5 Top-of-Funnel Marketing Tactics for More Quality Leads

What is ToFU marketing and how can content for top-of-funnel prospects increase leads? Learn five tactics to help book more sales meetings.

5 Top-of-Funnel Marketing Tactics for More Quality Leads

Learn How Top-of-Funnel Marketing Content Improves Outreach to Book You More Sales Meetings

Top-of-funnel marketing is the business equivalent of making the right impression on that first date.

People at the top of your sales funnel are either completely new to your brand or just vaguely familiar with it.

The point is to both charm and engage them until they turn into paying clients.

That’s where top-of-funnel, or ToFU, marketing comes into play. Top-of-funnel marketing refers to content and tactics that seize the interest of prospects and early-stage leads still getting to you and your services.

Strong ToFU content helps you create content for social media, attract inbound leads to your website and execute on a strategy for LinkedIn lead generation.

Marketing spaces are saturated and it’s daunting to best locate & message best-fit prospects. ToFU marketing campaigns can help generate high-quality leads as a sales-outreach best practice.

Better leads translate to higher conversion rates which equals more sales. The math is simple!

In this article, we’ll discuss the basics of effective ToFU marketing and share five ToFU marketing tactics to help you better outreach to prospects to boost sales.

How Top-of-Funnel Marketing Tactics Help Grow Leads 

Top-of-funnel marketing tactics are important because they help you target and outreach to high-quality prospects who can benefit from your services but aren’t aware of your brand yet.

The idea of top-of-funnel marketing comes from the underlying concept of a sales funnel. A typical sales funnel starts with a large number of leads and filters them through different stages of engagement to drive revenue.

Only a few of the initial leads engage with you consistently before finally soliciting your product or services.

Improving your chances of making a sale and how you communicate with better-quality leads requires two fundamental characteristics in ToFU leads:

  • They should be reasonably high in number
  • They should be genuinely interested in the benefits of your product or services

Effective ToFU marketing tactics help you reach out to better leads and capture their interest by improving brand credibility, providing collateral for sending LinkedIn messages to connections and optimizing followup & retargeting efforts.

With ToFU marketing content you can convert more leads and make stronger connections with prospects who are serious about your business.

5 Effective Top-of-Funnel Marketing Tactics 

Here are five tried and tested tips to help you boost your ToFU-marketing campaigns and target better-quality prospects.

  1. Bank on High-Quality Content
  2. Leverage Gated Content to Generate Leads
  3. Educate Prospects to Pivot to a Hard Sell
  4. Use ToFU Content for LinkedIn Social Selling
  5. Retarget Your ToFU Leads

1. Bank on High-Quality Content 

The old adage “content is king” is especially relevant in ToFU marketing. High-quality content attracts more leads to your website & social profiles and helps prospects form a good impression of you when you contact them.

In fact, one survey shows that 44% of businesses increased sales directly from improving the quality of their ToFU-marketing content.

And high-value top-of-funnel content builds a loyal audience base you can leverage when reaching out to new leads via reputation marketing.

LinkedIn profile optimized as part of a top-of-funnel marketing tactic.

For example, financial advisor Delyanne Barros creates and publishes high-quality content to improve her brand by, for example, publishing to her LinkedIn portfolio, including a post about achieving her net-worth goal to bolster her credibility.

She also catches eyeballs with the unique hook “Slay the Stock Market” as an example of a LinkedIn headline for finance professionals, demonstrating her intentional approach for speaking directly to a brand persona as part of a LinkedIn sales strategy.

2. Leverage Gated Content to Generate Leads 

Gated content is marketing collateral that you offer to prospects in exchange for details like contact information. For example, a potential client has to enter their email address on your website to receive an ebook.

Using gated content as ToFU marketing can be an extremely effective ToFU lead-generation technique; 63% of businesses are willing to provide their contact information in exchange for valuable content.

However, there are a couple things to keep in mind to leverage gated content effectively.

Don’t go overboard. If you start gating routine content like basic blog posts, your engagement metrics will take a hit.

Instead, only gate valuable content unique enough to compel your audience to give you their contact information. For example, if you’re selling a software product that manages customer data, you can create a gated whitepaper that provides rare insights and strategies for addressing user-identity and customer-privacy concerns.

Also segment your gated content well. Audiences of different personas engage with marketing content in their own way.

That’s why it’s crucial to publish diverse gated content for each demographic segment.

3. Educate Prospects to Pivot to a Hard Sell

According to LinkedIn sales data, the top thing that kills the most sales pitches for buyers is misleading information about the seller’s product or service.

If you can’t articulate the benefits and value of what you’re pitching in a way that resonates with your target audience while being clear and honest, you’re going to have a tough time nurturing leads.

Almost every market is highly saturated and prospects have several options to choose from.

Any impactful top-of-funnel marketing strategy needs to include content that educates and informs leads about how your product or service stands out and can solve their problems.

A B2B website's Resources section optimized as part of a top-of-funnel marketing tactic.

Take the recently updated Resources section on Chargebee’s website for example. This B2B-SaaS company organizes their educational content into unique sections and curates the content specifically for managers at organizations with subscription models, their target base.

Relevant, engaging and educational ToFU content like whitepapers, case studies and how-to guides comprehensively educates your prospects.

Creating content to empower buyers to make informed decisions helps not only educate leads at the top of your funnel but shows off your expertise to prospects at the very top so you can make strong impressions during outreach campaigns.

4. Use ToFU Content for LinkedIn Social Selling

LinkedIn is one of the most effective channels for connecting with more leads as part of a cold-outreach strategy.

For B2B companies, LinkedIn offers valuable insights from buyers’ profiles. For financial advisors, LinkedIn provides a chance to sell your reputation to relevant people.

If your target audience is likely to be on LinkedIn, you can use LinkedIn social selling to message them with confidence to optimize lead-gen rates from prospect lists.

What is LinkedIn social selling? Social selling on LinkedIn involves interacting with your network, sharing insights and demonstrating your experience to build your reputation on LinkedIn and leverage that reputation to improve outreach campaigns.

Top-of-funnel content for social selling boosts your profile’s visibility and helps with SEO for LinkedIn company pages.

An agency's LinkedIn post optimized as part of a top-of-funnel marketing tactic.

As an example of a company that generates awesome top-of-funnel marketing content to help with social selling, take Directive.

This marketing agency for B2B brands publishes short-form comedic videos mocking the absurdities of the day-to-day professional lives of those in their target audience.

When you relate to your audience emotionally with ToFU content, you can connect with prospects by showing them that you “get it.” This top-of-funnel marketing tactic boils down to building an online reputation to help convert interested prospects into serious leads.

5. Retarget Your ToFU Leads 

Data shows that retargeting ads on LinkedIn have a 30% higher click-through rate (CTR) and a 37% lower cost-per-click (CPC) than other ads seen by wider audiences, presenting a huge opportunity to fill your pipeline with serious leads.

What are retargeting ads? Retargeting ads are a top-of-funnel marketing tactic to deliver advertisements to prospects who’ve had a previous touchpoint with your brand, such as visiting your website.

Once your ToFU content receives organic traffic, you should set up retargeting campaigns to track those users and retarget them on other platforms like LinkedIn.

This ensures that your marketing efforts reach people who have already demonstrated an interest in your products or services to increase the likelihood of converting them into clients.

Benefits of Top-of-Funnel Marketing

When designed creatively and implemented strategically, top-of-funnel marketing tactics enable firms to reach higher-quality prospects and better nourish conversations with leads.

The benefits of strong top-of-funnel marketing content can translate to business gains by helping you establish credibility, generate high-quality leads, nurture relationships, drive website traffic and increase brand awareness.

Infographic listing the benefits of top-of-funnel marketing tactics.

Establish Credibility

Creating educational content that addresses the challenges and pain points of your target audience empowers you to position yourself as a trusted advisor and thought-leader in your industry.

A top-of-funnel marketing strategy that prioritizes “content credibility”—producing and sharing content to make you authoritative and trustworthy—can make the difference between booking just enough sales meetings for a modest profit and consistently booking serious leads to help scale.

Generate High-Quality Leads

ToFU marketing on LinkedIn attracts high-quality leads genuinely interested in your products or services. That’s because B2B buyers and advanced professionals, who largely compose LinkedIn’s base, crave industry news and simplified business insights.

Top-of-funnel marketing tactics generate more leads because it’s what audiences crave.

Nurture Relationships

Providing valuable ToFU content and engaging with your audience on LinkedIn keeps your brand at the top of prospects’ minds and motivates leads to talk with you.

Give people content they’ll value and you’ll find it easier to nurture conversations over LinkedIn messaging.

Drive Website Traffic

You can increase website visits with organic content—non-paid content to attract audiences naturally from your blog, social media and more.

Blog posts help with SEO (search-engine optimization) to improve rankings on search engines like Google and social content like LinkedIn posts help drive traffic to your website via links and indirectly via brand awareness & eventual retargeting ads. 

External links to your landing pages make it easy to get eyeballs on your collateral (but LinkedIn wants to keep users on its platform, so adding links as comments is a growing best practice).

Increased Brand Awareness

Creating valuable content as part of a top-of-funnel marketing strategy can radically strengthen brand awareness. For example, data shows that businesses that post weekly on LinkedIn have 5.6x more average followers than those that post only monthly.

Get More Out of Top-of-Funnel Marketing with LinkedIn AI

AI-powered LinkedIn tools can give your ToFU marketing campaigns the edge they need. Personalizing LinkedIn messaging and automating outreach tasks helps you best leverage top-of-funnel content to scale your efforts and talk to more quality leads.

With proper sales-enablement, you can nurture leads by delivering a one-two punch. ToFU marketing content demonstrates your reputation to set up the pitch and outreach tools optimize efficiency in lead-gen processes to knock the pitch out of the park.

Use LinkedIn AI to predict prospects most likely to talk with you, analyze the emotional sentiments of a prospect based on their profiles and receive automated messaging suggestions to enhance your lead generation with top-of-funnel marketing tactics.