Marketing impacts more than companies, businesses and people trying to make money. It even impacts churches and nonprofit organizations.
I’m a volunteer on my church’s Communications Ministry Team. Last week we had a meeting to discuss a fresh website and Facebook strategy. One of my colleagues on the team mentioned the marketing funnel: how you’re trying to make people aware of you, then to accept that they may want or need what you have to offer, and that ultimately you can encourage them toward action.
The marketing funnel has been around for ages (since 1898 to be exact) and is one of the foundational concepts of marketing. Which is why I think we could use a fresh reminder about the marketing ABCs! Although in this case, our marketing funnel is 5 As: Awareness, Acceptance, Action, After purchase, and Advocacy.
Much like a plumber works on pipes, we’re here to help you become a professional marketing funnel plumber. We’ll educate you to recognize and name the purpose of the 5 areas of the pipeline, plus how to diagnose when something goes wrong. Ready to take a look at your marketing pipes?
Funnel Phase 1: Awareness
Goal: The goal of the awareness phase is to cast your net to a wide audience. Make them notice your brand. Focus on your reader’s desires and interests.
Answer the Question: “Why should I care?”
Do: Produce a high volume of content. A broad audience means that a wide spectrum of content can reach a vast audience. Consider blogs, social media, podcasts, videos, etc. Share material that will help your reader; this not only builds up your trustworthy reputation, but it also helps your audience stick around to discover other helpful things you may provide.
Don’t: Resist the urge to begin selling your product to your audience. This stage is all about getting your brand recognized and sharing helpful, relevant content.
Funnel Phase 2: Acceptance
Goal: Educate the audience about why they need your product or service, and why you are the best option available on the market.
Answer the Question: “Why should I buy?”
Do: Highlight your best feature. Buyers are in the process of deciding which option is best for them. Show off your good side! Compare yourself to your competitors. Reveal how you supersede your competitors and why you’re the best choice for that particular consumer.
Don’t: Don’t offer every single detail about your products or services. Your audience isn’t quite ready for the full commitment, so stick with what they’re after. Limit your details to a small handful that can easily be detailed on an image.
Funnel Phase 3: Action
Goal: You want to convince the subscriber to purchase your product or service. Don’t forget to mention how this will solve their problems or make their life easier.
Answer the Question: “Why should I buy now?”
Do: Provide all of the details about what they could receive with their purchase. This is the time to put every single benefit in the limelight. Don’t forget to continue providing helpful content, even if it is unrelated to their purchase; this maintains your reputation as helpful and trustworthy.
Don’t: Be too pushy. Yes, you’re selling yourself. But no, you don’t need to follow up with them every single day. Continue to provide helpful details or special offers, but limit your interactions to be respectful.
Funnel Phase 4: After Purchase
Goal: Continue to engage with your customer post-purchase.
Answer the Question: “What next?”
Do: Send out regular newsletters with helpful content that isn’t necessarily marketing your products or services (since they just purchased). Follow up with calls-to-action that bring to mind your customer’s need for another product or service that you offer.
Don’t: Don’t immediately try to sell your customer another product. Allow them time to enjoy what they just bought! But don’t stop engaging; maintain the relationship because you do have products that can help them in the future.
Funnel Phase 5: Advocacy
Goal: Transform your customers into loyal fans.
Answer the Question: “Why should I recommend you?”
Do: Continue to connect, educate, and delight your customers. Ask for feedback, ideas, or reviews. Show your appreciation when a customer refers you or gives you a social media shout-out.
Don’t: Don’t forget about your customers. They already purchased your product or service, but that doesn’t mean they are eliminated from your future. A happy previous customer can be a content current follower and offer referrals in the future.
Pop quiz on the 5 As of the marketing funnel! Hinder your test anxiety - if you read this article, you’ll do just fine. This mini quiz is just another method to remind you about the foundational concepts of the marketing funnel (which will keep it fresh on your mind and in the forefront of your marketing strategy).
- Name the 5 As of the marketing funnel.
- What’s one thing you are currently doing that you read in the “Don’t” section?
- Did you learn something new about the marketing funnel?
- What is your next step of action in regard to the marketing funnel?
There is a reason our foundational concepts in marketing are rooted in the marketing funnel: it works! Convert prospects into customers, and customers into loyal fans. Grow your business, increase your profits, and develop a solid reputation for your brand!
The Mindshift Agency loves to help our clients implement the marketing funnel because we’ve observed it’s success time and time again! Don’t know where to get started? Feel like your funnel is leaky? Stuck in one level and can’t progress further? Our team of experts can help unclog your funnel for a smooth flow in your business. Contact our marketing funnel plumbers today using the form below!