While the marketing funnel is a common framework in marketing, middle-of-the-funnel content doesn’t always get the attention it deserves. Up at the top of the funnel, we’re busy trying to build awareness and collect new leads. While at the bottom of the funnel, we’re working hard to seal the deal.
But what about everything in between?
The middle of the funnel represents a valuable opportunity to nurture your relationship with leads and move them closer to a potential purchase. That said, writing effective content for mid-funnel buyers isn’t always straightforward. That’s because your content needs to be more in-depth than an introductory blog post without giving readers the hard sell about your product or service.
Getting to Know the Middle of the Funnel
Most marketers are familiar with a marketing funnel. At the top of the funnel, or the “awareness” stage of the journey, visitors find out about your products and services. As their interest in and awareness of your product grows, prospects move down the funnel towards making a conversion at the end.
The middle of the funnel, often known as the “consideration” or “evaluation” stage of the buyer’s journey, is where people weigh their different options. During this stage, the goal for companies is to build relationships with leads and help them decide if your products or services are the best fit for their needs.
Ideas for Middle of the Funnel Content
So, how exactly do you create effective content for the middle of the funnel? Here are 5 types of content that cater to buyers in the consideration stage:
1. Case studies: What could be better than showing prospects the ideal use-case for your product? Case studies are a terrific way to nurture leads and help them decide if your products solve their need. Need some inspiration? Check out Hubspot’s case studies: The software maker showcases a wide variety of companies who have successfully used Hubspot’s marketing and sales tools.
2. White papers: Some marketers see white papers as strictly top-of-the-funnel-content, but these in-depth papers can also work well in the middle of the funnel. Packed with information and details, white papers allow you to dive deep into your product’s features and explain how your product can solve specific problems.
3. Newsletters: You’re bound to have leads that don’t necessarily need you right now, but there’s a good chance they will in the future. Newsletters are a great long-term strategy for staying in touch with these prospects and keeping your business fresh in their minds for when they do start to evaluate possible options.
4. Ebooks: Like white papers, ebooks offer another opportunity to take a deep dive into your business’s area of expertise and guide prospects toward a specific solution. Customer-service software maker Zendesk excels at this type of content, creating in-depth educational pieces that cater to targeted audiences. For example, they offer a free ebook that covers the ins and outs of creating and managing virtual teams–a detailed look at a topic that probably wouldn’t be tackled in a top-of-the-funnel blog post.
5. Comparisons: Considering that the middle of the funnel is also known as the evaluation stage, it makes sense to help potential customers assess a few different options. Comparison content aims to do exactly that by showing 3 or 4 different companies side-by-side and making easy for readers to compare their costs and benefits. This is the perfect place to highlight your unique value proposition and position your solution as the one that best fits their needs.
Don’t Forget the Middle Child
While the majority of marketing focuses on the top and bottom of the funnel, having an effective middle of the funnel content strategy is a great way to keep your brand top-of-mind and move people closer to making a decision. The middle of the funnel is the link that speaks to the leads you captured at the top of the funnel and guides the most qualified ones closer to a purchase.