Producing engaging content for your target audience is the key to your success online; period. Despite the costly paid ads and your collaborations with leading influencers, the truth is quality content is crucial.
Content marketing is a wonderful strategy that can provide an advantage by increasing your sales conversion rate. In fact, according to Content Marketing Institute, “When content marketing adopters and non-adopters are compared, the adopters have conversion rates that are nearly six times higher than their competitors. While content marketing requires an investment of time, skill, and money, it drives much higher conversion rates than its traditional marketing counterparts”.
What is a Sales Funnel?
Picture, if you will an actual funnel. The wide top allows for large amounts of substance to be poured in, which then travels all towards one finite destination. In regards to sales, the top of the funnel would be your potential customers, while at the bottom are your converted or committed customers. Your ultimate goal is to turn potential customers into actual customers.
Many in the industry believe that content marketing works strictly at the top of your sales funnel. However, it can actually be used at every stage of your sales funnel in order to further increase your conversion rate. Just because a customer engages with the content representing your brand in the first stage of the sales funnel, does not mean they will necessarily buy from you immediately. You will want to use relevant content through each stage of the sales funnel in order to encourage the customer along and convert into committed customers.
STAGE 1 – DISCOVERY
During this stage of your sales funnel, you will work to indirectly influence and acquire potential customers by creating brand awareness. This is where leads are generated. You will want to create relevant content that educates these potential customers and prepares them for the next stage. It is unnecessary to be pushy or overly aggressive, just informative.
The following are examples of content that functions great in this stage of your sales funnel:
- Email newsletters
- Branded blog content
- Comprehensive guides and DIYs
- Long-form content
STAGE 2 – CONSIDERATION
During this stage, you will target the potential customers that are now familiar with your brand. This is where you will begin speaking directly to those that need what it is that you offer. The audience narrows and they are more likely to be engaged with your brand. It is at this stage that you differentiate yourself from your competition.
You will need to create quality content that shows your potential customers exactly why your product/service is the best solution to their issues. You’ll want to put emphasis on educating these prospects about your product or service and the value it has to offer.
The following are examples of content that functions great during the consideration stage:
- How-to videos
- Demonstration videos
- Case Studies
- Product descriptions and data sheets
STAGE 3 – CONVERSION
The conversion stage is when the potential customer is deciding on a purchase. This is the time to nudge these potential customers to purchase your product or service. You will want to persuade these prospects that what you have to offer is worth their time and investment. They need to see the compelling reasons why should commit to you and your brand.
By this point, these customers trust you and your brand. They’ve received the top-of-the-funnel benefits of freebies after registering on your website, and they’ve received the middle-of-the-funnel emails and other fantastic content. They have a sense of who you are as a person and what your brand represents. It is at the bottom-of-the-funnel where you ask for the sale. You’ll want to continue to engage, but you want to provide something of even more value for your customers.
The following are examples of content that works well during the conversion stage:
It is during the conversion stage that your content must be persuasive enough to compel potential customers to take action. Utilize comparison charts and graphics to display how your product or service compares to your competitors.
The significance of producing and utilizing great content to motivate potential customers closer to the bottom of the sales funnel cannot be stressed enough. It is vital to know who your potential customers are at each stage of the sales funnel, and therefore create relevant content that encourages them to move to the next stage effortlessly.