Marketing funnel examples and the actual strategies used by global brands

Learning from tried and tested strategies is the best way to develop a marketing funnel that converts. This article discusses some of the best marketing funnel examples brands can emulate, alongside the best-practice techniques for increasing conversions at each stage.

Without an efficient marketing funnel, a brands sale process will not run smoothly. After reading this blog, brands will have a strong knowledge of the different methods that can entice leads and ensure they are retained after purchase.

What are the best marketing funnel examples in use today?


According to Statista, as of July 2018, Netflix enjoys 72.9 million monthly users. Netflix is the champion of content streaming, with 51% of United States users using Netflix to stream. The brand starts its marketing funnel by using a simple website. One that is not confusing, so that users know exactly where they are going. To make it dynamic, they change their background image based on the shows that are being promoted.

Netflix is one of the best when it comes to marketing funnel examples
Source: Netflix

Netflix uses a 2-step digital marketing funnel model that invites leads to enter their sales funnel via a FREE 1-month trial offer. Once the user clicks on the CTA to subscribe to the free trial, they will funnel down to the pricing page. Users will find different package information here.

Next, Netflix collects email addresses from users so that they can easily follow up once someone opts out of the paid plans. They also include an assurance that the process will end soon.

Collecting credit card information occurs on the following screen. Everyone who enters the sales funnel will become a paying customer. The only way to ‘get out of payment’ is to cancel the subscription before the trial period ends.


  • Netflix uses a single CTA button on the Opt-in page. They place it on the top/front area where users can easily see.
  • Once consumers enter the funnel, it is the only action that they need to take on the entire page. This creates a streamlined action, as they only need to do one thing.
  • Netflix follows up the communication that was previously established. That means there is always a way to track and convert every lead through email.
  • Everyone who enters the funnel to enjoy the free trial has the potential to become a paying customer.


Basecamp is one of the most successful project management tool that brands can use to help remote employees collaborate efficiently. Brands who are looking for unique marketing funnel examples should consider how Basecamp has built their funnel.

Source: Basecamp

Basecamp heavily relies on word-of-mouth marketing to encourage awareness and guide consumers to the top of their funnel. Afterward, they send leads to a page where they can express their needs.

Basecamp makes it easy for customers to consider using their product by offering a really simple page showcasing the features of their product.

A testimonial page which further validates how good the product is follows this page. The FAQs found at the end of the page improve the conversion rate even better, because it reminds customers that Basecamp is ready to offer the right solutions.

Once users sign up, the website will generate another simple page where it needs only the name and email address.


  • First, basecamp brings leads to the top of their funnel via blog, organic search and PR.
  • The homepage showcases their product in action. They put a face right on their logo to encourage an emotional connection.
  • The 30-day trial does not require credit card information initially, giving more reasons to sign up.
  • The pricing page is simple and clear.


This is a premium email marketing tool that offers a free plan. MailChimp effectively grew its business even with this free service by adding “Powered by MailChimp”. That means every customer who receives the email can help spread the word, creating a viral loop.

premium email marketing tool has a unique marketing funnel example to follow


  • MailChimp generates awareness through organic traffic, direct emails, blogs and word-of-mouth marketing.
  • MailChimp uses aspirational marketing as the initial step of their marketing funnel. They share ideas by promoting freedom, identity and self-expression. This allows Mailchimp to convert better and become more persuasive.
  • MailChimp employs A/B testing to send the right aspirational marketing ideas to their customers.
  • To encourage the customers to sign up, MailChimp requires only an email, username and password.
  • The pricing page features an option where a prospect can calculate their plans.

3 Niche Marketing Funnel Examples to Inspire Your Strategy


Ecommerce marketing example as shown by Twilio

One of the best digital marketing funnel examples to emulate is Twilio. This brand offers communications APIs, a unique service developers can use to embed voice calling and communication plans into a product. Because of its unique service, Twilio understands that their key growth driver is to communicate the specific features of their brand to their leads.

  • Top of the Funnel–Any potential leads can find Twilio as their vendor by simply typing the words communications APIs on Google. Since they rank high on this key search term, Twilio also has massive social media effort through their blog. They also have a fun self-paced game to encourage leads to learn more. Once leads sign up, they can start with a free account or a representative will call.
  • Middle of the Funnel–Once the visitor becomes a lead, they can enter their company name, job title and even pick out the product that they are interested in.
  • Bottom of the Funnel–Once the lead is qualified and considers using Twilio as their solution, it will give them more information on pricing, implementation and information about ROI. 
For a unique marketing funnel examples check out how Twilio built their pipeline
Source: Twilio

Help Scout

Help Scout is a help desk application that is popular among small and medium businesses and freelancers. The platform provides a shared inbox for the team, enabling collaboration for support when an email request come in.

Help Scout use a simple but effective marketing funnel by fully understanding who their leads are. 

Helpscout is another great website for marketing funnel examples
  • Top of the Funnel–Help Scout offers a comprehensive blog or resource page to attract leads. Their homepage is clean and visually attractive. There is a lot of social proof and a clear call to action across the website.
  • Middle of the Funnel–Users answer qualifying questions as they move down to this stage. The main qualifying question given is “how many users do you expect to use Help Scout?”. For those who answered 11 or more, a Help Scout representative will call to walk the lead through the entire process.
  • Bottom of the Funnel–Help Scout’s pricing page offers everything that leads need to know. Users only need to enter specific information, then they can start their free trial.


Tricentis is a software testing tool which includes a suite of products that can support integration, automation and optimisation. This is one of the most innovative tools for continuous software testing and quality assurance.

  • Top of the Funnel–Tricentis understands that the services that they offer are for very specific customers. Therefore, they made sure they ranked high in search engine results when customers type in the word “software testing tool”. Once the customer enters their website, they can join a free trial by selecting “Ask an Expert” or “Talk with Sales”. 
  • Middle of the Funnel–Once the lead gets a call from the representative, they will collect more information such as job title and company name. This is an excellent strategy if brands want to qualify for the leads.
  • Bottom of the Funnel–For the purchase decision, they give leads reassurance and more information about the best way to move forward. Tricentis offers customers an ROI calculator, as well as customer success stories and perks.
Tricentis is another great marketing funnel example to emulate

What are the Most Effective Marketing Funnel Techniques?

Increasing the conversions at the awareness stage

Leads will not enter the funnel if they are unaware that the brand exists. It will also be impossible to turn them to customers if they do not trust your brand. When building customer awareness, brands need to get their name out there and establish that they are an industry leader. The most common awareness tactics for attracting new leads are:

  • Blogging–This tactic has always been an internet marketing basic. Brands should write anything and everything related to the product or service that they are offering.
  • Social networking and publishing–Consumers rely on social networking platforms to find recommendations, reviews and referrals. Social proof helps increase awareness and build trust. Meet new leads by developing an active presence on social media networks. 
  • Pay-per-click campaigns–PPC campaigns allow brands to pay websites to share their advertisements. Brands will only pay when a lead clicks on the ad or by the number of impressions that the ad receives. PPC campaigns can drive traffic to landing pages where they can convert prospects by capturing email addresses.

Improving conversions in the consideration stage

When looking at marketing funnel examples, focus on ideas that improve the consideration stage. The goal of this stage is to get the customer’s email addresses. This is the best time to engage customers and ask them to make small commitments to the brand. The best way to win in this stage is to create lead magnets which help solve the customer’s problems for their contact information. 

Source: Wishpond
  • Create landing pages–A landing page is a page on the website with content that addresses one specific problem. A landing page aims to capture the lead’s contact information or make a sale. It should include a single call to action. 
  • Call-to-Action–CTAs should be strategic and provide enough information to encourage customers to do something. Brands must decide the action that they want their customers to take and add a clear call to action multiple times on the page.
  • Forms – Contact forms (confirmation page) are easy, but often overlooked. It opens up the chance to add subscribers to the list. Include an option for the visitor to choose to receive your email newsletter in the form.

Increasing conversions in the preference stage

The goal of this stage is to pre-qualify the prospect/leads. This is the best time to educate customers about the brand and make them understand that the product or service is the best solution. 

  • Email–Educate leads about the business by sending them simple emails. For example, send an automated email to the subscribers by giving them answers to the most frequently asked questions.
  • Auto-responders and email drips–Drip marketing is one of the best strategies to help with engagement. When done right, an autoresponder series can move customers further into the funnel and lead them directly into a sale. 
  • CRM and sales integration–Customer Relationship Management is a software that helps keep track of interactions with existing and future customers. It is the best tool to identify where prospects currently are in the sales funnel and provide customers with tailored content. 

Improving conversions in the purchase stage

The goal of this stage is to close the sale. This is the best time to ask the customer to complete the purchase. Give the customers obvious opportunities to buy and do it as often as possible. 

  • Ecommerce promotion–Brands that are selling a product should consistently offer the product for sale. Never assume that customers know their way around the sales funnel just because they visited the website. Make it easy for the customers to find the product and optimise the checkout page by using tools like live chat or offering free shipping.
  • Targeted transactional content–Brands can set up automatic emails offering products to lead who have reached the end of a drip campaign. Or offer free shipping to customers who abandoned their shopping cart without purchasing. 
  • Social monitoring–Monitoring the keywords related to the brand can help identify customers who are ready to make a purchase.
Source: Social Report

Increasing Conversions in the Loyalty Stage

The aim of this stage is for brands to make another sale. 

  • Referrals–Brands should actively ask their existing customers for referrals. Offering discounts towards their next purchase for their show of loyalty.
  • Resell–Resell to customers the same product they’ve already bought. Many customers simply need a gentle push to re-purchase a service or product they’ve already enjoyed.
  • Reminders–Give customers a helping hand by letting them remember important dates that are related to the product and service.
  • Upsells and Cross-sells – Encourage the customer to buy more expensive products, packages or add-ons during and after the sale.
  • Gratitude–Emailing a customer on important dates is a great way to show gratitude and help remind them of why they used your brand.

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About James

James is an award winning digital strategist with over 20 years experience helping challenger brands and market leaders (Unilever, Diageo, MasterCard, HSBC) launch and scale their data-driven sales and marketing. Connect on Linkedin

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