If you’re trying to grow your business through content, but are struggling to set up a funnel, especially a clear content marketing funnel, here’s what absolutely not to do…
What is the Content Marketing Funnel?
The content marketing funnel visualizes the journey of prospects as they consider a purchase, and it’s part of an overall content marketing strategy. A successful content marketing funnel takes the lead from your product to a satisfied customer of your business.
It’s a simple multi-step process:
- Awareness ;
- The purchase or conversion;
Each step responds to a specific objective in the customer journey. But a comprehensive content marketing strategy answers these questions:
- What type of content should I create?
- How will I measure the success of my content?
- Where can I improve my content strategy?
This first stage of the content marketing funnel is where you want to attract and educate your audience about your topic, raise their awareness, and show them how you can solve their problems and eliminate their pain points. You can use several types of content such as:
- Posting on social networks;
- The blog post;
- The electronic book;
- With a podcast.
- The video.
With every piece of content you create, ask yourself:
- Are prospects viewing, interacting with, and sharing the content?
- Is there a follow-up after the interaction?
At this stage, you are building a relationship, creating trust, and getting your audience interested in your products. Now is not the time to “aggressively” sell, but once your audience knows your brand, you want them to consider making a purchase. Still, you don’t want your content to read like an advertisement. This amounts to creating:
- Blog posts.
- A white paper;
- Case studies;
- A webinar.
At this stage, ask yourself if your content serves its purpose:
- Are people converting from this content?
- Am I generating new sales or leads from this content?
- Does this content help or hinder my end goal?
This is the stage where you seek to convert contacts who have shown interest in your product. Your goal is to create content that leads to the closing of the deal. The most effective formats at this stage are:
- Comments ;
- Product sheets.
At this stage, ask yourself the right questions:
- Does my content have a clear call to action?
- Am I making the buying process as easy as possible?
This is the crucial step to retain your customers over the long term. Here, you continue to nurture customer relationships to not only retain customers, but also increase their lifetime value to your business. The different types of content that work at this stage include:
- The guides ;
- Content exclusively reserved for members;
- The forums ;
- Gifts and special offers.
Finally, ask yourself these questions at this last step:
- Does the content give readers reasons to refer their friends?
- Does this content encourage customers to leave reviews?
What not to do in your content marketing funnel
An effective content marketing funnel gets a potential customer to learn about your brand early on and decide to buy from you accordingly. When using a content marketing funnel, the primary goal is not to promote the product or service, but to give your target the value that the product would bring them. You need to understand your audience’s pain points and work on those pain points in your posts.
Without further ado, here are the 5 mistakes often made in a content strategy
- You don’t understand your audience well enough. They do not really know their expectations or their motivations. So they have no idea if your product is what they really need and if it can actually help them;
- You don’t know your competitorss and don’t know how they are different from you;
- You are not flexible. You think of the content funnel as a plan to follow to the letter, without modifying it. Because of this, you don’t adjust it to various real-time events, audience needs, and context.
- You create content only for new subscribersnew prospects, completely forgetting about your current customers. This is a common mistake and yet one to avoid. In marketing, retaining an old customer is a much more expensive and complicated mission than attracting a new one. So, never forget to engage with your old audience;
- You post the same content all the time. Of course, your content should be about your product or something you can use to connect your product. Still, try to make your content different even if it touches on the same thing.
Now is the time for you to invest in a content marketing funnel because today, more than ever, it’s the most effective way to reach potential customers and make valuable sales!