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The Sharpest Tool™

Building Value for Consumers Through Top Funnel Strategies

Cheryl McRae
Josh Smith
Bobby Ravan is the Director of Corporate Marketing at Scorpion. This means that he markets and grows Scorpion as a brand, creates awareness, drives businesses to their products and services, and continues to establish them as an authority in the space.

Josh Smith (00:03):

Hello, and welcome to the sharpest tool where we take the sting out of marketing and doing that thing that we do day in and day out here at scorpion. My name is Josh. I'm your host today, and I'm really excited. I have Bobby here in the booth with me. He's one of our directors of corporate marketing. So Bobby welcome.

Bobby Ravan (00:20):

Hey Josh. Thanks for having me

Josh Smith (00:22):

Here. I can tell I'm seeing it in your eyes and his smile and he's ready to rock. So let's rock and roll. What is the director of corporate marketing dude? I'm just, I'm just kind of curious. I think our listeners might be too sure.

Bobby Ravan (00:32):

Um, markets, scorpion, scorpions my client. I run a lot of these strategies that we're going to get into today for scorpion. I've done that for three years here. Essentially. My role here is to grow scorpion as a brand in the space, create awareness for us, get more people on our platform, reading our material, engaged with our things we put out on the internet and engage with our products, coming to us for consultations and really establishing, continuing to establish us as the leader in the, in the space

Josh Smith (01:07):

Right into, I think what we're going to be talking about today, which is building value for consumers through top funnel strategies. So, I mean, we're just going to jump right in because I think this is such an awesome topic and when we don't take seriously enough. So w what are, let's just start at a very basic level. What are top funnel strategies for marketing?

Bobby Ravan (01:25):

Well, I think a great place to start is backup a quick second, and think about top funnel. When we're talking about the funnel, we're talking about essentially the path where it consumer is going to become a customer and that's for, for any business, whether it's a home service business, such as a, a plumber or an electrician or anything to buying a pair of shoes or buying a car, the goal of the funnel is to nurture a stranger eventually down to a customer. And, and a funnel has a couple of steps that these strangers take before they're going to convert and become a customers. You have a stranger coming in to the top of the funnel. Then they become a visitor on your website. After they find some value on your websites and engage with your, with your Terrio, they become a lead after they become a lead that the, you nurture them. You continue to stay in front of them. And then that lead eventually at some point, hopefully becomes a customer. Those are the natural progressive steps that anybody that has a need for whatever type of product or service that you, that you're providing falls into your purview.

Josh Smith (02:33):

A lot of our business owners, I think they get stuck in this, this way of thinking of like, well, it doesn't matter about that stuff. All that stuff doesn't matter. I'll all I need is I need something that just gives me leads. Right. You know, I think sometimes it's very difficult to see why top funnel strategies can be an effective part of a marketing mix. So why would you say top funnel strategies that are really important for a business to incorporate into their marketing strategy,

Bobby Ravan (02:55):

Taking that into consideration right there, where a lot of business owners are talking, getting more leads. This is the easiest way to generate leads for, for your business because you're casting such a broad net. So the goal of your top funnel strategy is let's take for, for instance, somebody who has any sort of need, how do I get dog hair out of my carpet? They go, they go on the internet and they type that into a search engine. How do I get a dog hair out of my carpet right then? And there they're just have, um, need for education. And that's really what top funnel marketing is, is providing educational resources to establish your brand, your company, as the expert in that field, you're really establishing your credibility as a brand, getting in front of that consumer when they're searching for education and they're searching to get their questions answered.

Bobby Ravan (03:51):

If you are the one providing the answers, you immediately have a better position to later on that consumer becoming a customer of yours than somebody that they had never heard of. Yeah. So that's why it provides tremendous value because they are, there are many, many more inquiries done at the top of the funnel than there are at the bottom of the funnel where someone has the high intent to make a purchase or make a decision to hire somebody that you're casting a much broader net at the top and getting a much, much more array of leads coming in front of your business so that you can engage with them. You can nurture them and get them down the path to becoming a consumer. How do the, how do these top funnel strategies, like when we talk about top funnel marketing, how does that differ from, I guess, bottom funnel marketing let's absolutely.

Bobby Ravan (04:43):

What are some of the primary characteristics again, to, to let's look at the differences between top funnel and bottom funnel? The, the intent is certainly different at the top of the funnel. Again, the consumer basically has a need to have questions answered, or they have an issue that they don't know the ins and outs of. So they're doing general searches, they're doing their homework essentially on what comes next. How do I do this? How do I do that? They're not necessarily searching for, I need a plumber or I needed an attorney, or, um, I want to buy this car today. Sure. They're not, they're not in that position quite yet. And the job of a great marketer and the job of this funnel is to get them from the point of doing that initial educational search all the way down to where they have the attempt to make a purchase or decision to hire somebody.

Bobby Ravan (05:38):

Couple of the strategies that we run top of the funnel here at scorpion work very, very well proven strategies across the entire spectrum of, of businesses that we work with is creating awareness for your company as a brand. You got to remember that your company is a brand, a lot of business owners, especially small business owners. Don't think of it that way, but you really are a brand got to think about your business as establishing an authority in your space, differentiating yourself with the credibility that your business has versus the competition down the street. So that, that is an extra point for you. When someone is trying to pick between you and your competitor, couple of strategies that you're going to run at the top of the funnel are promoting content. You're, you're creating, you're creating valuable content that is answering the questions for these consumers who have, have these questions that are searching the internet to have these questions answered.

Bobby Ravan (06:35):

You're going to have how to videos. You're going to have blog posts. You're going to run ads on YouTube in front of YouTube videos as in the form of pre-roll. And the goal here is to simply put your, your company, your brand, the top of mind for these consumers during their initial stage of searching for anything. And then that's, it could be any type of business that you're in. You want to establish yourself as the authority. You want to get them to your site. And then you're going to work on different strategies that are going to nurture them all the way down to becoming a consumer. But at the top of the funnel, it's really about creating valuable content, such as videos, which are so readily consumed educational blog, posts, guides, but white papers, anything like that, that is free. That is valuable that the consumer will love to read that is going to, they are going to get something out of it. So that when the next question arises immediately, they're coming back to you because you solve their first question.

Josh Smith (07:38):

Ah, that's so good. And you know, it makes me think of something that I think we experience a lot with the business owners, right? And it's, you mentioned something interesting there, free content, you know, we're putting out free content free to the consumer. They don't have to pay anything for it. And I know some of our, the wheels are turning in our business owners have, but I got to, I have to pay to create this free content. Right? And so when a business is very much looking at it from an ROI perspective or a return on their investment, um, when do they see that return are all stages of the funnel created equal in terms of generating that return or does one necessarily maybe impacts the other in a way that, that financial investment of creating that free valuable content makes sense

Bobby Ravan (08:19):

For them? That's a fantastic question, Josh. One, one way to really put that into perspective is somebody who is ready to make a purchase decision. I need a plumber today. I need an attorney for representation right now. I need a carpet cleaner today because I spilled something on my carpet. They have a high intent to make that purchase immediately. Google search engines, such as Google and being know that they know that that, that consumer is the most value to you as a business owner. So obviously they're going to charge you the most amount of money to get you in front of that consumer. When that consumer has that exact high intent to make a purchase need. Whereas when you back up and you go up the funnel back towards the top, your cost per acquisition is actually going to go much, much lower. Now that's a,

Josh Smith (09:14):

I just want to set the cost per acquisition. What do we mean by

Bobby Ravan (09:16):

That? Cost per acquisition is language that we use in the marketing realm. And that is essentially your total cost as a business owner or a business to get somebody who is a stranger down to your customer. Great, great. From the time where they have no idea who you are to the time that they are making a transaction with you, all of the efforts that you make roll into that cost of acquisition. Perfect. So when we're talking about the bottom of the funnel, you have the most expensive way to get customers. Where when we back up to the top of the funnel, you're getting, you're casting a much broader net. You're creating content that is going to be much cheaper in the long run for you than trying to position yourself only at the bottom of the funnel. And here you have a real example of where one-on-one makes three to be, to, to, to say that.

Bobby Ravan (10:13):

So when you have your top of the funnel, middle of the funnel and bottom of the funnel, working in conjunction, you have a much more expansive presence on the internets throughout the space that your returns are being multiplied versus having just one of the, one of the elements working in a silo by itself. So the goal is to get as many, many consumers in, through the top of the funnel, giving them value, giving them the free content free doesn't necessarily mean bad or easily produced or, or anything like that. It has to have value. It has to have value. So that those videos, visitors that are reading that want to come back, want to reengage with you want to review, it's continue to think about you when that need arises. You're already there top of mind. So for example, somebody may not need a plumber today, but they're watching a, how to video on how to fix their own drain. They try to fix it, and unfortunately it doesn't go the way they want, but then they immediately have you as a plumber in mind when they realize they can't do it themselves and they need to bring in a professional.

Josh Smith (11:25):

Awesome. Awesome. So how, you know, when, when it comes to investing in some of these top funnel strategies, these content strategies, these value, adding strategies, again, going back to those ROI minded professionals, the ones who are looking at that acquisition costs as you so articulated so well, how quickly can these top funnel strategies produce leads? SEO has been a topic for a long time, and that was getting you in front of those customers. And sometimes people would invest for years before actually saw, uh, a solid lead production from it. Is that the same case for some of these top funnel strategies? Or do we see things happen a bit quicker?

Bobby Ravan (12:02):

We certainly see things happen much quicker nowadays, certainly because of the way the internet is the way that people are connected. Nowadays, certainly say, let's use an example. You create an ad for yourself, for your business that has an explainer video, two minutes long, that how to do something. And you share that across social media, somebody who, who may watch that video, doesn't have a need to whatever that, how to is, how to fix your, how to fix a drain. They may not have that need right then and there, but their, their neighbor down the street who they're friends with on Facebook posts, Hey, my pipe just broke. Does anybody know of a good plumber? You who simply just watched their plumber video and thought, Hey, this was great. Now I know how to do my own drain. If I ever need to this excellent plumber did a fantastic video.

Bobby Ravan (12:55):

They seem to know what they're talking about. They're very professional. My neighbor who needs a plumber, I'm going to recommend this guy because I've already engaged with them as a brand. They've already given me value. They don't even know who I am, but yet they're going to get my friend, my neighbor, who is in need as a referral from me. So there's tons of ways that it's going to produce leads for you add business immediately, because it has such a massive effect across the internet. By positioning you in channels that you may have not thought is a place for you to generate business from. But these are tactics that are generating businesses for all the businesses that we work with and scorpion itself, w these are tactics that we run for the company. So they're definitely tried and true practices that business owners really should invest the time and effort in because in the long run, you're going to remember as a business owner to while there's short-term goals, there's certainly a long-term goal. You certainly don't want your business to just do well. Now you want your business to do well for all time and continue to grow and really get you to where you want to be and provide for you and your family, whatever your personal goals are. So employing these strategies not only benefits you now, but it's really laying the foundation for you to again, develop your brand, grow your brand, and continue to provide business for months and years to come. Because again, you've created the path for a stranger to become your,

Josh Smith (14:28):

And you know, it seems to me, and you can confirm or deny this. The feeling that I'm getting is that we can't really fully gauge the collateral impact of top funnel strategies. Like you mentioned somebody who is referring that out to a friend, they had no interaction. They didn't even actually transact with the business, but because they saw the free value adding content, it produced a referral. So is that, is that pretty safe to say, do you see that a lot in your world?

Bobby Ravan (14:53):

So you see that a lot. Again, it is. It's really your job as a business owner to establish yourself as the professional, the educator, the, the one with the credibility, consumers themselves are coming to you because they have a need. They may not have that need immediately, but at some point they or somebody, they know that somebody that takes their word for it is going to have a certain need that you as a business owner are going to be able to fulfill and positioning yourself as the front runner for whenever that need arises is going to really produce returns for you all the time, because there is no better way than to constantly have a pipeline of fresh inbound consumers that are coming to you because they've engaged with you in the past. Maybe they haven't purchased with you in the past, but they've engaged with you. They've learned from you. And now that they need you, you're right there in front of them. Definitely.

Josh Smith (15:48):

Awesome. Well, Bobby, this has been absolutely fantastic. I think there's a lot of really good value added into just people listening to this podcast and listening to everything that you had to say. So I really appreciate you taking the time and sharing your expertise with us. Thanks, man.

Bobby Ravan (16:01):

Thanks. Josh loved to hear from any business owners as well. So if you guys have any further questions on top funnel marketing or any marketing strategies for your business, please feel free to reach out to Josh or myself.

Josh Smith (16:15):

Awesome. Thanks so much. And from all of us here at the sharpest tool, my name is Josh Smith. If you are enjoying all the value that we're bringing to you from this podcast hit that subscribe button, wherever you might be, and that you can get more of this awesome content. So from all of us here, we'll catch you next time. Thanks.

Speaker 3 (16:33):

[inaudible].

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