Lead Generation: How Lead Funnels Work & The Types You Need To Know About
Publish Date 16 April, 2020
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Building on from last month’s article: A Beginner’s Guide To Growing Sales With Lead Generation And Lead Funnels, it’s time to dig a little deeper and learn more about how lead funnels work.

With this article you will come to understand of the different types of lead funnels that exist in the world of digital marketing.

What Is A Lead Funnel?

We started things off last time with a description of a sales lead; anyone that displays an interest in what your business is offering. Now, to jog your memory, a lead funnel is the journey with which the lead will take to turn into a profitable customer.

The Steps And How They Work

A lead funnel can range from simple to complex depending on what your sales process looks like. This is an example of what a simple lead funnel could look like:

  1. Traffic
  2. Lead magnet
  3. Landing page
  4. Opt-in
  5. Thank you page
  6. Email nurture sequence

An effective lead funnel is one that is specially tailored to suit your business. The steps above are pretty rudimentary and can be expanded upon greatly. Having a little something to build upon is easier than staring at a blank canvas, right?

Converting Traffic Into Leads

Turning the traffic into leads is phase one of your lead funnel. Think of it this way, as a customer, before you hand over the cash you go through a process. You will move from being aware of the product, to interested, having a desire for the product, and finally, you will want to take action. The same goes for potential clients.

The role that lead funnels play in the buying process is helping potential customers move from being aware of the product to being moved to action and purchasing the product. To paint a picture, this process is typically illustrated as a funnel in marketing textbooks. Can you see why? Pour traffic into the funnel and paying customers will pop out.

Unfortunately, unlike real funnels, leads can leak out of the funnel and only a fraction will come out as customers. The way that you can prevent your funnel from overly leaking is by knowing the needs of your leads, as well as, the path they take to become customers. This will ensure that your funnel performs optimally.

The word ‘convert’ is super important as it’s the goal of this stage of the funnel. Keep this in mind when devising ways of making leads aware of and interested in your business.

Phase 1: Awareness

As we’ve mentioned, the first step is making potential customers aware of your existence. When it comes to the traffic that you are attempting to bring to your company website, the traffic can come from three sources:

  • Earned media – reviews, word of mouth, referrals.
  • Owned media – content marketing, website, social media, blog posts.
  • Paid media – pay per click, advertising.

Before rushing to add a ‘sign up’ banner give leads a chance to learn more. Overly zealous marketing techniques are a quick way to scare off the leads you’ve worked so hard to acquire.

Phase 2: Collect Data

Officially speaking, this is the stage where you would strive to enter names into your database. However, names aren’t technically enough to count as leads per say. That’s why you should try to learn more than just their identity such as a way to contact them and their permission to communicate and market to them further.

Phase 3: Engagement

Now that you know more about your traffic, getting them to move further along the funnel is key here. The way to do so is by encouraging them to remain in contact with your marketing. This is often done by having potential leads attend a webinar, sign up to a newsletter, accomplish a lead capture form on a landing page, download an e-book, etc. This will bring your potential leads to the next step, engagement.

Before moving further along the funnel it’s important to engage with your audience. This is important for a number of reasons including being sure that they know they’re being marketed to and that there are okay with the marketing efforts continuing.

Phase 4: Target Leads

Once engagement has been achieved, the process can continue and it will be time for lead scoring. This determines whether a lead is viable or not. This act can be automatic or manual depending on the size of the group.

Phase 5: Qualified Lead Marketing

From this point on you will be dealing with viable, qualified sales leads. This makes the contact viable for further marketing efforts. To make it this far the lead will have displayed a serious interest in your business. This is where direct contact from your sales rep/team will commence.

Phase 6: Recycle Leads

If you don’t get it right the first time try, try again! There could have been a number of reasons as to why it didn’t work out the first time around. For instance, the timing could have been off. Leads that showed interest but leaked out of the funnel somewhere along the way can be entered into your recycled leads database and nurtured – just in case.

Phase 7: Qualified Sales Leads

Once a lead has shown continued interest and there has been good communication with the sales team, it’s safe to say that you’re near to a slam dunk at this juncture. This is when an executive would take over and either market further or drive the sale home.

Types Of Lead Funnels

There’s more than one way to qualify a lead, here are the top five types of lead funnels. These types of leads will be used in accordance with the type of product or service your business offers.

Type #1: The Survey Funnel

This funnel involves quizzing people that have signed up to your email list. Depending on the responses you can categorize the potential leads.

The structure of this funnel:

  • Opt-in page
  • Survey page
  • Results page

Type #2: Lead Magnet Follow-Up

The idea is to get your audience interested in something enough to opt-in to get it. This could be a downloaded e-Book, a webinar, etc.

The structure of this funnel:

  • Lead magnet landing page
  • Opt-in page
  • Download page

Type #3: Live Stream Funnel

This lead funnel uses the belief that access is scarce as it’s live. The only way to get to it is by opting into the funnel.

The structure:

  • Opt-in
  • The live stream
  • Checkout/booking page

Type #4: Instant Quote Funnel

This funnel is a pretty useful one as prospects can qualify themselves. This is a way to get customers on your database by dangling revealing the cost of the service in front of them. This funnel is pretty similar to the survey funnel except that it’s a means to an end in most cases.

The structure:

  • Opt-in
  • The quiz
  • Thank you page

That’s all there is to it. Now you know what leads are, how they turn into customers, as well as, the different routes this can take. Stay tuned for our next lesson!

If you’re interested in boosting your digital marketing or starting from the ground up, then Big Rock Graphics are here for you. For all things marketing, check out the varied digital services that we offer then hit the “Contact Us” button.

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