Any small business that wants to nurture leads should start by understanding their sales funnel. The typical marketing funnel consists of three stages: awareness, consideration, and purchase.
Content created in the top-of-funnel stage should be designed to create awareness. This is the stage when a customer first learns about a brand and their offerings, so it should be less focused on trying to close a sale, and more concerned with connecting to the customer. After all, 68% of customers spend time reading about brands they’re interested in — so this is your chance to make an impression.
The best way to create meaningful connections with customers and form a lasting impression is to identify with their challenges. Use past customer interactions to identify your target audience’s biggest pain point. When creating content in the top-of-funnel stage, ask the following questions:
- What are your customers’ biggest questions and challenges?
- What do they want to learn more about?
- What are they searching for and why?
This will be different for many businesses. For example, personal styling company Stitch Fix has a series called “Ask a Stylist,” which invites prospective and current customers to submit their styling and wardrobe questions. Stitch Fix then publishes the best questions on its website and has personal stylists answer them in detail. By answering questions like, “how do I assemble a capsule wardrobe for work,” and “what shoes can I wear with a maxi dress,” prospective customers see why they might need a personal stylist and learn the value of such advice.
Another way to approach top-of-funnel content is to help the customer clarify their challenges. They might not know exactly what it is they need help with—but your introductory content can explain their struggles for them while gently introducing a solution.
BioLite, a company that creates off-grid energy products for recreation, succeeds at this with a blog post titled, “This Year I’m Reducing My Carbon Footprint, Will You Join Me?”. This article creates awareness around the importance of reducing a carbon footprint, and how that can be achieved through consumer choices. This targets climate-conscious customers who are interested in making more sustainable choices, but aren’t quite sure where to start.