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November 2, 2016

Marketing Funnel Toolkit, Part One: Introducing ToFu, MoFu and BoFu

Developing a content marketing strategy? You’re going to need to know about the funnel. The funnel is marketing-speak for the journey a customer takes from discovery through to conversion, and understanding it helps content planners and creators to target the right assets at the right people, at the right time.

Models of the marketing funnel vary, but everyone agrees that – like a good story – it has a beginning, a middle and an end. At the top of the funnel is a large pool of unfiltered leads; in the middle are prospects researching a purchase; and at the bottom is a small number of highly qualified leads who are ready to buy. Good content marketing pays attention to every section of the funnel, so that wherever a target customer is in the process your brand has something to say to them.

In this four-part series, we’ll give you a broad introduction to the funnel, then take its core sections one at a time, giving you some smart ToFu, MoFu and BoFu ideas to add to your content strategy.

Tofu Content – Top of the Marketing Funnel

The top of the funnel is about introducing your company to the masses. It’s about educating and informing potential customers about who you are and what you do. Tofu content needs to be personal and engaging, answering questions and solving problems.

At this stage, you should be looking at attention-grabbing, brand-building work, and making sure you have a solid search footprint, so that your name appears as customers research your industry. Make content enticing, interesting, unique and useful and give customers a thirst for more. According to research by HubSpot, companies that blog receive 55% more website traffic than those who don’t.

Mofu Content – Middle of the Marketing Funnel

Once you’ve managed to hook interested customers, they’ll progress into the middle of the marketing funnel. This is where you begin to sift the serious customers from the casual online surfers, by positioning your company as a solution to their needs and challenges.

Highlight how your offering benefits customers and why it beats the competition. Show visitors how your products or service works. Address common questions and issues, show them comparisons, reviews, videos and demonstrations. Content should continue to educate, but also go one step further to show them why you’re the best choice.

It’s at this stage that you can begin to gather data from interested customers. For example, incentivise them to sign up to a newsletter, nudge them into taking a quiz, or provide educational resources direct to their inbox. Research consistently shows email marketing to be one of the most effective means of converting customers, so gather as much information as you can and feed it into your BoFu strategy.

BoFu Content – Bottom of the Marketing Funnel

It’s at the bottom of the marketing funnel where you start doing business with customers. By this point, you have built a rapport with prospective leads that you can leverage to generate conversions.

Here you need to create content designed to close a sale. Nudge consumers into purchase by incentivising them with free trials, demonstrations, evaluations or discount codes. Show them that you care by answering specific questions, tailoring and personalising solutions and making your offers enticing enough to seal the deal.

Throughout the marketing funnel, remember that it pays to give a little. Informative, engaging and useful content that answers questions, solves problems and showcases solutions, will foster a rapport with consumers that will convert them into loyal customers.

Ready to explore the marketing funnel in more detail? In the next three pieces we’ll look at specific content strategies for the top, middle and bottom of the funnel…


In this series:

  1. Marketing Funnel Toolkit, Part One: Introducing ToFu, MoFu and BoFu
  2. Marketing Funnel Toolkit, Part Two: Top-of-funnel content strategies
  3. Marketing Funnel Toolkit, Part Three: Middle-of-funnel content strategies
  4. Marketing Funnel Toolkit, Part Four: Bottom-of-funnel content strategies

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