Resources Hub » Infographics » The New Marketing Funnel

Updated July 2019

Every marketing and sales manager is familiar with the old marketing funnel. At the top of the funnel sits awareness, followed by engagement, discovery, purchase, and retention. Traditional marketing practices are built around this idea: A lead enters at the top of the funnel, becomes an interested consumer and emerges, like magic, as a loyal customer.

As additional digital marketing tactics have emerged, the funnel has evolved. The New Marketing Funnel isn’t just about capturing leads and making sales, and it no longer ends at retention. Now, the marketing funnel looks more like a looping hourglass where prospects and customers can appear at any part of the marketing process.

Elements of an effective marketing funnel

Before we look at the new marketing funnel, let’s quickly look at a few elements that help make a marketing funnel effective.

1. Define your goals for each stage of your funnel.

For your marketing funnel to be effective, you have to set goals for each stage. What do you want your customer to do when they reach each goal?

Defining your goals directs the kind of content and strategies you use to gently guide your customer towards that goal.

2. Understand your customer’s pain points.

Your business is to solve your ideal customer’s problem. As such, you need to understand those pain points. This knowledge will not only help you empathize with your customer, but it will help you position your customer strategically in the funnel. This strategic placement is meant to achieve two things:

  • Point to the solution
  • Create a connection between your customer and your brand

3. Map out a clear customer journey.

Now that you have set your goals and understand what your customer needs, the next step is to map out an effective customer journey. To do this, put yourself in your customer’s shoes and picture what they are feeling and how you can solve their problem.

Use this analysis to design a customer journey that moves them through the stages of the marketing funnel seamlessly.

4. Create personalized content for each stage of the marketing funnel.

Content is the fuel that moves customers through the stages of the marketing funnel. For your content to be effective, you have to ensure that it offers your customers a personalized experience. To do this, you will have to gather data about your customer.

Personalized content endears you to your customer and increases the chances of them moving through all the stages of the marketing funnel until they become a loyal customer and advocate.

Now you’re ready to learn about the new marketing funnel.

Here are the stages of the new, lifecycle-based marketing funnel:

Marketing Funnel Stages Infographic

The New Marketing Funnel & its Stages

Do you want to attract excited customers and loyal brand advocates?

The New Marketing Funnel nurtures prospects through an omnichannel experience that’s unique for each buyer. Customers can now enter and exit the funnel at any stage, making one-size fits all movement through the funnel a thing of the past. This non-linear lifecycle focused funnel creates a strategy for lasting brand success.


Show the world the value you offer through investing in brand awareness strategies.


Understand potential customers’ pain points to show how you can solve their core problems.


Position yourself as the solution to pain points by focusing on key benefits, differentiators, and competencies.


Nurture your new customer (and friend) through their entire purchase process.


Provide onboarding tools, resources, and knowledge to set customers up for a lasting relationship.


Go above and beyond to ensure your customer is delighted with their relationship with your brand.


Connect with and learn from customers. Uncover new solutions and methods to help them achieve success.


Word of mouth advocacy for your brand is priceless. This loops new potential customers into the awareness stage of their own unique journey in your funnel.

Wrap up

The traditional marketing funnel is not cutting it anymore. Today’s consumer is not linear and can’t be put in a box. In order to succeed in winning them over, you have to adapt your marketing style to suit the savvy customer of today.

This is exactly what the New Marketing Funnel seeks to achieve. As a savvy marketer, you need to embrace customers who want to join the customer journey at any point. You also have to ensure that your marketing funnel is designed to help customers fit in no matter what stage of the funnel they start the customer journey from.

Be sure to check out our guide on creating customer journeys that your customers will love for a more in-depth look at how to take a person from prospect to customer to brand advocate.

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