Some new research from Google Media Labs came out reminding us about an important part of the marketing funnel that often gets overlooked, and that’s the middle of the funnel, or the “messy middle”, as they refer to it.
Now in the article, they pick apart the marketing funnel into three different pieces, with awareness being at the top, and purchase, or what we might call “activation” or “performance marketing”, at the bottom. We often focus on each of these pieces of the funnel as marketers because they represent critical stages of the customer journey, and also because they are common across pretty much all marketing situations.
The middle component of the funnel can often get “messy” and that might be why it gets overlooked sometimes. While the top and bottom are typically the same across products and services, the middle might include a single step like consideration, or it might consist of many steps for more complicated user journeys.
The research from Google Media Labs places consideration between the key top and bottom pieces of awareness and purchase, respectively, and their research found some important results in focusing on this often overlooked stage of the funnel. Specifically, they used some sophistical attribution tools to demonstrate that 16 times more sales could be attributed to the middle of the funnel when it was accurately measured. This is a statistic that marketers should take note of, because incorrectly attributing these sales to the wrong place in the marketing funnel could lead you astray in your strategy. In addition, marketers will also want to consider the following specific actions they can take to keep their marketing funnels in healthy order:
- Break marketing solos. It’s important that marketing and sales teams communicate with each other to help understand their unique contribution to your companies marketing funnel. In addition, make sure to keep the lines of communication open between the brand management and performance marketing team.
- Evolve attribution Model. Make sure your marketing attribution is accurate so you have a clear picture of the leaky points along your marketing funnel. The last thing you want to do is patch up a hole in the wrong place only to find out months or even a year later that you patched up the wrong hole.
- Allocate Mid-funnel budget. After you’ve put some thought into the number and type of stages that comprise the middle of your marketing funnel, be sure to set aside some budget to ensure these stages aren’t holding customers up along their customer journey.
At the end of the day, all these steps can help make sure your marketing funnel gives you a good representation of your customers journey from initial awareness all the way to purchase, and sometimes even repurchase and advocacy!
At Intermark Group, we’re happy to discuss how we can help you overcome these challenges to build strong brands. Feel free to give us a call at 833-578-1314 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss how we can help with your marketing challenges.