Making Sense of Marketing
Updated May 26, 2021
Confused by all the marketing options? Here’s a quick way to cut through the clutter…
The Marketing Funnel
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.
The Top of the Funnel
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.
The Middle of the Funnel
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 businesses should focus their marketing — getting more out of the relationships you have. How? Email, webinars, speeches, workshops, etc.
The Bottom of the Funnel
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, etc.
Where You Should Begin
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.
For a more visual explanation, check out the Phimation Marketing & Sales Landscape video