The funnel alibi: Why brand building and activation should be undertaken simultaneously

Examines whether upper funnel brand-building efforts, and lower level activation efforts, should be separated from one another, as is traditionally the case.


The sales funnel is typically the vehicle by which a consumer learns about, and eventually decides whether or not to buy a brand. At the top of the funnel is brand-building, which may comprise emotional elicitation and non-price, quality claims. At the bottom is direct response stimulus, which is often price related.

Where to start

There is a sea of empirical evidence concerning the long-term financial benefits of brand-building communications, and an abundance of discourse over how to weight long-term brand-building communication vs. short-term, “activate-now” communications designed to convert to sales.

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