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What Does a “Funnel” Have to Do With Jewelry Marketing?

Have you ever used a funnel to transfer a large amount of liquid to a container with a narrow opening? You can probably imagine how a funnel is shaped, with a wide top and a graduated, triangular shape that leads to a small spout. Did you know that a funnel should also play an important role in your jewelry marketing strategy?

In marketing, a funnel refers to the steps you’ll need to take in order to nurture your prospective customers, so they can eventually become life-long fans of your jewelry brand. To put it simply, the funnel describes the buyer’s journey from awareness to purchase.

If you can picture a funnel in your mind (or find a funnel in your kitchen drawer), you’ll know that the top is wide to catch as much of the liquid you’re introducing to it. Similarly, with a marketing funnel, a large number of prospects will enter your funnel at the top and discover your brand for the first time. Not everyone will continue to show interest in your brand after entering the funnel, but a few will continue moving down the funnel as it becomes more narrow. In the middle of the funnel, the customers will learn more about your brand and evaluate your products. The funnel becomes even more narrow, and you will lose a few more potential customers. At the bottom of the funnel, the most qualified customers make their purchases.

Unlike a real funnel, which keeps all the liquid within it, a marketing funnel will only hold your most qualified prospects. Not everyone you target will ultimately be a good fit for your jewelry brand, and that’s okay – you can’t please everyone! I really like this quote from brand strategist Tamsen Webster – “Your brand is not for everyone. It isn’t. It’s for the people who want something you can help them get, who value the same things you do, and who see the world the same way you do. And that’s not everyone.” The funnel has a funny way of weeding out the people who shouldn’t be there anyway.

Search for “marketing funnel” on Google Images, and you’ll find a few different interpretations, some with numerous steps and others with just a few. The terminology also varies from one model to another. For the sake of simplicity, we divide the funnel into three distinct steps: Awareness, Consideration, and Action. Consumers at each step of the funnel have different needs and respond to different types of marketing messages and tactics.

Awareness

If you’re a new jewelry brand, or you’re currently focused on expanding your reach to new markets, then you’ll want to invest your time, energy, and effort into optimizing the top of your funnel: Awareness. Pouring prospects into the top of your funnel doesn’t mean trying to capture everyone; filling your funnel should still be a focused effort, and your goal should be to reach as many of your target customers as possible. Some tactics for bolstering the top of your marketing funnel include a brand awareness Facebook campaign, presence at an event or trade show, search engine optimization, and enticing social media posts. At this stage, you’ll want to pique your target customers’ curiosity and tug at their heart strings, so you’ll want to efficiently communicate something essential and with emotional resonance about your brand mission, vision, and values.

Consideration

In the middle of the funnel, prospects are already curious, and you’ve piqued their interest. They’ll likely follow you on social media and even sign up for your email marketing newsletter, if you offer them a clear and strong call to action. Prospects in the Consideration step of your funnel will want to know more about your reputation, your products, and your values as a business. Some may even want to know, “Who else is wearing this jewelry?” and “Does this jewelry match my style and lifestyle?” Some tactics for strengthening the middle of your funnel include Facebook retargeting ads, email marketing campaigns, blogs posts, and directly engaging with these people on social media. At this stage, you’ll want to build trust with the prospect through consistency, and you’ll want to continue reminding her that your brand not only exists but that it’s also relevant.

Action

At the bottom of the funnel, your prospects are more interested in details like product reviews, product descriptions, customer service information, shipping details, return policies, and more. They’re the ones who are adding products to their carts and trying to decide whether or not to enter their payment information. They might be comparing your jewelry to similar products made by your competitors, and they’re probably asking themselves questions like, “Do I really need this right now?” and “Can I afford this?”. To optimize the bottom of your funnel, you can utilize product-specific Facebook retargeting ads, send automated abandoned cart emails, add social proof and user-generated content to your website and social media, and improve your product pages (you can listen to episode 84 for more information about that). At this stage, your soon-to-be customer wants to feel confident and certain.

Keep in mind that the process to get a prospect through the funnel can be very short or even very long – or anywhere in between. Typically, fashion jewelry brands will have short funnels, since price points are low, and customers are risking very little in making a purchase. However, for most fine jewelry brands, the funnel can be very long, since most customers aren’t ready to buy right away – or even within a few weeks. In fact, the time to get a prospect through a funnel can last months or even years! If you have high price points, then you need to be prepared to nurture those prospects for the long haul.

One of the most important reasons you should get familiar with your funnel is that it can help you diagnose leaks. For example, if you have a high abandoned cart rate, or your Facebook ads simply aren’t converting, then you’re probably not helping your target customers transition effectively from Consideration to Action. In general, marketing funnels are also extremely important when you’re planning Facebook ad campaigns, since Facebook’s ad objectives are based on the concept of a funnel; your goal in setting up multiple campaigns is to lead customers through the funnel, specifically by casting your net and then retargeting prospects who have visited your site.

In addition, understanding a marketing funnel can help you set realistic expectations about your marketing efforts and also enable you to gain insight into your customers’ path to purchase. Building brand awareness doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be selling many products at the beginning of your journey. However, it does give you the opportunity to create relationships with the people who discover your brand, so you can continue to market to them as they work their way down to the more narrow part of the funnel, where they become more likely to buy.