-marketing-funnel

TOP OF FUNNEL CONTENT (TOF)


At the top of the funnel, you’re dealing with the awareness about the problem you’re trying to solve, and your content in this stage should be raising awareness.

You’re talking to a larger number of very cold prospects at this point. They may not be aware of the problems they have, they probably are not aware of your brand, and they certainly won’t be aware of the solution you have available to them.

When a visitor lands on your website for the first time and engages with you, they might be unaware of what you’re actually selling. They still might not know how you can help them solve their problem.

The key here is that you’re not selling products or services; you’re selling solutions, gratifications, rewards and enjoyment. So tell your customers that.

At the top of the funnel, your goal is to communicate the solutions, gratifications, rewards and enjoyment, or the end benefits to your audience.

Resist the temptation to dive into deep and detailed specifications about your product or service.

What many fitness businesses do wrong at this stage is try to sell to the first-time visitor. This is a big mistake.

Content at the top of the funnel needs to be freely available and must aim to educate, entertain, or inspire.

Here are some example content types for this stage of the funnel:

1. Videos

2. Blog

3. Social media updates

4. Infographics

5. Photographs

6. Podcasts

7. Microsites

8. Print Magazine/Newsletter

Top of funnel goals:

• Increase awareness about the solution you have for the problem your audience faces. Be helpful; use actionable content to get in front of the people that might need what you’re selling.

• Grow your retargeting lists. People are much more likely to become paid customers after several ‘touches’ and engagements with your brand.

• Increase traffic to your site.

Unfortunately, many fitness businesses produce content only for the first, or the final stage of the marketing funnel!

As a result, they miss the opportunity for higher conversion rates that can be achieved by utilising the entire funnel in the correct sequence.

MIDDLE OF FUNNEL CONTENT (MOF)

The most important thing to remember at the middle of the funnel is that now you have a way to build trust directly with your visitors and prove to them your expertise.

If you have an established business, your most cost-effective content pieces will usually be at the middle and bottom of the funnel. These are also the places where you should impress your target audience by demonstrating your qualities, expertise, and trustworthiness.

The challenge, however, is to move your prospects from the ‘awareness’ to the ‘engagement’ stage and in doing so, convert these problem-and-solution-aware prospects into leads.

Your content for this job should encourage your prospects to submit their contact information and to opt in for future marketing communications.

Here are some example types of content for this stage of the funnel:

• Behind the scenes video of how your business solves problems for people just like the target audience.

 • Educational resources like customer testimonials, case studies, free reports, free guides, free e-books, free health and fitness tips.

 • Useful resources like cheat sheets.

• Events.

Most visitors that are browsing through the website or social channels, reading your blog, watching your videos, or just getting informing about what you have to offer, it’s safe to assume that they are there for a reason.

These visitors will also likely be interested in high value relevant content, even if it requires them to provide their email address to access it. They key here is that this content needs to be well-researched and matched with your target audience’s interests.

For visitors that don’t opt in, it is always recommended to retarget them through paid retargeting campaigns on Google and your favourite social media channels.

 

BOTTOM OF FUNNEL CONTENT (BOF)

The final stage of the marketing funnel requires that we understand what content your leads need to make an informed purchase decision.

The ultimate goal of any marketing funnel, is to convert leads into paying customers and move your prospects from ‘awareness’, to ‘engagement’, to ‘conversion’.

It is at this stage that you need to help them decide between yourself and your competitors by demonstrating how your product or service can deal with their circumstances, and by providing them with an offer.

This will help move them to the point where they’ll be able to make an informed purchase decision.

Here are some example content types for this stage of the funnel:

• Demo/trial (yes, your product or service is content too)

• Customer stories

• Testimonials

• Special offers

• Events

• Free/trial class

Video Marketing at the End of the Funnel
Video marketing can help build trust, which boosts conversions, and sales videos can increase purchase intent by 67%.

Video marketing content at this stage can overlap a little bit with content at the middle of the funnel. For example, case studies, testimonials, etc. are also helpful for closing a new customer.

According to Vidyard, content at the end of the funnel can include the following:

1. FAQ VIDEOS
Showing videos where you answer frequently asked questions is a great way to address the hesitations that keep people from buying. Some of the biggest objections that people have before buying include barriers like: “I don’t need this right now,” “I can’t afford it right now,” and “I don’t trust you yet.”

You can use your FAQ videos to address common questions that people have about your product and frame it in a way that addresses their concerns.

2. INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEOS
One of the biggest fears that customers have before making an expensive purchase, is that they might not get adequate support after handing over their hard-earned cash. A great way to prove that you’re invested in their success even after they purchase is through a series of instructional videos.

3. EXPLAINER VIDEOS
An explainer video focuses on explaining your business in a simple, engaging and compelling way, using a clear and concise language and appealing and attractive visuals that quickly grab the viewer’s attention.

No matter what content you are creating, you should be following a strategic plan to utilise the right type of content at the right stage of the funnel, to help improve your marketing results.

NEED HELP?
Enquire about working with us to help tell your story in an engaging, strategic way to drive results for your fitness business.

Click here: http://bit.ly/FourDWork

Owen Bowling
Director
FourD Media
E. owen@fourdmedia.com.au