Marketing Micro Funnels

Ever heard of a marketing micro funnel?

July 8, 2024

Ben (00:02.218)

Welcome back to another episode of Content Amplified. Today I'm joined by Amanda. Amanda, welcome to the show.

Amanda Groves (00:08.75)

Ben, thank you. Happy to be here.

Ben (00:11.466)

Awesome, well I'm really excited for the conversation. We're actually gonna talk about a term that I've never heard before, so I'm excited to dive into it and all that. But before we get there, Amanda, let us get to know you. Who are you, what do you do for your career, what do you love about marketing and content? We'd love to get to know you real quick.

Amanda Groves (00:30.575)

Oh, of course. Well, my name is Amanda Groves. I've been marketing in high tech growth startups for almost 15 years now, which in tech time is probably at least 30 or 40 for how quickly things change and move. But what I love about marketing is one, the storytelling aspect and creative. I studied English writing and communications, was a journalist for many years before entering my kind of tech experience and

Just the ability to balance, again, the creative side and then the data analysis to tell a compelling story and drive impact is really fulfilling. And also just with marketing, you're building relationships within your team, within the customers that you're serving. And as someone who gets a lot of energy from building connections, it's just kind of the perfect, wrong gradients of a fulfilling career. And especially in tech with all the change, it's fun to challenge yourself and stay curious.

Ben (01:26.986)

I love that. And I love that phrase, stay curious. Because if you can't and you don't like to have change, marketing may not be the right fit for you for a career. I feel like the best marketers really crave what's new, what's going to happen, where is the market going, things like that. So I love that direction and that focus. I think that's really cool. So today we're going to be talking about something really interesting. We're going to be talking about this concept of micro funnels.

Ben (01:56.65)

Now we talk about funnels all the time. It's the analogy that probably gets used more than any other analogy in all of marketing. And so we're gonna talk about micro funnels, what they are, and then also how you can map your content to the various stages of a micro funnel. So just to start off, Amanda, what is a micro funnel and how is it different from a normal funnel or an overall buyer's journey funnel?

Amanda Groves (02:24.144)

I am definitely in my micro funnels era. Can't talk about them enough. So happy to share kind of my experience with them here with your audience. So I think about micro funnels as breaking down the customer journey into smaller, more focused stages. And each of those stages are really designed to achieve a very, very specific outcome. So unlike our traditional sales or marketing funnels that are really broad from the awareness to purchase stages, micro funnels really concentrate on a specific audience or a specific motion within how you're running your go -to -market process.

Ben (02:59.69)

Okay, I love it. So, you know, let's say the traditional funnel is your awareness, consideration, decision, kind of an idea. How would a micro funnel fit into the realm of that? Is it like a small portion of the consideration phase for a specific action for a specific market? What would that really look like in practice?

Amanda Groves (03:16.623)

I think that's exactly right. Many of us in marketing goes without saying we wear a lot of hats, especially if you're at an early stage company. A lot of us will play the ops role and potentially if you're a marketer with an ops perspective, you're familiar with a waterfall project management process. So you can think about that taking the biggest bucket and then continuing to drill down. So if it, for example, if I'm in my awareness stage and then I'm looking at a specific, maybe high intent segment that visited my website, what is the next thing I want them to do in that journey? Do I want them to sign up for my newsletter? Do I want them to sign up for the product if you're a product -led business? So we're focusing on kind of the input and the output being the input, I did an event, I visited the website, and the output would be sign up for the newsletter or sign up for the product, and that would be a funnel that my team, myself, will be working on improving the metric there because that underlying groundswell activity can really have a huge impact on the top line number for the team.

Ben (04:24.682)

I love it, I love it. Before we dive into how content plays a role in micro funnels, another question I have is how do you prioritize specific micro funnels? I can imagine you could probably come up with hundreds, if not dozens, of specific micro funnels for the business, but when you are trying to prioritize and work and develop something inside of a micro funnel, how do you prioritize and make sure that you're actually working on the right ones?

Amanda Groves (04:56.529)

Such a good question. Prioritization is paramount for the marketing team. So we're always looking at what are our organization's North stars for cross beam. My most recent business, we are really focused on three big micro funnels and areas of conversion. So our self serve, so getting our core customers to upgrade to the next tier, our sales assist OKR, which was how can we get more sales motions in the product and then sales led. So our more enterprise accounts using our middle tier as a demand gen lever to move them through into an enterprise sales cycle. So those were always top of mind for the business and the key again, North Star is that marketing team, the marketing team was looking at and then drilling down to say, what is a micro funnel that could improve self -serve or sales assist or sales led because there's a host of campaigns, content pieces that were already in place, but maybe not in that next step action cycle for the outcome that we're trying to drive.

Ben (06:05.706)

Okay, I love it. So I'm really paying attention to my North Star metrics, I'm aligned with the business, and I found a micro funnel that I need to optimize and improve. How do I use content to assist and aid in that process in accomplishing what I'm trying to get out of that micro funnel now?

Amanda Groves (06:28.241)

I think there are so many different ways content should be used and I know many of the listeners that you have here may use the model of I have a pillar piece of content and I'm breaking that down into smaller consumables and that's just a perfect marriage of how you think about micro funnels, right? If I have a blog, maybe I'm taking a snippet that's a play that's really actionable for a key segment and a key action we're trying to drive. So that's something that is very common for us to experiment with.

in terms of our micro funnels. One specific campaign that I wanted to call out was what we called at Crossbeam is the abandoned cart campaign. So looking at high intent events where if someone is in the product and they're clicking and upgrade CTA or they're visiting the website and visiting our pricing page, what is that next best action that we're trying to drive? And we use content via email campaigns, interactive demos,

to really show versus tell to drive that self -serve upgrade action that we wanted to see. So content was paramount to continuing to nurture those prospects in that audience. And for that specific campaign that I mentioned, we saw 2X the open rates on the emails because it was very targeted. The content was personalized for exactly who they are at that time.

And we saw marketing, the marketing team was closing deals. So a little bit of a cannibalization against the sales team, but it was very, very good and showed that the power of targeting at the right time with the right content has a really, really strong impact on what you're trying to move the needle on.

Ben (08:13.962)

I love it. And you use the phrase right there at the end, the right content is really impactful. When you are looking at a micro funnel, how are you starting to determine the right content? You talked about repurposing other content. You talked about how you changed the demo into more informative versus salesy. How do you think about this? How are you trying to put your mind?

In the position of the buyer, like what do you, is it purely experiment driven? Is it asking consumers? What are some tips and tricks there to kind of say, maybe there's some opportunities with content. How do we map it to the funnel?

Amanda Groves (08:52.689)

That's a really good question. A thing, this is a, maybe it's a secret play that some content teams are running, but what I really like is if you have a help center and you have a few pieces that are the most viewed, especially if this is something that the micro funnel I'm trying to approve is a self -serve upgrade, what within that tier is the most highly viewed help center article or on the other side within the blog, what is the most viewed topic? And then from there extract who's the persona? And then we do that sort of content persona mapping within the confines of the micro funnel. That's been really successful. You're not guessing to what's valuable because you can see it with the view statistics that this is something that's being consumed a lot. It's being consumed by folks that if we're doing the analysis have a high propensity to convert. So let's bring that together.

Again, like right stage, right time. And it's a lot of just recycling existing materials, which good content teams are always balancing that net new feeding the market, but also using what they already have. Cause we all, we know we have new audience members coming in all the time and people changing growth stages. So I think yeah, striking that balance of recycling what you have making it data backed by views and then mapping it to the persona is that one, two, three home run play that a lot of marketers, if they're not already doing really should. It's easy, scrappy and very, very influential.

Ben (10:28.17)

Love it. So you mentioned personas inside of there as well. So it sounds like micro funnels are not just elements of the funnel, just the micro pieces you're trying to convert, but it's also for specific segments. So how do you view this when you're looking at maybe micro funnels at the same stage, but for different personas or segments with your audience? How do you segment the content?

How do you specify the journeys? How are you even tracking the different journeys? What are some thoughts on that in general to help people with that?

Amanda Groves (11:03.089)

I think it's very important to always keep the personas top of mind. Again, I've been in product marketing. I've also served in content marketing roles. So just fusing those outlooks together, knowing the market, knowing the customer segment, and then giving them the content that they need and crave and want to act on in their career is paramount. So in terms of these micro funnels,

We define them by those next best actions, but there's always a click deeper. We use our tech stack is from the growth side and analytic side, very, very well drawn in from our product, our product data and our website data. So we have a good picture of what people are doing and who they are within reason. Right. We know if you're a VP of sales at a mid stage company.

you may want and the product is centered around improving partnerships. What are they trying to do to get more leads from their partners? So we can center the content really clearly around that individual at the time that they need to make a move in their career. So I would say it is credited to our very wonderful data analytics team. So we're able to pull a host of good data and intent signals to make the content stick and stay relevant. And,

In absence of that, I do still think a marketer could look again at what are people looking at on their blog, who are they, and just make sure that via nurture workflows, whether you're using a HubSpot or a Braze or a Marketo, that you're hitting those folks at the right time. Otherwise, we know there's a lot of noise out there. We want to stay relevant. So it's important to cue those things up and make sure again at their time.

Ben (12:52.586)

I love it. So you've got a micro funnel, you've got a specific segment. It almost sounds like this is borderline account -based marketing slash personalization. Are there times where your micro funnels are specific to an individual or a specific business or have you typically kept them broad? What are your thoughts on how that kind of really dovetails into the concept of ABM?

Amanda Groves (13:19.569)

I would say, yeah, without saying it and calling it ABM, it absolutely is set up in that way. A lot of the examples that I have been drawing on are more for the micro funnel that's for self -serve and that segment of the market is more mid -market SMBs, but for our enterprise clients, we're trying to take a prospect and move them into a sales led type of funnel, micro funnel that is.

we're definitely targeting more of the organization and then multi -threading with the individual contacts that we need to see lean into the process to make the larger enterprise deal move faster. We all know enterprise clients can take a birthday, they'll annualize before they close in some respects. So making sure you target that entire account from an organizational standpoint, identifying the key context that you need to multi -thread with content is really a beautiful formulaic process that once you get humming can knock down those dominoes of interest.

Ben (14:24.426)

I love that, I love that. Well, as promised, these episodes go by so quick. It's just fun to dive into a subject and really learn about it. I love this concept of micro funnels. It's absolutely something I need to focus on and pay attention to. Amanda, thank you for sharing these insights. If anyone wants to connect and further the conversation or just get to connect with you online, how can they find you?

Amanda Groves (14:50.929)

Yeah, so I am on LinkedIn and my name again is Amanda Grove. So you can find me on there. I am always looking to make new connections, talk shop. Microfunnels is a passion project of mine. So if this kind of content area piqued your interest, definitely shoot me a note and we can do a coffee chat and continue the discussion.

Ben (15:10.282)

Love it. Love it. Well, Amanda, again, thanks for sharing your insights today. I really appreciate it.

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