Build your funnel from the bottom up
To keep your business thriving, you’ve got to continually attract and nurture potential customers, a.k.a. leads—the people who might pay you.
The thing is, not everyone is a potential lead. So don’t waste time making eyes with everyone you see, trying to drop as many people as possible into the top of your funnel.
Here’s Alex Birkett, Growth Marketing Manager at Conversion XL:
This means all your lead generation efforts should start from the bottom of the funnel: with the person who will actually pay for your product. This is your target audience, your ideal customer.
Not sure who your ideal customer is? Start by looking here:
- Run a persona survey or interview existing users/customers. It’s part of building a data-driven persona that you can use for all kinds of marketing decisions.
- Talk to your customer success team. They know tons of secrets about your customers—who they are, what they want, who sticks around. If they don’t know those things, do them a favor and pass them this guide to customer success.
Got your target in mind? Good. Never take your eye off that person—that long-term customer. They’re going to guide everything else you do. Including what’s coming up next.
Be memorable at every step of the journey
Once you know who you’re after, you’ve got to get their attention. Because if you’ve got your eyes on a target—but they don’t know you exist—that’s called stalking. And nobody trusts a stalker.
WordStream founder and Mobile Monkey CEO Larry Kim gives you another reason:
“The single biggest predictor of whether people will purchase is whether they’ve heard of you before.”
Great quote, but how do you do that? Brand awareness.
In the good old days, it meant setting up booths at trade shows, blasting mass emails, and interrupting dinners with telemarketer calls. With luck, you connected with a few people. Then you passed their names onto the sales team to sort the wheat from the chaff.
But think about today’s buyer. Nearly 80% of smartphone users check their phones within 15 minutes of waking up. And they go on to spend over 10 hours a day on mobile screens.
This always-on, information-everywhere world has given birth to a new business persona: the self-directed buyer.
Today, people research the brands and products that interest them long before they reach out to you. In fact, Forrester Research estimates that buyers are 70-90% of the way through their buying journey before calling up the sales team.
This has transformed lead gen into a full-funnel strategy. What’s at the heart of this strategy? Content.
It’s part of the “inbound marketing” method, where you produce content to inform and entertain your target audience at all stages of their buyer’s journey.
That’s what lead generation is all about. Providing potential buyers with valuable information and insights—for free. So when the time comes to pull out the pocketbook, they’ll trust that the paid stuff will bring even more value.
But just creating content won’t cut it. You’ve got to make sure every moment they spend with your brand flows like a snowman in the microwave. And to do that, you’ve got to live inside your target’s brain.