Simple marketing funnels have fewer, more meaningful interactions. More people make it through to the end of the funnel and a simple funnel is far more geared towards high ticket sales. It’s much easier to buy traffic when using a simple marketing funnel and it works well with high-value media. Simple sales funnels are the fastest path to online lead generation for high-priced products and services.
A marketing funnel is a model describing the customer journey from awareness of the product to the actual conversion. It has long been a topic of contest and conjecture. We call them funnels because the probability of sales and proceeds gradually decreases at each step. Some people opt out, some lose interest, and some choose another portal. Had this not been the case, terming it as a marketing cylinder would have been better! In an ideal situation, all leads would turn into customers – ten on ten returns. The job of the marketers, hence, is to make sure that most of the leads are turned into customers so that their marketing funnels could distort its ways and turn into a marketing cylinder.
I’ve heard a lot of talk over the last couple of years about the sales funnel being dead. What a load of nonsense. It’s not that long ago these sorts were telling us SEO is dead or – more recently – that web design is dead. Jackie Chan has also died multiple times over the last couple of years but I have my doubts about this, too, unless he has at least one identical twin who also happens to be versed in multiple forms of martial arts.
Many marketing funnels stop after the purchase has been made. However, in the hypercompetitive and dynamic environment of today, it is key to keep customers with you for as long as possible. Repeat purchases and the retention of customers are therefore just as important as the initial purchase. Good after-sales service and customer relationship management (CRM) enlarge the chance that customers will become repeat customers. You could for example start by sending out an email a week after the purchase has been made asking for customer feedback. People generally love to give their opinion on subjects. From there on you can get to know the customer better and see if he or she might be interested in a repeat purchase. Depending on the nature of your business, calling or even meeting up face-to-face with customers are considered more personal and more effective. This latter is for example more appropriate in the auto or consulting industry where larger transactions are being made.
There are many different versions of the Marketing Funnel. I tried to only use very distinctive phases of the customer journey without becoming too specific, in order for this funnel to be applicable for a multitude of industries and businesses. The reason why the Marketing Funnel is a funnel is because the wideness of the funnel at every stage represents the amount of people belonging to it. Since you are likely to loose some potential customers along the way, the funnel gets narrower towards the bottom. Finally it is important to mention that the colours chosen for this marketing funnel are deliberate. In the beginning, your relationship with potential customers are rather ‘cold’ and are therefore coloured blue. Once you get to know your customers, you want to ‘heat’ things up a bit and make your relationship stronger until you reach the advocacy stage (orange). Let’s go through each stage one by one.
Best practices in accelerated business growth, combined that with over 2 decades of Advanced Human Potential immersion studies (stretching from San Francisco to India, the Middle East to Europe) creates a unique and powerful set of tools and presentations that shift your potential past what you know as possible today. Across the planet, participants comment on the unusually poignant systems that these two power house coaches have developed for Business Owners.
Finally the customer will make a decision to either buy or not buy from you. Important to note here is that the one making the decision does not allows have to be the same person as the one purchasing the product or using the product. Think for example of a child who wants a Nintendo console from the toy store. Even though the child might become the user, it is the father who might decide whether he will get one, whereas the mother might be the one who will have to go to the store and purchase it. It is crucial to keep that in mind when targeting your marketing efforts to certain groups of people. The child for example should be targeted with news about the amazing games you can play on the Nintendo, whereas the father should be informed about the relatively cheap price and the durability of the Nintendo console.
It begins when you use emotion to capture their attention (maybe they feel a certain way or identify with others that do), once you have their attention you need to use logic to show them you’re good at what you do and can address the requirements they have. Finally, to seal the deal and make them a loyal customer you need to use emotion. Emotion is a powerful tool in getting prospects across the line once they have reached the penultimate stage of your funnel.
UThis is a Lead Generation system that takes people who are possibly unaware of their problem and you lead them through to becoming aware of the problem. Then displaying the solution to that problem, educating them on how the solution works and encouraging them to take action on your offer by making contact by telephone or email or making a purchase through a sales page or visiting their physical shop or event.
Influencer marketing focuses on people with influence on or over a target market instead of focusing on the target market directly. By identifying the people who influence your potential mass market of customers, you can work at getting these people as showcase customers. They in turn will influence the mass market or at least the segment where they hold sway. This can be done on a professional basis, where you pay an endorsement to the influential person with a fee or a commission per sale, if you you can quantify that influence. In theory you should be able to enter in to an agreement where you pay the commission based on sales only. This is different to paying a celeb to wear your product, in the ‘hope’ that their followers would buy your product, much like Nike and Tiger Woods.
Facebook is particularly good at capturing these leads, thanks to its targeting options. You can narrow down on users based on their demographic info, interests, online behaviour and previous purchases. AdWords also has a role to play here, letting you target lower-intent searches like “how often should I audit my website?” and getting these users involved with your brand.
It’s now time to really bring on the value and elevate your relationship with your customers. Following up with your recent buyers is one of the fastest ways to solidify your position as a business that truly cares. Buyers remorse is very real, and is alive and well across all markets and industries, so the first 24-48 hours after making a purchase is a critical time to calm any anxieties and affirm your new customers decision to do business with your company. It’s also unexpected. Which makes it an even nicer surprise, and part of the system to turn elevate your customers into brand evangelists who tell their friends, family, coworkers, and sometimes even strangers, about just how great your business is.
I mentioned earlier that the sales funnel goes beyond the first purchase. You don’t want customers to buy once and then forget about you. You want them to buy again and become long-term customers who are loyal to your brand. You want them to recommend you to other people – both online and offline – who might also be interested in what you have to offer.
Now, at any given time maybe less than 1 in 100 people are ready to sell their house, but by sending these mailings out consistently, month-on-month over a period of years, the company is building top-of-mind awareness (the first level of our funnel) for when they are ready to sell, even if that takes 5 years or more! Notice how the cards contain very little information because people won’t invest much time on the company at this stage in the funnel, and notice how using the prices the firm has achieved in the area tries to emotionally connect with the homeowner.
Step 1 is to identify where your prospective customers (let’s call them leads) are coming from. Are they finding you through social media, a search engine, or a paid ad you’re running. Once you’ve identified your traffic sources you can start to compare and pit them against one another. And may the strongest traffic source win! As a side note, these leads who have never heard about you or your business before are called “cold”
Not only must value be properly sequenced throughout the funnel, but cost must be as well. In that deeper stage in the funnel, SolarWinds didn’t only provide the properly sequenced value (trial versions) it also communicated properly sequenced cost (an online price quote engine). You must determine when to introduce the price in the funnel you’ve created, but also non-monetary elements of cost too.
That was an interesting article. I was looking on your page of scheduled webinars, and what about offering a webinar on segmenting your list? It seems that to use the marketing funnel idea you need to segment subscribers, so you’re not sending new subscribers something that should go to your “Advocates”. I’d love to see a webinar that really goes over how to use the funnel & segmenting together. Thanks.