The Convergence of the Content Marketing Funnel and Micro-Moments

As content marketing became a thing, there were also a gazillion marketers creating a gazillion different funnels to define different phases of the funnel aka customer journey aka buyer journey. All you have to do is search Google for “content marketing funnel”, click Images, and you’ll have plenty of examples.

Thankfully content marketing experts started to reign in the chaos referring more importantly to:

Top of Funnel

Middle of Funnel

Bottom of Funnel

Looking at the funnel this way, you can focus on defining the type of content relevant to different phases of the journey allow you to better plan for the micro-moments.

Top of Funnel

Top of Funnel content brings people to you. It creates an opportunity to provide people the information that introduces your brand and your expertise. Some people at this phase (in either B2B or B2C) will have no immediate intention to buy. They may not even yet know they have a need for your services. They’re just looking.

Middle of Funnel

Ah! This is where the engagement begins. In both B2C and B2B your challenge is to understand what will build positive emotions that will build relationships. It’s probable that factors that lead to greater desire for information center around the value and importance of the purchase. Is it important for a man to know that your new razors will reduce the likelihood of nicks and razor burn? Does the buyer of your expensive shirt want to know it will be durable, that it has an unbeatable fit or that it is buying into the heritage of a brand and the lifestyle it represents? Does the buyer need to be assured that he is getting the best price on that enterprise software, that he’s not overbuying functionality or that the aftercare support will make sure his business can start getting business results fast?

Bottom of Funnel

At this point, you’re pretty certain of the intent to buy, you need to overcome any doubt. And depending on what you are selling the doubt you need to overcome could actually lie between you and delivery. How can you reassure? Sweeten the deal?

Now… How does the Content Marketing Funnel Converge with Micro-Moments?

This is really a matter of perspective. Breakdown the potential needs at different moments of truth:

Proctor & Gamble defined a First Moment of Truth (FMOT) as the interaction between a shopper and an item on a store’s shelf.  In FMCG this might put FMOT in the Bottom of Funnel, but it could also be Top of Funnel taking the shape of ‘showrooming’. 

Understand that people aren’t likely to navigate through a campaign as a journey you’ve plotted out and that you need to make sure that people at each phase of the funnel can find the content relevant to their micro-moment.

Content Funnel Moments of Truth diagram

Applying Personas

How can I better plan my persona-targeted content for micro-moments? Simple: understand and respond to what people want. Think about their aim/intention/goal.  Use Micro-moments to help you understand what your customers need in what format, and where through the funnel based on who they are. In the illustration above, image that the content is based on me, a senior marketer that works in technology but who hasn’t purchased a laptop in a few years. How might the micro-moments be different for a software engineer? And how might you need to influence him differently?

Building persona profiles is a great way to build an understanding of who is buying from you. As people have adapted to developing persona-based content, they’ve also learned that some of the ways we define personas aren’t very useful. For example, does it really matter if a Marketing Director is married or has kids? Sure that might make it easier for some people to visualize a person in their head but does that information really influence her buying decision? If you’re selling a tablet does it really matter that a persona is a Millennial? “Of course!” you say…but perhaps not. Perhaps it is more important to understand the intentions of the person planning to buy the tablet and which features or benefits are the most intriguing or useful.

Together, the Content Marketing Funnel, micro-moments, and personas can create a useful framework to help you identify content that will be highly impactful.