Focusing on the Middle of the Funnel
Confused by all the marketing options? Here’s a quick way to cut through the clutter…
Your marketing and sales occur in a funnel, with lots of unqualified suspects at the
top, fewer qualified prospects in the middle, and even fewer scoped proposals
to potential customers at the bottom.
Most of the “chatter” about marketing is focused on the Top of the Funnel (TOF). The
problem with TOF marketing, though, is that it’s a 2% game. Super Bowl ads,
Facebook ads, click-through rates – they’ll all have about a 2% response rate.
That’s why most people say, “Marketing doesn’t work.” They’re right – but they
really mean TOF marketing.
Middle of the Funnel (MOF) marketing is much more powerful – response rates of people
who know you and are interested in what you do are usually around 15-20% –
about 10 times the rate of the top of the funnel. That’s where most people
should focus their marketing – getting more out of the relationships you have.
How? Email, webinars, speeches and workshops – things like that.
Is 20% not good enough for you? Then focus on the Bottom of the Funnel (BOF). It’s
not marketing down there, it’s sales. And most companies have hit rates of
40-80% on the proposals they write – two to four times MOF rates, and 20 to 40
times TOF rates. What kinds of things should you invest in to improve sales?
Account plans, sales training, sales process improvement – things like that.
Where to Begin?
So, here’s the simple lesson in looking at the response rates at various points
in the funnel – start at the bottom of the funnel when you are starting to
upgrade your marketing and sales, and work your way up. BOF upgrades will get
you the most bang for your buck. Once you’ve optimized your sales, then move up
the funnel and upgrade your MOF marketing to people who already know you. Only
after you’ve got a good MOF system should you then wade up into the 2% world of
TOF marketing to make more people aware of what you do.