A marketing funnel is a term used by marketing professionals to describe the journey potential clients or customers go through on the way to purchase a product of interest. The funnel has several stages: the top,middle and bottom. Stages may vary depending on the model the company decides to adopt.
The pain of missing a sale by an inch is not new to an entrepreneur. After weeks of hard work conducting pitches and demos, charming your clients and customers, etc, some might drop out of the funnel without buying. This can happen when you try to sell a product through a leaky funnel.
As it is, it takes the right sales funnel to get the sale done. Small businesses or inexperienced entrepreneurs alike use the marketing funnels. For some it may look like a sieve patched together by the many sticky notes, missed appointments, forgotten follow-ups, and weak spreadsheets.
Why is an effective marketing funnel important?
To understand what your potential customers are thinking and doing at each stage of the purchasing journey, a marketing funnel can be helpful. It provides the company with insights that allow you to invest in the right marketing strategies and channels, create effective messaging for every step, and turn potential customers into loyal ones.
Building an effective sales funnel for your business.
Once you have defined your prospects who can move through the funnel, you can start building your sales funnel. Through this process, you can track behavior and engagement using many funnel management techniques such as lead scoring to identify where they are in the funnel. Building a funnel takes five crucial steps.
1. Build your landing page.
A landing page is where your potential customers first learn about your company. As the saying goes, your first impression is your best impression. Make it appealing to the tastes of your defined target group. The page should have clarity on who you are as a company and your unique benefits, your products, and other interesting facts about your company. Ensure you have proper means to establish communication and include details such as email or number allows you to continue communication. A contact section is key so they can visit your social media pages if you decide to have any.
2. Offer something of value.
Give your prospects a reason to establish contact. If they have to give you their email ID, you might have to provide them with something in return. Weekly newsletters, ebooks, or something that acts as a lead magnet is a good way to give something of value to your potential customers.
3. Nurture your prospects.
After your potential clients notice your company, they move from their awareness stage to the interest stage. With their interest in your company, you can share educational content about your products and how it can benefit them.
The interest stage is followed by the decision stage. Offer demos, trials, and special discounts to your customers. This is the stage where you can push them to make that purchase. Nudge them into the direction of buying.
5.Feedback and analysis.
This stage allows you to analyze your sales. You can see if you have landed customers or lost most of them. You can also find opportunities to go through the feedback and understand why your prospects were not interested in purchasing your product or service. Communication is key as it will help you make or break your sale. If you have developed a loyal customer base, find ways to keep engagement and retention going.
For those customers who were with you up until the purchase decision, build a new educational and nurture series and check in with them now and then. It is important to find a fine line between annoying and persuasive.
How to detect inefficiencies in your marketing funnel stages?
Now that you’ve understood the basics of building an effective marketing funnel, you can now plan better funnel management. Lack of nurturing strategies can lead even the good ones out of the funnel. Having a clear-cut idea of the steps in your sales process and working towards making those steps happen, is the most effective way to prevent unwanted losses in your plan. You can lose prospects and potential customers at every stage of your funnel. Prospecting and marketing are some of the things you must invest in to get people into the first stages of the funnel.
It is also important to note that a stage can be broken into two or more steps for convenience. For instance, a demo can be a single-stage, but it involves a lot of things. From contacting the customer to sending reminders and finally doing the demo and following up for feedback. No matter how you categorize the stages in your funnel, the management effort you need to put in them will remain the same.
Once you are crystal clear about your stages in the funnel, you need to examine where you’re losing potential customers. Locate the bottlenecks of your sales process, examine where you tend to lose track of customers and clients. Point out the positive trigger points and actions that usually guarantee you the sale. Fix your funnel and make it leak proof!
How to fix your funnel with effective sales funnel management.
According to research and observation, three reasons can cause the loss of prospects in a sales funnel. With an effective step in sales management, you would be able to pinpoint and seal the gaps where potential customers can seep out of.
In sales, “no means no” does not stand. It can also mean “maybe not now.” The prospect may be interested but would need a push. Customers hesitate, and it’s common. Usually, salespeople dump the lead and move on to the next. Although there is a better option.
Building an automated email follow-up campaign that speaks directly to this objection can play a good role in lead conversion. It can be useful to send information to the prospect that is designed just for them. Analyze the most common reasons your prospects deny your sale. Think about how this can be turned around with a helpful and automated follow-up. Don’t dismiss your potential customers too quickly. Sometimes, all it takes is a little push.
Research suggests that 48% of the sales reps never follow up with their clients. Only 10% of sales reps try to contact their potential customers more than three times. 80% of the sales usually close between the fifth and the twelfth contact! It can be exhaustive for you and the client to receive back-to-back sales calls. Persistence might feel like a waste of time, but the numbers show otherwise. A marketing automation funnel can be useful here. Instead of an either/or game, automation assures a both/and game. This means that all your prospects get consistent emails at all stages of the sales funnel. A marketing automation funnel can help fix follow-up fails.
It is a fact that newer leads are more likely to convert if you follow up within the first five minutes after they show interest in your company, product, or service. If you wait for longer than 30 minutes, the sale won’t happen. Contacting a lead in the first five minutes may seem impossible manually, but with a sales funnel management automation, it is possible. You can set up your system with the response time you want, and it will act accordingly. It is important to understand how quickly you normally respond to a brand new prospect.
An effective marketing funnel can get your company all the leads you want and convert them successfully to sales. It is easier said than done. It is about providing every potential customer with a personalized treatment that they crave. This includes, following up at the right time every time can also make your customers feel valued. If you feel you have a BIG IDEA and are unsure of how to execute a marketing plan, partner with Project 10K. A company with a state-of-the-art go-to-market team with a proven track record will be at your complete disposal. For more information, visit Project 10K website.