What Is Top of the Funnel Marketing and How Can You Convert Visitors to Leads?

What Is Top of the Funnel Marketing and How Can You Convert Visitors to Leads?

Harry Mckay
December 5, 2022
6 mins
min read

Approximately 96% of visitors that come to your website are not ready to buy from you.

The fact is that most people don’t make a purchase immediately. That’s why your company needs a sound strategy to convert those visitors into leads and customers.

Consumers are more informed and educated with the tools available at their fingertips.

You need to get a top of the funnel marketing strategy in place to attract quality leads to your pipeline!

But how do you get started? And what strategies do you need to successfully implement a practical top of the funnel marketing strategy?

In this blog post, we’ll walk you through the top of the funnel marketing strategies, the types of content you have to create, and how to measure the success of your campaign.

Let's get to it!

What is Top of the Funnel Marketing?

Top-of-funnel (TOFU) marketing refers to the practice of generating leads for your business by marketing to a wide audience segment. At this stage, your audience is just beginning their search and primarily looking for information—not necessarily ready to buy yet! 

Recreation content: 

  • Your prospect doesn't know anything about you.
  • They've heard of you, but aren't interested in hearing what you have to say.
  • You've piqued their curiosity, and you're one step closer to getting them on your list.
  • They compare multiple vendors before choosing you.
  • They become your customers.

This stage is about getting people onto your list so that you can market to them later in the and move them down the funnel. The goal here is to provide value and build trust with your audience by providing useful and relevant information.

Importance of Investing in Top of the Funnel Marketing

The top of the funnel marketing is where you start to attract users and build awareness about your brand! All your future customers have a question or problem in their mind. The top of the funnel marketing activities can help them find an answer or at least point them in the right direction.

The key to reaching new customers is by providing answers to the questions they ask. If you provide content relevant to your customer's needs, they will be more likely to engage with your brand.

Top of the funnel marketing is also an opportunity for you to learn about your audience and what they want from you. By providing value at this stage and making sure it’s relevant to them, you can gain valuable insight into what people are looking for when buying products like yours!

If you don’t invest in top-funnel marketing, you’re losing out on an opportunity to generate new leads and gain new customers.

Types of Content for the Top of the Funnel Audience

Around 86% of the content created for B2B marketing focuses on generating awareness and leads instead of sales. And to stand out, you need to create content designed to help your audience solve a problem or meet their needs.

There are different types of content we can create for the top funnel audience, depending on what you want them to do after they’ve consumed that content piece.

Here are the 8 type of top of the funnel content you can create:

1. Blog posts 

If you want to reach a bigger chunk of prospective customers before they make their purchase decisions, publishing blog posts is an excellent way. You can give them the information they need, as it is the most used type of top of the funnel content. 

You can address common questions, explain things, and show that you know a lot about a topic your audience might be interested in.

According to a SEMrush study, 72% of marketers surveyed said that “how-to” guides were their top traffic drivers. In light of this, it is clear that providing step-by-step instructions on topics of interest and solving problems will help you connect better with your website visitors—something other content types do not have as much potential for doing.

By consistently pushing out quality blog posts, your brand will be top-of-mind when they have time to buy later down the line.

2. Product Demo 

Most of the top funnel audiences are figuring out a solution for their problem and need to test out different things before they can choose the right one.

That’s why you should be creating interactive product demos that allow them to try out your product without making a purchase. A product demo is a short video that demonstrates how your product works.

You can embed an interactive product demo in your site with a CTA, "Take a tour" as Wingman does,

Source

You can use this type of content to showcase features, benefits, and use cases. This type of content also helps you build trust with your audience because they can see the value in what you’re offering before ever reaching out to talk with sales.

3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) 

Search engines are the first place that prospects go to when they are looking for information. Optimizing your website's content and other marketing tactics for search engines can encourage more people to visit your website.

To determine your target customers and what kinds of searches they're making, do some research on the questions people are asking online. You can evaluate your competitors or join relevant forums to find out what your audience is looking for. 

This can help you identify essential keywords for your business and create content that will cater to your specific audience segment. 

4. Social media 

One of the best ways to get your content seen by many people is to promote it on social media. If you are creating blogs, you can even repurpose them for social media and drive traffic to your site via blog posts. 

You can use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more to reach a particular segment of audience that may not have otherwise come across your site or blog.

You can even supercharge your efforts with the help of paid advertisements that take advantage of social media platforms' massive reach and targeting capabilities.

When you use social media for your top of funnel marketing efforts, it’s essential to consider how each platform fits into your overall strategy.

For example, LinkedIn has become a go-to place for businesses to post business-related content because of its nature—but Instagram may be more effective for visual storytelling or sharing behind-the-scenes of your business.

5. Case studies 

One way to grab the attention of potential customers and move them further down your marketing funnel is by producing original content that offers value to those readers.

You can do this by creating a case study, report, e-book, or white paper (or whatever format works best for your audience). It can serve as powerful way to create awareness around a topic or your company.

By providing your audience with detailed, exclusive information on a timely topic of interest to them—and by demonstrating leadership in that area (versus just making claims about it)—you’ll be building their trust and credibility even before you ask for anything from them.

The best thing is you can even use those assets as a lead magnet for lead generation. 

6. Webinars 

An online webinar can be a valuable lead-generation tool for top of funnel marketing. Before your audience watches your presentation, you can capture their information during the sign up process and later reach out to them through email or advertising channels. After all, they have demonstrated an interest in what you’re offering by showing interest in your content!

While webinars can help build your business by increasing sales, they also provide an opportunity to educate and create brand awareness and recognition with your audience.

7. Interactive product tours 

Product tours reduce the friction between checking out your product and signing up for a trial. Your marketing team can embed a product tour on the website to bring more leads into the marketing funnel. Here’s how Toplyne was able to get a 2X boost in conversions

With the right strategy and tactics, you can use interactive product tours to convert more prospects into customers. 

8. Infographics 

It’s been proven that people remember content better when paired with a visual than simply written content. Infographics are +178% more likely to be linked on social sites and websites than standard blog posts or articles; thus, it’s one of the best sources for your top of funnel marketing efforts. 

Infographics generate attention, so create an infographic if you have data relevant to your company's goals. 

Top of Funnel Marketing Best Practices

It's essential to focus your efforts on the top of the funnel because this is where you can make your most impactful campaigns and generate your best leads.

To do this effectively, it's essential that you know what works best and how to optimize every aspect of your campaign.

Here are the 7 top-of-funnel marketing best practices; 

1. Understand your audience

To have a successful top of funnel marketing campaign, you should know your audience intimately: what they like and dislike, their problems and concerns, and where they hang out online.

When customers feel that your business is attuned to their needs and interests, they are more likely to stay with you and become loyal.

Creating a buyer persona can help identify who you are selling to. A buyer persona is a fictional character that represents your ideal customer—someone who fits the description of their most likely buyer and has specific needs and desires. 

Here is an example of a buyer persona from Hootsuite. 

Source

The more detailed your buyer persona, the easier it will be for you to create messaging that resonates with them.

2. Create educational yet high-quality content 

Top of funnel marketing is all about educating your customers and prospects. You want to help them solve a problem or answer a question that they have. Providing helpful content is one of the best ways to do this—and it also enables you to build trust, authority, and loyalty with your audience.

On top of that, your content has to be high quality. You want to ensure that it’s well-written, informative, and valuable for your audience.

Highly-written content that addresses the concerns of your audience is more likely to be read, shared, and indexed by search engines. If you write short, poorly-written content or fail to address your audience's core question, people will stop reading, and Google won't rank your site higher than other results.

Focus on creating content that serves your users with the value they need. 

3. Allow your users to take action

If you don’t use any Call-To-Action (CTA) with your content, you can’t get anything out of your top of funnel marketing, no matter how well it’s crafted. 

CTAs help guide your leads through the marketing funnel, giving them clear direction and showing them where to go next. Leaving readers to fumble on their own won't get you very far! 

You can include a lead magnet or a bonus resource to your educational content to collect your leads to your sales funnel. Hubspot follows the same, and you can see a lead magnet on most of their educational content, 

Source

This helps you to collect information about a fraction of your traffic. With evergreen content, you will get consistent leads from your lead magnets. 

4. Boost your SEO strategy 

Your search engine optimization strategy must be solid if you want to bring in new customers.

If your target audience can’t find your top of funnel marketing content, they won't become part of the customer journey and will instead seek another company's offering.

So use the best SEO strategies to get in front of your target audience. 

5. Leverage influencer marketing 

If you are scratching your head about whether influencer marketing works for your B2B brand, the answer is YES. According to a detailed report from the Search Engine Journal, around 86% of B2B brands successfully use influencers in their marketing strategies.

Influencer marketing is a way of growing your business by working with well-known or influential people. When you partner with an influencer, you can tap into their large audience and encourage them to learn more about what makes your brand unique—helping them gain credibility and trust in the process.

6. Reduce friction in the sign up process

There are many forms of friction. For example, the visitor might get overwhelmed with too much to do if you ask them for everything at once—it's best to start by asking for only a couple of things and then introduce other requests later on.

To keep their attention and elicit the desired response, create an experience where they barely notice its seams.

7. Set up email nurturing campaigns

When people visit your website, they usually do so with a specific goal, such as learning more about the products and services you offer or downloading one of your free lead magnets.

Email marketing is an essential part of a well-designed marketing funnel. You can use automated sequences to nurture your leads with more informative content that pushes them down the funnel.

To build trust and ease their concerns, provide them with more information about your product. In this stage, you can even use a product demo embedded in your mail to show how your product works!

Here is how Storylane leverages this email marketing segment.

Additionally, you can create lead nurturing sequences that persuade your free trial users to convert into customers by sharing valuable and practical product knowledge.

Metrics You Should Measure in Top of Funnel Marketing

How do you know whether your top of funnel marketing efforts is paying off? 

The best way to measure the success of your top of funnel marketing strategy is to look at metrics that show how many people are visiting a website, engaging with content, and taking action.  

Here’s a list of the most important marketing metrics that you should be tracking:

1. Impressions 

Marketers often rely on impressions to measure brand exposure at the top of funnel marketing. This metric is effective in measuring your efforts on social platforms. Impressions are the total number of times your ad or post has been served up on someone's screen. For example, if 1,000 different users viewed your ad over some period—say a day or week—that would mean it received 1,000 impressions.

Because impressions are essential to building brand awareness, it is vital to ensure that new audiences see your ads and content before they can be expected to recognize your brand.

2. Website Traffic 

On top of funnel marketing, the ultimate goal of creating a blog and implementing SEO is to drive new audiences to your pipeline.

Website traffic is a metric that indicates how many people visit your website. It is usually measured in pageviews (the number of times a page has been loaded) or visits (the total number of times a user has visited your website). You can also track how long people spend on your site, often called engagement time.

You can measure website traffic by using Google Analytics or another third-party tool. One of the most important ways to measure your website is by looking at the traffic sources. This will help you determine where your audience is coming from and what kind of content they are engaging with.

3. Bounce rate 

It is the percentage of people who visit your site and leave without interacting with it. This can be a good indicator of whether or not your content is relevant to your audience.

The most important thing to remember is that the goal isn’t just about getting as much traffic as possible – it’s about using that traffic data to improve your marketing strategy.

Bounce Rates tell you how likely customers are to leave your website without exploring further. If a page provides a poor user experience or is uninteresting and irrelevant, visitors are more likely to exit the site immediately.

If your Bounce Rate is low, it means that visitors are engaging with the content on your website.

Pro tip: You can use lead magnets on pages with low bounce rates to collect email addresses and generate leads.

4. Click through rate 

The clickthrough rate is a metric that shows how many people have clicked on an ad or link compared to how many times it’s been shown. You can measure your website’s clickthrough rate using Google Analytics or another third-party tool.

A high Clickthrough Rate shows that your content is valuable and engaging. A low rate could mean it’s time to rethink or optimize how you present your information. 

5. Audience reach 

Reach is the total number of unique people your content reaches. It can be used to understand the performance of marketing campaigns, like how well they’re reaching their target audiences.

If your reach is good but cannot get any clicks, your audience is not engaging with your content. This might be because the message or offer isn’t relevant to them, or they may simply not be interested in what you have to say.

You could focus on audiences likely to be interested in your ads based on previous experience with advertising campaigns.

How Storylane Can Help you convert Top of the Funnel Leads

The marketing funnel journey starts when you acquire leads from your top of the funnel marketing efforts. Once you generate sufficient leads, you have to begin your lead nurturing campaigns to convert the leads into sales. Conversion is not easy and requires careful planning.

A good strategy involves using a sequence of emails and personalizing those messages based on their interests. This ensures they don’t get tired of repeatedly seeing the same offers.

Once you warm up your leads, you can use different conversion tactics to convert them into customers. The best way is to create a product demo that educates your leads about the value of your product rather than sounding sales(y).

Through a tailored product demo, you can engage your leads and show them how your product will solve their problems. The lead should see the value in your product. This is when a sale becomes more likely.

And this is possible only when you have interactive demo software like Storylane. When your leads reach the consideration stage, they need more clarity about your product, and a product demo can serve them better than any other method.

With Storylane and its rich features, you can capture your live product and roll out a personalized demo for every lead with a few clicks. You can create and share product tours without requiring the help of your engineering team. 

The interactive demo will give them a better understanding of your product and help them to make the right decision.

If you want to translate your top of the funnel marketing into better conversion rates, Storylane can help you with that. Just schedule a free demo, and we will assist you in creating a demo that will help you achieve your goals.

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