The Ultimate Email Marketing Funnel Cheat Sheet
The marketing funnel is a theory, that, if applied correctly, produces extremely powerful results. This theory combines psychology with consumer behavior to visualize the journey people follow from the moment they first encounter a brand to the moment they make a purchase and become a loyal customer.
As marketers, we try to incorporate the marketing funnel into all of our strategies, regardless of whether we are using social advertising, content creation, or even SEO. However, one channel rules them all when it comes to having total control of when and how you interact with prospects throughout their buying journey - email.
1. Build brand awareness
Consider developing an automated “Welcome Sequence”.
At this stage in the buyer’s journey, prospects are unfamiliar with your brand and are eager to learn what you’re all about (hence the reason they signed up for your mailing list in the first place). Rarely ever do marketers have a list of people that volunteered to receive marketing messages, so take advantage of this opportunity when it arises!
Leverage this opportunity to establish yourself as a thought leader within your industry and start building a relationship with your subscribers. Send them valuable content like blog posts, e-books, videos, infographics, and checklists. Free educational content like this will pique their interest and leave them wanting more. Consider developing an automated "Welcome Sequence" that subscribers receive upon signing up that includes these educational materials.
2. Consider and target your subscribers' needs
Send each prospect targeted content based on their interests and unique needs.
Now that you’ve shared a few pieces of valuable content with your subscribers, it is time to take your relationship to the next level. Build an even deeper relationship with these prospects by taking a deep dive into the analytics and seeing what type of content they’re interested in. For example, if you have an e-commerce site that sells pet food, send them content relating to both cats and dogs and segment your list based on which pet content they clicked on.
During the consideration stage, you can use this information to send each prospect targeted content based on their interests and unique needs. This can be in the form of case studies, testimonials, white papers, or blog posts.
In the example above, we could send testimonials from customers discussing the improved energy level or overall health of their dog or cat. Using targeted content like this, you demonstrate that you have the solution to their problem or needs, without directly asking them to make a purchase.
3. Gently urge subscribers to convert
Highlight what makes your brand different than your competitors.
The moment we’ve all been waiting for has finally arrived! During the conversion stage, we can finally convince the subscriber to make a purchase. You’ve nurtured your subscriber with valuable and relevant content in the awareness stage, helped them see the value of your offerings in the consideration stage, and by now they should be more than ready to make a decision.
Think of this stage as an opportunity to show off your product or service offering. Discuss the benefits of your offering and be sure to highlight what makes your brand different than your competitors. There are a variety of tactics that can be used to urge subscribers to convert including:
- Offering a free trial or giveaway samples
- Announcing sales with coupon codes
- Scheduling “spotlight” emails that each describe a different benefit of your product or service
4. Develop customer loyalty
Nurture your relationship with your customers by sending email content that will increase loyalty.
It may seem like the funnel is complete once a prospect turns into a paying customer. However, conversion is just the start of your relationship with them. Don’t risk losing customers because you failed to develop a plan to maintain customer loyalty.
Nurture your relationship with your customers by sending email content that will increase loyalty and keep your brand top-of-mind. Send a quick list of helpful tips, discounts and promotions, and how-to guides that customers can refer to when using your product or service offering.
5. Reward brand advocacy
Advocacy occurs when your customers turn into superfans.
Perhaps the most important stage of the marketing funnel, advocacy occurs when your customers turn into superfans. We all know how important and influential word-of-mouth is when it comes to getting your brand’s name out there. Therefore, when a customer continues to purchase from you and tells their friends about you, you know you’ve caught yourself a lifelong customer.
Reward these advocates by starting an affiliate program where customers get incentives for referring your brand or include a survey to see how you can improve. These customers will provide you with honest feedback that you can use to further grow your business.
The marketing funnel doesn’t have to be voodoo! Use the marketing funnel to develop emails that match each stage of the buyer’s journey and start seeing your conversion rates soar.
About our guest blogger: Currently a Content Marketing Specialist at Power Digital Marketing, Alexa Engelhart is skilled in the development and execution of marketing campaigns through promotion, content creation, and social media. Follow her on LinkedIn. Learn more about guest blogging on MediaLeaders.