The ability to generate traffic and convert leads directly corresponds to the success of your business. Content marketing plays a major role in this process. Research shows that content marketing generates 3x as many leads as traditional sales marketing while costing 62% less.

Crafting an effective content marketing funnel helps you to take even more advantage of this marketing strategy. Learn how to build a content marketing funnel that will convert leads below.

Trend Watch: What Is a Content Marketing Funnel?

A content marketing funnel is a type of marketing strategy that uses various types of content to attract new leads to your business. Conversion happens when the leads get funneled through further content.

Marketers and smart business owners use a content marketing funnel to get more backlinks and indexed pages for their website. They increase organic search traffic naturally so you can spend less money on paid advertisements. They also help you get higher conversion rates while increasing brand awareness overall.

We can break content marketing funnels into three distinct parts: the top of the funnel, the middle of the funnel, and the bottom of the funnel. Each part focuses on a different aspect of marketing.

Top of the Funnel

Content at the top of the funnel focuses mainly on increasing site traffic and raising brand awareness. It’s all about grabbing attention. This is your chance to make an impression and reveal why your product or service offers the customer value.

Show how your business will solve problems or answer questions. Be sure that you present this in a way without asking anything in return from the potential customer.

Middle of the Funnel

Content in the middle of the funnel focuses more on generating and nurturing leads. This content seeks to educate and inform about your business or products.

Present an offer they cannot refuse in exchange for permission to add them to an email list or another form of contact. In this phase of the funnel, you begin to nurture the new relationship and start to build rapport and trust.

Bottom of the Funnel

Finally, content at the bottom of the funnel focuses on those all-important conversions like buying a product or paying for a service. It’s when you convert potential customers into actual customers.

You’ve shown them who your brand is and what it can do for them. Now is the time to present a new offer that naturally turns them into a paying customer. This type of content works best when personalized.

How to Set Up a Content Marketing Funnel in 4 Easy Steps

If you do not currently have a content marketing funnel put in place for your business, follow these 5 easy steps to set one up from scratch.

1. Consider Your Audience

Before you start creating any content, you need to know who you ideally want to consume it. Identify your target audience so you do not waste time creating and sharing the wrong kind of content. If you haven’t already figured out your target market, ask yourself the following questions:

  • How can your products or services make your target markets’ lives easier?
  • What questions do members of your target audience ask that your products or services will answer?
  • What problems does your target market face that your products or services will solve?

Writing content for a middle-aged single male about to retire is very different from the content you’d write for a late-20’s working mom. Once you grasp the daily needs and challenges of your target market, you can build content around meeting these needs.

2. Research and Review Popular Related Content and Content Shared by Top Influencers

After you establish your target audience, you need to figure out what kind of content they like to consume. Take a look at your competition and figure out what content of theirs gets shared most often. Do keyword research to find top performing keywords in your industry and use them to search for more content.

You should also research and review the content shared by the top influences in your industry. Find influencers by being an active participant in your industry. Stay up-to-date with recent news and content shared in blogs, groups, or on social networks.

You can use this content as a baseline for coming up with your own content. It eliminates the concern of guessing what your target audience may want to consume.

3. Create Content for Each Part of the Funnel

Once you figure out an engaging subject for your content, it’s time to start writing. Create different content for each part of the funnel based on what you hope to achieve at that step.

The best kind of content to start with at the top of the funnel includes:

  • Blog posts
  • Social media posts
  • Infographics
  • Podcasts
  • Videos

The best kind of content to provide when potential clients hit the middle of the funnel include:

  • Case studies
  • Free ebooks and guides
  • Whitepapers
  • Worksheets

The best kind of content to convert in the bottom of the funnel includes:

  • Free discount codes
  • Advanced classes and webinars
  • Testimonials

You do not need to use all of this content. Pick one or two types and see how they resonate with your target audience. If they don’t work, try something else.

4. Retain by Restarting

The process doesn’t end once you successfully convert a potential customer through the funnel to a paying customer. You’ve created a set of expectations through each step and you must continue to meet these expectations.

Restart your content marketing funnel but in a slightly different manner. Satisfied, repeat customers act as a free marketing source if help them do so.

Offer a discount on their next purchase when they refer a friend who makes a purchase. Or provide them free trial codes that they can then share with their friends. You can also offer them exclusive content that they can then share with their friends and family.

Send out surveys occasionally to gauge how your customers feel and ask for suggestions about how to improve. By involving your audience in this process, it makes them feel invested in your business and more likely to use your products or services again.

A Digital Marketing Consultant Can Help Flood Your Funnel

Now you should understand how a content marketing funnel boosts your conversion rates by driving more organic search traffic to your site. Take the time to build or revamp your current funnel to raise your brand awareness while paying for fewer advertisements.

Still not sure you know what to do? Hire a digital marketing consultant with proven expertise in creating effective content marketing funnels. Contact Eric Ritter today to see the many ways a digital marketing consultant can generate leads for your business!