10 Tips for Generating Top of the Funnel Leads
Every business in the world aims to fill the top of its sales funnel with qualified leads one way or another. Here are 10 tips that will help you generate top of the funnel leads that will convert into customers.
You’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating. The competition for consumers’ attention is fiercer than ever before. Endless marketing messages are bombarding an expansive audience at multiple touchpoints every day. To survive, companies need to commit to new and innovative tactics for lead generation.
So, you’ve built up your marketing team with the best creative, strategic, and technical minds, but you’re not sure what to do next. You know you want to invest your marketing dollars smartly and generate quality, top of the funnel leads that you can nurture to purchase. You need the right strategies to help you develop your top of the funnel marketing plan and we can help.
Read on for our 10 tips for generating top of the funnel leads. We’ll cover strategies that any business, small start-up or well-known brand, can use to grow and thrive in today’s competitive landscape.
Keep it Simple
That’s right. The first tip on our list is a reminder that top of the funnel marketing messaging doesn’t need to be and shouldn’t be too complicated.
The top of your inbound marketing funnel should be all about branding and awareness. You want to tell people who you are, what you offer, and how it can help them.
But, you want to do this in a simple, attention-grabbing way that makes them remember. These are likely people who don’t know much about you or what you offer, so you don’t want to confuse them. It’s all about providing just the right amount of information at the right time.
Create a Quality Brand Campaign
The best way to keep it simple when marketing for the top of the funnel? Creating a campaign around your brand. Remember, this stage is about branding and awareness, and building brand recognition is the main goal.
While a brand campaign won’t be the highest converting campaign in your marketing plan, it can help get you VIP entrance into your target customer’s mind. You want to build trust and brand recognition through continued exposure.
A large-scale example of a brand who does this incredibly well is Apple. Even when they’ve released less-than-stellar products in the past their brand has retained recognition and its reputation. When you’ve generated trust in your brand, it’s easier to bounce back from other pitfalls.
Invest in Your Website and Blog
Where do most people go to learn more about a brand or product? If they aren’t asking friends and family, they’re going right to the internet.
You want to make sure your website and blog are designed to give them the best experience possible with valuable information that’s easy to access and understand. The first impression you make is going to be the most important one, so put resources into making sure your web presence is up to par.
Reports on career and employment demonstrate the importance of a web presence and a strong web team. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of web developers will grow 15 percent between 2016 and 2026.
Take Advantage of Search Engine Marketing for Top of the Funnel Marketing
Search engine marketing (SEM) can help drive people to your website at the exact moment that you or your product or service is front of mind. Start by building content for organic search engine optimization (SEO). Once you’ve got a solid foundation of SEO content, you can explore pay-per-click (PPC) advertising through a tool like Google Adwords.
SEO and PPC marketing are done best by professionals who specialize in these areas. If you don’t have in-house specialists, consider hiring an outside firm to help with your digital inbound marketing.
Transition into Social Media Marketing
Like pay-per-click search engine marketing, social media advertising can target potential customers while they’re browsing online. This is another valuable method for building brand awareness and recognition.
You can share content on your own social platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram for no cost. Engaging with others through your social platform-especially influencers-is a great way to target new leads for your digital marketing funnel.
To target those customers who may not have been exposed to you yet, there’s paid social media marketing. Today’s social media platforms offer robust targeting options that can help you narrow your audience to people who are most likely to be interested in your product and service.
You don’t have to go it alone. Seek out relationships with businesses who offer products or services complementary to your own. For example, if you own a specialty shop for running gear, partnering with a local health food restaurant would be a beneficial strategy.
Once you’ve established a partner relationship, explore ways to turn your partner’s customer base into new leads for your company. Publish a guest post on your partner’s blog, host a joint webinar, or run a joint campaign on social media.
Run an Assessment Campaign
Getting people to engage with your brand through your website or social media is a good start, but you want to target content and information to each prospect’s unique needs.
An assessment campaign allows you to get input from your potential customers, so you can learn more about them and market to them more effectively. Depending on your business and the customers you want to target, you may want to know their age, job titles, location, or special interests.
Use this information to build a detailed picture of your leads and create tailored content.
This tip is especially beneficial for B2B marketing but can also be useful for B2C businesses.
Develop assets-or marketing collateral-that offers enough value to your prospects that they would engage with you to gain access to the material. In-depth blog posts, guides, and ebooks are just a few examples of assets you can use.
While many businesses offer these types of assets behind forms or other gates, offering open assets can help your business stand out. If what you’re offering is providing valuable information, the prospect is more likely to engage with you again and you can nurture them further down your digital marketing funnel.
Utilize E-Commerce Tools and Strategies
If you are capable, develop a system that allows your customers to complete their purchases online. Being able to conduct transactions online is a huge draw in today’s market, where convenience is key, and customers want access to products and services virtually 24/7. Even top brands like Macy’s have restructured to focus on digital and e-commerce.
Once you have e-commerce functionalities in place, let people know. Use your other marketing strategies, like SEO, social media, and even your main branding campaign to tell prospects that they can access everything they need from you online. Highlight the value of this service and help drive more leads to your inbound marketing funnel.
Don’t Forget Outbound Marketing
Most of what we touched on here involved inbound marketing tactics. Outbound marketing still has its place and can offer value, too.
Attend trade shows and collect leads at a booth or exhibit. Send direct mail. Methods like these can be greatly beneficial in targeting a specific audience.
Be thoughtful and strategic when it comes to deciding how to use inbound and outbound marketing tactics to offer the most value to your business.
Partner with a Marketing Agency to Help Expertly Execute Your Marketing Plan
Generating top of the funnel leads is a large undertaking for any business. Why not partner with a company who specializes in it?
Blue Atlas Marketing is a full-service agency. We offer services like SEO, social media, and more. We’d love to partner with you and help generate more leads for your business.
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