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A Definitive Guide to Marketing Funnel

Kirjoittanut: Khaldun Shahran - tiimistä Crevio.

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Khaldun Shahran
Esseen arvioitu lukuaika on 7 minuuttia.


A marketing funnel is a visual representation of the customer journey from initial awareness of your brand to the ultimate goal of conversion. Understanding and strategically designing a marketing funnel is essential for businesses of any size, as it helps attract potential customers, nurture leads, and boost sales.

Marketing funnels help businesses set a clear path and make sales efforts way easier with the strategy lined out. Defining your customer journey to the end of the funnel helps businesses with insight into why customers are converting and why not. And, when you know what’s your bottleneck you can always adapt. 


What to expect in this essay

Hey, I’m Khaldun. I am a professional Digital Marketer. Recently in our 12H innovation challenge we created one sales funnel, where we actually visualized the whole journey of the ideal customer for the business that we worked with. I believe this is now my responsibility to share with proakatemia members so other people can also learn about marketing funnels.

In this essay, I will try to cover my knowledge of Marketing Funnels and give you a proper introduction and step-by-step guide to plan and create your marketing funnel either for your client or your project.. 


What are Marketing Funnels?

Marketing Funnels are basically the journey of customers with businesses.

Even if you don’t actually been not visualized your client journey yet, but you’re getting sales/conversion. You’r clients are actually having a journey from the beginning of finding your business to actually converting to sales. The most popular funnels are mostly four stages A.I.D.A developed by Elias St. Elmo Lewis (Elmo Lewis, 1898).

Attention: Picture this: I’ve got to make you stop scrolling on instagram with our coffee project Kiitos Kahvi content for sales day. My headlines are bold, catchy, my images are pleasing, and the offer is too good to ignore. This is where I hook you in.

Interest: Now that I’ve got your focus, I need to keep you intrigued. I’ll show you exactly how Kittos Kahvi relates to you with proper branding. Think of this as me proving that I’m worth your time.

Desire: Here’s where I switch gears. I want you to not just need my product but actively want it. I’ll paint a picture of how your life will improve, how you’ll feel after making this decision. The goal is to get you emotionally invested.

Action: Okay, you’re convinced. Now, I have to make taking the next step super easy. That means a clear CTA(call to action), a “Buy Now” button that’s impossible to miss, or maybe a special offer that disappears if you don’t act fast.

This was a simple example to make your understand the use of AIDA model concept for the marketing funnel. But action can be different for different types of business goal. It can be Sign up, Call, Appointment booking etc.

The reason behind it is call funnel is that you may get a lot of attention at first but step by step till the action you will see less people are converting. The more interested buyers will go further down


Tofu, Mofu, Bofu!

A newer and simpler model to explain Marketing Funnel.

Acronyms are marketers’ best friend. “TOFU” (top of funnel), “MOFU” (middle of funnel) “BOFU” (bottom of funnel) (Chaffey, 2017)are all referring to different stages of the marketing funnel:

TOFU (Top of Funnel) – Awareness Stage This is where potential customers first learn about your brand and what kind of problems you can help them with. Think of it as the “getting to know you” phase. 


MOFU (Middle of Funnel) – Consideration Stage Your customer knows they have a problem and are actively looking for solutions. They might be checking out you and your competitors. Your job here is to convince them that your brand offers the best solution. 


BOFU (Bottom of Funnel) – Decision Stage Here’s where it all comes together! Your potential customer is ready to buy. You need to give them that final push – maybe it’s a discount, a free trial, or highlighting what makes you stand out from the competition. 


This three-stage model basically takes the AIDA model and simplifies it slightly: Awareness in both models is the same – the customer becomes aware of your brand. MOFU (Consideration) combines the Interest and Desire stages from AIDA. BOFU (Decision) and AIDA’s Action stage are essentially the same – this is where you seal the deal!


What are the different types of funnels?

There is always a purpose behind a marketing funnel. Here is a breakdown of a different kind of funnel. I decided to differentiate into two categories:


Core Funnel 

Lead Generation Funnel: Designed to capture lead information (contact information) in exchange for a valuable offer (e-book, newsletter). Focuses on building a list of potential customers.


Sales Funnel: Are the classic funnel focused on moving a prospect through awareness to purchase decision


Membership Funnel: Designed to attract and retain subscribers to a recurring membership program (subscription)


Webinar Funnel: Uses a webinar as the core content piece. Aims to educate leads, build authority, and then present an offer for a product/service.


Specialized Funnel


Free trial funnel: Encourages sign-ups for a free trial with the aim of converting trial users into paid customers.


Upsell/cross-sell funnel: Targets existing customers to encourage them to purchase additional products, upgrades.


Affiliate funnel: Designed to attract and onboard affiliates to promote your products or services in return for commission.


Why Are Marketing Funnels Beneficial?

Marketing funnels help you map the customer journey. So, when you visualize the total customer journey from awareness to purchase it will help you identify the bottlenecks and pinpoints where you are losing potential leads. Also, it allows you to customize your marketing strategy by fulfilling potential customers with enough information needed to go further down the funnel steps. 


Funnel metrics can be very useful to improve your strategies. Identify which strategies are more effective with a/b testing and improve your funnel experience for leads. A well-defined funnel requires you to create a clear customer profile which gives you a clear roadmap for your marketing team. Funnels allow you to understand which marketing channels and tactics are working to your success, so you can optimize your spending for maximum return on investment. (Zenisek, n.d.)


A Real-Life Marketing Funnel Example


This is the funnel we created for our company in the 12-hour challenge. As you can see it’s a four-step funnel with a hook, then value and creating desire with retargeting and finally action. But is it so simple at work? Scroll down for surprise!

This is the actual marketing process and activities look like. So and the top as you can see we marked how we are going to reach out to new clients and what hook we are going to use to get them interested. And in the middle as you can see we are offering free tools/blogs/newsletter to retarget them to convert, 

How to Create a Marketing Funnel

1. Determine Your Ideal Buyer Journey and Map It Out as a Funnel

Map out the typical steps a person takes to become a customer. Think about where they first hear about you, how they learn more, and what finally convinces them to buy.

2. Set Goals for Each Stage in Your Funnel

Decide what you want people to do at each stage of the funnel. Examples could be signing up for your newsletter, watching a product demo, or finally making a purchase.

3. Make a Content Plan for Each Stage in the Funnel

Figure out what kind of content will help people move through each stage. This could be blog posts, videos, free guides, or anything that provides value and answers potential customer questions.

4. Implement Strategies and Create Content to Generate Awareness

Start using different strategies to attract attention to your brand. This could include social media, ads, or partnerships with other businesses.

5. Generate Interest and Desire

Provide more in-depth information that shows how your product or service solves a problem. Customer testimonials and case studies are great for this stage.

6. Encourage Users to Take Action

Have clear calls-to-action like “Buy Now” buttons. Consider offering limited-time promotions or guarantees to sweeten the deal.


What’s the difference between goals and funnels?

The goal is actually what you are trying to achieve with the funnel. The funnel is the journey that the client takes to reach the goal (Patel, n.d.). 



We’ve learned a lot about marketing funnels! It is a powerful tool for building your brand and boosting sales. The best part is that funnels let you see where you might be losing potential customers along the way. With this knowledge, you can improve your strategies and turn more leads into loyal customers.


Chaffey, D. (2017, March 2). TOFU > MOFU > BOFU: Mapping Buyer Persona to the Buying Cycle Content for your Content Marketing Strategy. Smart Insights. Retrieved March 7, 2024, from https://www.smartinsights.com/content-management/content-marketing-strategy/mapping-buyer-personas-buying-cycle-content-marketing-strategy/

Elmo Lewis, E. S. (1898). AIDA. Oxford Reference. Retrieved March 7, 2024, from https://www.oxfordreference.com/display/10.1093/oi/authority.20110803095432783

Patel, N. (n.d.). A graphic saying “Mastering Your Marketing Funnel”. Neil Patel. Retrieved March 7, 2024, from https://neilpatel.com/blog/how-marketing-funnels-work/

Zenisek, M. (n.d.). Wikipedia. Retrieved March 7, 2024, from https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/benefits-having-sales-funnel-michelle-zenisek/


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