Unlike the other sections of your marketing funnel, your top-of-funnel provides a critical first impression of your brand. So, your ToFu should be clear of bottlenecks to optimize your marketing strategy.
There are two primary ways to create an effective ToFu – 1) provide a bigger ad spend budget for the ToFu, and 2) create effective ToFu content. The former tip is easy. The latter tip needs some explaining. That’s what we are here to do.
Here’s how you can create effective top of the funnel content for potential customers. Be sure to note these tips when creating your content strategy.
1. Create informational content
Top-of-the-funnel content aims to inform, educate, or entertain, not to sell. The top-of-funnel is primarily concerned with getting that initial attention for lead generation. Capture that interest with compelling pieces of content that will funnel them down the customer journey.
Shown above is an example of an interesting ToFu blog post Spiralytics created regarding what Vine did wrong. The informative blog post helps draw in traffic, giving Spiralytics a chance to make a great first impression. Going through the article, you will notice that there’s also a CTA at the bottom. That’s Spiralytics’ attempt to capture leads and push them down the sales funnel.
Here are some quick tips on how you can create informational content.
- Create blog content around keywords relevant to your buyer personas. If you’re just starting your blog out, it would be better to write for less competitive long-tail keywords.
- Edit, proofread and go through your piece of content again before publishing. Remember, your content will carry the brand’s image. More content containing false information and grammatical errors will reflect negatively on your brand.
- Follow the AP style of writing for clearer and more premium quality content.
Alternatively, you may also incorporate the below-mentioned tips for your social media post:
- Repurpose your educational blogs into educational videos you can post on YouTube. This will increase the reach of your informational content with minimal effort.
- Use short-form types of content for your social media channels. As a fast-paced medium, viewers on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok don’t have time to sit through 10-minutes worth of content.
Top-of-the-funnel content works best if it gains a wider reach. That’s why it’s represented as the widest part of the sales funnel. Creating informational content will not only provide value to your readers but, if written and made well, may also gain virality from shares and engagement. That builds more brand awareness.
2. Answer the frequently asked questions
A significant part of creating informational top-of-the-funnel content is addressing your buyer personas’ most pressing questions. That’s usually how the customer journey starts. But before content marketers create content that targets these questions, they have to know first what their audience is asking. This will maximize your content marketing efforts.
Here are some useful ways to know your audience’s FAQs:
- Do keyword research. Keyword research tools like Ahrefs will provide you with relevant search terms you can target. This will give you a wider array of topic ideas and improve your search engine optimization campaign.
- Join online communities like Reddit and Facebook Groups. Your sales team may join these as well for better interaction with funnel prospects. You can gather FAQs from the different community platforms that share insights and discuss various topics in your niche.
Once you determine these KPIs, here’s how you can address those pain points:
- Create How-To blogs and videos. Some internet users want comprehensive guides on certain matters, such as how to play chess, how to start a digital print business, etc.
- Use structured data for your content. Structured data labels every text, image, and element in your content to be easily identified by search engines. This maximizes the functionality of search engine results pages (SERPs), turning your blog into a highlight snippet for FAQ searches.
According to Moz, 8% of Google Searches are phrased as questions. That 8% is a high-converting audience whose purchasing decision can be influenced by providing solutions to their problems. Position your content in front of these people for more qualified leads.
Your sales team will also craft better sales pitches when you know your audience’s FAQs.
3. Be consistent on social media
A lot of the time, your prospects are surfing social media instead of doing Google searches. That means you can reach a broader audience with compelling social media content. After all, meeting your audience where they are is a critical part of marketing.
Being consistent with your posting will tell social media platforms that your page is active. Consistency also improves engagements helping you build your social media profile.
Here are some tips to follow to improve your social media strategy:
- Stick to a good social media calendar. You should be posting at least once a day. Shown above is an example of a decent social media calendar.
- Only use social media channels relevant to your audience. This will prevent your marketing team from being spread thin.
- Share your blogs on your relevant social media channels.
- If you’re using Facebook and Instagram, publish stories, posts, and consider going live. Take full advantage of the platform you’re using.
- Stick to a single tone and message. Brand consistency is just as important as having a consistent engagement with your audience.
In these scenarios where your content first touches base with leads on social media, your activity there serves as the top of the funnel content.
4. Encourage email newsletter signups
Your optimized ToFu will be all for naught if it doesn’t bring people deeper down the sales funnel. One way of nudging people in that direction is encouraging email newsletter signups through your top-of-the-funnel content.
Once a lead has given their email to you, they become available for your email marketing campaign. Encourage email newsletter signups by giving something in return. A solid rule in email marketing is using a lead magnet to grow your email list.
Here are some great lead magnet ideas:
- A free ebook that provides valuable information. This is the most common.
- Webinars where experts hold a class for your leads.
- A discount voucher.
- A free item that leads can claim at your physical stores.
- A free trial for your SaaS.
So long as it provides free value to your customers, that is considered a lead magnet. In Spiralytics’ case, it’s a free marketing consultation. Click here to avail.
Once you’ve gathered an email list, track your emails to know who’s received and opened your newsletter, effectively monitoring your qualified leads.
5. Include a strong call to action in your content
You’ve created great top-of-the-funnel content that’s relevant and engaging. What now?
You’d want your leads to take other actions as well besides opting for your lead magnet. Whatever action you want them to take, make it clear with the help of strong calls to action. At Spiralytics, some blogs will contain a clickable CTA such as “Contact Us Today for a Free Consultation.”
Here are some tips for incorporating a CTA into your content:
- Include actionable insights on your content. This will seamlessly transition to your CTA, compelling viewers more.
- Add one or two CTAs. You wouldn’t want to overload your audience with a dozen CTAs telling them to do different things.
- Never shoehorn in your CTAs. Your CTAs have to feel genuine and natural with the rest of the content piece.
You should also incorporate strong CTAs into your email newsletters.
6. Ask for feedback and suggestions
Content creation is a two-way street. To create effective top-of-the-funnel content, enable comments on your blogs and videos. Take these comments, filter out those that don’t add value. Use the rest as inspiration and insights to make better content.
Reading comments also gives you an idea of your audience’s other pain points. This can inspire more content that will resonate with your target audience.
Metrics such as page traffic can only provide you with quantitive data. But you also require qualitative data to understand your ToFu content’s performance better. This qualitative data comes in the form of readers’ and viewers’ comments.
And, you don’t have to sit waiting for the comments. You can proactively search for user feedback by asking for it through email, social media, and other channels.
Your top-of-funnel (ToFu) content will serve as your first impression to a ton of potential leads. Make it count by publishing informational content. Quality relevant content will tell your leads that you’re a trustworthy brand. Moreover, it’ll set you aside as a thought leader in your industry.
Answer FAQs by creating blog posts around these queries. Besides blogs, leverage your social media activity to reach a bigger audience.
Your ToFu content should include a strong CTA. Moreover, tell leads to subscribe to your email list. You can use lead magnets to increase signups. Finally, ask for feedback and suggestions from your audience to help you craft better top-of-the-funnel content moving forward.
Follow all these steps, and your top-of-the-funnel content will drive leads straight down your sales pipeline.