Content Marketing: The Drop At The Bottom Of The Funnel
Content Marketing and Acquisition Funnel: how important it is to associate the right content at the right stage
You have heard the phrase “content is king” hundreds of times. That’s it. And the funnel is in his realm of him.
Every email, every tweet, every landing page, and every product description are examples of content.
Content is everything that communicates a message to an audience. Linguistically but also visually because it is not “just words.”
What is Content Marketing?
Content Marketing is the use of that content, in all its forms, to achieve a marketing goal.
It could be the acquisition of potential customers, the retention of existing ones, the increase of brand or product awareness, or any other marketing goal.
Content Marketing and Acquisition Funnel
You may have heard a little less about the marketing funnel.
It is nothing more than a “funnel” where everyone who hears about a company ends up “buying something” from that company, even if things are not quite easy and automatic.
The idea behind the funnel is that the incoming group of prospects gets smaller when it comes to the first transaction.
At the start of the funnel, many people will become aware of that brand (often seen as the first step in the conversion process).
The funnel’s center becomes tighter as there are people who will actually consider buying certain products or services.
The end of the funnel is even tighter as many of the people willing to buy previously will no longer be.
This is where content marketing comes into play, whose role is to accompany people within the funnel along each step and ensure that they follow it to the end. And they remain there.
Match the right content to each stage of the funnel to drive customers to conversion and beyond
Discovery: The Beginning Of The Funnel
Objective: Indirect customer acquisition; Brand awareness
Tactics: Educational content, Viral content Content
type: Blog post, Big content (games, long content, tools), Guides, Videos, Email Newsletter
In this first phase, we try to generate brand awareness among potential customers or the market in general. Through content marketing, we try to generate interest during this phase because it is not enough for people to read the brand’s name: they must be encouraged to trust that brand. Even if it’s more about “trusting the content” at this level.
The goal is always to bring potential customers to conversion, but at this stage, it is not “straight to the point.” On the contrary, we try to understand what the audience wants and what they want to know and “educate” them on those very same things. If done well, feelings of gratitude and respect are associated with the brand, and its authority is built.
At the same time, the skills and “expectations” of readers are increased until the products or services of the respective brand become more useful for them.
Consideration: The Center Of The Funnel
Objective: Direct customer acquisition
Tactics: Solutions to use cases
Content type: Case studies, How-to content, Product descriptions, Data
In the consideration phase, the (potential) customer begins to associate the brand with the solution they offer. This is where you provide the type of content that helps evaluate the company and its products or services.
At this level, you speak directly to the people who can benefit from the brand and make sure they understand that that brand can help them. These may still not be trusted, so direct selling is not proposed. Not yet.
The right content for this stage is a great opportunity to make sure visitors have easy access to all the information that can help them differentiate the company from its competitors.
Conversion: The End Of The Funnel
Objective: Transactions with customers
Tactics: Product descriptions and unique value proposition
Content type: Testimonial, Reviews, Straightforward, understandable, and reliable purchase process
Here we are! Visitors are ready to convert into customers.
The transaction (or conversion) point is the narrowest part of the funnel. At this point, we know that the people left are genuinely interested in the products or services offered. We have to “convince” them to complete the purchase action.
What they need to be definitively convinced about in the final moments before they click to buy are the testimonials, reviews, and the decisive purchase path, which must be simple, linear, and reliable to facilitate completion.
This type of content is more direct. It can include clear product descriptions emphasizing these products’ unique value to the customer. It may include charts comparing the company’s or other company’s products or other specific and decisive types of data.
The content at the end of the funnel is the “sales material” of content marketing.
Retention: Beyond The Funnel
Objective: Retention of existing customers; Advocacy
Tactics: Help, Support
Content-Type: Customer Support and Documentation, Special Offers, Specialized How-tos, Email Presence, Follow-up, Effective UX
Once the customers have been acquired, the goal is to “keep them.”
Content marketing is a fundamental part of this process. The aim is retention: to transform one-time buyers into loyal customers.
It is about consolidating relationships with customers, creating profiled one-to-one communication; making sure they have had a positive experience or, if it had been negative, remedying; anticipating the needs of these customers by promoting services or products based on the historicity of the information and activities collected.
In short, each phase of the funnel, and therefore each step of the (potential) customer, requires a different approach and content. What matters is understanding who we are talking to and what they need, even before saying anything.