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The Three Phases Of Effective Online Marketing

Online marketing, as we all know, is perhaps the most powerful form of marketing you have available today - as it can be hyper-targeted meaning you can almost market yourself to a very specific audience that means your message will be much more relevant to them.


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Relevancy is the secret sauce when it comes to marketing as when you are operating in such a chaotic and busy world, where so many other people, companies and things are vying for the attention of your target audience - relevance is the one thing that will help you connect, capture and convert your audience from knowing nothing about you to becoming a customer.

Therein, lie the three phases of effective online marketing; the first step is to capture your audience's attention - as without having their attention and them knowing you exist, you will be able to do little else.

That said, just because you have their attention for a split second doesn’t mean they’re suddenly going to want to do business with you - the next step is to connect with your audience in a relevant and value-added way so that they engage with you and associate trust and authority with your brand.

The final step, is the most important, as you can have customers who are very engaged with what you have to say and have connected with your brand and value proposition, yet, if you can’t effectively convert an interested prospect into a paying customer, your business is never going to grow.

In this article, we’re going to look at these three fundamental stages to online marketing, but in addition to the academic overview, one thing you’ll likely be thinking is “what’s the best way to implement these steps”, as with so many different marketing platform providers from leadpages to clickfunnels, it can seem rather overwhelming in picking the right option for you.

The general advice is that if you’re just starting out you can piece together a number of third-party applications such as MailChimp that offer free service to smaller entities, yet, as you expand you will probably want to migrate to ClickFunnels, as they offer the easiest and most comprehensive way to build marketing funnels.

Now, if you’re asking what a marketing funnel is, you’ve come to the right place.  A marketing funnel is essentially this process of capturing attention (usually through something called a lead magnet), engaging the prospect and providing value (usually in the format of offering something free, such as a three-part video series that offers advice on a particularly problem your audience face) then converting this interest into a sale with an offer and call to action.

Brendon Burchard, founder of Experts Academy uses a model known as OVO which describes the same three-step process in the following format: opt-in, value, offer.  In this sense, it’s important to note that there are three distinct phases to online marketing, that take people through a funnel - rather than simply advertise a product.

Indeed, the old way of advertising a product on Facebook, for instance, and expecting people to buy is very archaic in the information age.  Let’s say you have a product for treating hair loss, for instance - you could just promote a bottle of special shampoo at $29 (not many people will click it unless they already know the brand) or you could first offer an “opt-in” whereby you draw people into your funnel by capturing their attention through a question - such as “would you like to stop your hair receding, click here to find out how”.

This peaks the interest of your target audience and provides value first, rather than trying to sell them something in the first instance.  This engages the psychological principle of ‘reciprocation’ which suggests people are much more willing to purchase something if you first provide value.

Then, in the next phase, there could be a three-part video series that educates the person on the reason hair thins and looks at a number of ways to try to prevent it; in this sense, you are going through the alternative possibilities to your product - but ultimately discounting them, as you will be coming up with problems.  

For instance, you could discuss caffeine based shampoos explaining how and why they work, but pointing out the limitation that they can’t penetrate to where they are needed to be, as unless the product has a pharmaceutical license it cannot be absorbed into the dermis layer of the skin.

Then, finally, you promote the benefits of your unique solution - having gained the trust and authority to do so, meaning people are way more likely to buy your solution than if you simply sent out a sales focused ad.  Therefore, you want to lead with educational value rather than sales hype.

In summary, the three phases of online marketing are:

CAPTURE

You need to grab your audience’s attention by asking them a question that relates to a problem or challenge your target audience struggle with and something your product or service solves.  You then want to offer them a chance to learn more about the particular problem in a solution-focused way; through offering something for free, such as a video course.

CONNECT

People have now committed their interest to watching a video or two, about the problem, which means they are pre-qualified as prospects.  Your job, now, is to create so much value to this prospect that it builds your status as a trusted advisor and authority in the area of your subject.

CONVERT

The final stage is to convert their interest into a sale, and the way you do that, is to simply ask.  This is the bit that people tend to get uncomfortable with - but it’s the most crucial aspect of building your business.  The best way to go about this is to come from a place of absolute conviction and certainty that your product is the best solution for them (which has to come from an authentic place of feeling this deep down) - then, simply ask for the sale, and back it up with a 100% money back guarantee so that the pressure is taken off the sales process.