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How To Create Custom Content for Each Stage of the Sales Funnel

In Blog by A. Lee Judge

We all know that content is king. That phrase is so tiring, especially among marketing gurus, but it couldn’t be more true. Yet, it’s not that simple. Even though content is a vital aspect of marketing and building trust, marketers can’t just create any content and expect it to work for every customer. That’s why creating content for each buyer persona and sales stage is paramount.

For a better chance of converting leads to customers, create content for every stage of the funnel. From top-level brand awareness to bottom of the funnel detailed data and analytics, content that’s tailored to each stage of the funnel is key to converting leads into customers. From light and branded content to deep and detailed content, you can guide prospects towards making a buying decision.  One tactic is to take your target personas and divide them into funnel stages. Figure out what kind of content is most effective for that persona and that stage of the sales and marketing cycle.

Let’s look at this process in more detail.

Why It’s Important to Match Your Content to Your Customer Journey

To get a better understanding of sales funnel copywriting, you must be familiar with the different stages of the sales funnel:

  • Awareness – The most common entry point for potential buyers. They stumble upon your business through a variety of channels, including blogs, social media posts, and videos. For example, they see an ad about your business/offerings, which leads to an educational blog post.
  • Interest – Leads now know about your product/service and are actively looking for a solution. They may have followed you on social media or subscribed to your email list. Examples of content in this stage to educate your audience include newsletters, free downloads, eBooks, guides, presentation, case studies, and FAQs.
  • Consideration  – Leads want to make a decision and are trying to figure out if you’re the best solution to their problem. Content to help guide them past this point might include blog posts, guest posts, more in-depth videos/guides/eBooks/whitepapers, webinars, podcasts, and Facebook/Instagram live experiences.
  • Action – The lead is now ready to buy, but they need a little push. Customer experiences, testimonials, third-party validation, and case studies are effective pieces of content to help alleviate their final doubts and convince them to take the plunge.
  • Loyalty – Customers are constantly coming back to make another purchase or have a subscription. Content to generate brand loyalty include referral videos, collaborative presentations with strategic partners, quickstart guides, etc.

For the best results, you need different types of content to match the intent of your potential customers. No matter how many quality blog posts you write, they won’t be relevant if you’re not segmenting them based on a customer’s place in the funnel. For example, a blog post on how your product works isn’t going to really help people still in the awareness stage. So when creating your content, make sure you’re really thinking about who’s going to be consuming it.

How to Create Content for Each Stage of the Sales Funnel

When it comes to content marketing, it’s all about creating the right content for the right customer at the right time. Here’s how to build an effective content marketing funnel.

Top of the Funnel Content

Goal: Spark Interest

The top of the funnel (TOFU) content is the first touchpoint between a potential customer and your brand. At this stage, they’re not ready to buy and are likely just discovering your company. Your goal is to get their attention, offer the best answers to their questions, and subtly introduce them to your brand.

How-to guides are perhaps the best types of content to create for the TOFU. These guides help prospects solve a specific problem and show that you’re an expert in your field. How-to guides also help educate potential customers, which helps build trust.

Here are other types of content that work well for the TOFU:

  • Blog posts
  • Infographics
  • Checklists
  • eBooks
  • How-to videos
  • Educational webinars

Middle of the Funnel Content

Goal: Guide and Educate

Compared with prospects at the TOFU, prospects at the middle of the tunnel (MOFU) are much more willing to interact and engage with your brand if you encourage them to.  They now know about your brand and are looking to learn more about how you can help them. At this stage, your content should go from introductory to more-in depth. The content you create for the MOFU should be about your brand and how your solution will help your potential customers.

Like with TOFU leads, how-to content works effectively for MOFU leads. Other types of content to use for the MOFU include:

  • Social media posts
  • Testimonials
  • Case studies
  • Whitepapers
  • Landing pages
  • Video interviews
  • Podcasts
  • Email newsletters
  • Side-by-side comparisons

Bottom of the Funnel Content

Goal: Drive Conversions

When it comes to the bottom of the funnel (BOFU) content, you should focus on demonstrating how your brand is better than competitors and showing prospects why they should pick you. Your content should be compelling enough to remove any remaining doubt a prospect might have about your offerings. Customer-generated and case-oriented content are some of the most effective types to propel conversions at the BOFU. This type of content may include:

  • Product overviews
  • Customer reviews
  • Success stories
  • Use cases
  • Case studies
  • Tutorials

Tailoring Content for All Stages of the Funnel and Buying Cycle

At first, it might be difficult to determine what content would work best at which stage of the funnel. But once you really get to understand your customer’s needs, you can get the right content to them at the right time.

The buying cycle is different for each type of business, which means it can’t be replicated from one business to another. So make sure you’re building your content strategy around your customers’ unique buyer’s journey. For the greatest possible impact on your customer relationships, it’s critical that you get to know your audience, understand their intent at each stage, and create custom content to match each phase of their journey through the funnel.

For more on the tailoring content for each stage of the buyer’s journey, get in touch with us today.

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