Having lots of followers on social media is great, but you need to find ways to convert those followers into customers.
Otherwise, it’s just a vanity metric that makes you look cool while you secretly sweat behind closed doors wondering if and when your posts will finally land your next client.
A marketing funnel (“sales funnel” or “funnel”) is an intentional series of information that’s supposed to turn a random stranger who doesn’t know you into a customer.
There’s more than one way to deliver that series of information. It could be a series of blog posts, a webinar, or an email sequence.
Regardless of format, a profitable marketing funnel attracts high quality customers to you, and pulls them through your selling sequence so they become happy paying clients.
When you do this correctly, your prospects subconsciously feel like they are in the hands of a pro.
Not only does this build trust and credibility, but it makes selling your products and services easier.
And the best part...it’s evergreen.
Meaning once you create it, you have an asset that you can use for months, even years into the future.
A basic online marketing funnel looks like this:
Content → Squeeze page → Thank You Page → Sales Page
A squeeze page is a single webpage with one goal — to capture your prospects email address (and sometimes their name and other contact info).
And to get the best results, you would supplement this funnel with a chain of automated follow up emails designed to build trust, showcase your expertise, and get them excited to work with you.
Most solopreneurs know they need to create valuable, free content to build an audience and attract new customers.
But they don’t usually have an airtight selling system in place to convert that content into clients.
So let’s talk about that.
Imagine a cauldron overflowing with sweet, ripe honey that triggers your mouth to salivate the moment you see it…
The craving is so intense that you body is magnetically pulled towards the cauldron while you lick your lips...
You want it badly. You need it.
There’s a wooden spoon sitting next to the cauldron…
...you grab it, and dip it into the cauldron.
The moment that spoonful of honey hits your tongue...a rush of warmth and pleasure ripples through your body from head to toe…
You feel joy, happiness, bliss.
Now, my question to you is…
Do you have a pot full of rich, valuable honey that your prospects can’t wait to get their hands on?
In other words, do you have a free gift that is so valuable (and relevant) to your potential clients that they would happily give you their name and/or email to get it?
This could be a free video training, cheatsheet, email series, webinar, or mini-course that helps them solve their biggest problem OR achieve their desired transformation.
You may have heard other marketers call this a lead-magnet or ethical bribe.
But I find the honeypot analogy 10x more memorable, don’t ya think?
Anyways, this is the entry-point into your marketing funnel.
A honey-pot persuades onlookers who are loitering outside of your business (i.e. reading your social media posts, watching your videos, and possibly even liking and commenting)...
...to actually “open the door” and “step into” your store.
Now, creating a honey-pot is just the first step.
There are more stages to the funnel (as we learned above), but this initial commitment moves your prospects closer towards the red-hot center of your business — where they become a paying client.
And until they make that transaction, you cannot serve them at the highest level.
After they opt-in to receive your honey-pot offer, two things occur:
#1- They are automatically taken to the next page of your marketing funnel — the thank you page.
On this page, you would acknowledge that they’ve requested your honey-pot, and then tell them what to do next.
A “great” thank you page keeps the experience going instead of leading your prospect to a dead-end, while also taking into account where your prospect is in the customer journey.
The second that that happens is...
#2- Your email autoresponder gets triggered
Remember when I said a great marketing funnel has a series of automated follow up emails running alongside it?
Well, the first email gets sent immediately after the prospect enters their contact info on the squeeze page.
This is your welcome email — it introduces who you are, how you can help, and how to get the honey-pot.
Then they get another email the following day, and another one the day after that.
There’s no limit on how many automated emails you can have.
Some marketers have hundreds, but you can have one that converts new leads into buyers within 5-10 days or sooner (if it’s good).
But that’s a topic for another blog post 😉
Before we move on, I want to share a piece of advice that my 8-figure mentor gave me about selling.
In other words, you need a deliberate strategy to follow up and close your new leads while the engagement is still hot!
One place to do that is in your honey-pot training, after you’ve delivered value. Introduce your offer and then point them to your sales page where they can buy.
What else? What about an email autoresponder?
You may have heard the phrase, “the fortune is in the follow up.”
Or that it takes between 7 and 14 follow ups to convert a new lead into a buyer.
The time it takes someone to buy depends on a lot of things, including: your offer, your price, your relationship, and a handful of other factors.
For example, imagine a scale from 1-10.
A prospect who’s a “1” is an impulse buyer and needs very little information about the product or service before they are ready to purchase.
They just need to know the price, what transformation they’re going to receive, and they’re ready to swipe their credit card.
A prospect who’s a “10” needs all the information before they are ready to buy.
They want to do more research, evaluate you vs. the competition, and read lots of customer reviews before making a decision.
Regardless of their rating, a professional marketer knows how to create enough value and urgency in a product and service to make buying a priority, right now.
And an effective way to do that is with a smart email follow up strategy, which we’ll cover in part 2 of this blog post.
Tim is a full-time copywriter and marketing strategist who helps solopreneurs grow an online business using smart online marketing strategies and tactics. This blog is where he shares his expertise. His favorite business model is affiliate marketing — selling other people's proven products to a specific niche market. Grab his free training to learn more