Today we’re going to look at what kind of content you should be using in your sales funnels, especially if you’re blogging or creating content of some kind.
So you could be writing articles, making videos, or you could be doing podcasts, webinars, whatever it is you’re doing, this is going to be of huge benefit to you if you’re building an email list. So I’m going to show you how powerful the right kind of sales funnel can be.
A sales funnel is just a way of moving someone from not knowing who you are, to want to buy your stuff.
But listen, I’m not going to B.S. you ok. I’m going to tell you the reality of the situation ok. This is the ugly truth, and I’m going to show you just how difficult it is to make a profit because most of the people that consume your stuff won’t buy from you. But that’s ok.
Thankfully, we only need a small number of people to become customers, and we can still do pretty good. So it’s still worth our time, but getting it right is important.
Ok, so before we begin I want you to pause this right now and if you haven’t got one already, then go ahead and create a new folder on your desktop, and call it ‘Profit Copilot Tips’ or something else descriptive, and we’ll come back and use this later on.
Right ok, so today it’s all about the right way to structure your sales funnel and what type of content you should be using at each stage.
This is a critical step to getting it right because it generates most of the profit. The behind-the-scenes mechanics of a website is what’s largely responsible for the revenue, right? It’s the stuff nobody really sees unless they go through all the stages of your funnel. That’s something that took me a long while to figure out, and really, it was someone else who explained all that stuff to me. So now I like to pay it forward and help you guys out who might be struggling to make sense of things.
So you’ve probably heard of sales funnels before and you might already have one, and that’s great, and if you’ve been watching my videos and listening to my podcasts then you’ll know that I spend a lot of time talking about these things. So it’s important stuff, but there’s the right way to structure your sales funnel and a wrong way.
You probably already know that most of the people who visit your website, or whatever vehicle you’re using to sell, well most of them won’t buy from you straight away.
It’s a bit silly to expect someone who doesn’t know you or your clients, to just hand over their money to a complete stranger. So that’s why we need sales funnel, we need ways to re-engage all the people who decided not to buy whatever we’re selling. And that percentage of people is huge, only a very small fraction of people will trust you the first time they meet you.
So we’ve got loads of ways to re-engage people and turn the ‘no’ into a ‘yes’, but to make all that work you’re going to need the right kind of funnel, and take them on the right kind of journey.
I’ll show you how it’s done, there’s a sequence involved that moves somebody through the all different stages, from not knowing who you are, from not knowing anything about you, and moving them into a stage to where they actually know they can trust you enough with their money, to do business with you. And that’s where we want to be, right?
If you’re like me, and pretty much everybody else in my Facebook group, then you probably want to create awesome content that genuinely helps people, and you’ll also want to build a strong and healthy business, in an ethical way, without taking advantage of people, and without using hype or any of that sleazy internet marketing stuff.
So, this is how we do it. This is the right kind of funnel for the job.
There are three stages to this kind of funnel, and I’ll run you through each of them now. The first component is called ‘seeding’, the second is called ‘appraisal’. And the third is called ‘conversion’.
And each one of these has a set of very specific functions, and we’ll talk about each of those too.
So we’ll go through each of these stages in more detail… And I’ll tell you why we use each one, I’ll tell you why it’s important and why we need it…. Then I’ll tell you the primary objective and the purpose of each stage. I’ll also tell you what types of content work best at every stage because not all pieces of content serve the same purpose, so I’ll explain what types of content work best and where. Then I’ll explain what results you need to be aware of, at each stage.
Because when you think about it, there’s no point creating loads of awesome content that besides helping people, doesn’t have any other purpose, right? We can use it to help people, deliver value to the marketplace, but we can also use it to move people towards us and bring them further into the sales process. And as they move closer to us, the amount of value they receive increases as a result.
So we need to use the right kind of content in the right way, and then we need to monitor what kind of results that piece of content is giving us. So we need to be aware of the metrics, so we can tweak and fine tune things as we go along.
Now, there’s lot of information out there about sales funnels, and some people split them up into 9 or 10 stages, and if that’s what works for them, then that’s great, but really, when we boil everything down and simplify everything, there’s really only 3 stages that we need to worry about, to make this work, if you’re creating awesome content. Now you can tweak and refine this later on, once the sales are coming in, and the funnel is up and running, so to make that happen quickly, we just need 3 stages.
So let’s start with the seeding stage, this is where we start planting ideas, we start planting seeds, that will grow and produce something we can harvest later on.
And this is really for cold traffic, these are website visitors who’ve never heard of you, they don’t know anything about you. The might not even know they have a problem, so there’s a sequence you have to take them through, to get to the bottom of your funnel, which is them buying your stuff.
And this is especially true if you’re selling big-ticket items. They are more expensive things that require more thought, more consideration. So the more money that’s involved, the more time they’ll need to think about it.
So at this stage, you’re just making people aware of the problem and your solution, and let’s be honest, not everybody who comes into your funnel is going to stick around. People are going to exit and that’s ok, it’s perfectly normal. Your stuff isn’t going to be for everybody, nor should it be.
Maybe they don’t need the content you’re providing, maybe they’ve already solved the problem on their own, maybe they don’t like your style, hey maybe they don’t like your haircut, who knows.
The point is, not everybody is going to want whatever you’ve got, so don’t let that get you down. But other people will stick around and they’ll move down into the appraisal stage of the funnel.
So at this stage, they’re starting to realize there’s a problem, or they’re thinking about ways to solve it, so they start looking at what their options are, they start to desire a solution, and they start evaluating those potential solutions. They could be looking at your solution, they could be looking at your competitors. And remember, they have the option to just do nothing, right?
A lot of people will choose to do nothing, there’s a lot of people out there who don’t want to deal with their problems or face them and find a solution, for whatever reasons. So a high percentage of people will exit your funnel at this point, and that’s ok, it’s perfectly normal. Maybe they’ll go to a competitor, maybe they’ll keep looking for a solution, who knows right?
So the people who stay, they now move down to the bottom of your funnel, the conversion stage. So this is the point of sale. This is where we harvest the seeds we planted at the top of the funnel. You’ve taken them from seeding, to appraisal, right down to conversion, and this is the last stage of the funnel.
And this is where we see people spending more money. People will be more likely to buy high ticket items, buy things that have more risk involved, and things like that.
So as a content creator, we have to understand how the content we make can move people through all three stages. So we have the top of the funnel, which is seeding, we have the middle of the funnel, which is the appraisal, and then we have the bottom of the funnel which is conversion.
And each one of these stages has a set of goals attached to it, and specific types of content you can use for that specific stage. I’ll give you a quick overview.
Ok, so the top of the funnel uses things like blog posts, social media updates, podcasts, videos, photographs, newsletters and that kind of stuff. The purpose of this is to increase awareness of your brand, to grow your website traffic, to increase engagement and all that stuff.
The middle of the funnel uses things like webinars, surveys, quizzes, resources. And you can even give them a coupon to use, that will move them from the middle to the bottom stage quicker. The purpose of this is to grow your email list, to grow you retargeting lists, all that stuff.
So the last stage, the bottom of the funnel uses things like free demonstrations, free trials, webinars, a mini course, customer stories and that kind of thing. The purpose of this is, of course, is to get sales. That’s the primary objective of this stage. But we can also do some pretty cool things down here too.
So we can nurture the leads, we can maximize the customer value, so we increase how much each customer is worth to the business over a short, or prolonged period of time so we can encourage them to buy more stuff from us at the point of sale. And we can also increase buyer frequency, so we can encourage them to buy from us more often.
Once we know what kind of content to deliver, then we have to figure out what kind of results we should be looking for. So we need data, and this is what’s going to guide you. Always follow the data, let the numbers lead you.
So let’s go back to the top of the funnel and look at the things we need to keep an eye on, the stats and the metrics, and that kinda stuff. We need to keep an eye on the number of inbound links to your website, the demographics, so the type of visitors and where they’re from. We want to keep an eye on the site engagement rates, so a number of comments and social media shares are important.
And the things we need to monitor at the Middle of the funnel are things like: The conversion rate of your lead page, so that’s the percentage of people who opt-in to your email list. We also need to keep an eye on the actual stats, the number of people subscribing, that’s important. And we need to be aware of the open rate of the emails we send, and the click through rates of those too.
And seriously guys, if you’re not building your own email list and if you’re still struggling, and I know that some of you are, then building an email list should be your priority.
Ok finally, at the bottom of the funnel, the numbers that we need to keep an eye on, they are: The conversion rate, so the percentage of people who accept the offer and buy from us, we also need to keep an eye on the actual number of customers, so we look at those stats too. We need to keep an eye on the retention rate, and we need to look at the average customer value, so we know how much we can spend on advertising and that stuff.
Ok so, that’s a lot of stuff for one video, right? Well, if you use this structure that I’ve outlined for you, and consider what purpose each piece of content you produce serves, then you’ll ultimately increase the number of people who stick around in the funnel for longer, and you’ll ultimately increase the number of people who buy your stuff. So that’s a good situation to be in, right?
Well ok then, so I’ll probably return to this kind of funnel again at some point in the future because it’s a massive area and we can spend ages going through it all, but if you’re producing content, if you’re blogging, making videos, making podcasts, any of that kind of stuff, then this is the exact funnel you need to get started with.
For now, the important parts to remember are; we’ve got three stages of the sales funnel and they are called: Seeding, Appraisal, and Conversion.
Each one serves a purpose, so the top of the funnel is all about creating awareness and planting seeds. Growing your website traffic and that kind of thing. And to do this effectively, we want to use blog posts, videos, podcasts, all that good stuff.
The middle stage is all about growing your email list, about presenting your solution or whatever you’re selling. At this stage, your subscribers will be considering your product. So we can use surveys and quizzes and give them resources they can use to solve part of their problem.
And then at the final stage, the bottom of the funnel is all about making the sale. So we’re focused on increasing the conversion rate, increasing the number of people who buy from us. And the type of content we use to achieve this could be things like free demonstrations, a free trial, stories and webinars, all that stuff.
Ok so, that’s pretty much everything you need to know how to get this up and running. And I’ll also give you the diagram we’ve been using, for free, as a handy download, so you can keep it and use it anytime you need to remind yourself about what I showed you here today. So go ahead and download that now and save it in the folder you created at the start of this.