Peak Ace on Air #46: BOFU (Bottom-Of-the-Funnel) Content Marketing
Another Tuesday, another Peak Ace on Air! This one was the third and final episode of our content marketing funnel series. After successfully creating content to attract potential buyers to your brand in the top funnel stages, and convincing them in the middle funnel, you are ready to finally create content that has one goal: a sale or a lead.
‘Why did it take this long?’ we hear you ask! Well, nothing is worse than getting hit by a cold sales pitch when you’ve never heard of the brand before. (I am looking at everyone who sends random “can we hop on a quick call” messages after connecting on LinkedIn.)
But before we really get into the topic, here’s a little advertising on our part. Peak Ace will be hosting one of the hybrid hubs of this summer’s SMX Advanced Europe, on the 21st and 22nd of June. That’s right, we will actually be streaming live speeches from our office! (Naturally with all the necessary safety and hygiene measures in place.) Bastian and our Head of PPC Julia will be giving talks about SEO and PPC and we’re also hosting the end keynote on day two with Philipp Klöckner.
The whole lineup is pretty majestic, so do check the event out; there are still tickets left. And if you can’t make it, no worries; we’re sure there’ll be a blog post (or two) about the event coming your way soon.
Bottom-of-the-funnel content marketing: close that deal
The main goal of BoFu Content Marketing is, of course, conversion. It’s the last stage of the sales funnel, so there is no need to act shy around that potential customer anymore. The job of the content is to convince that person enough that they either buy from you directly (B2C) or contact your sales team (B2B).
BoFu thus needs to close the gap between consideration and purchase.
BoFu content formats: be personal and promotional
There are basically two words to describe BoFu content: personal and promotional. With B2B in particular, you should already have a very good idea of what exactly your potential customer wants – so you can now send them personalised emails that only talk about how your product can meet their needs and help them solve a specific problem or concern.
In a similar fashion, customer reviews and testimonials are a great way of showing how you’ve helped other (similar) customers in the past. B2C companies may offer free samples and B2B companies usually love to give out free demos or walk-throughs around their product. As you can see, in comparison to the first two stages of the funnel, in this last stage the content really revolves around the product.
BoFu content for the B2B audience: trustworthy product information
In the B2B world, especially in the case of complex and expensive products or services, it’s crucial to give out extensive and convincing product information. Sure, price matters, but quality is also important. If something is cheap but the information about the product seems fishy or there are barely any (trustworthy) reviews, nobody is going to buy it – and they’re not going to contact the sales team for a consultation either.
Also, as we already mentioned, you need to get personal here. Even though emails can largely be automated, they work best in the earlier phases of the sales funnel. Once the prospect has sent you a clear signal that they’re interested in hearing more about the product, they need to be contacted by a real salesperson and not just a chat bot. However (and this cannot be understated): be careful about that “clear sign” of interest.
E-mail and newsletters have been pronounced “dead” many times over, but that’s mainly because they’re done badly. For example, someoneon might download an e-book and then be suddenly spammed with sales-oriented emails which don’t bring them any value. Also (maybe we don’t need to say this, but we’re going to anyway): don’t buy e-mail lists. We know you can do better than that. (And if you’re stuck, just get in touch with us. Let’s work on it together.)
BoFu content for the B2C audience: simple but convincing
For B2C, the focus is also on promotion and the product. Keep it simple as in the B2C world. The potential customer usually doesn’t have to read a whole customer success story to be convinced; the average (good) rating of the product or of your company might just be enough. With more complex products (say, for example, beauty products), you should go a bit deeper. Have before and after pictures to visually explain the effectiveness of your product.
And remember: don’t just rely on the price. Make sure you offer useful information on the product page too. The client might still be comparing your product with that of a competitor, so make sure you tell them why they should buy from you. Of course, if you’re clearly the cheapest brand on the market and that’s your USP then you can stick with the price as your selling point, but more often than not you need to compete with other benefits too. Let the potential customer know about them.
Examples of BoFu content (B2B and B2C)
Carina presented couple of content examples for the B2B and B2C audiences for this final stage of the funnel. She told us about how customer success stories are a common form of content in the B2B sector because they are a great way to explain how your brand has helped a similar company. By providing personalised case studies you enable the prospect to visualise the success that they could have with your company. However, how you structure the case study is important too. Make sure you explain the challenge and then offer the solution (with your product or service.)
For the B2C segment the example focused on convincing a customer to buy more from the brand. E-mails are a good method to go with here as long as you ensure that they offer additional value. Make-up tutorials or style tips are just couple of examples. A little discount here or there obviously doesn’t hurt, but if you rely too much on discounts, your customers might only buy from you when you are having a sale.
With B2C you should also be careful not to forget one important point: Make sure your e-mails are visually appealing. There is actually a lot of research on the topic of how attractive e-mails can have a positive impact. Remember: we do eat with our eyes as well. Make sure your e-mails are not just informative and packed with value, but also look good while doing so.
Mixed funnel marketing strategies
As we have learned from the previous series, the same content can be presented for people at different stages of the customer journey. You can have an in-depth blog post about your product (MoFu) and at the same time offer a way to contact your sales people or to sign up for a product demo (BoFu).
How to measure BoFu content marketing success: MQL, SQL, sales
Measuring BoFu content marketing is counting sales and leads, right? Right, but there’s also more to it than that.
An example for you: in the B2B world it’s important that the leads are of high-quality, meaning that the lead is interested in the company’s offer and is a potential customer. Sometimes MQLs or marketing-qualified leads are not yet ready to buy, so you should continue to send them more MoFu content. With SQLs, or sales-qualified leads, you should be able to get more promotional with product-specific information without scaring the prospect off.
The BoFu stage is also a great way to analyse the effectiveness of your whole marketing funnel. If you can turn your website visitors or prospects to customers easily, it means you have been able to convince them well in the previous stages. In the B2B world it means less work for your sales team. In the B2C world it means a higher conversion rate from the people who come to your website.
Final tip: have an overview of the whole content marketing funnel
Funnel-based marketing does not seem easy on paper, but when one dives a little bit deeper, it can get complex. It’s not easy to differentiate between the stages, nor is it easy to know exactly at which stage a potential customer is. You need to understand the whole funnel from the top to the bottom, but often people only work at one stage and only see their field. Social media is at the top, the SEO manager sits in the middle and the salespeople operate at the bottom. However, everyone should have an understanding of what happens before (or after) their channel and how they all can contribute towards sales or lead generation. Either that, or there needs to be a person who has an overview of the whole funnel and an understanding of it all.
And that is a wrap! A massive thanks to Carina for preparing such great and informative presentations, together with the deep-diving blog posts. Of which there is also the one about BoFu Marketing, for those who like to absorbe their information in black-and-white.
We hope you feel more confident than before about getting started with your content marketing journey or at taking a good look at your current efforts to make sure you are presenting the right type of content. If you’re not, you can always reach out to us. We’ll gladly guide you through your next steps.