Yet, in order to have your funnels working effectively, there are a few important things to keep in mind. Therefore, this article discusses the 4 most important things for optimizing the marketing and sales funnels of your business.
- 1. Market segmentation
The complete market that you could potentially cater to is of course far too big to focus on as a whole. Moreover, the many individuals in any market make it far too complex to target effectively. In order to solve this issue, you first have to homogenize your market by dividing it into various market segments – for example, based on your target audience’s demographics, needs, the way they look for solutions, and their purchasing behavior.
When you have segmented your market, you can judge which segments will be most fitting for your business model. In this, mapping out your customer journey is a great help. It will show you how exactly you could reach your various customer segments, and hence judge which segments are viable targets for your business.
With your market segmented and customer journey mapped out you can narrow down your target audience. Then, you can focus your marketing and sales funnels on converting your narrowed target audience into returning customers.
- 2. TOFU, MOFU, and BOFU
These terms refer to Top of Funnel, Middle of Funnel, and Bottom of Funnel. They offer useful reference points for the aims of your marketing and sales strategies.
- TOFU: How can you attract suspects in the top of your marketing funnel?
- MOFU: How can you manage and feed leads or prospects in the middle of your funnel?
- BOFU: How can you convert prospects into paying and returning customers at the bottom of your sales funnel?
As we discussed in our previous article, an effective funnel is all about making mini conversions. Thus, as the sales maxim goes, “always be closing” – not just the sale, but always close in on the next phase of your funnel.
- 3. Align your sales funnel with your marketing funnel
As we explained in this article, the messages of your funnels should follow the AIDA model (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action). Attention and Interest you generate in your marketing funnel, and Desire and Action you stimulate in your sales funnel.
In order to do this effectively, you have to maintain a consistent narrative throughout your funnels. This means that the solutions of your product/service offered in the sales funnel follow logically from the problems communicated in your marketing funnel. In order to smoothen the transition from your marketing to your sales funnel even more, have the messages in your sales funnel reaffirm and reinforce those from your marketing funnel. This way, every step toward the purchase reassures your (potential) customers that they’re still on the right track.
So, in the marketing funnel you communicate your target audience’s problems, and make them aware about possible solutions so they can form a concrete need for a solution. Then, in the sales funnel, you play into this need by offering your solution in an attractive manner.
- 4. Customer Pyramid
Once you’ve successfully guided your target audience through your funnels, it’s time to plot a customer pyramid. This pyramid follows the “Pareto principle” (also known as the “80-20 principle”), which holds that generally only 20% of the customers generate 80% of the revenue.
By plotting your customer base according to this principle, you can focus your marketing and sales efforts on those who give you the biggest returns. So, roughly group your (potential) customers as follows:
- Group the top 1% who generate 40% of your revenue as A customers
- Group the next 4% who generate 25% of your revenue as B customers
- Group the next 15% who generate 15% of your revenue as C customers
- Group the other 80% who generate 20% of your revenue and inactive customers as D customers
Of course, these numbers are never precisely like this, but grouping your customers from A – D gives you a good direction of how you should target each group. Use your customer pyramid to focus your marketing and sales efforts around the following 3 strategies:
- Holding on to A, B, and C customers and removing their bottlenecks
- Promoting B, C, and D customers to have them move up the pyramid and remove their bottlenecks
- Rejecting the inactive and D customers who aren’t worth the money and effort
How to create your marketing funnel and sales funnel
In order to create your marketing and sales funnel, start with segmenting your market. Then, use the TOFU, MOFU, and BOFU model to strategize the 3 parts of your funnel. In this, make sure to align your sales funnel with your marketing funnel so that the transition between them is smooth and reassuring.
Finally, when you’ve got your first (returning) customers, plot your customer pyramid and restructure your funnel accordingly. This way, you effectively focus your marketing and sales efforts on getting the biggest returns on your investments. Missed the articles explaining how these funnels work? In our marketing funnel article and our sales funnel article you learn everything you need to know and find concrete examples to illustrate the funnels in practice.