Why ToFu is Just an Appetizer
Spending boatloads of money on marketing and not getting the return you expect? Too many companies are spending large sums of money on filling the Top of Funnel (ToFu) and not focusing enough on the meat of the equation, the Middle of Funnel (MoFu) that drives revenue. Much like the tofu salad at the Venetian or Palazzo in Las Vegas, it is just an appetizer. It’s the MoFu (Middle of the Funnel) that will have your sales team raving and profits soaring.
When I first met my wife, she was a vegetarian. On our first date, she ordered a tofu salad and I had the prime rib (Bloggers Note: She had not told me yet that she was a vegetarian. Might explain why at the end of our first date she jumped of the car before I could even put it in park). I was damned if I was going to go to this expensive restaurant and still be hungry after the meal. By focusing only on ToFu marketing practices, that is what you are doing to your prospects. You are leaving them hungry for more and without the ability to satisfy them. You need to develop the Middle of the Funnel (MoFu), such as lead nurturing, that will help satiate their hunger and deliver the unique customer experience that will raise your profits to completely new levels.
Many companies spend way too much money driving traffic to their website. These companies are spending considerable time and effort on creating, optimizing, and promoting their content. In addition, they do a good job at getting initial leads. However, for most companies, those leads just aren't 'ready' to buy or they don't want to talk to your sales team. A great example of this is HubSpot, creator of the term ToFu and MoFu. As the company has evolved, it has added more MoFu features to their product recognizing the need.
The problem is that 50% of the leads that convert on your website are not ready to buy. However, 70% will buy from you or one of your competitors within 12 months. According to Forrest Research, companies using lead nurturing have closing rates 300% higher than their competitors who do not stay in touch with qualified and qualifiable leads. In addition, according to DemandGen Report, nurtured leads produce, on average, a 30% increase in Sales Opportunities versus non-nurtured leads.
Increase Your MoFu
The middle of the funnel is all about converting the traffic you get into prospects and leads and then nurturing your leads and prospects in order to increase the likelihood they will become customers. You do this by using landing pages, blogs, conversion forms, email marketing/lead nurturing, and social media. MoFu is the main course of any demand generation program.
They need answers to their questions, guidance in understanding the scope of how you can help as well as relevant information shared by you that will help them make an educated decision. They don’t need or want a generic sales pitch. In order to achieve this you need to leverage marketing automation to lead intelligence to deliver behaviour-driven lead nurturing.
Marketing Automation tools allow you to leveraging the power of prospect understanding and lead intelligence to help you better align with your prospects’ motivations and stages in the buying process and customize the correct timing of your lead nurturing campaigns. According to HubSpot, companies that excel at lead nurturing achieve 50% more sales-ready leads at a 33% lower cost.
Not sure if your company is any good at managing the MoFu? Ask yourself these questions:
- Are you using landing pages with forms to convert your visitors into leads?
Landing pages with conversion forms are a great way to get leads from your website. Make sure you are collecting contact information from your visitors so that you can follow up with them later and be in touch. Without landing pages, you can't convert your website traffic into customers. Businesses with 31 to 40 landing pages get 7X more leads than those with only 1 to 5.
- Are you using any marketing automation software?
Make sure you that you are not using it to force leads through your old school sales process by beating them into submission with endless programmed emails. Automation can be an effective tool, but you want to engage potential customers on their terms in order to convert the most leads into happy customers. You can automate your marketing efforts, but beware; your email database expires at a rate of 25% per year.
- Are your visitors engaged when on your site?
Visitor Engagement looks at how many times your visitors came to your site, how long they stayed around and how many pages they viewed. In general, we want to see that people came to your site and stayed around because of all your great content. Two-thirds of marketers say their company blog is "critical" or "important" to their business. Part of the reason is that blogs are a great way to engage your visitors.
Want to Become Really Bad Ass?
According to an MIT Study with InsideSales.com on Lead Response Management, 78% of sales start with a web inquiry, and gives their business to the company that responds first! However, not all leads are created equal, and this is why you also need to focus on Bottom of Funnel (BoFu) management. It’s up to your lead generation program to ensure that only the best leads are passed onto sales. If leads aren't prioritized, the sales team wastes time contacting people who aren't ready to buy.
BoFu (Bottom of Funnel) is the sweet desert. Companies that focus on developing effective BoFu strategies, such as effective lead scoring systems combined with revenue performance management, found on average:
- Close rates increased by 30%
- Company revenue increased by 18%
- Revenue per deal increased 17%
Key components of any badass BoFu solution are:
- CRM Integration: passes the best leads into a CRM for Sales follow-up
- Lead Scoring: only sales-ready leads get passed onto Sales
- Lead Assignment: ensures that the leads are handed off to the right salespeople
- Lead Intelligence Passed to Sales: attributes behaviors useful to gaining greater understanding into the prospects’ needs and wants as well as stage in their buying process.
Much like that first date with my wife, ToFu (Top of Funnel) is great at getting the process. However, like How I Used Inbound Marketing and Sales to Find My Wife, you need to create a truly spectacular experience that your prospects will be raving about to their whole network. You need to add the main course and dessert - the MoFu (Middle of Funnel) and the BoFu (Bottom of Funnel) management. – to complete the experience (Bloggers Note: My wife is no longer a vegetarian and enjoys cooking complete meals that include mouth-watering steaks, roasts, and burgers, much to my relief).
Want to learn how your company is doing at ToFU, MoFu and BoFu? Grade Your Marketing