What does AIDA mean in marketing terms?

Watching AIDA in Verona really is an utterly absorbing spectacle, especially by the third act. There is absolute silence from the absorbed crowd, hanging on every nuance in the starlit darkness of an open-air colosseum.

The voices carry from the stage without the need for microphones, echoing through the Colosseum. From the hard stone seating, you start to realise how they managed to create perfection thousands of years ago. Clean, precise, simple and elegant.

However, I suspect you’re not here for opera, but for clean, precise and simple marketing. And in a more modern world, AIDA is also an acronym that stands for:

  • Awareness
  • Interest
  • Desire
  • Action

It is an online marketing model that explains the steps taken by a customer when they are interested in purchasing something. Let’s have a short look at understanding the basics and how come it is called a sales funnel.

And what does this have to do with toothpaste?

We can also use this as a mental crib note to remind us of each step when promoting a product or service online.


This essentially means attracting potential customers. They don’t know you yet. You need to introduce the brand and what you do. This can be through various means like Google Ads, Facebook posts, Instagram, videos or even a blog like this, to name a few.

The idea is to get your brand in front of the viewer. And to pique their interest in your product/message. You need to decide on how you are going to bring the message, and on which different platforms. For example, an Instagram post is mostly entertaining, while your website page is informative. They all need a different approach that will work on each separate platform.


Now you have their attention you need to hang on to it. Don’t have them scrolling past you, or your product/services. This is also where you try to craft your goldfish ‘hook’, a fast way to keep interest before people move on. Attention spans are super-short these days, so let your creative side come into play with good copy/content writing.

Let them know what you’re trying to do here; sell a product or offer a service. A catchy headline will add to that dramatic photograph you took. The idea is to lead someone further into your message.


When you expand on the advantages and features of your particular product/service. Some extra detail and fleshing out of the headline above. And particularly, why they should choose you. Social ‘proof’ is gold here (reviews) and you need to build trust and a connection so that they ‘want’ what you have. They like it, sure, but now they want it.


A call to action. This can be a ‘BUY’ button, strongly formulated text or even your contact information. Make it clear what you would like them to do. If it is to watch a video then add the link. If you want to direct them to the product page then do so here. But make it easy to do.

This sounds very complicated

And I agree – if you’re not in marketing – this may be hard to get your head around. It looks very formulaic and a little vague at the same time. Sure I need to do these steps, but how? And how do I know if I am doing it right?

A Simple Example to Understand AIDA

Let’s try and simplify it with an example. How about we sell some toothpaste? Let’s publish an image of our product, and add a title, some info, and a checkout button all on one page/post/image. What could be more simple than that? And this demonstrates all four parts:

1: Awareness – a nice image
2: Interest – a catchy title

3: Desire – some information
4: Action – a ‘Buy’ Button

Expanding on our single page we can add all of the different marketing channels (your website, Youtube, Facebook, Insta, Twitter, Linkedin etc.) This is where it becomes a bit complicated to try and keep a consistent message across everything.

And don’t forget that you need to track each step in the ‘funnel’ to be efficient. And let’s not forget the importance of SEO copywriting in marketing. But those are subjects for another time.

So make your message as simple or as elaborate as you feel comfortable with, but remember that not everyone is at the same place online. Focus on your Twitter network if you’re more comfortable with that, but also spend some time on Youtube or Facebook, Instagram and your website, and widen your ‘net’.

Why is it referred to as a sales funnel?

It is a well-known fact that you will not sell to everybody who comes across your business. You may appeal to some, but others will go elsewhere.

For example; you start with 1000 people who you have managed to attract (Awareness). Of those only 500 are interested (Interest) and of those 200 have been persuaded (Desire) but only 100 of them click on your button (Action).

It’s shaped like a funnel – wide at the top (Awareness) and narrow at the bottom (Action). So what started as a wide group of 1000 attentive viewers at the top ends up as 100 active customers who you will need to convert. And this is the next step (meaning to finalise the purchase) and even here you may end up with 10 actual clients.

So now you have the basics of AIDA in mind, you can focus on keeping that funnel as wide as possible. And I hope these mental crib notes will help. Or perhaps reach out to someone who can help you with the various technicalities.

Get in touch if you need help with your online business. We are happy to project scope, and even build a website for you. Then coach, and guide you on how to use it.

Think about joining the NetNomads community, and explore the concept of the skill exchange where you can trade or transfer your skill or experience in return for help understanding AIDA.

And when you have some downtime, perhaps unwind with Mr Verdi at the amphitheatre in Verona for a couple of hours (bring a soft seat), while you plan your next campaign.