A marketing funnel is the set of steps that a potential lead takes to become a client. Your marketing strategy should ultimately guide this process, whether you work in a B2B or B2C marketing field. A proper marketing funnel can increase revenue, production, and your overall loyal customer base.
Manufacturers that institute marketing funnels will be able to see a clear progression from lead to client and be able to calculate the ROI of their marketing activities, as well as analyze how they can increase the velocity of lead to customer and how they can get more customers like their highest-value customers.
Just as the market changes, though, so should your strategy — and your marketing funnel. The following five steps will help you maximize your efforts for manufacturing marketing, no matter how your industry changes.
1. Re-evaluate Plans and Goals
The first step is to take a step back and re-evaluate your market. Plans and goals can become outdated in a day if customer trends begin to change. You’ll have to adjust your marketing funnel by changing the way you market and who you market to.
Consider where you are now and where you want to be. To reach your ideal marketing goal, you must channel funding to areas that need attention within your marketing mix. For instance, if you need to make more connections with buyers, you might want to target them with advertising — an expeditious way to get new prospects into your marketing ecosystem.
Looking to upsell existing customers? Emails are a central part of virtually any business, so email marketing is a reliable way to ensure potential clients see your content. Given the prevalence of email marketing, if you aren’t emailing buyers, your competitors likely are.
Pay attention to areas of need in your funnel and embrace multiple channels to connect with them. With a more dynamic strategy, leads will smoothly work their way through the funnel, progressing from one point to the next. With the right funnel established, a new buyer looking for a supplier might find their way to your sales team via a journey that starts with a simple Google search.
2. Expand Your Reach
Company growth can happen on any scale. You can bring in a few new clients or branch into an entirely new sector. With these initiatives, expanding your marketing funnel is key.
Consider your current target audience and the new audience you wish to bring in. Note the similarities and differences — their needs, motivations, and purchasing processes. If they’re similar, you can make a few content changes within your marketing funnel.
If they differ, though, you’ll want to cater to those new needs. Advertise your strengths, your influence in the field, and how you provide an offer the lead can’t resist.
Perhaps a buyer is looking for a manufacturer that uses the latest tracking technology for shipments. Advertising that you work with that tech demonstrates how you can meet their needs. Since the supplier was already looking for this tech, seeing how you use it will draw them in without having to persuade them at length.
3. Sync Marketing with Production
Your marketing funnel should always line up with your production tactic. For instance, if you order a significant amount of raw materials and are expecting a boost in demand, you can advertise with those expectations in mind.
Conversely, you’ll need to account for slowdowns, too. The COVID-19 pandemic is disrupting supply chains all over the globe. If it’s an obstacle for you, you should change your marketing tactic. Consider focusing your message around how resilient your facility has been throughout the past year of disruptions. Advertise any steps you took to keep workers employed or to maximize productivity. Showcase the changes you embraced to stay profitable. If you’ve seen any positive results, zero in on these.
This synchronization between marketing and production allows you to keep the promises you make in your marketing. Once leads become clients, they’ll find everything they expected.
4. Simplify the Marketing Funnel
The process of drawing people into the marketing funnel needs to be as smooth as possible. If a lead hears about your company through word of mouth but can’t find a site or contact information, the funnel fails.
Your website and overall online presence are where you should start. Your site should be easy to navigate, with testimonials showcasing that you are a trustworthy brand that delivers quality results.
You can also focus on social media — one study shows that 53% of participants are more loyal to brands they follow on social media. These sites give you an accessible platform to reach leads, since they likely already use them regularly. If you provide a consistent experience across all social media platforms, users will find it easier to understand your brand.
The more places you are accessible, the easier it is for leads to work through the funnel and become clients.
5. Monitor Your Marketing Funnel’s Success
After you implement any changes to your marketing funnel, you should study their impact. Whether your adjustments turn out to be successful or not, you’ll want to respond early. Monitoring key metrics in your marketing will tell you which strategies work and which don’t for your specific market.
The first step in gauging your funnel’s success is defining what metrics to consider. What these are could vary depending on what’s most important to your company, but there are a few common KPIs to look for. Consider how many users return to your website, the number of leads generated, number of sales opportunities, the size of those opportunities, and how long it takes for someone to move from lead to opportunity.
If one or more of these metrics improve after you implement a change, you can apply those actions on a broader scale. If performance drops after a change, you can go back and try something else. In either case, closely monitoring your funnel will help you optimize it, allowing you to mitigate mistakes and capitalize on successes.
Maximize Your Marketing Potential
These five steps are the keys to managing a strong marketing funnel. With them, you’ll add several layers of allure to your manufacturing operation while also making it easier for leads to get into the funnel. Your result will be more clients and revenue and a marketing discipline with maximum impact.
It’s easy to establish a marketing funnel and then forget about it, but that strategy won’t prove effective. Follow these steps to update your funnel and maximize its efficacy. If your funnel adapts as your business does, it’ll stay relevant and impactful.