Content Operations

Content Marketing Funnel: 24 Examples per Stage of the Journey

Samuel Schmitt

Aligning your content with the stages of the marketing funnel is important because it means that your content resonates with your audience as they progress through their content journey.

In this article, we have listed 24 content formats designed to connect with your audience at different stages of their buying journey.

We will provide examples and guidance for creating the right marketing content that targets potential customers at every stage of the sales funnel.

These 24 content formats include: 

Keep reading to learn more about developing a content strategy for each marketing funnel stage and how it can help your brand gain attention and conversions.

What is a Content Marketing Funnel?

The marketing funnel is a key concept in digital marketing, outlining the customer journey from the initial point of awareness to the ultimate goal of conversion.

It includes distinct stages, each with a specific role in guiding leads toward becoming loyal customers.

Creating the Right Content per Stages of the Marketing Funnel

Stages of the Content Marketing Funnel

Awareness Stage

This is the initial stage of the marketing funnel, where the customer journey begins also known as Top of the Funnel (TOFU).

Your target audience becomes aware of a need or problem they have, and they begin seeking solutions.

At this stage, creating content that attracts customer’s attention is important because:

Consideration Stage

At this stage, potential customers have moved beyond mere awareness and are actively evaluating their options.

This stage is also known as the Middle of the Funnel (MOFU).

Your goal here should be to create content that educates and demonstrates why your product or service is the best choice. You can do this by:

Decision Stage

This stage marks the end of the content funnel, where prospects are now ready to make a purchase. It is also called the Bottom of the Funnel (BOFU).

To convert these prospects into loyal customers, you can create content that emphasizes your unique selling proposition, provides social proof, and persuasively convinces them to choose your product.

You can consider showcasing your product or service by doing the following: 

Low Buying Intent vs. High Buying Intent: Understanding TOFU and BOFU

Understanding the concept of Top of the Funnel (TOFU) and Bottom of the Funnel (BOFU) is crucial for tailoring your strategies to the level of buying intent exhibited by prospects.

Low Buying Intent vs. High Buying Intent: Understanding TOFU and BOFU

TOFU, representing the awareness stage, marks the entry point into the marketing funnel.

Here, prospects typically exhibit low buying intent.

They’ve just recognized a need or issue but aren’t actively seeking a solution yet.

Content in this stage should be educational and geared toward building awareness and interest. It introduces your brand and highlights its problem-solving value.

On the other hand, BOFU signifies the decision stage, the final stretch of the funnel.

Here, prospects have a high buying intent. They’ve progressed beyond awareness and consideration and are actively in search of a solution, nearing a decision.

Content in BOFU should focus on sealing the deal. It should emphasize your product or service’s unique advantages, offer social proof, and provide incentives for conversion.

Typically, prospects exhibit high buying intent when they reach the BOFU because they’ve gone through the earlier stages of the funnel, learned about their problem, evaluated solutions, and are now prepared to act.

Later, we’ll discuss what strategy to employ to prioritize conversion.

Creating the Right Content per Stage of the Buyer Journey

To create a successful content strategy, it’s important to understand the stages of the buyer’s journey.

These stages include “Awareness, Consideration, and Decision.”

At each stage, providing content that suits your audience’s mindset and requirements is essential. 

Here, we will examine each stage closely and reveal the types of content that work best to connect, inform, and empower consumers on their path to making a purchase.

Content Ideas for the Awareness Stage (TOFU)

In the awareness stage of the buyer’s journey, the primary objective is to create content that grabs the attention of your target audience and introduces them to your brand.

This TOFU Content should be informative, engaging, and shareable.

We’ll look at a couple of examples for this stage.

Content Ideas for the Awareness Stage

1. Educational Blog Post

An educational blog post is a written piece of content that addresses common questions and provides informative answers related to your product, service, or industry.


For example, an educational blog post for a fitness brand can address the question “How to Create an Effective Home Workout Routine.

It should provide step-by-step guidance, exercise recommendations, and tips for staying motivated, catering to individuals in the awareness stage looking to start their fitness journey.

Shelley Morris, an SEO and Digital Marketing expert, recommends creating an ‘FAQ page‘ with common SERP questions scraped from thruuu. This can also help in obtaining a featured snippet. She is sharing an example with frequent questions about Pythons.

🚀 Pro Tip: Check this article explaining how to create a FAQ Blog Post. A great content format organized around questions and answers. The perfect TOFU content!!!

2. Infographics

Infographics are visual representations of information, data, or concepts. They condense complex information into a visually appealing and easy-to-understand format.


For example, an infographic for a nutrition website could visually show “The Benefits of a Mediterranean Diet,” delivering key health advantages and food components in an easy-to-understand format.

3. Statistics or Survey Results

Incorporating statistics or survey results into your content means using data to back up your statements, offer valuable insights, or shed light on prevailing trends within your industry.


For example, a marketing agency might create a blog post titled “2023 Digital Marketing Trends: Insights from our Industry Survey,” presenting survey results about emerging trends with an emphasis on data-backed predictions.

We advise you to visit the blog of Exploding Topics as it shares great articles, including statistics and industry surveys.

4. Checklists

Checklists are simple, actionable lists that guide users through a process or provide a step-by-step overview of a task or topic.


For example, a cybersecurity firm could create a “Website Security Checklist” to help website owners ensure their sites are protected from common threats.

Users could download it in exchange for subscribing to their newsletter.

5. Podcasts

Podcasts are audio recordings where you can discuss topics, share insights, or interview experts in your industry.


For example, a technology company might produce a podcast series discussing the latest tech trends, featuring interviews with prominent figures in the tech industry.

6. Ebooks

Ebooks are comprehensive digital documents that go deeply into specific topics, providing in-depth insights, research, and valuable information.

Ebooks usually require significant time and effort to create, including research, writing, and design.


Ebooks have the added benefit of generating leads. You can offer free ebooks in exchange for an email address on your website. Then you can nurture these leads further.

For example, a financial advisory firm might offer an ebook titled “The Ultimate Guide to Retirement Planning,” covering various aspects of financial planning for retirement in-depth, which users can download in exchange for subscribing to their newsletter.

Content Ideas for the Consideration Stage (MOFU)

In this stage, potential customers are actively evaluating their options. To guide them toward choosing your product or service, your content should demonstrate its value and advantages, positioning it as a viable solution.

MOFU Content should focus on the job to be done, address specific points, and be useful.

Content Ideas for the Consideration Stage

1. Comparison Guide

A comparison guide is a content piece that provides detailed comparisons of various solutions, products, or services, including yours. It helps prospects make informed decisions by highlighting the pros and cons of each option.


For example, a software company could create a “CRM Software Comparison Guide” comparing the features, pricing, and user satisfaction scores of different CRM solutions, including their own.

💡Discover: We have curated  must-have SEO blog post templates designed to accelerate your content creation process.

2. How-to Guide

A how-to guide is a step-by-step content piece that addresses common pain points or challenges in your industry. It provides detailed instructions on solving these issues.


For example, a marketing agency might create a “Social Media Advertising Strategy Guide,” offering step-by-step instructions on planning and executing effective social media ad campaigns while emphasizing how their services can simplify the process.

3. White Paper

A white paper is a comprehensive, in-depth report or document that explores a specific industry issue, technology, or solution.

It provides extensive research, analysis, and insights. 

White papers can be used as gated content, requiring users to provide their email addresses to access, thus building your email list.

A downside to white papers is that they typically require substantial time and resources to research and produce.


4. Case Studies

Case studies are detailed accounts of a specific client, project, or use case where your product or service successfully addressed challenges and delivered results.


5. Interactive Content

Interactive content includes quizzes, calculators, or tools that engage potential customers. They encourage user participation and interaction.

For instance, using a GIF maker can add a fun, visual element to your interactive content, making it even more engaging.


Banks and insurance companies often employ this kind of content to offer loan calculators or insurance coverage calculators.

This tool could also help in lead capture, as the final step is often to enter your email address to obtain more information.  

6. Downloadable Assets: Templates

Downloadable asset templates are ready-made documents or files that users can download and use.

These could be templates for detailed processes, workflows, or other useful resources.


At thruuu, we take this approach and provide our audience with a library of content brief templates that can be downloaded in various formats. 

Content Brief Template for a blog post

7. Webinars

Webinars are live or pre-recorded online seminars or presentations that allow you to engage with your audience in real-time.

They can be used to showcase your expertise, demonstrate your product, or address industry topics.


8. How-to Videos

How-to Videos are video content pieces that demonstrate how your product or service solves specific issues or fulfills particular needs. They provide practical solutions and instructions.


Below, you can watch an “How-To” video explaining how to create topic clusters with the thruuu keyword clustering and topic cluster tool.

Content Ideas for the Decision Stage (BOFU)

In this stage, potential customers are close to making a choice.

BOFU Content should provide reassurance, remove doubts, and give compelling calls-to-action (CTAs).

Content Ideas for the Decision Stage

1. Competitor Alternatives

Competitor alternative content highlights the differences between your product or service and those of rivals. It often includes clear pricing comparisons and showcases why your offering is superior.


2. Product Reviews

Product review content provides lists or rankings of the best products or services in a particular category or industry. It can help potential customers make a well-informed decision.


As an example, at thruuu, we follow this content format and offer a review of the best SERP Scrapers and Analyzers.

The goal is to attract people looking for a SERP Analysis tool while also emphasizing thruuu’s value proposition in comparison to its main competitors.

best SERP Scrapers and Analyzers

3. Competitor Versus

The competitor versus content compares your product directly with a single competitor. It highlights the strengths and weaknesses of each, helping potential customers make informed decisions.


The blog format is straightforward and is often titled “Product A vs. Product B.” You can even compare your product versus two competitors as Ahref did in its comparison with SEMRush and MOZ. 

4. Product Demo / Tutorial

Product Demo or Tutorial content showcases your product through either a written blog post or a video. It provides an in-depth look at how your product works and its benefits.


Below is a video showcasing a tutorial about how to use the thruuu content brief tool.

5. Free Tools

Free tools are an excellent format for the decision phase. They can help your audience experiment with your product or a specific feature of your product for free. This strategy works very well for SaaS.


At thruuu, we created a set of free SEO content writing tools. Each individual tool is an extract of what the paid version of thruuu can offer.

The goal is to attract people by offering a lot of value for free while showcasing the value of the paid version. This strategy helps us acquire new users every month.

free SEO content writing tools

6. Interactive Product Tours

Interactive product tours involve guided tours or walkthroughs that showcase the features and benefits of your product. This format is particularly effective for SaaS products.


To implement such a feature on your website you can use Product Tour Software such as UserPilot or Intercom.

7. Customer Testimonials

Customer testimonial content shares feedback and reviews from satisfied customers. It adds social proof and builds trust.


At thruuu, we are really proud to share on our home page testimonials of long-time users such as Tom Shapiro, CEO of the excellent Boston-based Marketing Agency.

8. Pricing Explanation

Pricing explanation content provides detailed information about your pricing model, helping potential customers understand the cost structure of your product or service.


9. Delivery Model Explanation

Delivery model explanation content is relevant for agencies and service providers. It explains how you work with clients and outlines the next steps if they contact you.


10. ROI Calculators

ROI calculators are tools that estimate the return on investment (ROI) of your product or service. They help potential customers understand the value they can gain.


Hubspot is an excellent example. Based on aggregated data from 177,000+ HubSpot customers worldwide, you can calculate your potential return on investment with HubSpot products.

11. Landing Page

Landing Pages are often short-form web pages that focus on a specific feature of your SaaS or service. They are designed to capture user attention and encourage action.


Content Strategy: Prioritizing BOFU and High-Intent Content?

Regarding content strategy, experts in the field of SEO and marketing have shared valuable insights on what works best.

For example, Jake Ward has been a proponent of “flipping the funnel.” 

This approach suggests focusing on BOFU content, which targets users with high buying intent.

BOFU keywords and content are strategically crafted to capture the attention of prospects who are close to making a purchase decision.

The advantage here is that BOFU content often has a better conversion rate, directly addressing the needs of those ready to take action.

Even notable figures like Brian Dean, known for his experience in SEO, initially emphasized TOFU content.

However, Brian and his startup are now making a significant shift towards BOFU content as explained in the video below.

Growth and Convert Agency, another digital marketing player, strongly emphasizes BOFU keywords and content.

Their strategy aligns with the principle that reaching prospects in the Decision stage is an effective way to boost conversion rates as described in their blog post.

The consensus among experts is clear: prioritizing BOFU and High-Intent content is a strategic move in the world of SEO and marketing.

By addressing the needs of prospects who are ready to convert, you can maximize your chances of turning them into valuable customers.

However, we might challenge this approach because, in the long run, you will need to be visible at all stages of the customer journey and create BOFU and TOFU content. 

As Benjamin André, an SEO Consultant, has pointed out, sales cycles are getting longer. It is essential to cover every stage of the customer journey with the right content.

Remember that the best long-term strategy is to build a brand and be visible at every customer touchpoint.

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