Customer Acquisition Funnel- Develop your Acquisition plan

Customer Acquisition Funnel

Develop your acquisition plan

Developing and Optimizing your Customer Acquisition funnel in a Startup and Small business is essential to take you from base clients/customers to your maximum amount of clients/customers and of course, increase your revenue and growth. Simply the Customer Acquisition Funnel is a structured map of their journey to paying for your product or service.

If you have a Customer Acquisition funnel, it’s important to frequently reassess and optimize based on your marketing analytics, data, and feedback. Fixing a leaky funnel can be a game changer for any business.

The most important part of the Funnel is to identify the intended results of your funnel. The financial result ($), the funnel result (Purchases, subscriptions, etc), the method of measuring your results (LTV, CTR, etc), among many others. Referring back to my ‘Map’ reference, you must know where you are going and how you will get there. These two areas must be identified before taking your customer on the journey.

Let’s discuss some important funnel development and optimization factors-

Do market research for your startup

Is there a good product/market fit for your service or product? As mentioned in my previous blog (Growth Strategies for Startups) One reason many startups fail is due to their being no product/market fit.

Take a look at what your competitors products and marketing strategy, analyze them thoroughly, it’s important to analyze their successes just as much as their weaknesses.

This research will lead you to understand your customers and potential customers. Understanding their behaviors, actions in-app or on-site, and what they are hoping to achieve through your product.

happy women in a customer acquisition funnel

Is your product ready for the market?

Ensuring your product is out of Beta and will ensure your customers with a successful experience and solution. A steady product will lead to a steady customer acquisition strategy. There are also larger brand image repercussions that can come be have longer-term consequences. How many times have you heard about a SaaS product ‘I tried it years ago and it wasn’t great’ or similar, It is hard to re-engage these former customers and turn them into brand advocates.

Financial assessment-

Estimate the customer acquisition cost (CAC) plan. Knowing this metric along with the Value of the customer client is essential in maintaining the growth of the business. If your CAC is far too high and the Lifetime Value is not higher, then you potentially may be running into a deficit. A great example that comes to mind and is quite common, High PPC spends on Google Ads or Social Media for very few customer or clients acquired. Financial and Risk assessment in funnel development is essential.

Develop content marketing for your startup

What content will bring the most value to your audience and have them wanting more?

Your content is highly targeted content that is identifying problems or potential problems, addressing them with authority and knowledge, discussing interesting and relevant topics to your audience, along with building trust for your business and its expertise.

The different types of content and delivery should be matched with your above factors. What content is best? Some types include-

  • Blog
  • Infographic
  • PPC
  • Video or Digital Story (link)

Identify Friction points

This relates back to Market research and customer understanding while moving through the funnel. Are they interested in the product or service? Is the lead not interested in trialing your product or service? Have they trialed although still not interested in purchasing?

Once you have identified the leaks and friction point, its time to get to work! Brainstorm with your team or find a specialist..which leads me to my last piece of advice.

Hire a Growth Hacker

Hiring a specialist might be one of the greatest investments you could make for your startup or small business. If you are unsure what a Growth Hacker is and how they may help, you can learn more here. A growth Hacker will identify many areas of the funnel that you may have not realized is an issue and they will collaborate to create effective and efficient solutions to have the Customer Acquisition funnel developed and optimized.

David Taylor-Smith Growth Hacker

Written by David Taylor-Smith

David is a Growth Hacker and Digital Marketing Specialist in Sydney, Australia. He has an extensive knowledge in Growth Marketing strategies and techniques, ranging from PPC, SEO, SEM, Coding, HTML, Chatbots, Analytics and much more! David is a successful entrepreneur (having founded 2 SMB's), as well as being a former professional athlete and Coach.

Growth Strategies for Startups

Growth Strategies for Startups

Developing Growth Marketing or Growth Hacking strategies for Start up’s is a complex and time-consuming process, it is integral to ensure a start up’s success. Over 20% of Startups fail due to lack of Marketing! Let’s jump into a few growth strategies for startups when developing your Marketing plan!

Define your audience and develop around this

Combine Data Analytics and a personal research to understanding your audience. Look into the data on your potential and current user base. Use Free Audience and Affinity Analytics such as Google, Facebook, etc. Install analytics software in your site or app, use scroll tracking, heat mapping, eye tracking. This data will tell you a lot about your target audience and their behaviors.

With the hard data in mind, now its time to get personal! Join communities that your audience may be a part of (online and face to face), ask them questions, engage in discussions, find their pain points, dig deeper into these areas and record your findings. Combining Analytical Data with your personal research will expose many amazing marketing opportunities and create stronger marketing strategies.

Use Traditional Marketing

It’s easy to get distracted by all the latest software and ‘Hacks’ to get your product in front of its audience or users. When developing your Marketing strategy, Focus on your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) or UVP (Unique Value Proposition). Let your audience know why your service or product is better or what it makes unique or creates value for them.

If you can’t find either, spend your time finding it! Over 40% of Start up’s fail due to the lack of need in the market for their product or service.


A Growth Hackers specialty! Creating Awareness and Visibility for your SaaS or product will require resources and time. There is an ever-increasing list of strategies, tools, and techniques to achieve this. This encompasses, SEO, Referral Marketing, Digital Story Telling, Social Media platforms, Automation, Press Releases, Blogging, Blogger Outreach, and this list goes on! The issue that many Start up’s faces are financially related at this stage, there isn’t large amounts of funding to create mass awareness. That’s where you need to get creative!

Some growth strategies to include in your marketing plan-

  • Create Authentic Content that is valuable to your audience- You may have heard ‘Content is King’, it still applies. The only problem in 2018 is that there is A LOT of content, so ensure your content is more valuable than the others. Try to assist them and show that your startup is focused on providing value, people are low on time and looking for specifics, develop your content around this knowledge.
  • Harness SEO– The use of good SEO can level the playing field between you and your competitors along with exposing your Audience to a product or Service. (SEO tip- Target Long tail keywords, for greater success in your rankings)
  • Automation- There is so much great software and API’s out there, spend some time allocating plans and setting up your tools correctly. Low-cost tools worth looking into include- Mailchimp, Drip, Zoho, SEOQuake.

I wanted to include a quick side note relating to Automation- Don’t forget to be Authentic if you are using Automation tools! Sending automated thank you and please subscribe messages on Social Media is spam! Chatbots with poor scripting and limitation is also spam! These don’t seem authentic to the user or audience and can have negative acquisition consequences.

Audience insight and Awareness Intersect

Buzzfeed is a great example of using Growth Marketing, that is they have found Low Cost and effective methods of promoting their platform. Buzzfeed understands their users and what they want to see or discuss across the internet. This understanding has allowed them to create some of the most successful viral content across the internet multiple times with extensive platform awareness. Anyone remember the below example?

Blue or Gold?
27 Cute Cat picture article received 63,000 shares on Buzzfeed


Creating a Marketing strategy for any business can be difficult and complex. More so, a Startup faces financial challenges that can impact on marketing and product development. Focus on marketing your unique product and value to the customer that you understand, demonstrate your value and your understanding of the customer, exhaust all the lower cost and free social media channels through your developed Social Media Marketing Plan, use SEO, automation and most importantly keep moving! Never stop learning and researching Marketing strategies and methods.

If you have any questions or need any assistance with your growth marketing or growth hacking strategies, you can reach me via Linkedin or Contact us

David Taylor-Smith Growth Hacker

Written by David Taylor-Smith

David is a Growth Hacker and Digital Marketing Specialist in Sydney, Australia. He has an extensive education in Business Strategy, Management and Marketing. Along with specialist knowledge in Growth Marketing strategies and techniques, ranging from PPC, SEO, SEM, Coding, HTML, Chatbots, Analytics and much more! David is a successful entrepreneur (having founded 2 SMB's), as well as being a former professional athlete and Coach.

Other Growth blogs-