For an online coach + business owner, a sales funnel is probably the most important marketing tool you have. And yet many entrepreneurs (coaches, digital nomads, etc.) - both new and established - have no clear understanding of what a funnel is or how this business tool works.
As you can imagine, failing to fully understand this critical part of your business means fewer sales, lower profits, and ultimately, an unstable business.
A Simple Sales Funnel
At its most basic, a sales funnel consists of free content, which typically requires nothing of your readers. Many sales funnels begin with blog posts, YouTube videos, Facebook content, and other information readers can access at no cost. This is the “top” of your funnel. This is your opportunity to build an awareness about what it is you do, who you serve, and why you do what you do. You're building engagement and your Know, Like, and Trust Factors.
Examples of the top of your sales funnel:
Social media marketing, such as Facebook posts, Facebook Lives and Stories
Instagram posts, mini-blogging, Instagram Stories
Next, you’ll have an attractive offer, also known as an opt-in, that requires a very small “payment” of sorts - typically an email address. You’ve seen this type of offer on websites all over the internet, and probably even signed up for some.
Examples of an opt-in:
Free ebook or guide
Workbook, or other valuable content that is available in exchange for “opting in” to an email list.
Once on your mailing list, you’ll then begin to offer your readers with special one-on-one free offers. By getting on the phone with your readers, they are able to put a voice with the face and name they've been seeing all over social media. When you're first starting out as a coach, one of the things that is most terrifying is actually talking to people, believe it or not! So start getting into the habit of hopping on the phone and having a coffee date to chat with your readers to break the ice and set yourself apart from the sea of coaches out there!
Examples of one-on-one offers:
30-minute strategy sessions
Complimentary coaching sessions
Get-to-know-you Skype coffee dates
Taking them further down the funnel, you can start offering low-cost services and products. This is great way to see who is interested in what you're selling, and also time to start thinking about segmenting your newsletter list, to divide up who is buying and who is just digesting content and may need some more time to reach out to you.
Examples of low-cost offers:
Trial membership to a program
A discounted one-on-one session
Membership to your lowest priced program/offering
Membership to a coaching mastermind, like Inner Glow Circle
Customers who purchase your low-priced items move farther down the funnel, and are presented with more, higher priced products. As they continue to buy, they move closer and closer to your top-end offers, which make up the bottom of your funnel.
Your Premium Offer is at the very bottom of the funnel, which is your highest priced offer. This is typically a one-on-one program, retreat or other high-end service or product.
How Your Funnel Works
If you imagine your funnel as looking like, well, a funnel, it’s easy to see that your free content—at the top—is consumed by the largest number of readers. Below that, your extreme low-cost item (available only for the cost of an email address) attracts a smaller subset of the true freebie seekers. Next, your low-priced products bring in yet a smaller group.
Finally, as you near the tip of the funnel, only the most loyal of fans and customers will purchase your highest priced offers.
Your job, as the business owner, is to ensure that your funnel leads buyers naturally from the top, free offers all the way to the bottom. The more buyers you can keep in your funnel, the more money you will make.
Most new—and even established—business owners can easily envision the top of the funnel, but if you truly want your business to grow, you must master the entire process, and that starts with understanding what a funnel really is and how it works.
Would you like some support with your sales funnel and business model? Have you realized your need more offerings in between your blog posts and Premium Package? I am a Business + Marketing Coach and I can geek out on this stuff for dayyyyys, and I would love to chat with you!!
Click here to schedule a consultation so we can get things moving along for you!!