Leads are the backbone of business. Thus, it is critical for business to strategize lead generation process. In order to obtain high qualified leads, it is quintessential to have a customized lead generation funnel as per the business demand. Lead generation funnel is a strategic approach to generate leads, where in a prospect is converted into a paying customer systematically.
Basically, lead generation funnel is a process of walking your prospects through various stages to convince them to make purchases.
Talking of stages, lead generation funnel consists of 3 stages; each steps leading to another.
Guide to Follow Stages of Lead Generation Funnel
Stage 1: Top of the Funnel [TOFU]
From companies’ perspective, it is the stage of raising awareness. On the other hand, people are discovering your brand for the first time. Hence, this stage should involve blog posts and videos that touch the pain points of the prospects and talk about solutions.
If used appropriately, top of the funnel can be used to trigger the interest of your potential leads regarding your brand. Hence, it is advisable to create quality blog posts.
Stage 2: Middle of the Funnel [MOFU]
For prospects, it is the engaging phase while for companies it is the lead nurturing stage. As per a report, companies who focus on nurturing leads have witnessed 450% boost in qualified prospects. Further, brands that consume appropriate time to nurture the leads and build customer relationship have witnessed 50% more sales at relatively lower price.
In this relationship building phase, the brand should provide with value-building study materials such as white papers, e-books, and case studies.
Stage 3: Bottom of the Funnel [BOFU]
This is the final stage of the funnel and equally significant as above stages. It is clear that the prospect has started to trust your brand and is interested in your product/service.
Thus, this stage should be reserved with demos of the product/service that your brand has to offer followed by consultations, trials, and discount offers to convert the prospect into customer.
Despite following every step prospects seem to drop out in the middle of the lead generation funnel stages. Each of these drop-outs result in higher bounce rate and lower conversion rate. Drop-outs from lead generation funnel is attributed to the mistakes while building the funnel.
Some of the common mistakes in lead generation funnel are-
- Unaware of Customers’ Demand
- Following One-Size Fits All Approach
- Underestimating Requirement of Automation Software
- Sidelining Social Media
- Weaker Content Strategy
These are some of the strategic errors that can be prevents effective lead generation process. In addition, these errors result in wastage of time, resources, energy, and budget of course!
However, with proper planning and attention to details these errors can be easily omitted. This, further, will result in achieving highly qualified leads in maximum number. But before that you have to come with a full-proof plan to optimize your lead generation funnel.
Steps to Build Optimized Lead Generation Funnel-
Step 1: Identify Customers’ Need:
To create an effective lead generation funnel, you should know your customer. Once you are aware of your customer’s requirement, you will be able to figure out the pain points and corresponding solutions. This will help you to communicate in a better way.
A proper research in the direction will help you to curate better blogs. Here is how you can know about your customer-
- Conduct interviews
- Send survey forms
- Read support tickets
Step 2: Strategize Content
The three stages of funnel requires three different types of content pieces. This takes us to another questions, what kind of content should be posted at different stages? And there comes the role of strategizing content as per the stage.
Stage 1: Advertisements, Videos, Infographics, Social Media posts, and check lists
Stage2: Blog posts, Guides, e-books, Case Studies, Webinars, e-mails, and Ratings and Reviews
Stage 3: E-mails, Newsletters, Surveys, Contest and giveaways, Demonstrations, Landing Page, and Discount offers on purchase.
Contents should be precise and not lengthy. Quality content over quantity is always recommended to keep the prospects engaged.
Also, the content should be SEO optimized to drive organic traffic and appear in the search result of the prospects. All the contents that are published on the website homepage should have proper headings, structured data, header tags, and internal links. Once the contents are published on the webpage, they should be re-circulated over different social media handles of the company.
Step 4: Build Database of Prospects
Not all the visitors on your website are potential customer, and hence, they will not benefit your website. In order to filter the leads, it is mandatory to collect their information.
Most efficient way to collect the information about your prospect is by building a lead magnet. As lead magnet you can provide free samples, e-newsletter, free subscriptions for limited time period, or consultations. However, make sure lead magnet is relevant to your prospects.
Step 5: Close the Sale
This is the final stage to convert potential leads into customers. It may vary from company to company one trick that is applicable to every company is to value the time and business of your prospects.
If you are sending leads to your sales manager, ensure the manager has thorough knowledge regarding requirements and demands of your leads.
Moreover, once the sale is closed follow-up with your customer after a few days to collect their feedback. This action enhances the customer experience and at the same time helps you to improve your product/service quality.
Lead generation funnel is a complete cycle where you convert visitors of your website into a customer. It is an ongoing conversion cycle. Business and customers are evolving simultaneously. What helped you in conversion yesterday may not help you today. Hence, it is necessary to keep experimenting at every stage of the funnel to figure out what suits your business best!!
We, at Valasys Media, are experts in shaping perennially healthy sales pipelines for our customers. Our services included lead-generation, account-based marketing, lead nurturing, content syndication & business intelligence to name a few; all of which have been designed to help our clients achieve their bottom-line goal of Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO). For more information on our services, feel free to contact us.