Back in the day, businesses could get by with no social media presence.
Today, social media marketing is an integral part of the marketing mix.
Whether you are a service-based brand or a B2B company, a startup, or a brick-and-mortar business, in 2020 and beyond, you can’t succeed without investing in social marketing.
With people spending a significant 2 hours and 24 minutes on social media, the stakes couldn’t be higher. Thus, smart brands create a social media marketing funnel alongside their sales one to maximize growth.
In this article, we will look at how to build a high-converting social media funnel that generates traffic, leads, and sales.
Let’s jump straight in.
What Is a Digital Marketing Funnel?
A marketing funnel is a preset path of interlinked steps you’ve mapped out for your prospects, so they move along it in their journey to becoming customers. It takes customers-to-be from a state of being unaware of your brand through to the awareness, consideration, purchase, and after-purchase stage where the customer becomes a brand evangelist.
A social media marketing funnel has a social media bias.
These are the four stages of the buyer journey in brief and the social media activities best suited for each stage.
1. Awareness Stage
A prospect who previously had no clue who you are or what you do notices your business’s existence, the problems you solve, and the services/products you offer. They may not even be aware that they have a problem that needs solving.
Activities and tactics: Contests, Giveaways, Facebook & Twitter ads for content promotion, YouTube videos.
2. Consideration Stage
At this stage, the prospect is aware of their problem and the solutions at her disposal. She researches unique solutions and weighs her options based on the information in front of her.
Activities and tactics: Twitter Chats, LinkedIn Groups, Facebook Groups, IGTV, YouTube videos.
3. Purchase Stage
The prospect finally decides which solution will remove or relieve her pain, and she becomes a buying customer. All things being equal, the brand with the best unique selling proposition clinches the sale.
Activities and tactics: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter ads, Buyable pins on Pinterest, buy now buttons on Instagram and Facebook.
4. Post-purchase Stage
After the initial purchase, the customer becomes a loyal, repeat buyer and a brand advocate who can’t stop talking about your company. People at this stage need incentives, so they continue spreading the word about your brand.
Activities and tactics: Giveaways, partnership, and affiliates, loyalty rewards program.
Neal Taparia, a former public company executive and founder at brain training start-up Solitaired explains:
“Matching the social media channel with the stages of the buyer’s journey ensures that the marketing message is relevant. It maximizes the chances of a conversion. The choice of a channel depends on several factors. For example, the target audience, their preferred mode of communication, the cost involved, and the objective of the campaign. Also, there are several content formats to choose from. For instance, videos create awareness about a new product or service. Blogs and white papers provide in-depth information about the product in the consideration stage. Case studies and comparison pages are used in the purchase stage to persuade the customers to make the buying decision.”
Digital Marketing Funnel Example: The Factory Carpet Outlet
A social media company, Inspire To Thrive, helped their client The Factory Carpet carpet drive traffic to their site from their Facebook page.
They always had a much older audience from their former print and TV ads. Now they wanted to target a younger demographic online. Here’s how they did it:
- Grew their Facebook page from 300 followers to 1,100 followers through engaging content.
- Ran a Facebook ad targeting a younger audience in the areas nearby their store who had shown interest in home remodeling.
- On clicking the ad, users landed on a shop-from-home sign-up page and then received a call from a company rep thereafter or placed an order straight away.
Using this strategy, they drove 81 clicks to their landing page at a reasonable $1.23 Cost Per Click (CPC).
They got new customers from the resulting conversions.
Facebook Lead ads allows users to collect contact information such as name, email address, phone number, etc, from people who may be interested in your products or services. With just $17.75, they were able to collect up to 80 leads at a jaw dropping low cost of $0.22 per lead.
With Lead Ads, your prospective customer is not redirected to a landing page but stays on Facebook instead while their data is posted to your customer relationship management (CRM) system.
How to Build a Social Media Funnel in 6 Simple Steps
It’s time to reveal the major building blocks of a solid funnel. Remember, these foundational steps cut across every industry or niche.
Here we go.
Step #1: Define Your Goals
Clear goals must guide your social media marketing strategy.
What do you want to achieve?
Do you want to:
- Drive traffic?
- Increase awareness?
- Hike sales?
- Top, middle, or bottom of the funnel?
Without obvious goals charting the way, you’ll wander in circles and not achieve much.
Step #2: Revisit Your Customer Avatar
Before you jump into frantic activity on social media platforms, it’s crucial to remind yourself who exactly you are targeting.
Regardless of what your business model is, the best way to do that is by revisiting your customer avatar. Reanalyze your ideal customer. To engage intelligently on social media, refresh your memory about your audience’s:
- Goals, dreams, and values.
- Favorite channels and sources of info.
- Challenges and pain points.
By looking at and talking to your existing customers, you’ll become more aware of what it is really that they value about your product or service.
Step #3: Research The Platform’s Slant
Because each social channel is different if you apply a blanket one-size-fits-all approach you will fail dismally.
Study the platform where your audience spends time to find out:
- The content type that works best.
- The part of the funnel it suits.
- The ideal publishing frequency.
- The trending hashtags to latch onto.
Step #4: Work On Your Offers
To nudge customers from one stage to another, you must make irresistible offers to your audience. Your offers must persuade potential customers to make a series of micro-commitments that culminate with a sale.
You could ask them to:
- Download an ebook/guide.
- Book a free consultation.
- Sign-up for your newsletter.
- Watch a demo video.
For them to take up your offer, make sure it’s connected to the topic they’ve just consumed on social media. Plus, make sure it solves a nagging problem. Finally, make sure it’s a mouthwatering proposal by using power words that ooze emotion.
Step #5: Optimize Your Landing Pages
Do you know the worst mistake you can make when you transition from social media to your site?
Taking warm traffic to your homepage.
Your homepage is a packed, busy page with too many distractions. Your visitors will end up not taking the next step you desire in the buyer journey.
To succeed, design special landing pages where you roll out the red carpet for your treasured guests. For each campaign, have:
- A specific page.
- A specific goal.
- A specific offer.
This simple step alone will hike your conversions significantly.
We create landing pages to maximize conversions.
Step #6: Track, Test, And Tweak
Today, marketing is data-based.
You don’t have to fumble your way and hope for the best.
Take the guesswork out of your funnel strategy by using A/B testing social media data to improve your performance. Thanks to an array of native and third-party analytics tools, you can analyze your campaign’s effectiveness easily.
Key metrics to measure:
- Awareness metrics: @mentions, post reach, video views, and impressions.
- Engagement metrics: likes, shares, pins, comments, and engagement rate.
- Conversions metrics: click-through-rate (CTR), cost-per-click (CPC), and conversion rate.
- Share Of Voice (SOV) metrics: @mentions, total mentions vs competitor mentions.
Top To Bottom Social Media Marketing Funnel Example: Consulting
Sam Ovens of Consulting has built a powerful $20m/year business machine through a social funnel built around Facebook ads and webinars.
As you can see, the ad generates a massive engagement. It kickstarts the customer’s journey that ultimately leads to a sale.
Notice how he uses Facebook ads in two ways:
- Drive awareness at the top of the funnel.
- Persuade prospects to buy at the bottom of the funnel.
Here are all the pieces of this insanely profitable funnel’s puzzle:
- Facebook ad.
- Landing page registration.
- Automated email sequence.
- Text message.
- Webinar (free).
- Facebook retargeting.
- Free trial.
If this million-dollar funnel doesn’t inspire you, I don’t know what will.
Retargeting: What It Is, How It Works, And Example
It’s something that happens all the time.
A person visits your website, but they click away before they convert. Some might even have put goods in the cart but they abandon them.
Thanks to retargeting, you don’t lose those leads forever. You can win them back.
Retargeting is an advertising strategy where you follow people who have left your website and put relevant ads in front of them when they browse on social media or visit other websites. It connects the ad to their last action on your site. For instance, a few minutes back I visited OkDork and then hopped over to Facebook straight after and saw this:
I clicked the ad and landed on their squeeze page:
Straightforward, but powerful.
And you can learn more about this in this extensive Facebook Retargeting Guide.
OkDork used retargeting or remarketing and other digital marketing strategies to exponentially grow their email list into tens of thousands of subscribers.
Truelist published some appealing figures about retargeting:
- 17.5% of apps running retargeting see a 25% conversion rate.
- LinkedIn retargeting ads can increase CTR by 30%.
- Retargeting beats all other ad placement strategies with a 1,046% efficiency rate.
You can use retargeting to feed your funnel with warm traffic that converts better than cold traffic.
The best part?
It’s all automated. You don’t have to lift a finger. Prospects come back to your site to finish what they were doing, be it completing their order or signing up for your newsletter.
Now that we’ve covered the underpinning steps of building a marketing funnel, it’s time to go granular.
8 Questions to Ask When You Create a Custom Social Media Marketing Funnel
Here are 8 key questions to ask yourself as you build a custom social funnel.
1. How do my best customers move from a prospect to lead, first time buyer, repeat buyer, and brand advocate?
Reverse engineer the steps taken by your perfect customers as they moved through your sales funnel. Use the insights to build a framework for your social marketing funnel.
2. Where is the biggest leak in my sales funnel?
If you plug the weakest link in your sales process, your funnel will convert more. Ask yourself how social media can close the hole you’ve identified.
3. How do most prospects normally find out about me and my business?
Optimize your funnel’s biggest entry point. You will set yourself up for your biggest wins.
4. What are my target audience’s favorite social media channels?
Use the audience-first approach. Follow them to their darling platforms, where they are most engaged for the highest conversions.
5. What are my most popular content assets that resonate with my audience?
Drive prospects to your proven content assets. They convert best and act as conversion doors, leading prospects from one stage to another.
6. Which relevant info must I provide to persuade people to move to the next stage?
To pick the relevant content asset to use, revisit your best customers. Which type of content did they consume on their way to becoming customers? Discover similar trendy content and use content curation for higher engagement.
7. What are my Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for each stage of the funnel?
Identify and monitor the vital signs of each stage so you double down on what’s working and improve or discard what isn’t.
8. How are my competitors killing their social selling strategy?
Spy on your competitors to unearth hot tactics in their arsenal and spot gaps you can take advantage of.
Social Media Marketing Funnel Scenarios
So, how does all this pan out in the real world?
Here are two digital marketing funnel templates from two different industries to help you envision exactly what a typical funnel would look like. Yes, each business is unique, but this will give you a good starting point and make it easier for you to build yours.
Social Media Funnel For Coaches and Consultants
Social Media Funnel For Course Creators
Use these templates to inspire your funnel.
Digital Marketing Funnel Tools and Best Practices for Building Converting SMM Funnels
To knit all these intricate steps together into a sleek high-converting funnel, you need a plethora of tools, right?
Not if you have GetResponse.
Because GetResponse is a massive all-in-one marketing machine, you can use it to build your whole funnel from top to bottom.
You can use it to:
- Retarget website visitors on Facebook by adding the FB pixel on your site.
- Track conversions and attribute them to your ad.
- Set up, run, and manage your Facebook and Instagram ads.
- Generate leads and grow your email list from your social media traffic through sign-up forms.
- Welcome, follow up, educate and nurture your leads through automated emails.
- Target your social media visitors using stunning, SEO-optimized, and user-friendly landing pages that convert.
- Find new followers, delight your fans, and get more traffic using the Social Ads Creator.
- Build a lead and sales funnel with ease. Quickly deploy or tweak templates that cover up to 30 predetermined conversion-optimized scenarios.
In short, GetResponse has everything you need to build a polished, profit-making social marketing funnel and more. They do all the heavy lifting for you.
Whether you use GetResponse or choose other tools to build your funnel, one thing is clear.
The time to build your funnel is now! You can’t afford to leave money on the table anymore.
To build a modern marketing funnel make sure you meet these best practices:
- Integrations: Your software must be agile enough to work together with the favorite tools you are already using. Everything from email marketing to CRM software, from landing pages to Facebook and Twitter ads, and from webinars to SEO must integrate perfectly.
- Analytics: Data insights must drive your funnel. Your integrated system must be able to collect and synthesize data in visually attractive ways. The system must pick and display all your key metrics without you having to jump from one dashboard to another.
- Dedicated team: Gone are the days of superman entrepreneurs who did everything alone: marketing, sales, customer support, social media, you name it. To succeed in online funnel marketing, build a dedicated SMM team for a united specialized effort that gets results.
Supercharge Your Funnel with Social Media Marketing
Today’s customers are moving targets.
They do business on their terms, anytime, anywhere on any device. Social media is one of the key stops they make in their complex journey of becoming customers. That’s why you must superimpose your social media marketing funnel into your main sales funnel.
You’ll persuade more prospects and customers to take the next step in the customer’s journey and hike conversions.
More conversions, anyone? 😉