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New Era of Content Marketing Funnels

September 09, 2019

The traditional sales funnel has been changing to a content marketing funnel, which many brands are still doing their best to figure out. Marketers are now able to support sales in an unprecedented way by targeting each part of the funnel with unique, stage-specific content types that help qualify, nurture, and convert leads into paying customers. Strategic use of content opens up a world of opportunities.

In our experience, lots of companies don’t know how content marketing comes together, and they ask questions like:

  • How many blog posts should I write?
  • How often should I be tweeting every day?
  • Is there a specific percentage of my budget that I should be spending on video?
  • Do I really need to write whitepapers and e-books?

What these companies fail to understand is that content creation, when done correctly, isn’t a race against the competition. It’s more like a spectator sport, one in which you watch your leads get closer and closer. In this framework, every piece of content you create is an opportunity to bring a new lead closer to a sale or to inspire an existing customer to take action.

Is content volume important? Absolutely. But content synergy is far more important. In other words, there’s no point in creating 100 blog posts if you’re just going to send all your readers to your homepage.

If you struggle to come up with relevant and interesting material, want new ways to repurpose your curated content, or want to learn how different types of content target different parts of the funnel, this blog post is key to creating an effective content marketing strategy.

A content marketing funnel is a system that takes as many leads as possible through a step by step content flow and converts them into actual customers who pay for your products or services.

Picture the wide top of a funnel. This is where a large number of people might become aware of your products or services. All these people are your leads or potential customers. As they move through your funnel towards the much narrower neck, many will drop off. A much smaller number of leads will actually make it through the entire funnel and become paying customers.

Content marketing funnel has three broad stages:

  1. Awareness – when a lead first discovers your brand
  2. Evaluation – when a qualified lead (or prospect) decides to find out whether your product or service is the right fit or not
  3. Purchase – when the prospect gathers the last bit of information they need before deciding to buy and becomes a customer (the stage every business wants to achieve)

The generic content marketing funnel is similar, but has a fourth broad stage:

  • Attract – when a lead first discovers your brand
  • Convert – when a lead likes what they see and becomes a prospect
  • Close – when a prospect makes a commitment and becomes a customer
  • Delight – when a loyal customer is so satisfied that they become a brand advocate

The great thing about content marketing is that it can help your business reach users at any stage of this funnel, whether they’re at the top or floating somewhere in the middle. And as leads continue to interact with your business, and your business produces more quality content, you’ll widen the neck of the funnel and increasing your business opportunity.