also recommends the Evergreen Email Engine™ Playbook
After gathering leads, many wonder how to convert website clicks into new sales. Sometimes, your company may generate many leads but fail to gather qualified leads.
Qualified leads are potential customers who are well-educated on, and actively considering a product. In order to convert prospects into qualified leads, you must develop your middle-of-funnel marketing strategy. But what is middle-of-funnel marketing?
To understand mid-funnel marketing tactics, first marketers must understand the marketing funnel. Essentially, the marketing funnel consists of three stages. Each part of the marketing funnel leads into the next stage. Marketing funnel stages create the customer's journey.
The top of the funnel focuses on awareness. Next, a prospect must actively consider the product. Most often, when considering a product, customers will weigh their options and compare prices.
Following consideration, a customer will purchase the product, which is the final level of the marketing funnel. After buying from a company, successful businesses will aim to convert them into repeat customers through loyalty rewards and referral programs.
The Upper Funnel aims at casting a wide net and getting as many leads as possible. By contrast, lower funnel marketing focuses on upselling and customer loyalty to get the most money from each customer as possible.
The Upper funnel naturally has more prospects, while the lower funnel consists of fewer prospects. However, customers within the lower funnel are more likely to spend more money than those in the upper funnel.
The upper funnel creates brand awareness through a variety of marketing activities such as email campaigns, social media, pay-per-click advertising, and SEO.
Upper-funnel marketing is crucial to the buyer's journey. Before spending money, a prospect must be aware of the product and what it is used for. Most marketers spend more time creating awareness than closing sales because it is low competition and creates the most leads.
Lower funnel content focuses on closing more sales and maximum revenue generation. Lower funnel marketing can either focus on converting the leads from the upper funnel or upselling existing customers.
Before a customer purchases, for example, they must be in the consideration stage, which is why middle-of-funnel marketing is important.
The middle of the funnel bridges the upper and lower funnel gap. Middle-of-funnel marketing tactics avoid the hard sell, which can seem pushy - almost like a telemarketer.
Instead, mid-funnel marketing aims at subtly convincing potential customers to buy the product by showing various options and educating potential customers.
Therefore, mid-funnel marketing content should feel natural and give prospects the agency to choose for themselves. Ideally, mid-funnel marketing content should offer information to lead prospects through the buyer's journey.
Mid-funnel marketing tactics include customer success stories, educational materials, and other marketing activities that portray the quality of the brand.
It is easy to ignore the middle of the funnel. Many companies focus on top-of-funnel marketing in order to generate more leads or focus on the lower funnel to increase sales.
Often, however, a brand has many leads but does not nurture leads to create conversions.
Moreover, mid-funnel marketing can create more loyal customers who are more likely to make multiple purchases. Through proper lead nurturing, your company converts new leads into qualified leads who are ready to buy confidently.
Through developing mid-funnel leads, your company will gain more educated customers who are less likely to buy from other brands. Mid-funnel content develops trust. By giving the customers honest, in-depth information, they will trust your brand and your expertise.
Additionally, mid-funnel marketing gives educational materials to sales teams. Middle-of-the-funnel marketing materials offer essential information that helps a sales team close a deal more quickly.
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As previously mentioned, the middle of the funnel helps customers gain confidence to make a purchase. Moreover, a mid-funnel marketing tactic will make the mid-funnel audience feel confident they have made the correct choice - your product is the perfect solution to their problem.
For instance, a customer may see an ad for your website: top-of-funnel marketing. After clicking on the website, they may read product reviews or watch a webinar from your company (middle-of-funnel marketing). After perusing the site for a while, they may make a purchase.
Without the middle of the funnel content, the customer would not feel comfortable enough to make a purchase. However, if they did buy your product, it may simply have been because the prices were lower on your site than others.
If the customer purchases a product simply because of the low prices, this customer will move to another brand if your site low longer has competitive pricing.
However, if the buyers instead make an informed decision based not solely on pricing but on mid-funnel content, they will be more likely to purchase from your company in the future.
Mid-funnel marketing depends on creating a content strategy that aligns with a target audience. Proper mid-funnel content requires research on behalf of marketers to know which audience will purchase your product and how to display a product's features in a way that engages potential buyers.
Moreover, digital marketing should find qualified leads and invest in lead nurturing.
Qualified leads are members of your target audience that are actively searching for the product that you offer.
Suppose your company develops software for older computer users that makes the fonts more accessible and will read the headlines of sites. In this instance, a qualified lead is a person who is older and has vision loss, and uses the computer regularly.
In order to make sales, connecting with qualified leads is essential to the success of your business.
Once you have found qualified leads, it is time to nurture leads. Nurturing qualified leads can be achieved through a variety of methods:
Email marketing campaigns are excellent for middle-of-funnel marketing because they are low-risk, cheap, and can be either long or short-form. Moreover, email marketing is also used as a top-of-funnel marketing tactic.
Therefore, a single email can spread brand awareness, generate interest and provide information.
Educational content informs the potential client not just about your brand but about anything related to your brand.
If your company sells skis, for instance, educational content may tell the customer the best places to ski in Aspen or which types of socks to wear to wick moisture and stay warm.
By educating prospects, potential buyers will trust your brand and become actively engaged.
Social proof can take many forms: product reviews, customer success stories, testimonials, or brand advocates.
Before purchasing a product, many people will look to social proof to establish whether a brand is of high quality or not.
Many people scroll to the bottom of a website to read testimonials so they know what to expect from a brand and what others are saying. By providing testimonials on your site, you entice new leads.
Subconsciously, many people look to others before making commitments to a brand.
Case studies are in-depth reflections on the experience of past clients. Most often, case studies provide concrete data that is measurable.
Suppose you own a digital marketing company that focuses on SEO. A case study for your site may be a graph of the organic traffic for a past client from before and after they hired you.
Case studies and white papers are effective because, unlike testimonials, they provide prospects with measurable data. Like testimonials and product reviews, they are a type of social proof.
Product reviews and demos are when a brand advocate displays how a product or service can be used.
Many influencers on social media will do product reviews for a fee. When choosing an influencer to conduct a product review, make sure their target audience aligns with your own.
Product reviews and demos have the added benefit of reaching new leads and converting them to the middle of the funnel quickly.
Social media marketing allows you to know which potential clients engage with your content. Through great content, social media allows your company to reach customers exponentially through social networks.
The middle of the funnel lends itself to social media because they both hinge upon customer engagement. Each of these marketing tactics is a puzzle piece to create a holistic mid-funnel marketing strategy.
In the modern era, engaging with customers has fallen to the wayside. Customer service and communication with prospects can set smaller businesses apart from larger companies.
Middle-of-funnel marketing should engage with potential clients and past customers. Through chatbots, customer service, a great sales team, and replying to comments, your company can engage with prospects.
The goal of any middle-of-funnel marketing is to establish a connection with prospects by offering a solution.
A common phrase is "it's business, not personal." This phrase is incorrect. Every customer should "feel seen" by your brand and connect with it on an almost emotional level.
By establishing connections through anticipating wants, needs and ambitions, your company can create unwavering brand loyalty.
Every piece of middle-of-funnel content will lead a prospect toward a solution. Middle-of-funnel marketing is primarily about problem-solving. Each piece of content should share a story that piques the interest of your lead. Leads will view your brand as a solution to their problems.
By offering and comparing solutions, your company sets the stage to close more sales.
In order to foster interest, your business should research the type of content that will result in more clicks. Creating excellent content is a process that is often overlooked.
Many marketers will focus on quantity over quality. However, 50 pieces of content that are viewed only once is less effective than one great piece of content that is shared 50 times.
Middle of Funnel marketing tactics validate the customer and give them agency to make informed decisions. Instead of being a pushy salesman, middle-of-funnel marketing can bridge the gap and create a gentler sales itch that will establish trust.
Moreover, middle-of-funnel content can add authority to your website and business. By investing in great content that relays your expertise, your business can give consumers the confidence to purchase your product or service.
Give your business an advantage against its competitors by creating great informative emails, blogs or webinars. Include testimonies, product reviews, and other forms of social proof.
Do not wait for the competition to utilize these strategies. Speak with a marketing expert for ways to convert quality leads into loyal customers.