We go from top to bottom, simultaneously converting users with buy intent. Then, we use your campaign’s data to generate optimized leads and work your way up to the funnel maintaining a continuous flow of fresh new customers and leads at the top.
Most standard full-funnel marketing strategies focus on the classic “drive them down” approach. The result is the conversion of those leads at the bottom of the funnel. In our approach, we change the order of things and convert users with buying intent, we work the way up the funnel, maintaining the flow of new customers and leads at the top.
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The perfect full-funnel strategies focus on closing the sale while nurturing new customers. We leverage your campaign data through a custom match and using your offline conversions, we build up your audience with optimized lookalikes.
When developing a full-funnel marketing strategy we always start from the bottom. A very practical approach is to show numbers heading in the right direction before driving up the budget and starting to increase your marketing spend.
We start from the bottom of the funnel and focus on those customers that are ready to buy or, let’s say, almost ready to buy. We focus a lot on Google Search, on terms that express a certain level of intent.
Google Ads has a different set of campaigns for different users and different steps of the funnel: TOFU, MOFU, and BOFU.
In a traditional funnel approach, there are 3 segments: TOFU (Top of the Funnel), MOFU (Middle of the Funnel), and BOFU (Bottom of the Funnel). Most of the time, corporations have different names for each phase, but it is easy to remember TOFU, MOFU, and BOFU. This is how we see the standard funnel models.
Retention is extremely important. After all, retaining an existing customer is cheaper than acquiring a new one.
Depending on the industry, studies show that acquiring a new customer could be from 5 to 25 times more costly than retaining an existing customer. Researchers from Frederick Reichheld of Bain & Company have calculated that increasing customer retention rates by 5% increases profits by 25% to 95%.
This is why it is important to remember that nurturing a prospect who has already shown interest in what you offer, might be more valuable (and less expensive) than trying to attract the attention of new customers.
To simplify we can imagine that branding represents the TOFU stage and focuses on planting new trees, where BOFU is more about harvesting the fruit. And after harvest, we can worry about preservation and retention.
When talking about remarketing, there are the main 3 types of users:
1 – Those who are landing on your website and buying products.
2 – Those who are not buying right now but might buy it in the future.
3 – Those who will never buy.
In Remarketing about 2% of customers convert and you cannot follow only this 2%. So it is important to distinguish between people who will maybe buy, and those who won’t.
To do a proper remarketing campaign we use some tricks that are a little more clever than the other approaches you might get from a deep dive in Google or Facebook.
It is not about following all the people that land your website and assume they are good leads, but more like following 18% of the leads that are most likely to convert.
First: Behavior on the website.
Let’s say somebody is spending hours on your website and went down to the very last step of the funnel versus someone else that just stopped on the homepage. The first user is more likely to be valuable in the future.
In most cases, recency is directly related to the conversion rate. It’s simple, a user that was on the website a day ago is more likely to convert with the remarketing campaign than a user who was on the website a month ago.
Third: Study your data and clone your customers.
It’s very important to connect all of your remarketing efforts with first-party data (trust us, the proof is in the funnel!). Overlapping similar lists, look-a-likes, and machine learning intelligence that Google or Facebook are providing us with is fundamental to find similarities within our first-party data.
“When it comes to Lookalikes. We need data to set up a smarter game!”
We don’t buy the views from all the leads who probably won’t convert, we focus on the 18% of the “real leads” that have seen your brand before and are more willing to buy.
When it comes to Lookalikes. We need data to set up a smarter game!
We do this by analyzing how we acquire the customer using data from SalesForce and Hubspot. At this point, we run some fancy analysis on the CRM from a classic RFM type of analysis where we are trying to focus on segmenting customers based on common metrics such as recency, frequency, and so on, and bringing it down to a more sophisticated segmentation that considers prospective LTV.
We want to try and figure out using our existing customer database how we can isolate our top clients by increasing the homogeneity of them within a cluster and decreasing the heterogeneity versus other clusters.
Once we have the answer, we can reinject this information back into Google (it is also true for Facebook) and at this point, we can communicate with Google and ask it to find users similar to our top users. Moreover, we can target them with very relevant creatives.
For example, let’s say we are creating a cluster of users that are spending money on higher-priced tickets of a product, then we could pair it with a creative that resonates with them and would show a product with a higher value type of ticket.
This is a fundamental piece that we need to get right to achieve every marketer (and business owner) dream: that of finding the right user at the right place with the right message at the right time.
No one proposes on the first date. 💍 So, do not propose just yet!
Meaning, we don’t try to sell on the first interaction that we have with the user. Whenever we focus on the bottom part of the funnel it’s fine to go and start selling our product or asking for a lead immediately but whenever we move into the upper funnel we want to make sure that we don’t go and propose on the first date.
This way, if we reach the user on the upper funnel we are courteous and can gather more intelligence before asking them to buy a product.
When it comes to the content, it is very important to consider the fact that upper-funnel customers will probably need a certain level of education, especially when we are talking about sophisticated or non-obvious B2B products.
We are reaching out to users that don’t know they have a problem. We are reaching out to customers or potential customers that haven’t searched for a product, let alone ours. They don’t know yet that they need to buy a brand new T-shirt. So we want to make sure that the content that we are showing to them is focused on the educational message.
Here it’s important to utilize a format that is more suited to the world of image and video, which is why every time you move to the upper funnel it’s more likely that your creative team is also involved and your marketing focuses on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube.
So the lower funnel is more for Google Search, whereas whenever you move up the funnel you might also want to make sure you are including Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube.
One important thing to remember once you bring Facebook and Instagram into the mix is that you need to make sure you are mobile experienced because the traffic that you want from Facebook and Youtube and Instagram is going to be a lot of the mobile traffic.
So in the content part the message to remember is don’t sell directly to the upper funnel, really focus on the content for the upper funnel, go Video, go Image, go Youtube, go Instagram, and Facebook.
Let’s talk about the numbers and think about the scoring system. You could see it as using the data in a little algorithm that tells you WHEN you should propose to your user.
Say you have a user that is consuming a certain type of content, let’s say, from a Facebook video about a new Adidas line. She clicked on the ad, she came to your landing page and she read everything about that product. Let’s say we give her a score of 3!
After a week the same user comes again and reads a similar but generic type of content on “Fashion and Friends for 2020”. At this point, our user has a total score of 6.
She then comes again but this time she has been triggered by the remarketing campaign that was following her and she reads another article but this time the article was specifically about Adidas and we know that the user had a certain level of interest in that product line.
What we now know is that the total score is 13 and this is above our target of 10 so at this point we are ready to push our product and propose the offer. This is way more product and price-focused.
Of course, this is a very simplified way of building up the scoring system that then tells us when the time is right to show a user the right type of message.
When the score is low we continue showing a generic message, an educational message, or something that is more focused on general trends. Then, whenever the user is ready, we will actually ask for money.
So now we have built up the funnel, we have a remarketing machine, we have content for the upper funnel, and we have a scoring system that is telling us when the users are ready to buy.
But what are we going to do with all those users that are in the upper funnel?
Let’s imagine that we are a lead generation website or a SAS – we are getting information from the users that are still in the information phase – the upper funnel, in TOFU or MOFU, still trying to learn what CRM software they need to use next year, or what an advertising platform is.
Now, when we talk about prospects, we usually talk a lot about nurturing machines, so there is a ton of content out there. And today we really want to focus on the rest. What does it mean in terms of lookalikes, remarketing, and everything else that we have discussed so far?
There are 2 macro areas that we need to take into consideration when it comes to nurturing online users.
You need an email marketing machine (marketing automation).
This means, how do you make sure that you are sending the right email to users that gave their email address in exchange for a content magnet in the upper funnel? How do you send them 2, 3, or 4 emails that are gradually giving them more information and more details about your product?
Another element that you need is a sales organization.
Whether your product is complex and needs a human interaction or whether it doesn’t. This is more for software but if it is a service that is connected with offline elements – plastic surgeons or dentists – you want to make sure that a certain level of the human element is added to explain to potential prospects the value of services that you are offering.
So Sales Organisation is a very good way of nurturing clients and giving them more information to prep them before actually giving them an offer.
Every time you hear the word FUNNEL, probably 80% of the content is really about the nurturing part and most of that is about marketing automation, which ultimately is a complex way of defining an email marketing operation. But this is just one component that makes up a much broader approach.
We have now seen how the different components of the funnel can be reached out to with different campaigns.
And we have seen that, in broad terms, the Search part is more focused on the lower funnel, while Display, Youtube, and Instagram are more in the upper funnel.
Let’s dive a little bit deeper into each type of campaign.
First of all the most obvious candidates when it really comes to the bottom of the funnel are Brand campaigns or Google Search.
If you have an e-commerce product you want to have a Shopping campaign, but you also want to have a specific product on Search, that is targeting your Top product.
Two really good friends of the bottom of the funnel are Remarketing (that we have seen before) and also Remarketing List for Search Ads (RLSA).
The latter which has features that allow you to retarget the customers that have been on your website overlapping that together with keywords.
So let’s continue the story in the Adidas example: the user landed on our website by searching “Adidas sweater with a hoodie”, and now she is Googling something else like “Christmas sweater”. We actually have an angle to reignite that conversation if we are overlapping the keyword “sweater” together with an audience.
Remarketing for Search Ads is a really good friend of the Bottom of the funnel types of campaigns.
This is not at all a comprehensive view and most likely does not apply for everyone 100% of the time but it is a good approximation for most of the people that are trying to tackle the same type of problem.
Let’s move to the upper funnel.
At this point, we are first going to start with categories and subcategories campaigns.
Let’s take an e-commerce example. In categories, we might have Sweaters, Pants, Shoes, etc.; in a subcategory campaign, we might have Leather Pants, Jeans, Sandals… And then there are Video and Display Placements that have specific placements on the Google network.
So we, as industry experts, as e-commerce owners or e-commerce marketing managers, probably know where our customers are reading about our product or where our customers are hanging out. So if our target is a businessman, in each country there is an equivalent of the Financial Times for the Mexican market, the French market and so on. So it would be a really good idea to include in our Google Display Network placement. The same applies to Video placement.
Google is such an underestimated type of resource. There was an old Google pitch suggesting YouTube that it is the 2nd largest search engine in the world! And it’s true!
There is a lot of traffic on Youtube that is done by people that are probably in the MOFU stage.
It might waste your time a little if you get stuck in too many cat videos, but it’s also a way to learn more when making your shopping decision on which software you should buy or how that program can be installed.
Classic approaches for full-funnel strategies focus on harvesting (aka closing the sale), but we also need to remember that it is important to plant new seeds (aka nurture new customers).
When developing your full-funnel marketing strategy, here the things you need to remember:
Start easy rather than complicated;
Make sure that your marketing machine has really closed the loop;
Make sure that you are leveraging your own data through a custom match or uploading your offline conversions in order to build up the lookalikes;
Remember that you should never ever propose on your first date.
If you follow this advice and implement these steps in your full-funnel digital marketing strategy you’ll be harvesting the fruits of your labors in no time!