A customer's journey starts from when they find a product right until they make the final buying decision. The customer goes through what is called a marketing funnel.
The customer starts at the top of the funnel, narrows into the middle of the funnel, and ends at the bottom of the funnel.
Understanding customer behavior at each stage of the funnel will help you engage with prospects and turn your leads into customers.
In this article, we will zero in on what the top of funnel marketing is, why it is important, and some of the best top-of-funnel strategies to help you attract new customers.
Top-of-funnel marketing involves marketing to a wide audience to capture new leads. Think of it like casting a fishing net into a wide ocean.
Top-of-funnel marketing involves campaigns and activities that expose your brand to a new audience and takes them on the journey to become customers.
The top of the funnel (TOFU) is the initial touchpoint for a potential customer. Here, they get to know your business exists.
At this stage, the customer doesn't know about your product or offering and is in research mode.
All campaigns and activities at this stage of the funnel should focus on education and building trust. Your content should be able to solve a customer’s problem or address their needs. You want to avoid making a sales pitch at this stage.
At the top of the funnel, you want to attract as many prospects as is enough to trickle down further into the funnel.
Here’s a quick overview of what the entire marketing funnel looks like:
This is the awareness phase where customers are searching for solutions to a problem or need. At this stage, customers are in search of educational materials and resources that can help them.
The middle of the funnel is the consideration phase. At this stage, customers begin to narrow their options to the one that will best solve their problem. You want to create content that helps customers evaluate products and services. So think of email marketing, e-books, white papers, etc.
The bottom of the funnel is the decision stage where customers finally pick which company or seller they want to buy from.
At this stage, the customer considers testimonials, product reviews, prices, etc. You want to create content that can capture hot prospects and turn them into customers.
The top of the funnel is a crucial part of the entire marketing funnel. At this stage, you want to cast a wide net and get as many customers into the funnel. The goal here is not to drive sales, as only a small percentage of these prospects will become customers.
Here are some reasons why the top of funnel marketing is important:
Here are seven top-of-funnel strategies that can help you reach new audiences and drive traffic to your store:
The journey all starts with understanding who your audience is. You need to have an in-depth understanding of who they are, where they spend their time online, what their interests are, and what their pain points and frustrations are.
Carry out deep research on your customer's demographics, behavior, interest, pain points, etc, and create a buyer persona.
Understanding your audience will help you create content that appeals to them and provides answers to their problems. The more your content can resonate with your audience, the more likely they are to convert at the bottom of the funnel.
Consumers usually begin their journey by browsing search engines like Google, looking for answers to specific questions or solutions to their problems.
To attract a massive audience, you want to optimize your website content for SEO. For example, you want to include relevant keywords that potential customers may be searching for. You can use keyword research tools to create a list of relevant keywords and add them to your website content.
You also want to create valuable content that provides answers to customers’ questions and problems. For example, you can create a blog post to raise awareness about a particular problem and present your product or service as the solution.
As we mentioned earlier, at the top of the funnel, consumers are looking for answers to specific questions or problems. They are looking for largely educational and informative content that provides the answers.
You want to share educational content like blog posts and provide customers with all the answers they need.
In addition, it is important to pay attention to the quality of your content. A poorly written blog post will only put your customers off and affect your overall SEO ranking.
With social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc, you can push content, attract a wide range of audience and drive traffic to your website. You want to focus on the social media platforms that your target audience uses the most. This is where having a deep understanding of who your customer is, comes in.
Create relevant content across your social media platforms and engage with your audience. As you build a strong and loyal following, you can gradually drive them through to the bottom of the funnel.
To build trust and attract users into your sales funnel, you can leverage influencer marketing.
Influencer marketing works effectively, as it is similar to a personal recommendation. People trust these influencers and will most likely try whatever product they recommend.
Research to pick the best influencer that suits your brand. The influencer can host giveaways or contests to engage with their audience and direct potential customers to your website.
As we’ve established throughout this article, consumers at the top of the funnel want to educate themselves and learn more about products and services that address their needs. The last thing consumers want to do at this stage is to buy a product.
At the top of the funnel, you want to avoid appearing “salesy” or aggressive as this can drive prospective customers away instead of luring them in.
A call to action is a great way to move your prospect further down the marketing funnel. For example, you can have prospects provide their email in exchange for educational content like an ebook. This way, you can easily capture new leads and drive them into the funnel.
Since the major focus of top-of-funnel marketing is not to acquire new customers but to reach a wider audience, measuring success may be slightly difficult. However, here are some key metrics that can help you measure the top-of-funnel marketing success:
Top-of-funnel marketing is a crucial part of the marketing funnel, as it helps you attract potential customers. It also helps you improve brand awareness and build trust with new audiences.
Keep in mind that at this stage, you want to attract as many prospects and guide them further into the marketing funnel to become customers.