It’s common for today’s consumers to search for products and learn about brands through multiple channels and on multiple devices before making a purchase. 

At the most basic level, a shopper may research products or services by using Google or reading online reviews before making a purchase. Using upper-funnel marketing strategies can help brands reach their target audiences.

Stages of the Marketing Funnel

A marketing funnel follows a buyer’s journey from beginning to end. It goes from becoming aware of a brand and considering a purchase to making a purchase, but buyers don’t necessarily follow this neat and streamlined path. 

Each stage of the marketing funnel serves a different role. These stages are:

Awareness – Top of Funnel (TOFU)

TOFU marketing is used to build brand awareness rather than to encourage someone to purchase a product. It’s great for reaching consumers who may not know much about your products or services yet.

With TOFU marketing, consumers will learn more about your brand, so by the time they are ready to purchase, you’ll be top-of-mind. 

Consideration – Middle of Funnel (MOFU)

MOFU marketing focuses on what makes a company stand out among its competitors. MOFU marketing is the most useful when consumers have already engaged with your brand through email subscriptions, social media engagement, or other tactics that can help you build relationships with potential new customers. 

Conversion – Bottom of Funnel (BOFU)

Many advertisers focus their paid advertising campaigns on consumers who are at the bottom of the funnel since these are the people who are ready to make a purchase, submit a form, or complete some other call to action.

The problem with relying on this strategy alone is that brands are missing out on opportunities to reach consumers who have not yet heard of them or those who are still in the consideration stage of the funnel.

With BOFU marketing, you can use reviews and testimonials, special offers, price comparisons, or how-to guides to encourage consumers to purchase. 

The Importance of all Stages of the Marketing Funnel

Consumers can skip stages and enter the funnel at any of the four stages. Businesses should make sure to reach consumers at all stages of the funnel so they don’t miss out on making important connections with potential customers and selling their products.

When it comes to PPC campaigns, we can see real results in the mid to low parts of a paid advertising funnel. This is where the conversions happen, so it’s easy to see the ROI. Consumers typically reach this lower part of the funnel with paid searches and are often ready to buy. 

Even though conversions happen at the bottom of the funnel, it’s important not to neglect the top stage of the funnel, because you want to reach people through other methods than just paid searches.

Paid searches won’t encourage people to purchase from you if they don’t know anything about your brand. You should use top-of-funnel marketing strategies that promote your brand and make more consumers aware of your products or services. Even if they don’t purchase immediately, they may be more likely to become customers later when they’re more familiar with your brand, and they’re ready to make a purchase. 

Upper Funnel PPC Strategies

Implementing a top-of-funnel marketing strategy can help boost your search engine presence in searches for your products or services and make more people aware of your brand. Below are some strategies that can give you great results with your upper funnel marketing.

Want to learn more about incorporating PPC into your digital marketing strategy? Learn more about our PPC services.

Video Advertising/YouTube

Video advertising is becoming more common, with 88% of people claiming that they have decided to purchase a product or service after watching a brand’s video. Video advertising will provide you with excellent opportunities to reach more consumers.     

Display Advertising with Google Display Network

You can use this strategy to show your ads on any of more than two million websites that are part of the Google Display Network. In addition, using Google’s Advanced Audiences will allow you to target consumers according to their interests, purchasing behavior, or demographics, rather than by keywords alone. 

Search Ads for Top of Funnel Queries

Using search ads that are directed toward top-of-funnel queries will allow you to reach consumers who may not be familiar with your brand and are searching for information on the types of products or services that your business offers. 

Third-Party Media Buys (Podcasts, Print, etc.)

Third-party advertising provides businesses with a way to reach consumers through a variety of other commonly used websites by placing their ads on third-party ad servers, such as Google AdWords or AdSense. These third-party ad servers then connect advertisers with businesses that will display their ads online.

Social Media Advertising

More than 3.6 billion people from all over the world used social media in 2020, and this number is expected to increase to 4.41 billion by 2025. This makes social media a great way for many businesses to reach consumers. Social media advertising also allows you to target specific groups of consumers based on attributes such as age, gender, location, education, life events, and interests.

Is Your Business Ready for Upper Funnel PPC?

There are specific cues that it may be time to focus on upper-funnel marketing strategies for your business. It’s time to use upper-funnel marketing when:

You Need to Reach New Audiences

Using top-of-funnel marketing will promote trust in your brand by exposing your business’s products and services to a new group of consumers who may not be familiar with them. 

Your Branded Impression Share vs Impression Volume Has Changed 

Branded impression share is the percentage of impressions that your ads get in comparison to the total number of impressions that they could potentially get. 

Impression volume is the number of times that consumers see your link in search engine results pages (SERPs). 

When your brand impressions have decreased while your volume has stayed the same or increased, this shows that consumers are searching for your products or services, but they’re not visiting your website. TOFH marketing can help spread brand awareness to consumers so they can get to know your brand, which may make them feel more comfortable purchasing from you. 

You’re Focusing on Long-Tail Keywords for Growth 

When you have already optimized your digital presence to the point that you need to focus on more specific, long-tail, exact-match keywords to encourage growth, you are more than likely reaching a smaller audience than you should be reaching.

While long-tail keywords may have less competition than other keywords, the results may be too narrow for you to reach consumers who aren’t aware of your brand. 

You’re Not Using Your Budget Efficiently 

If you’re not using your allocated budget because there isn’t much left to purchase on the search network after you’ve used most of your options, directing your focus to TOFH can provide you with additional avenues for your advertising efforts. 

You’re Moving Down in Google Trends 

If Google Trends begins to consistently show a downward trend for searches related to your brand, non-branded terms, or topics, using TOFH strategies can help turn that trend around as more consumers hear about your brand. 

If you are ready to boost your upper funnel marketing through paid search advertising, our expert marketers can help you decide on the best strategies for you to promote your brand and reach a wider audience.

For more information on how we can help you reach more consumers and turn them into customers, contact WTM Digital to get started!