Create a sales funnel that brings in customers every time!
The World Wide Web has evolved multi folds over the last decade and to sell online is no longer just about having a website. With over 1.5 billion websites, businesses have little evolved to capture that attention and sell their products the way it works.
Everything starts with a sales funnel. I am not going to bore you with the typical sales funnel that looks something like this.
But if you think hard any online marketing essentially starts from a “Step Proposition”. This might seem obvious but in most cases, a tempting “Step Proposition” is very hard to find. A beautiful analogy that I came across was, “think of your customers as your potential dating partners”. You don’t really go to a person and ask them to marry you the very first time. You have to woo them. You have to go on multiple dates and then finally when the other person trusts you, you can think about the marriage proposal.
Well, needless to say, there are people who propose on the very first date but we have a name for them, they are called creeps.
So, how do we woo our customers?
First, create a bait, make an offer that the other person can’t refuse.
This could be an e-book, a simple tool like a credit score calculator for a fin-tech or a resale price calculator for companies dealing in buying and selling of pre-owned cars or a quiz.
Remember, this is your chance to pitch what your company stands for, its values, its identity and most importantly its story. As humans we all love stories so converting your pitch in an easy to comprehend story is the safest choice.
Since most people are very sceptical of traditional advertising these days, so by weaving your proposition into a story, you can easily get the message across in a more efficient manner. Just make sure that your brand is an integral part of the story otherwise people might remember the story but not your brand.
This initial offering should preferably be for free or something that’s so cheap that it’s a no brainer to buy.
The purpose here is to gain trust and not to sell the main proposition (think of it as a coffee date before the dinner). If this happens to be a free E-book related to your business (which is the case in most businesses), you could ask for their email address in return. This way you could convert your cold traffic into traffic you own. Now engaging with these subscribers is as easy as pressing that send button on the email campaign.
Bear in mind, the tactic that you used in the first step in the “Step Proposition” can either break or build the relationship. After all, the first impression is your last impression. So it’s always good to test the content with your potential users to draft out a piece that is surely going to make your users come back again for more.
Whenever possible, try and get the customers to pay some amount to get your product. It could be just the shipping fees or a product that you know is so damn good and most importantly cheap, that almost everything would want to get it. It’s always easy to get someone to buy more of your product once he has already made some payment.
Here are some tips to increase the conversion rates on the first step if there is nothing for free:
Invoke FOMO: This could be done by creating scarcity. You can see a real-life example of this on almost all e-commerce websites these days.
Creating curiosity: We humans are born curious and evoking curiosity in your users could be done by simply telling them a story about your brand with a mystery or starting with a cliff-hanger.
Add social proof: These could be simple testimonials or news coverages that assure people that they can trust your brand.
Price anchoring for the pricing: Whenever you are designing your pricing page, you can lead people to choose a certain subscription by making it an obvious choice. Eg: Enjoy 300GB internet at Rs. 1000 and Unlimited internet at Rs. 1500. Now you have anchored Rs. 1000 as the price and relative to that, Rs. 1500 deal seems to be the obvious winner.
Use reciprocity: This is the reason the first step in the Step Proposition works so well. Once you give your users, something of value, they feel obliged to reciprocate the feeling and thus buy your real deal.
Add a guarantee: Adding a guarantee can fill in the trust gap. Eg: 30-day money-back guarantees on Udemy courses.
Once the user becomes your subscriber, you can engage with these users again, be it through advertisements or email campaigns or any other channel, make sure that you don’t send them to the same landing page. Now the copy should be molded to match their requirements. These users now know of your brand and are pretty much aware of the offering. Here be comfortable to use industry jargon if need be in the copy but not for the cold users. Here you can try and sell some something that takes them deeper into the funnel. Now that you have already gained their trust to some extend you can make them a better offer.
But again remember to make them an offer, they can’t refuse till it’s the last offer you have to make.
In the last 5 years, I have sold almost everything you can think of, from pre-owned cars to hotel rooms for couples and one ubiquitous mistake everyone made was to not concentrate on the funnel but optimizing ad spends. Once you have a robust sales funnel in place, you can be 100% sure of getting conversions that no paid media expert can guarantee.
A good sales funnel once optimized can be the backbone for all your marketing channels.
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