Every good marketing professional knows that the process of generating leads and turning them into customers can be a challenge.
And with a lot of competition out there, you need to make sure that your approach is working as efficiently as possible. This can mean making sure you’re using a broad range of strategies.
One such strategy is top of funnel marketing, also sometimes referred to as “TOFU.”
But what is top of funnel marketing, exactly?
How can you apply it to your own marketing strategy?
We have the answers (plus a few more insights) in our latest blog.
Ready to get started?
The three stages of every marketing funnel
Imagine a funnel. You’ll notice the funnel’s shape lends itself to being wide at the top while gradually gets narrower—and a marketing funnel operates that way, too.
You may attract thousands of leads or prospects with your marketing and sales tactics (top of funnel, also referred to as TOFU). Those who continue their journey to the middle funnel or MOFU will be fewer.
The people that visit the bottom of your funnel or BOFU are the ones most likely to turn into your customers.
Every marketing funnel contains at least three stages:
Research & Awareness
This is the widest point of your funnel. The only thing you should focus on here is getting eyes on your marketing materials. While these leads might not qualify as future customers, they are interested in learning more about how your product or service can solve a very specific problem they’re having.
Your prospects here have identified their problems, and have also researched possible solutions. They’re savvy about the benefits of your solution, but may not know enough to be persuaded to make a purchase. Keep them coming back for more by offering detailed information about your company, and encouraging them to reach out if any questions arise.
Decision or Action
The bottom of the sales funnel is where your ideal customers live and: therefore, this is the one stage of the sales funnel that has the most potential for success. Prospects who make their way all the way down to the BOFU meet your strict criteria for serious buyers. But keep in mind that even here, you may need to have multiple meetings and check-ins with your prospect before sealing the deal. Remaining patient is key.
An overview of top of funnel marketing
Now that you have some additional familiarity with the different stages of the buyer’s journey, also referred to as the marketing funnel, let’s do a deeper dive into the top of the funnel and what it means from a business perspective.
Top of Funnel (TOFU) marketing takes place in the uppermost point of your marketing funnel. This also happens to be the widest or largest part of your funnel. All about generating awareness for your product or service and getting people interested in what you have to offer, you may attract hundreds or thousands or millions of leads in the TOFU phase.
Why top of funnel marketing is important
As the name suggests, top of funnel (TOFU) marketing is all about generating awareness and interest at the very top of the sales funnel. It’s about getting your brand in front of as many potential customers as possible and planting the seed for future conversions.
But the goal of TOFU marketing isn’t to sell! Instead, your goal here should be to reach as many people as possible and get them interested in your product or service. And while it can be difficult to market without the intention of selling, it’s necessary when you want to grow your business.
Without top of funnel marketing, you can’t build brand awareness and discover new prospects. And if you don’t have new prospects to move down the funnel or convert them into customers, you can’t grow your sales.
Think of TOFU marketing as your foot in the door. It’s how you make that all-important first impression that will determine whether or not someone does business with you.
TOFU marketing tactics to use in your business
When you’re looking for ways to build brand awareness and attract more and more prospects, you might be wondering—how?!
Fully understanding the different stages of the customer journey enables you to create targeted content that resonates with your TOFU audience (versus your MOFU or BOFU audience).
Consider that in the first stage of the customer journey your ultimate goals are:
1. Generate brand awareness
2. Build up curiosity or interest
Here are a few ways you can get started:
1. Content marketing
This tactic is all about creating valuable, relevant, and engaging content that speaks to your target audience’s needs and interests. This could be anything from keyword-optimized blogs, to eBooks, infographics, whitepapers, videos, and case studies. The key is to create content that educates, entertains, and inspires your audience so they keep coming back for more.
2. Search engine optimization
SEO is all about optimizing your website and content for search engines with the goal of earning higher rankings. Use keywords and other SEO best practices to ensure that your content appears in search engine results pages when people are looking for information related to your product or service.
3. Direct mail marketing
By sending out targeted mailers to potential customers, you can grab their attention and grow interest in your product or service. This is especially effective if you use personalization on the mailer (like their name) as this will make them feel like you are speaking directly to them. Also, including a call-to-action or CTA on your direct mail piece is crucial in getting leads to take action like visiting your website to learn more about your product or service. A great CTA will give prospects a specific task that may move them further down the funnel.
4. Social media marketing
Choose a single social media platform like Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn to share your content and engage with potential customers. Strive to be everywhere on whatever platform you choose and remember to stay engaged with your audience by replying to comments and posting relevant material.
5. Paid advertising
Use well-known platforms like Google AdWords or Facebook Ads to reach potential customers who are searching for products or services exactly like yours.
Now that you have a better understanding of top of funnel marketing or TOFU marketing, we hope you’ll feel confident instilling a few tactics we discussed into your marketing strategy.