Patch the leaks in your sales funnel.
Sales funnels are the first place that I start when a company hires me, brings me out for a day or two of consultation. We attack their sales funnel first. That’s the first place that we start. We look at all of the marketing that they’re doing, what’s working, what’s not, what needs to be beaten into shape, how are they selling their services, and really tear everything apart, and then put it back together.
The reason a sales funnel’s important and why It’s important that you understand it is because once you really understand how your sales works and how the marketing plays a part and how your salesmanship plays a part, you can really go in and start to fine-tune all of these different areas within the sales funnel. When you fine-tune each of these different areas, all of your marketing, all of your sales, becomes more effective and you sell more.
The example that I like to give is that every company’s sales funnel has holes in it and out of those holes leaks sales, leaks clients, leaks customers, so when you dump a bunch of leads in the top, they start escaping out the sides. The only way that you can make a sale is to get them to come out here at the bottom.
That’s the only way that you’re going to get a sale, and to get through this funnel, to progress through this funnel, they have to go through a couple different stages and the first is attention. Do you stand out in a crowded market? Are you getting in front of your customers? Are you everywhere your potential customers are looking for services like what you’re offering?
Next is interest. We have their attention. Is our marketing, is our message interesting to them? Did we pique their interest? If we don’t pique their interest, then getting their attention doesn’t matter. After we get their attention, after they see our ad, after they see our flyer, after they see our truck, do we get them interested in using us or checking us out or getting more information?
Third is engage. We’ve got their attention, our marketing message has made them interested, and now they’re willing to engage with us. They’re willing to pick up the phone. They’re willing to email us. They’re willing to reach out and raise their hand and say, “You know what? I’m interested. Let’s talk.”
Finally, the last is action. We’ve engaged with them. We’re communicating with them.
Now, we’ve got to get them to take action. Without getting them through each of these different steps, we can’t make a sale. If they don’t take action, we don’t get a sale. If they don’t engage with us, meaning they raise their hand or contact us or talk to somebody on our staff, we can’t get a sale. If they don’t find our products or services interesting, they’re not going to buy them. If we can’t get found, they don’t know we exist. None of these things can happen, so every step of the way, we have to go through these steps. That’s really what marketing’s about. It’s about gently nudging your buyer, your prospect, down a specific path towards the sale.
This is really the first place that I start when I consult with companies when they bring me on for a few days and I analyze their business. This is the first place that we start. We look at what they’re doing on each of these different stages and how we can fix or improve it or streamline it or make it better. Everybody’s sales funnel has holes. You never close 100% of the prospects or leads that come your way. I don’t, you don’t, nobody does.
The goal and one of the most effective things that you can do in your own business is to patch all the little holes in your funnel. Keep more leads in the funnel, and if you keep more leads in the funnel, they can travel down here towards the sale. That’s the goal with any sales and marketing plan.
Let’s break each of these down specifically.
Continued in Part 2