How to Pick the Best Content for Your Top-of-Funnel Campaign

Savannah Mudd
April 8, 2020

All marketers know a good content piece can turn someone from an onlooker into a prospective lead. That’s exactly why we’re always looking for the perfect piece that will catch the eye of the receiver. It’s no wonder we spend so much time talking about that golden sentence, subject line, or graphic that will ultimately lead to the almighty click-through. 

But what exactly makes up a good piece of content? Is there a method to the whitepaper-ebook-infographic madness? 

In 2019, we ran over a thousand top-of-funnel programs for a variety of companies — from healthcare to transportation. We analyzed the engagement of each and every content piece to determine what kind of content performs best at the top of the funnel. Here’s what we found:

Top Performing Content Type

In terms of the first touch, eBooks are the way to go. When we pulled together the top 25 pieces of content, we found that eBooks were the most prevalent. In fact, eBooks made up 44% of the most successful pieces. The rest of the list was made up:

1. Whitepapers – 16%

2. Blog Posts – 12%

3. How-to Guides – 12%

4. Gartner Reports, General Reports, Brand Comparisons, & Videos – 16%

EBooks seem to be the biggest success when it comes to gaining traction at the top of the funnel. But what about the actual engagement of these pieces? How does the total viewing time correlate to length?

We found the average viewing time of content may be shorter than you think. According to the statistics, viewers spent an average of 23 seconds per page across all content. This indicates it’s our job as marketers to put valuable content in a format that is easy to digest at a glance.

Top Performing Content-Length

In terms of the length of the content, the average number of pages hit about 10 across the board. While it seems 10 could be the lucky number, most of the time viewers engaged most with the first 2-3 pages. Therefore, we can confidently say the phrase “put your best foot forward” applies to top-of-funnel content. This does not only include eBooks, but whitepapers, reports, & blog posts as well. The common link among these pieces was that the consumer wanted their information to be within those first few clicks. From there, our data shows a steep drop-off for most viewers.

So to sum it all up, here are our biggest takeaways:

  • Keep it short and sweet — 2-3 pages is the sweet spot.
  • Make it easy to read — don’t make your reader hunt for the value.
  • Try all different methods — while eBooks were the most prevalent, all forms of content were still found in our top 25. Testing out different forms of content will help you create the secret-content-sauce your prospective lead is looking for.



Further Reading

Lainey Mebust
June 15, 2020
Lainey Mebust
May 29, 2020
Olin Hyde
April 8, 2020
. 5 min read