Top of the Funnel Marketing: Increase Customer Awareness With These 7 Proven Tactics
marketing funnel series
Proven Tactics to Attract, Engage, and Nurture Leads.
What is Top of Funnel Marketing and Why is it Important?
Understand Your Customers for TOFU Marketing
Here are the five most effective questions to ask to uncover TOFU marketing secrets:
Which of the following do you spend the most time on:
- Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Netflix, etc. [include all the channels you can utilize to reach them, online and offline]
What kind of content do you prefer when learning about new products or services?
- Some people prefer video content, while others prefer written articles or social media posts. Understanding your target audience’s preferences can help you tailor your marketing content to their preferred format and increase engagement.
Which influencers, bloggers, or websites do you follow and trust when it comes to topics related to our product/service?
- Understanding which influencers or websites your prospective customers follow can help you identify potential partnerships or collaborations that can help you reach and engage with your target audience.
What led you to start looking for a solution like ours in the first place?
- Understanding the motivations and pain points that drove customers to seek out your product or service can help you tailor your marketing messages to address those specific needs.
Tactic 1: Influencer Marketing Tactics for TOFU
Two examples of successful influencer marketing campaigns for TOFU are:
Airbnb’s #WeAccept Campaign
In response to the 2017 travel ban, Airbnb launched the #WeAccept campaign, which was aimed at promoting diversity and inclusivity. The company partnered with high-profile influencers, such as actress Lena Dunham and musician Ringo Starr, to share messages of acceptance and encourage their followers to travel and experience new cultures.
Glossier’s #GlossierPink Campaign
To promote the launch of their new line of pink products, beauty brand Glossier partnered with influencers to create a visually stunning Instagram campaign. Influencers were sent pink props and products to incorporate into their posts, creating a cohesive and eye-catching feed.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) to track for influencer marketing success in the awareness stage include metrics such as reach, engagement rate, website traffic, and brand mentions. By monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your campaigns and make data-driven decisions for future influencer marketing efforts.
Tactic 2: Social Media Marketing Tactics for TOFU
Social media marketing is one of the most popular top-of-funnel marketing strategies. To make the most of your social media marketing efforts, it’s important to focus on a few key things.
Firstly, you need to identify which social media platforms your target audience uses the most and focus your efforts on those channels. For example, if your audience is primarily active on Instagram, you should focus your social media marketing efforts on that platform and craft your content and messaging to appeal to that specific audience.
Secondly, it’s important to create content that is engaging, informative, and shareable. This means sharing valuable information, images, and videos that resonate with your audience and encourage them to engage with your brand.
Two examples of successful social media marketing campaigns for TOFU are:
Old Spice’s “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” Campaign
This iconic campaign helped Old Spice reach a younger male audience on social media. The brand created humorous, over-the-top videos that went viral on social media and helped to increase brand awareness and engagement.
Glossier’s Instagram Marketing
Beauty brand Glossier has built a massive following on Instagram by leveraging user-generated content and creating a visually stunning feed. The brand encourages customers to share photos of themselves using Glossier products and reposts those images on their own Instagram feed, creating a sense of community and encouraging engagement.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) to track for social media marketing success in the TOFU stage include metrics such as social media reach, engagement rate (likes, comments, followers etc.), website traffic, and brand mentions (unique #s).
Tactic 3: SEO Tactics for TOFU
SEO tactics are a crucial component of any effective TOFU strategy, helping brands to improve their visibility and attract potential customers through organic search. To make the most of your SEO efforts in the TOFU stage, there are a few key things to focus on.
Firstly, it’s important to conduct thorough keyword research to identify the phrases and terms that your target audience is searching for. By understanding the keywords that are most relevant to your business, you can optimize your website and content to improve your rankings in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Secondly, it’s important to create high-quality, valuable top-of-funnel content that aligns with the needs and interests of your target audience. This might include blog posts, whitepapers, or other types of content that provide helpful information, insights, or solutions to common problems.
Two examples of successful SEO tactics for TOFU are:
Marketing and sales software provider HubSpot has built a massive following through their blog, which features a wealth of informative, well-written content on topics ranging from lead generation to social media marketing. By creating high-quality content that addresses the needs and interests of their target audience, HubSpot has been able to improve their rankings in SERPs and attract new leads in the TOFU stage.
REI’s Outdoor Guides
Outdoor gear retailer REI has created a series of comprehensive outdoor guides on their website, covering everything from camping to rock climbing. By providing valuable information and advice on topics that are relevant to their target audience, REI has been able to improve their SEO rankings and attract potential customers in the TOFU stage.
The most important KPIs for TOFU SEO tactics are organic traffic (volume), the total number of ranking keywords, and then the #1-3 position ranking keywords.
Tactic 4: Video content tactics for TOFU
For many years, the marketing industry has recognized the power of video content to engage and connect with audiences. However, companies often make the mistake of creating their first video about their founder or company, rather than focusing on content that their customers want to see. As a result, these videos may fail to resonate with their target audience and miss the opportunity to build a strong brand connection.
Video content is powerful TOFU content, allowing brands to capture the attention of their target audience and communicate their message in a dynamic and engaging way. Here are some of the most important things to focus on when it comes to video content tactics for TOFU:
Identifying the right format: There are many different types of video content that can be effective in the TOFU stage, including explainer videos, how-to videos, and brand storytelling videos. It’s important to identify the format that best fits your brand and target audience and create content that is informative, entertaining, and engaging.
Optimizing for search: Video content can also be optimized for search engines, helping to drive more traffic to your website from search results pages. This might include optimizing video titles, descriptions, and tags and including video transcripts and captions to make your content more accessible to a wider audience.
Two examples of successful video content tactics for TOFU are:
Nike’s “Dream Crazy” Ad
In 2018, Nike launched an inspirational video ad featuring Colin Kaepernick and other athletes, encouraging viewers to pursue their dreams and strive for greatness. The ad generated a lot of buzz and positive sentiment on social media, helping to build brand awareness and engagement among Nike’s target audience.
Salesforce’s “Dreamforce” Conference Videos
Salesforce, a leading provider of cloud-based CRM software, hosts an annual conference called “Dreamforce” that attracts thousands of attendees from around the world. The conference features a wide variety of speakers and sessions focused on topics like sales, marketing, and customer service.
Salesforce records and shares many of these sessions as videos on their website and social media channels, allowing people who couldn’t attend the conference in person to still benefit from the content. By creating high-quality, engaging video content that showcases the value of their software and services, Salesforce has been able to attract a wide audience of potential customers in the TOFU stage.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) to track for video content success in the TOFU stage might include metrics such as video views, engagement rate, and click-through rate. By monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your video content and makeKey performance indicators (KPIs) to track for video content success in the TOFU stage might include metrics such as video views, engagement rate, and click-through rate. By monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your video content and make data-driven decisions for future video marketing efforts.
Tactic 5: Display Advertising Tactics for TOFU
Display advertising can be a powerful tactic for TOFU marketing, allowing brands to reach a wide audience across a variety of websites and digital platforms. To make the most of your display advertising efforts, here are some of the most important things to focus on:
Identifying the websites and platforms where your target audience spends time online, and focusing your display advertising efforts on those channels.
Creating eye-catching, visually appealing ads that grab your target audience’s attention and encourage them to click through to your website or landing page.
Two examples of successful display advertising tactics for TOFU are:
Squarespace’s Retargeting Campaign
Website builder Squarespace uses retargeting ads to remind potential customers who have visited their site but haven’t yet made a purchase to return and complete the transaction. By using visually engaging and relevant ad creatives, Squarespace has been able to effectively re-engage potential customers and drive more conversions.
Spotify’s Display Ad Campaign
Spotify, the music streaming service, has used display advertising to great effect in their marketing efforts. One of their most successful campaigns involved using data on users’ listening habits to create humorous and engaging ads that played off popular music genres and artists.
Some key performance indicators (KPIs) to track for display advertising success in the TOFU stage might include metrics such as impressions, click-through rate, and cost per click. By monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your display advertising tactics and make data-driven decisions for future campaigns.
Tactic 6: Event Marketing Tactics for TOFU
Event marketing is an effective tactic for TOFU marketing, allowing brands to connect with potential customers in person and create memorable experiences that can help build brand awareness and loyalty.
Event marketing is not just for large brands – small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) can also benefit from this tactic.
One advantage of event marketing for SMBs is that it allows them to create a more intimate and personalized experience for attendees. This can help build stronger relationships with potential customers and differentiate the SMB from larger competitors.
Here are some of the most important things to focus on when it comes to event marketing tactics for TOFU:
Choosing the right events: It’s important to select events that attract your target audience and align with your brand’s values and messaging.
Creating engaging experiences: At events, it’s important to create engaging experiences that resonate with your target audience and showcase your brand’s unique value proposition.
Two large-brand examples of successful event marketing tactics for TOFU are:
IBM’s “Think” Conference
IBM’s annual “Think” conference is a great example of effective event marketing in the B2B space. The conference features a wide range of keynotes, breakout sessions, and networking opportunities, all designed to showcase IBM’s expertise and innovative solutions in the technology space.
Red Bull’s “Flutag” Event
Red Bull’s “Flugtag” events are a great example of creative event marketing in the B2C space. These events challenge participants to build and launch homemade flying machines off a platform into the water, creating a spectacle that attracts huge crowds and generates buzz on social media.
Two SMB examples of successful event marketing tactics for TOFU are:
Little Bee Books – Book Launch Party
Little Bee Books is an independent publisher that specializes in children’s books. For the launch of their book “Vampirina Ballerina,” they hosted a “Batty Ballerina Party” event in a local bookstore. The event featured a reading of the book, a dance party, and themed crafts and activities. By creating a fun and engaging event that appealed to their target audience (young children and their parents), Little Bee Books was able to build brand awareness and generate interest in their new book.
Mott & Bow – Pop-up Shop
Mott & Bow is a direct-to-consumer denim brand that sells high-quality jeans at an affordable price point. To showcase their products and connect with customers in person, they hosted a pop-up shop event in New York City. The event featured free drinks and snacks, as well as a selection of their latest denim styles for customers to try on and purchase. By creating a unique and interactive shopping experience, Mott & Bow was able to generate buzz around their brand and attract new customers.
Some key performance indicators (KPIs) to track for event marketing success in the TOFU stage should include metrics such as attendance, email sign-ups, and social media impressions. By monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your event marketing tactics and make data-driven decisions for future campaigns.
Tactic 7: Leveraging Personal Brands for TOFU
Leveraging the personal brand of a company’s founders is a powerful tactic for TOFU marketing. By showcasing the expertise and personality of the founders, companies can build trust and credibility with potential customers, and establish a strong brand identity.
Here are some of the most important things to focus on when it comes to leveraging founders’ personal brand tactics for TOFU:
Authenticity: It’s important to ensure that the founder’s personal brand is authentic and aligned with the company’s values and mission. This can help build trust with potential customers and create a stronger connection between the founder and the audience.
Thought leadership: Founders can position themselves as thought leaders in their industry by sharing their expertise through blog posts, podcasts, webinars, and other content. By providing valuable insights and information, founders can attract potential customers and build a loyal following.
Two examples of successful leveraging founders’ personal brand tactics for TOFU are:
Patagonia’s Yvon Chouinard
Yvon Chouinard, the founder of outdoor clothing company Patagonia, is known for his commitment to sustainability and environmentalism. Chouinard has leveraged his personal brand to promote Patagonia’s values and mission, appearing in interviews, documentaries, and speaking engagements. By showcasing Chouinard’s personal brand, Patagonia has been able to build a loyal following of environmentally-conscious customers.
Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO of VaynerMedia
Gary Vaynerchuk is a well-known entrepreneur, author, and social media personality who has leveraged his personal brand to build his marketing agency, VaynerMedia. Through his popular podcast, blog, and social media channels, Vaynerchuk shares his insights and expertise on marketing, entrepreneurship, and personal branding. By establishing himself as a thought leader in the industry and building a loyal following of fans and customers, VaynerMedia has been able to generate leads and build brand awareness in the TOFU stage.
Some key performance indicators (KPIs) to track for success when leveraging founders’ personal brand tactics for TOFU should include metrics such as brand social media followers and engagement, website traffic, and session duration. By monitoring these metrics, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your personal brand tactics and make data-driven decisions for future campaigns.
Top of the Funnel Marketing is Only The Beginning: What’s Next?
By attracting more prospects, generating more leads, and growing awareness of your business, these 7 top of funnel marketing tactics will help you amplify your marketing. Start with understanding your customer and then implement a multi-faceted approach to educate the customer, generate leads, and engage with the audience. That being said, you’ll still need to nurture those leads to turn them into paying customers.
Click below to learn how to nurture leads with an effective middle-of-the-funnel marketing strategy!
In This Series
The Marketing Funnel Explained: The 3 Stages + How They Work
A successful customer journey roadmap.
6 Mid-Funnel Marketing Tactics for Successful Lead Nurturing
Strategies That Drive Conversion and Elevate Customer Engagement.
Bottom of the Funnel Marketing Strategy that Works +Examples
This is where the magic happens.