Online marketing powerhouses like Russell Brunson of ClickFunnels have long been evangelizing the internet about how important it is to have a digital marketing funnel. Is that only because they sell the SaaS (Software as a Service) needed to create these funnels or are they really worth the time and money you'll need to put into them?
Digital Marketing Funnel 101
If your business is going well, you may have a business blind spot because you don't understand their importance. Our hope is to clear up that blind spot so you can move forward confidently. And if you need a little (or a lot of) help, we are always just an email away.
Why You Need a Funnel in Your Business
1. Lead Tracking
When your business has a funnel, it is much easier to understand where your leads are. Even if you have an email list, if you don't have a funnel in place – you're in a mess.
You need to have a funnel in place so you know if leads are at point “x” in the funnel then those leads usually do xyz next or need xyz sent to them at that stage to keep them moving closer to making a purchase.
Some funnel software solutions will score your leads for likelihood of purchasing to see which ones warrant a phone call for intensive follow up. Some you may opt to continue to email.
2. Lead Nurturing
If you're not nurturing your leads, that is one of the reasons you're not getting the results that you want. Even when your leads are warm leads, you want to continue to nurture them.
When you know where they are and what they need in the process, you'll be able to create content and offers that appeal to them. If you don't know where they are, it is likely you've sent your leads confusing promotions. Or, more likely, you’ve forgotten to do anything.
You may have sent a customer that is past a certain stage a promotion for something they no longer need at this point.
Tagging and scoring are effective because they prevent you from targeting the wrong people and possibly turning them off altogether.
3. Higher Conversions
Funnels result in higher conversions because of the lead tracking and nurturing. When you keep on top of your email list and allow your subscribers to get to know and trust you, it's easy to convert to sales.
If you want the higher conversions, you can't abuse your email subscribers and those who get push notifications. Make sure you're sending them relevant promotions and your conversions will be off the chart.
What Is a Digital Marketing Funnel?
Now that you understand why you need a funnel, what is it anyway?
Not everyone is up on all the latest tech terms and developments and that's okay. You'll catch up in due time and here is some simple information that can help get you up to speed.
It's well known that after people have bought from you once, it is easier to get them to buy from you again. Getting that first sale from your lead is the most difficult, even if it is a lower ticket item.
This is why many people opt to have a trip wire offer that is very low priced to kick off their funnel.
Think about the shape of a funnel. It is wide at the top so it can catch as much liquid (in this case leads) as possible. As it gets to the container, the funnel narrows.
Your funnel is shaped the same as it continues to home in on the leads that are going to convert. Not everyone is going to make it to the bottom of your funnel – and that's okay. You aren't going to be able to serve everyone; you only want the people who are right for your company.
Your goal is to make as many people aware of your company as possible and take them through the funnel until they get to the point they will become customers. Even after people buy from you, you want them to go in your funnel again which is why you should have multiple offers – down, up, and cross-sells.
How to Start Your Company’s Marketing Funnel
All of this funnel talk is very exciting but how do you get started with your marketing funnel? It seems like there is a lot to know and a lot to do.
While there are a lot of moving parts to a funnel, once you get it set up, you can do very little to it and it will continue to reap rewards for years to come.
Here are some things you need to do when getting started with your funnel.
1. Determine How You'll Fuel Your Funnel
There are plenty of ways to fuel your funnel – that is, build the list of prospects and their email addresses that will go into the funnel. There is no single best way to do this, but you do need to settle on a strategy.
Some people opt to drive traffic through social media, others use paid ads, and other people dive into search engine optimization (SEO) to get traffic from organic search results. Others hold contests, offer prizes, or give away a PDF with valuable information. In each case, the goal is the same: Get the prospect’s email address.
Even the best funnel won't do you any good if you don't have any anyone in it. The sooner you get people going through your funnel, the better. It can take some time to convert people, especially if you have a more expensive offer.
2. Set Up Your Funnel Components
Now that you know how you're going to get people into your funnel, you need to give them somewhere to go.
One thing you should know is that not all funnels are created equal. You should also know that different niches are going to require a different approach.
You need to decide if you're going to employ long sales letters in your funnel, videos, webinars, email marketing (almost always), push text messages, messenger marketing, or other methods.
There are a lot of different options, but as with your traffic method, you need to determine what you're going to do. After you get started, you can always change up your strategy if it isn't working out as well as you'd hoped.
The idea of a funnel is as follows and in order:
- Optin to a free offer which adds the person to your email list.
- Offer a loss leader or other “tripwire offer” for a low price.
- Then, upsell or cross-sell offers or provide more information, training, etc., to help them get to the point they buy or quit interacting.
- Rinse and Repeat.
While this is an oversimplification and there are many other options, this gives you an idea of what is possible and how you can take people from lead to customer.
Once you have your traffic coming into your funnel, you shouldn't stop there. You need to continue to optimize. While your funnel may be doing well, you should do an A/B split tests and see what is going to give you the best ROI.
Create the Best Funnel for Your Business – Get Results
Some people like to DIY everything. While DIY is great, if you don't know how to build a digital marketing funnel, DIYing it could cost you millions in future earnings.
There are many more click funnel/marketing automation systems available and picking one that’s right for you is important. For a good place to start researching what is right for you, check out the well regarded software reviews at Captera.