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What is a Sales Funnel and Why do You Need One?

What is a sales funnel, and why is it essential to build an effective one?

So, you’ve got a great product and many potential customers, but you find yourself frustrated because people aren’t converting to paying customers.

Does this sound familiar? Are you one of those people?

What do most of them do then? 

They do what they know best – they create more courses and work on getting more people to their website. 

Now – when you’re starting with your content marketing, it’s (relatively) easy to 2x your traffic. But growth is more challenging once you’ve been going for a while. 

Increasing your traffic and creating more courses will bring results, but there’s another more significant lever you can pull. One that could allow you to 2x, 5x, or maybe even 10x your sales.

That lever is a sales funnel.

What if you knew how to build a bulletproof funnel for sales that worked like clockwork? Let’s look at the ins and outs of a customer sales funnel.

What is a sales funnel system?

A sales funnel is everything you set up to convert visitors into leads, leads into sales, and sales into repeat sales. 

A good funnel takes your audience on a graceful and beautiful customer journey. 

People go from hearing about you to learning more and trusting you. They opt-in to join your email list and decide to buy something from you for the first time. They start buying more expensive courses, and finally, they become loyal, returning customers. 

When you visualize a marketing sales funnel, maybe you imagine a super organized funnel that looks something like this:

Sales funnel

But, in reality, most people’s funnels look something like this:

Leaking sales funnel

They’re leaking money left, right, and center. They’ve got so many holes you can’t believe it and are nowhere near as neat as the first picture. If you watched any of my webinars, you probably saw these two pictures; I love using them to explain imagination vs. reality. 

Creating that funnel isn’t easy, and I’m not pretending it is. But it is doable. It’s not some mystic art; it’s a practical thing that you can do, one step at a time. 

For now, I want you to know that if you don’t have at least a basic sales funnel, you’re missing out on a lot of your potential revenue.

You’re missing out on a huge opportunity to earn what you’re worth and sell your courses to many more people. 

Once you learn about the sales funnel stages and implement them, you will thank past you for this.

What is a sales funnel in digital marketing?

Every business has a variation of a sales prospecting funnel. For example, for bricks and mortar businesses, the first stage of the funnel could be someone walking by your store. The moment that person walks into the store, they become a lead. You then have the opportunity to sell to them directly by offering exceptional customer service. 

In digital marketing, your website is your storefront. You want someone to go from seeing your business on Google or social media to browsing your website to entering their email address to making a purchase. 

The typical sales funnel steps turn people from leads to prospects to customers.

What are sales funnels

This image shows a simple sales funnel, but you should consider the actions you want to take to move someone to the next level at each of these three stages. 

An example could be: 

Lead
Someone sees your ad on social media and clicks through to your website. How can you target your lead generation content to the segment you target?

Prospect
How can you keep your prospect interested in what you do? Perhaps you have a lead capture on your website where you ask for an email address in exchange for some free content. 

Customer
Your prospect may need a little nudge to become your customer. You can now directly market to that prospect via email. Perhaps this is in the form of a discount code or limited offer. Once they purchase from you, it’s crucial to think about how you will retain the customer. 

The 4 funnel stages

When building your sales prospecting funnel, you need to consider the four stages of a customer journey. You want them to move from a lead to a customer, so think about how you will capture them at each point of their journey. 

An easy way to remember this process is with the acronym AIDA. 

AIDA sales funnel

Think about the needs of your potential customer. How are they feeling at each of the lead funnel stages, and how will you capture their interest? What strategies will you use to turn their interest in your business into a desire to purchase from you?

Knowing your target audience is essential to building an effective sales funnel. Understanding their thought process and what may drive them to buy from you is vital for creating a successful prospecting funnel.  

Why do you need a sales funnel?

So what does a funnel do? In short, it brings you revenue. 

These are the top reasons customer funnels are essential for your business: 

  • You don’t waste money on marketing efforts that aren’t working 
  • You have visibility over the channels your customers come from
  • You can focus your efforts on the most effective activities 
  • You can work on retaining customers and getting them to refer you
  • You can easily monitor your ROI 

Let’s look at some examples. When one of our clients, Seonaid, started working on her marketing and sales funnel, she managed to grow her revenue 8 times while doubling traffic.

Yes, eight times! That means she made 4x as much per website visitor. And that number is only going up. We believe she can make about 3x more from her current website traffic next year. I’ll keep you updated on Seonaid’s progress.

Another client of ours, Paintable, doubled their revenue while hardly increasing traffic at all.

That’s why you need sales funnels.

If you have great online courses, over 2,000 website visitors a month, and an email list of over 2,000 people, a good customer funnel will bring you results (which means more money). 

How can you analyze a typical sales funnel?

After you saw the two images I showed at the beginning of this post, the question you probably have right now is:

If I have funnel #2, how do I make it look like funnel #1?

Which hole should I fix first?

In my opinion, the best answer is – the one that will bring you the most money. 

But how do you figure that out?

You look at numbers. First, you must know your numbers for each funnel stage. Then, you must know the benchmarks. When you compare those numbers, you will see what you need to optimize.

Are you A/B testing ads and landing pages? Look at the data on what’s performing best. 

You need to know where people are dropping out of your sales lead funnel. Are they dropping off at the top of the sales funnel or further down the process? 

The best way to do this is with some sales funnel reporting. Scrutinize the data to understand what is causing people to drop out of the funnel.  

The best decisions in marketing are data-driven. We believe in that so much we’ve put it into our company name. 

I’ve explained how to find the biggest hole in your funnel in this blog post.

If you want to see how much you could be making if you optimize your current funnel, use our Funnel Revenue Calculator.

The sales funnel explained

Now we’ve answered the question “What is a sales funnel?”, it’s time for you to take action. Random marketing efforts with no plan or strategy behind them aren’t going to help you grow your online business.

Even if it’s the most straightforward funnel, map out the journey you want a prospective customer to take with you. If you can visualize a customer’s process with you, it will be easier to optimize it. 

We are sales funnel experts and can help you create your marketing lead funnel. Have a chat with us by booking a call here

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The Art Of Selling Online Courses Funnels

Is Your Mindset Holding You Back – With Josip Belina and Monica Badiu

‘’Average person working with us will have increased their revenue by 468% in the first four months’’. Sounds unbelievable, doesn’t it? That is why it is not something that you will hear us use in our marketing, but trust us, it is true. And there is no secret to how we do it. 

If you have been listening to us for a while you know we said time and time again: upsells, order bumps, email promotions, optimized top of the funnel and lead requisition source. And the most important ingredient: consistency. 

Join us as Monica and Josip share more of our results and some exciting news about changes in our model! They will also discuss the often overlooked aspect of every success: Mindset. 

If you want to hear it yourself, how are we so good at what we do, check out the new episode of ‘The Art Of Selling Online Courses: Winning Strategies & Secret Hacks From Top Performers’’ now.

Subscribe

For more interviews and tips on building funnels to sell more online courses, join our Facebook group for Advanced Online Course Creators.

What You’ll Learn In Today’s Video:

  • Some of our recent result and why are they so unbelievable 
  • How did we get to where we are now
  • Exciting new changes in our model
  • Mindset

Ideas Worth Sharing:

‘’Lucy has gone up 28.6 times from what she was making before she started working with us. Do you think that’s going to be the limit?’’  ‘’No, we’ve only just started basically. ’’ – John Ainsworth & Josip Belina

‘’We know for a fact that on average, a standard person working with us will have increased their revenue by 468% in the first four months.‘’ – Josip Belina

‘’I think people don’t believe us because they don’t expect our tactics to be so powerful because they’re kind of simple. But they are very, very effective.’’  – Monica Badiu

‘’It’s not a secret formula. It’s having upsells, order bumps, email promotions, and it’s having optimized top of the funnel and lead requisition source. All you have to do is to be consistent with doing the fundamental things, right.’ – Josip Belina

‘’People expect it to be an overnight miracle, but in reality, this is a lot of work.’ – Josip Belina

‘’It [our program] has this incredible impact because, partly, we’re not doing all the other stuff that’s a waste of time. Most people don’t know which is the thing that works and which is the one that doesn’t. And because we’ve tracked every single tactic, every single time, we’ve run it for four years, that’s how we know what it is.’’ – John Ainsworth

‘’We are so confident that our system is going to work, that we decided on a revenue share model. Basically we only get paid if there are results. ‘’ – Josip Belina

About the speaker:

Monica is a mom-in-training with an insatiable curiosity for paper art, psychology, and all things digital marketing! She is our in-house copywriting chief and copy coach. She specializes in sales copywriting for online course creators who want to produce copy that speaks to their ideal customer and generates conversions.

Josip is a Biomedical Scientist now working on online marketing funnels as DDMs Funnel Strategy Lead & Consultant. While working on dozens of Funnel Building & Optimization Projects – he developed & tested most of the systems DDM is now using when working with our clients.

In the last 5 years of working with funnels – he’s helped more than 100 people to scale their businesses. His areas of expertise are data analysis, funnel strategy, email marketing strategy, and automation.

Resources In This Video Interview:

This interview is part of our video series “The Art Of Selling Online Courses”, where we talk with top performers about their winning strategies and secret hacks. When you join our Facebook group “Advanced Online Course Creators” you will be able to see the full videos and get more exclusive content to help you grow and scale your online course business

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Funnels

Which Is the Best Online Course Funnel for You?

I work with amazing online course creators. They are great at what they do – creating and improving courses, communicating with students… That’s their full-time job. 

On top of that, they are trying to figure out how to scale their business, and learn the best course funnel for online course promotion and sales. I admire them. It’s not easy to do all of that. 

There are so many different suggestions out there about how to market your online course:  drive more traffic, run more ads, start a YouTube channel, record your own podcast, do a webinar, write more SEO friendly content, set up a course funnel… It’s overwhelming.

Do you feel the same? 

I can’t tell you what to do in other marketing areas, because I’m not an expert on everything. But when it comes to course funnels, I will share with you three proven strategies for scaling your online course business.

You don’t have to learn about every sales funnel to sell online courses. I’m going to give you a shortcut so you can implement what’s proven to work. I talked about this in a lot more detail, with many examples, in my webinar, Funnels for online course creators. 

But if you want a short summary or you prefer to read, then keep reading 🙂

Course funnel options

There are two funnels that we use on a regular basis at Data-Driven Marketing because they are the best marketing funnels for course creators. These are:

  • The tripwire funnel 
  • The webinar funnel

We also spend a lot of time on email promotions, because they’re such a great way of getting customers into your funnel. Email promotion to a funnel is the third most effective tactic for selling more online courses.

Ok, now that you know, let me give you useful resources about these three tools, so you can go ahead and set them up. 

Tripwire funnel 

A tripwire offer is a cheap but useful offer you give to your audience right after they sign up for your lead magnet (a free gift you give to your audience to subscribe to your list). The idea behind a tripwire is simple: make an irresistible low-cost offer to gain a new customer. 

Once people have bought an inexpensive item from you, they are more likely to purchase something else. Additionally, if your traffic is high enough, your tripwire sales can cover your ad costs. That’s the real value of a tripwire funnel. 

Using this type of online course funnel gives you the best opportunity to upsell your new buyer once they are in your sales funnel. If you’re interested in turning more visitors into buyers, then read more about the tripwire funnel here.

Webinar funnel

The webinar course creators funnel is a bit more complex and it will take you more time to set it up. But the webinar funnel is arguably the best sales funnel for online course sales.

Webinars are great for building trust and showing people how you can help them. They’re a powerful tool. You can set up an automated webinar funnel and then you’ll be literally making money on autopilot. It’s not easy, but it is possible. 

One of our former clients, James from BNB Mastery, has an automated funnel that brings him 271% ROI.

This is what an ideal webinar funnel looks like:

I wrote a very detailed guide on how to create the ideal webinar funnel. You can read it here

Creating an automated, evergreen course funnel with webinars is one of our specialties. If you need help, book a call here.

Email promotion

Some of the best online course creators I work with do at least two email promotions to their list monthly. They are great at using all the resources they already have. 

If you have an email list and people who applied to receive useful content from you – use it!

Can it really make a big difference?

One of our clients, Seonaid, is making an additional $10,000 per month just because she started doing two promotions per month. If your email list is smaller, your results won’t be like hers but it will still make you additional money.

Is email promotion a funnel? No, but you can send people to a sales funnel for online courses from your email promotion offer. If you add an upsell and order bump to your offer. 

Upsell is a more expensive offer you show to people after they’ve bought something. Usually, it’s related to what they already bought and it can be your other course or level 2 of what they already purchased. 

An order bump is a small offer shown on the order page. People can just check the checkbox to include the order bump in their offer. It can be a workbook or something additional that goes well with the purchase. 

Both of those can increase your average cart value and your profit. 

Create your sales funnel 

There’s no need to try and figure out everything by yourself. You now know that creating a sales funnel for your course will improve your sales and what the best options are for course creators. 

If you end up stuck at any point, need help, or have additional questions about your course funnel, book a call here.

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The Art Of Selling Online Courses Funnels

Do’s And Don’ts Of Youtube Ads – With Tom Breeze

In this episode of “The Art of Selling Online Courses: Winning Strategies & Secret Hacks From Top Performers, Tom and I are taking a look at YouTube as an advertising platform. We will talk about who should and shouldn’t run YouTube ads and what different kinds of YouTube campaigns there are.

Tom will walk us through the 5 A’s of a successful YouTube channel and how to grow it fast. And if you are interested in going deeper into the psychology of advertising Tom will also share his insights on why it’s important to ‘sell’ identity with your course.

If you want to hear more about these topics, check out the new episode.

Subscribe

For more interviews and tips on building funnels to sell more online courses, join our Facebook group for Advanced Online Course Creators.

What You’ll Learn In Today’s Video:

  • Who should and shouldn’t run YouTube ads
  • What different kinds of YouTube ad campaigns are there 
  • The five A’s of YouTube ads
  • How to grow your YouTube channel fast
  • Selling the identity with your course

Ideas Worth Sharing:

‘’Are your customers actually on YouTube? If you’re having to force the issue, then it’s going to be a real challenge.‘’ – Tom Breeze

‘’People are going to YouTube all the time, spending a lot of time there, looking for answers to their questions that you can probably help them with. And you don’t even need to be super salesy, you can just turn up at the right time and give them great content. And people will love you for that.’’ – Tom Breeze

‘’The thing that makes YouTube work and any advertising work really is knowing the value of your customer and how long you’re willing to park aside to say, well, the lifetime customer value is this much.’’  – Tom Breeze

‘’Not everyone wants to be rich. That’s the thing. And they might be comfortable with where they’re at and they don’t want to take that extra level of uncomfort. ’’ – Tom Breeze

‘’On YouTube, you can target people that are watching right now. You can select which videos you want to run your ad in front of that’s called placement targeting. You can also do keyword targeting. What keywords are typing in or what content they’re watching.‘’ – Tom Breeze

‘’YouTube is not just a search engine. It’s also a contextual place. Right? So I go to YouTube for one thing and I ended up finding, I’m watching content about other things very quickly.’’ – Tom Breeze

‘’So the can be super simple, you know, it’s just that the offer converts really well when it comes to video, it’s well-thought. The script is well-thought through the storyboard as well. And those are the two elements really that make a video work really effectively.‘’ – Tom Breeze

‘’How does your product make them feel? That’s really important. What is the emotion? And once you’ve figured that, the next step of that emotion is, does it come with an identity? Does someone think of themselves differently now as a result of that? Does it reflect well on them? ’’ – Tom Breeze

About the speaker:

Tom Breeze is the founder of Viewability, a YouTube ad agency & Ad Buyers Club, the place where marketers are transformed into YouTube ad buying heroes. Tom has a masters in psychology, is an author and is regularly invited to speak at conferences all over the world, showing businesses how to unlock the true power of YouTube ads for profit & scale.

Resources In This Video Interview:

This interview is part of our video series “The Art Of Selling Online Courses”, where we talk with top performers about their winning strategies and secret hacks. When you join our Facebook group “Advanced Online Course Creators” you will be able to see the full videos and get more exclusive content to help you grow and scale your online course business

Categories
Funnels

How to Draw a Sales Funnel Diagram for Better Conversions

How many of you know how to draw a sales funnel diagram and keep track of it?

If you are anything like my clients, probably not so many.

Why?

Because you’ve probably never even heard about funnel drawing, am I right?

Most of my clients are surprised when I show them that there is such an option.

And they are even more amazed when they see how simple it is to draw your own sales funnel graphic. They’ve never seen it before because nobody told them about it and they’ve never searched for it themselves. I bet you are in the same group.

To learn more about sales funnel themselves, check out this blog post.

This time, I would like to show you how to draw a funnel diagram in just a few simple steps.

Take a look at this 17-second gif:

Looks simple?

It is an example of a sales funnel visualization I mapped out for one of my clients.

Let me explain step-by-step what you just saw on this sales funnel map. 

The idea here is not to show you the best or ideal sales pipeline visualizations we create for our clients but to show you how you can draw one on your own.

First, there is a website and traffic coming into it. In my client’s case, it was mostly coming from Google search but from different pages, such as blog posts or YouTube.

Each of those pages has an opt-in so that people who visit the website can become leads.

After someone uses any of the pages and opts-in, there is a chance to share the information they got with friends on Facebook.

Once they shared on Facebook, they’re getting a chance to sign up for a free email course.

When the opt-in, they’re going to get some emails, a welcome sequence or a video course, one of these two different sequences and each of the sequences will have four emails. That leads them to a promotional email sequence.

After that, they get an offer of an annual membership sales page. If they don’t buy the membership, there are four emails in a promotional sequence leading to a monthly membership sales page.

After that, there are a couple of emails, my client used Tuesday and Friday emails. Occasionally, 2-3 times a year there is a launch and all of that is pointing people back to the annual membership sales page.

If we look back on the annual membership sales page, there is an order page and we have a couple of emails that go out to people if they don’t actually buy the membership.

After the order page, the website takes people to a thank you page. The same sequence is used for all three of those different sales pages. These are all the steps we usually take to draw the current sales funnel diagrams for our clients.

Why draw a sales funnel diagram?

  1. A funnel visual helps you remember the exact steps you’ve already set up.
  2. Helps you easily control your sales funnel and see what stage it is at.
  3. Helps you see how you can improve your marketing funnel.

How to draw a sales and marketing funnel diagram

Out of all the funnel visualization software available, I mainly use funnel chart creator Funnelytics

It’s a funnel mapping tool that allows you to map your strategies and sales pipeline charts in just a few minutes. You can use ready created templates to make your work easier or map out your sales funnel image by yourself.

Let’s see how a funnel illustration looks in this tool:

How do sales funnel charts help you?

You can use the diagram not only to map out your funnel flow chart steps, but also to add some of your results.

Like in this example.

As you can see above, the conversion rate on a tripwire is usually 1-3% which means that many people are likely to buy your offer.

If you have an order bump in your funnel, about 33% of your clients could buy it. Usually, my clients get between 20% and 60% where the latter is considered an amazing result.

Upsell 1 can get about 20-40% of your clients to buy whatever you’re trying to sell them. You should aim at 20% because that’s the number you will most likely be able to reach. If you add a downsell and/or the second upsell, you can expect up to 20-25% of the people to buy it.

By having those numbers, you are able to estimate how much income your funnel can actually generate. Just multiply the number by the price of your offer and you will see how much you will earn per month. 

Of course, those are only exemplary numbers but you can get a general idea and make some adjustments if necessary.

Sales pipeline graphic examples

Here are a few of the funnels created for our clients. Some of the pictures show only a part of the actual funnel and some show the fully created one.

As you can see, all the funnels diagrams are different. That’s because every client has different offers and whether you use a tripwire, a webinar or any other funnel depends on the type of business you have.

When I help my clients figure out and then map out their ideal marketing funnel visualization, I spend a lot of time putting all the pieces of their business together so that we come up with the best option for them.

Start designing your own funnel

Now you know that preparing a sales funnel chart takes just a few steps. It’s simple and it helps a lot when it comes to figuring out the best business strategy. 

I hope that now you will see why it’s so important. Since you learned how to do it on your own – do it! Map your own sales funnel diagram, practice what you know.

If you have questions or if you’d like to talk through what your current funnel is vs. what it could be, contact us and we will help you draw and build your ideal funnel.

 

Categories
Funnels

How to Create an Automated Evergreen Webinar Funnel

If you’ve read my blog post about the two best funnels for online course creators, you will have seen that the evergreen webinar funnel is one of them. They are not easy to set up but they are really effective. 

Webinars are a great marketing tool. They can be used for presenting new products or features, educating customers how to use your product, selling your product or service, discussing relevant topics or issues. 

This blog post is going to focus on automated webinar funnels for selling online courses, but most of this advice applies for selling any info product or service. 

What is an automated evergreen webinar?

An automated evergreen webinar is one that potential customers can watch again and again, and that continues to send a steady traffic of leads to your products. That’s because the content in the webinar is evergreen content – it doesn’t go out of date and will continue to be of use to the person watching for many, many years.

The difference between a standard webinar and an automated evergreen webinar is that the second one is pre-recorded. It’s not done live. It contains information and resources people can use whenever they watch it. 

Evergreen webinars are also known as just-in-time webinars because people can watch them immediately after signing up. And when we say they’re automated, it really means that. Once you set everything up – the webinar software, emails – it all works by itself. That’s why for most people this sounds too good to be true. 

They’re not easy to build, and they’re not easy to get right, but once you get them right they are a fantastic tool for selling online courses. 

There are lots of tools out there for webinar creation, but the one with the most modification options is Stealth Seminar. We use it for our evergreen webinar and recommend it to all our clients. If you want to use it, here’s our affiliate link

Why are evergreen webinars so effective?

I love webinars in general as a way to reach customers. There are many reasons for this:

  • It helps you build trust with your audience because you’re able to share a lot of valuable content.
  • It helps you present yourself as an expert in the area you work in.
  • it gives you the chance to build rapport with your audience. They’re spending an hour listening to you. An hour!
  • You have people’s attention in the way that you don’t have with a sales page.
  • You can teach content that sets up the sale in a very natural way.

All of these things combine to allow you to sell a higher priced course than using a tripwire funnel or an email promotion. 

Evergreen webinars are even more effective, because you’re presenting content that remains relevant. Also, it gives you more free time because you are not present during it. 

This article isn’t about how to write your webinar, or what content should be in it. Here we’re focusing on the evergreen webinar funnel.

What is an evergreen webinar funnel?

It’s not enough just to record an amazing webinar. Your goal is to get it in front of as many people as possible from your target audience and to get those people to your sales page to buy your product. The best way to do that is through an automated webinar funnel. 

A webinar funnel contains all the steps you need to set up so that people who see your webinar ad and/or landing page actually watch the webinar and then go on to buy your product. 

Having a good webinar sales funnel in place is the best way to:

  • Be sure you will not lose potential leads 
  • Increase your conversion rate
  • Increase the average amount each customer spends

An example of a basic webinar funnel 

Let me give you an example. This is a visualisation of the most basic webinar funnel template I can imagine.

basic webinar funnel

You’ve got traffic coming from somewhere (a website or an email list, let’s say). Then after they sign up they can attend if they remember. At the end you point them to a sales page and if they buy they go to an order confirmation page.

The problem with that funnel is that people might drop out at lots of different points:

  • They might not remember to turn up to watch the webinar
  • They might not watch it until the end (and your pitch is at the end)
  • If they attend and watch the pitch they might not go to the sales page
  • If they go to the sales page they might not click to add to cart
  • If they add your course to their cart they might not finish checking out

How to set up an automated webinar funnel 

The ideal webinar funnel can help you to maximize the results of your webinar. 

How did I learn what the ideal webinar funnel should look like?

Over the years, I had the chance to analyse webinar funnels of some of the very successful businesses that are making hundreds of thousands of dollars per month. I was looking at the patterns and what all of them have in common. 

That’s how I’ve created the ideal webinar funnel map. My team and I have implemented this map and made many webinar funnels for our clients based on it. That’s how we know it works and it gets results.

What does the ideal webinar funnel look like?

This is how the ideal webinar funnel should look:

webinar funnel

 

Ideal webinar funnel

As you can see, it’s far more complex and it therefore takes a lot more time to build, but it’s all for a reason. I will explain and guide you through the entire map, so you can know how to set it up. 

What does this type of webinar funnel work for?

Webinar funnels are really good for selling online courses from about $300 – $1000. They’re also good for booking sales calls for selling bigger programmes from $1000 up, but there’s a slightly different structure to those funnels. 

The reason why they work best for selling courses from $300 up is that there’s a certain cost to getting someone registered for a webinar, and attending. 

Let’s say for example that you pay $5/ lead and 35% of people attend and you get a 10% conversion rate from attendees to sales (which is really good).

That works out as: 

  • $5/ lead
  • $5 x 35% = $15/ attendee
  • $5 x 35% x 10% = $150/ buyer

So you better be selling something for $150 or more – otherwise the numbers don’t add up. So $300 is a good price at the low end.  

One of our clients, James Svetec, co-founder of BNB Mastery is selling his $2k course directly via an automated evergreen webinar funnel. He has 271% ROI. It took him over 400 hours to set everything up and he had to do a lot of optimisation. 

A step-by-step guide to setting up a webinar funnel

Now, let’s get to work. Let’s look at the entire map, step by step. 

Create a webinar landing page

Your first goal is to get as many people as possible to attend and register for the webinar. The second goal is to get them to your sales page after the webinar and sell them your offer. 

First, set up the webinar landing page. Before people start scrolling the page they should see the webinar title and subtitle explaining what’s the webinar about. It should include a video in which you’re explaining what they’ll learn in the webinar and why they should listen to you. The most important thing is to have a register button as well, right at the beginning of the page.

The text should be clear and written in your customer’s language. When they see the title and subtitle they should say: Yes, this is what I need!

Here’s an example of our webinar page. If you want to learn about how to scale your course sales with automated funnels and see a wide range of examples, you can register for it on this link.

Bonus tip: do A/B testing with different titles and subtitles and see which one works best for your audience.

The rest of the webinar landing page should focus on benefits the audience will get after they attend the webinar. Include testimonials if you have them and let people know what they will learn. 

Run retargeting ads

Make sure you capture data on who’s coming to your webinar landing page. If they don’t register for the webinar, you should set up retargeting ads to remind them to sign up. 

If you want to take it a step further, you can do Facebook authority ads to those who have registered for the webinar. These are ads that point people to your interviews or articles you’ve written for other publications. Their goal is to establish you as authority in the area you work in, so you can build credibility and trust with your audience. 

Add reminder emails before the webinar

People who have registered for your webinar will then go to the confirmation page. You can put another video on there and thank people for registering. Let them know they will be receiving reminder emails and motivate them to attend by reminding them about the benefits. 

On the confirmation page, it’s good to add information about how they can best prepare for the webinar. Will they need a pen and paper? Should they watch on computer, tablet or smartphone? Should they have read anything first? 

Make sure that you have an “add to calendar” button.

Everyone who registers should receive a confirmation email. But, that’s not enough. The average statistics say that only about 35% of people who register will show up. That’s not good enough for us. We want to get 50-60% of people attending, and reminder emails help achieve that number. 

Depending on when they signed up to watch it, you can send from 1 – 5 reminder emails. Of course, you could send more, but you don’t want to spam your audience. If your webinar software allows it, you can set these emails to be sent out automatically 24 hours, 12 hours and 15 minutes before the webinar starts. This is the usual reminder frequency. 

If you wish, you can modify these emails and include reminders about all the benefits they’ll get if they attend.

Here are some examples.

reminder email example

Or it can look like this:

Or even this simple:

Add post webinar email sequences

Make sure you tag everyone who registered to watch the webinar. Have a different tag for those who attended, those who missed it, and those who attended but dropped out at some point.

You can either send links to a webinar replay or you can send them the link to register again and pick a different time to watch it. Both of these work fine. We prefer the second option with evergreen webinar and the first option with a live webinar.

Create email sequences for each group:

  • Attended – they should receive reminders to go to the sales page and buy the course (if they haven’t bought it yet). These emails can include testimonials, frequently asked questions, objection handling and everything that will show the audience that your offer can help them
  • Missed – they should receive reminder emails to register again and watch the webinar
  • Attended but dropped out – they should get teaser emails about what they missed and a link to register again

Here are some examples:

For those who attended but dropped out at some point:

For those who watched until the end but haven’t signed up for the call:

Add abandoned cart emails

Those who got your product into the cart, but didn’t buy it should receive abandoned cart emails with the link to finish their purchase.

Make your offer compelling

Offer your audience different payment plans. Offer a special price because they’ve attended the webinar. Create a bundle and add bonuses. I wrote a detailed post about how to create a compelling webinar offer, which you can read about here.

What if they want to spend more money?

Some people will always be willing to spend more than your initial offer. You don’t want to stop those lovely people from giving you more money, do you? Of course you don’t. 

That’s why you should add in a one-click upsell for those who bought your offer.

An upsell is an additional useful offer you show to your customers after they’ve bought something. It should be related to what they’ve bought. For example, if they buy a course about content management, your upsell can be a course about copywriting or ads. If they want to organize their content, they might find those skills useful. Or maybe the upsell is some useful templates for $149. 

We’ve shared many upselling examples before. You can also include a downsell – for example if they don’t want to buy the templates that go with your course then we can offer them a smaller pack of templates for $49.

After you add upsell, downsell offers and all the emails and Facebook retargeting that goes with that, you’ll have the ideal webinar funnel. It will help you:

  • Make sure you don’t lose potential leads 
  • Increase your conversion rate
  • Increase the average amount each customer spends

The reactions I get 

The normal reaction I get when I show people this is first “That’s really impressive,” and secondly “It’s overwhelming and looks like lots of work.” 

The reason it looks like a lot of work is because it is a lot of work. It’s complicated. There’s a ton of automation to set up. You need all the content. It takes lots of time.

Of course you don’t have to do all of this to make a successful webinar funnel. 

But this is the ideal. This is the best of what’s working right now.

Want help setting up your evergreen webinar funnel?

Setting up an effective evergreen webinar funnel requires quite a bit of work. We specialize in creating funnels. Why not let us help you? 

Book a free strategy call here and we’ll help you on your way. 

Categories
Funnels

The Ultimate Guide to Building a Sales Funnel Landing Page

I regularly come into contact with people who’ve created fantastic online courses. They’ve taken the time to set up a sales funnel landing page which draws in loads of interest from potential customers.

But sometimes I get clients coming to me who are frustrated. Even though they’re getting lots of people coming to their site, those people don’t convert to paying customers. If that’s the case, the problem may be your landing page funnel.

In this blog, we’re going to look at how to get your landing page to operate at a really high level, so you get as many people as possible signing up for your courses.

To have a successful online business, you need sales landing pages designed to engage potential customers and motivate them to take action – purchase a course, book the sales call, or sign up for a webinar.

While you might already have a well-designed sales landing page, understanding its performance can be tricky.

Let’s take a look at how it’s done.

What is a landing page?

A landing page is a web page designed to convince your audience to take some action – buy your product or service, book a call, sign up for a webinar or lead magnet, or anything you want them to do.

It’s the first page your potential leads land on after clicking on the link from your emails, Google ads, Facebook, or any other place you promote your site. The landing page is the first step to your sales funnel pages.

Landing page vs sales funnel: what’s the difference?

Your landing page is the page people enter your website on. It’s where they “land” and the first stage of your sales funnel.

Depending on the complexity of your business, you may have different pages you want to guide potential customers to. Customers may need to go through various stages of the sales funnel before they make a purchase.

Why do you need a great sales funnel landing page?

A well-designed landing page will make sure that people who come to your website take the action you want and move into your sales funnel.

Every single detail on this page matters because it can influence the conversion rate.

The key is to understand your audience and find a way to catch their attention so that they stop, read your offer, think about it, understand it clearly and decide to buy the product or take the next step.

Want to know how much more revenue you could make with an optimized funnel? Use our calculator to find out. 

How to build a perfect landing page

Whatever your goal, your landing page is the first of your funnel pages. It needs to impress potential clients. A successful landing page should have:

  • a catchy headline and subheading that talks to your target group
  • information about the product/service/lead magnet/webinar
  • a list of benefits: why they should do what you ask them to do
  • product/service features: how you are going to give them those benefits
  • information about your irresistible offer
  • testimonials from clients who already bought the product
  • answers to Frequently Asked Questions
  • information about the course creator or company or team so that you can build trust and authority

Sales funnel landing page examples (good and bad)

Although the landing page might look like any other web page, its purpose is different: to get you conversions. And that’s why it has to be designed in a different way. There are a few key points you or your designer should follow to make the landing page as effective as possible so it converts best.

Keep it simple

The landing page has to be easy to navigate and cannot be overwhelming when people first look at it. Having a minimalistic design will improve the focus of your audience and make it easier to find the information they need. 

The layout should guide the eye of the customer to high-priority sections and it shouldn’t be distracting in any way.

The call to action should be impossible to miss. It’s also a good idea to place the CTA button on your landing page at least two times. First, above the fold so that people can see it immediately after opening the page, and the second time at the bottom after the offer.

Here is an example of a badly-designed landing page:

There is lots of information everywhere on the page which confuses the audience. The landing page is not clear and the audience might not know where to look to find what they’re looking for.

Choose appropriate colors

It’s well known that colors are a big part of how we perceive websites. They influence our feelings and actions. You can find out more in this article.

Depending on your business, adjust the colors on the landing page to your audience so that it converts better.

It’s important to remember that CTA buttons need to stand out. Make them in a color that is easily visible and eye-catching.

When designing the funnel landing page, think about what your target audience needs. Keep the colors on your landing page in line with your brand colors.

Here is an example of a well-designed funnel page with colors and fonts matching the brand:

Make it responsive

Nowadays, we work on many different devices: laptops, tablets, even mobile phones. If you want to target more people, your sales funnel landing page needs to be responsive.

Make sure that your page works on all the devices. Check the layout, forms that have to be filled in, and all the buttons. Whatever device people use to reach your website, they have to be able to see it clearly without having any errors.

Choose a catchy header

The first thing visitors see when they come to your website is the header. It should be written in a way to convince people to read more. For example, if you have a blog about bringing up children, your header could be “Everything Mums Need To Sleep At Night”. If your goal is to help real estate agents, you could go with “For Real Estate Agents Who Want it All”.

Choose a headline

Out of ten potential customers, at least seven are likely to leave the page without clicking through to anything.

To minimize that number, the headline needs to be clear, understandable and catchy. After reading it, they should be able to figure out what your offer is about, what it is for them and how valuable it is. The goal of the headline is to make people read whatever is written underneath it.

Be intentional with your copy

You need to write the copy on your website in a neat, clear, and concise way. Speak directly to your audience. Using words like “you” and “your” will make them feel more engaged and they will be more willing to stay on the website.

The purpose of the copy is to draw attention, make your potential customers stop for a minute, read what you have to tell them, and decide “Yes, this is what I need”.

Copywriter and marketing expert Perry Belcher has an easy to follow 21-point sales letter formula. Here are some of the steps included in his guide:

Identify the problem

Start with identifying the problem of your audience. Show them that you know what it is they’re struggling with and that you can relate to their situation. Once they see you are aware of their problems, they will be more willing to listen to what you have to say.

Show them the solution

Provide the solution for the problems. Explain how you overcame the obstacles in your life and how it impacted your business. The solution should be explained in an understandable way.

Mention how long it took you or your clients to see the first results after implementing the solution in your business. People want to see results. For some of them, it will take longer than others but it is important to let them know what to expect.

Show them how their life can change

Finally, show your potential customers how their life can change. Explain that the solution you’re providing them can improve their future and make their business better and easier in the long run.

Add credentials and testimonials

Make your offer and results more trustworthy and add some credentials. Show your audience that you have experience in what you’re doing. Add some of the certificates or badges you have. You can also add logos of businesses you supported successfully.

Testimonials are another great way to establish credibility. Having social proof that what you do is working will help you get more clients. Testimonials build trust and are a perfect way to back up your experience. 

Top tip: Make sure to add the name, company, and potentially function of the person giving the testimonial as otherwise it may appear fake.

You can also add trust icons to make your page more credible. A trust badge is an icon handed out by a company like McAfee or PayPal to say your website is safe to do business with.


Present your irresistible offer

Explain your offer. By now, your audience should feel that you understand them, you showed them you know what their pain points are, and they are interested in the solution, so now you can show them the whole offer.

Your product or service is not your offer. This means that your offer is not simply a recap of what your product or service will do. You also need to explain how and why the customer’s life will be better if they make a purchase. In order to make the offer irresistible, there are many things you should add to it.

If you have bonuses or some free trials that go with the main product, add them in this section. You might want to offer a free resource that your audience will be able to download once they buy your product or an additional product at a better price.

To make it even more convincing, add a money-back guarantee. People are more willing to buy a product if they know they are secured by a money-back guarantee in case something doesn’t work.

I wrote about how to create an irresistible offer for your webinar in this blog post. The same concepts that work for a webinar will work on your landing page sales funnel as well.

Here is another example of a well-designed sales landing page.

Tactics to get more sales funnel page conversions

When it comes to writing copy on a landing page, there are a few strategies you can follow. Remember that the content needs to be informative and clear. It has to give people insight into what they will get once they buy your product. It should convince them to go ahead with the purchase and make them feel good about it.

We usually use two strategies we’ve found to work really well:

1. Urgency

The idea behind this tactic is to push your audience to act fast. When people are facing a limited-time offer, they start to think if they feel comfortable letting the offer go. FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out.

Copy that tells people they only have a limited time to decide if they want to purchase your product can make it appear much more valuable to them.

2. Scarcity

Tell people that there’s only a limited amount of whatever they’re buying. This also triggers FOMO. People want to buy something quickly before it’s unavailable.


Using urgency and scarcity can push people to take action. But be careful not to fake it. The trouble is that if you say there are only a few of something and they’ll soon be gone, you can’t email them the same offer with the same stuff that’s supposed to be scarce, at the same price, a month later.


Have a clear call-to-action

The goal of the CTA on your landing page is to convince the audience to take action. It needs to be clearly defined and a visible button in a stand-out color. Whether it is encouraging people to download a free resource or to register for a webinar, the idea should be clear, so people know what they are signing up for.

The CTA button can be used a few times on the landing page. Use it at the very beginning and at the end so that people cannot miss it. If the sales page is quite long, you can drop it in a couple more times as well.

Examples of sales pages with high conversion rates

Here is an example of a well-designed landing page used for getting new leads:

Then it has testimonials in a form of Facebook comments.

It has an example of how the product helped the customers. In this case, it is a digital painting done by one of the customers who took the course.

In the end, it has a section that explains frequently asked questions together with the CTA button.

You can compare it with this example of a landing page used for a sales funnel:

On top, it has the name of the offer and an invitation to buy the product.

The offer is backed up by a testimonial from a previous customer and a description of the offer.

The next section shows the latest products offered by the company – in this case, it’s a list of courses customers can sign up for.

Then the customers can see another testimonial from a previous customer and logos of organizations that bought the product.

The next section shows what’s inside the main offer and what clients will have access to once they decide to buy the product.

There is also a promise given by the company that everything is done by an expert and that the customers will always get support when they need it.

In the end, there is information about the price of the main offer. If you have different plans for your offer, you can show it to your clients like this:

At the very end of the website, customers can see the guarantee given by the website and answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

Understanding your landing page conversion rates

Conversion rate is the main metric we use to measure how a landing page is performing. To calculate it, divide the number of people visiting the page by the number of people who click through to the next stage of your funnel. The conversion rate of an average landing page which uses lead magnets is 40-60%. There are some landing pages converting better and hitting 60-80%.

If you’re trying to figure out what your conversion rate is, there is a simple way to do it. Just take the number of conversions your page generates and divide it by the number of the website’s visitors.

It might be a little discouraging at the beginning if your numbers are not exactly what you expected but don’t worry. While it takes some time to figure out the best way to improve your pages so they convert well, most people are able to get higher numbers very quickly.

Want to boost your landing page conversion rate?

Now you understand more about how to improve your sales funnel landing page, it’s time to get to work implementing some changes.

If you don’t have your own landing page yet or you have one but you feel like it could convert better, book a call with us.

We will be happy to answer any questions you might have and help you figure out how to optimize your funnel and landing pages

Categories
The Art Of Selling Online Courses Funnels

What To Keep In Mind When Flipping Online Businesses – With Greg Elfrink

In this episode of “The Art of Selling Online Courses: Winning Strategies & Secret Hacks From Top Performers, Greg and I are talking about what asset flywheel strategy is and how to use it to become financially free.

We will also cover the potentials of selling and buying online businesses compared to continuously growing one. Greg will walk us through how the market and evaluations for online businesses have changed over years and what price range to expect if you decide to sell your course.

If you want to hear more about these topics, check out the new episode.

Subscribe

For more interviews and tips on building funnels to sell more online courses, join our Facebook group for Advanced Online Course Creators.

What You’ll Learn In Today’s Video:

  • What is asset flywheel strategy 
  • How to use asset flywheel strategy to become financially free 
  • Selling and buying online businesses vs continuously growing one
  • What price range to expect when you decide to sell your course
  • Changes in online businesses evaluations in the last years

Ideas Worth Sharing:

‘’An online business that is run well grows so much faster than stocks and shares and dividends or property.‘’ – John Ainsworth

‘’What a lot of people don’t realise is that growth is a double-edged sword. You could grow so fast and so quickly where your own success kills you.’’ – Greg Elfrink

‘’As you scale up bigger, you’re not just scaling up your revenue, you’re also scaling up inefficiencies that you didn’t even know existed. And those inefficiencies can become these gaping holes. And really become alligators for you down the road.’’  – Greg Elfrink

‘’It’s much better to always buy a business like the one that you sold, because you already know the roadmap to success.’’ – Greg Elfrink

‘’The person who knows how to grow a business from 10 to 100 million might not know how to grow from 1 to 10 or from getting started to one or anything like that. So it’s like, you get that specific skill set and then you leverage that in the same business model.‘’ – John Ainsworth

‘’Most authority sites, depending on the niche, can support many different business models.’’ – Greg Elfrink

‘’The hardest part of the whole thing is the first business. ‘Cause that’s the one where you really need to hustle to make it happen. Once you sell that business, that’s when the real fun begins. Now you have two paths. If you want to be more conservative, you can take the capital and build a new business. But buying a business is way, way faster.‘’ – Greg Elfrink

‘’So the first business is the hardest one. Then you buy two smaller businesses, you build those up and then you sell them, and where you go from there is you buy two more that are bigger businesses or buy four more of a similar level. And you repeat this just two or three times at the end of that five-year period, you’re seeing on a huge amount of wealth.’’ – Greg Elfrink

‘’Don’t try to just maximise yourself, maximise the opportunity you get when you do sell.’’ – Greg Elfrink

About the speaker:

Gregory Elfrink is the head of marketing at Empire Flippers, the #1 largest curated M&A marketplace in the world for buying and selling online businesses. He helps educate the market and help entrepreneurs understand how they can level up their life through a successful exit, or how to grow a portfolio of profitable acquisitions.

Resources In This Video Interview:

This interview is part of our video series “The Art Of Selling Online Courses”, where we talk with top performers about their winning strategies and secret hacks. When you join our Facebook group “Advanced Online Course Creators” you will be able to see the full videos and get more exclusive content to help you grow and scale your online course business

Categories
Case Studies

Case Study: How BNB Mastery Uses webinars to get 271% monthly ROI

A former client of mine has an automated funnel running which makes him a 271% ROI on his ads. No sales calls, no extra work, the funnel is doing everything on it’s own.

Every month, for every $1 he puts in he gets $2.71 back out. And that’s making him $50,000 in profit every month. And he runs this business with one assistant. And his clients love him.

Nice work if you can get it.

But it wasn’t easy to get to this point.

James Svetec, Creator & Founder of BNB mastery has been upgrading and optimising his funnel over the years. Now his entire business model is based on an evergreen, automated sales funnel that’s selling his BNB Mastery course. That’s a program for helping people earn a full-time income by managing other people’s properties on Airbnb.

We all love learning from examples, so in this post I will tell you James’ story and the journey he took to get to the point where he’s at now.

Let me start with how we met James and what the first things were we worked on.

 

The Old Model: Webinar > Sales Call > Sale

James built a webinar funnel driving people to a sales call.

That funnel was doing fantastically well. He was using ads to drive people to the webinar sign up page. The webinar was about 45 minutes long. It had a pitch to book a call in the end.

To get people back in the funnel if they left at some point, he had email sequences in place for people who:

  • registered but didn’t attend
  • attended but haven’t reached the pitch and CTA
  • attended, saw the CTA but haven’t booked the call

He was getting consistent leads, sales calls and sales. More people attending the webinar meant more sales calls which further required a bigger sales team.

He was making about $50,000 a month in profit at that time. He had around 200-300% ROI during good months.

So, where was the issue you may ask…

The Issues: Scalability and Low Margins 

The sales team was two sales reps and himself. The business was growing, but he was very busy with the calls. When he wasn’t on the sales calls, he was investing time in developing his sales team. The better they are, the better results they can get. So one of his priorities was also organizing training and education for them, motivating them and doing regular planning. Having more people in the sales teams means more work and people management, bigger costs and smaller margin.

Salespeople are humans, so sometimes they have a good day, sometimes a bad day. They argue with potential clients, they have health or personal issues… These are all regular things you’re dealing with when working with people.

Building his business up to this point was a lot of work and it was stressful. It was bringing good revenue, but James wanted to grow further. He thought: “There must be a way to simplify that process and to scale while working less”.

Let’s summarise shortly:

  • At that time, his program was priced at $2800.
  • They were putting leads through a just in time automated webinar which lasted for about an hour and had a pitch to book a call at the end.
  • He and two other people were in the sales team, doing calls with the leads.

The issue with that model was:

  • Inability to scale because scaling means bigger sales team and that would mean higher costs
  • He tried to increase the price of the course but that didn’t give good results
  • He was too busy with sales calls and managing his team so he didn’t have time to track data and optimise his funnel
  • Margin was low due to other costs (commission to sales people, training, consulting companies etc)

The New Model: Webinar > Sale

James realized that if he really wanted to scale further, he needed to start doing something differently.

So, he decided to try an automated evergreen sales funnel. That was the solution chosen to cut the sales calls and cost of the sales team. With this model he would be selling the product straight from the webinar.

It was the beginning of another journey. And not an easy one.

A funnel that leads to sales calls and one that sells are two different kinds of funnels.

When you sell on the call, you need to give people value on the webinar and to intrigue them enough to be interested to book the call. On the call, you talk to them, answer questions, build more trust, help them more and persuade them to buy. The goal of that webinar is for people to book the call. The goal of the call is to sell.

A webinar that directs people straight to the order page to buy is different because it has to be much more persuasive. It must include all the steps that sales reps are doing on the call. You must be able to build trust and persuade people during the webinar as you won’t have the chance to talk to them. You must give even more value. You must address their objections.

It’s not an easy task.

That’s why James put even more time into building this automated funnel.

What did he change?

  • The webinar itself, which was previously one hour long, now is two and a half hours meaning he is giving more value and establishing more trust
  • He lowered the price of the course from $2800 to $2000 while adding more value for course students
  • He added additional email sequences in every point where customers could churn (I give detailed info about the funnel later on in the post)
  • He added a 14-day email sequence which is handling different objections people may have before deciding to buy the product
  • He created different sales pages to handle objections

So, was this enough to get the new funnel template to work?

When James started the ads to the new funnel, he set aside a $5000 budget to try to get it to work. The days were passing by and money was running out, but the number of the sales made was 0. When he had only $1000 more left to spend on ads, the panic and fear started coming in.

“What if this doesn’t start working after all? This is not as easy as I thought it would be.”

It is then that he started further analysing the entire funnel in detail and making even more changes fast to see if he can make it work. There was no more time (nor money) to lose.

There was a lot on the line. It was not only money, but also time, knowledge, years of experience and even self-confidence that were put to the test. Were his hopes and dreams to fully automate his business going to vanish just like that?

He knew other people were doing it, so why couldn’t he?

Many things in business and marketing are done by trial and error, but when you don’t have much money and time available, it’s getting very stressful, very fast.

He started digging deep into analytics and data one more time. He watched a training about high converting webinar presentation and had an assumption that his webinar was missing this small but crucial piece.

James realised he must show his audience that they are able to do what he’s teaching. If someone is new to this, it’s not enough just to “kill them with value”, but you must address the question “What’s stopping me from believing that this is possible?”

He needed to make them believe the results he was talking about were possible for them. It’s not enough just to tell them what to do and give them practical tools. He had to give them confidence as well.

It’s always very small tweaks that create a huge difference. People are usually not aware of this.

But, was this the right tweak to make?

The Result: Automated Sales

A couple days after making that change, there were still no sales and his $5,000 initial advertising budget was almost entirely depleted. On the final day of his budget, he decided he would leave ads to work until midnight that day and if no sales came in, he would turn them off and agree that he needed to go back to the drawing board. The test has failed. Ego bruised, self-confidence scattered, James would decide to stop investing money into something that doesn’t seem to work.

A few hours before the deadline for this test was to expire he had nothing to show up for. His thoughts were close to what you might expect yourself: “Time to call this a failure and to go back to managing the sales team”.

Then, a few minutes before midnight, the first sale came through.

Maybe this could work?

He watched the next day on tenterhooks.

1 day later there was another sale.

Then another one 2 days after that.

This was not only working – it was working well, and it was profitable. Yes!

But the job is only part way done. Now that he has more time because he’s not busy with sales calls or with managing his team, he’s able to track and optimise his funnel further. I will get to the point how that’s done further in the post.

Building Funnels

Let’s now take a look at two funnels he had in place. Before and after.

Previous funnel:

Current funnel:

You can see that this funnel is way more complex. It takes a lot of time to build all of this.

There are many email sequences that are making sure people get back on track if they fall off. There are pages he’s taking people to further build trust. There is a lot of useful content.

Email Sequences

Emails are a very powerful tool and are extremely important when building funnels. If you don’t set up your email sequences right, you’re missing out on more sales.

Here are the email sequences he has in place:

  • Registered but did not attend.
  • Attended but didn’t get to the call to action. The goal is to get them to attend the webinar until the end.
  • If they don’t sign up to attend again they start getting the objection handling email sequence (14 emails).
  • If they attend and don’t purchase – they end up in the same 14 days email sequence (objection handling email series that’s trying to get them to purchase.)
  • If they start buying but close the window – they are getting abandoned cart emails.

7 out of those 14 days, objection handling emails are directing people to the pages James created to build more trust and increase sales.

Each page includes some of the objections people might have before they decide to buy and each page has a CTA to buy the course. Here are a few examples of what is on those pages:

  • Video testimonials of people who bought the course and had great results.
  • Answer to questions such as: “What if my area isn’t good enough to do this? What if people don’t want to work with me?”
  • All frequently asked questions listed and answered. That is the last one they point people to and it includes the deadline funnel (countdown timer) to add urgency.
  • Each page include CTA to buy the course.

Here are two examples of objection handling pages:
Page #1

Page #2

The last few emails are the deadline funnel. They are sending emails with the countdown timer:

  • 48 hours before cart closing
  • 24 hours before cart closing
  • 4 emails during the last day

The Importance of Looking at Data

So, what happens when you set up the funnel, make changes and it finally starts working?

You keep track of results and keep improving it. If you’re running ads, you should keep track of your data daily.

Most people I talk with don’t have the right tracking system in place. They don’t know what are the most important parts to track and they don’t know how to analyse it and what to do with it. If you don’t measure you can’t improve, so this is a crucial part of every funnel. Especially when you’re setting everything up – this data will show you what needs changing and how to earn more.

What is James tracking (and what you need to track):

  • Ad Spend
  • Impressions
  • Reach
  • CPM
  • Clicks
  • CTR
  • CPC
  • Leads
  • Partial leads (submitted email but didn’t select webinar time)
  • Registered
  • Attended
  • Saw CTA
  • Missed
  • Sales
  • Revenue
  • Refund
  • Cash
  • CPA
  • Payment plan completion rate
  • Average LTV (accounting for refunds and payment plans)

So, you must be wondering after all this hard work what are the results James got?

By the title you can see his funnel is working and he’s managed to get 271% ROI. But let’s take a look at other data for one of the months:

  • CPM is $19.36
  • CTR is 1.69%
  • CPC – $1.14
  • Webinar Attended – 30%
  • Saw CTA – 46%
  • CPA – $839
  • ROI – 271%

Selling Courses on Autopilot is Hard – But It’s Possible

Automated funnels are an amazing way to sell your course or other product/service you may have. It is not easy to set it up, but it is worth it.

For James, these are the main benefits and results he got from his funnel:

  • no need to manage, educate, work with a sales team
  • no more sales call which means
  • more time to focus on the funnel, track data, and optimise it further
  • everything is working on autopilot – he just needs to come in and check the data and see what needs to be optimised
  • he has time for his course students and he actually has more activities and benefits he’s offering them
  • he’s got 271% average monthly ROI in revenue
  • by optimising the funnel, the results can go up so it’s possible to scale even more
  • he recently had the most profitable month without any sales calls
  • it was stressful for sales reps before, now there’s no stress

This is possible for you as well if you set up automated funnels.

Get Your Own Automated Sales

If you’re already doing over $3,000/month and want to scale your course business quickly, we can help you just like we helped James. Take just 2 minutes to fill in this questionnaire, schedule a time, and we’ll create your growth plan togehis

Categories
Tracking & Reporting

Why data-driven decision making is important: increase your revenue using data

Most stuff we do isn’t that important. There are a few things that really matter in order to increase your revenue. You can find them if you are data-driven.

“There are 1000 things you could be working on in your business, but only 2-3 really matter.” Perry Marshall

So how do you figure out which is which?

  • Should I develop a new product/ service?
  • Should I work on our autoresponder?
  • Do I just need more traffic?
  • Maybe I should redesign our homepage?
  • Do I need to study SEO?

I used to struggle with this.

I used to be really frustrated with developing our marketing and sales funnel.

I’d try new things, they might work, but they wouldn’t have the effect I was hoping for (to increase revenue).

I’d be all over the place with how to improve our marketing – jumping from one idea to another.

I can come up with 10 new ideas before breakfast, and often did. But it wasn’t helping me to make progress.

It felt like I was running through treacle. It was so slow.

I was obviously working on things in the 80% that didn’t matter.

 But over the last year I’ve developed a process for how to choose the next thing to do to improve our marketing and sales funnel and increase revenue. It’s allowed us to improve our funnel consistently week after week (except for one 7 week patch that I’ll explain later). And it’s made a huge difference to our business. It all started with spending more time with analytics and learning to make only data-driven decisions.

We’ve now got an automated system in place that fills up my calendar with sales calls with excited prospects.

I’m going to explain it in detail below.

How to become data-driven?

I’m sure you have heard about the 80/20 rule

The 80/20 rule (also known as the Pareto principle) states that, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes

I learnt to use the 80/20 rule to look backwards at stuff I’d done and cut elements that weren’t working. Test 5 things. Cut the 4 worst performing ones. Do more of the top one. Great.

While that is great, and I regularly do that, I always wondered about using it to look forwards rather than backwards.

It’s easy to spend weeks implementing five different tactics before figuring out which is the best one.

Was there some way of figuring out what thing to work on in advance, rather than using the brute force approach of trying a bunch of stuff then cutting what didn’t work.

Could I figure out “What should I do next?” instead of “what should I stop doing?”

I thought about this many times over the years. I was sure that other people were managing this somehow. But I couldn’t find a specific process to follow.

80/20 Sales and Marketing talks about this a lot, but it doesn’t show step by step how to do it.

I found this article by Taylor Pearson useful where he talked about limiting factors.

“I’ve found that thinking in limits is frequently the best way to identify, and do, the obvious.

“Once I’ve defined the problem as a system with constraints or limits, I have the desired outcome that I can think backward from to see what the limits are and re-allocate my energy to address the appropriate limit.”

Taylor Pearson

I also found this article by Nate Smith useful where he said he focused on parts of people’s funnels that are underperforming.

Based on these and my own experience I’ve developed a data-driven process that I use once a week to identify the next thing to improve. An 80/20 SOP if you will.

It’s been life-changing for me.

We’ve been making improvements faster than ever in our marketing funnel, so I thought I should share it.

80/20 SOP – Basic version

Step 1

Write down the steps in your marketing and sales funnel. Let’s imagine this is:

Google ads —> Landing Page —> fill in enquiry form —> phone call —> sale

Step 2

Write down the conversion rate at each stage. For example:

Google ads $5
Conversion % from click to sign up on landing page = 13%
Conversion % from call to sale = 30%

Total cost per sale $128

Step 3

Look up an ok conversion % for each step. 

* Google ads – depends on your keywords, buts let’s say you find its $4
* Landing pages – depends on your offer, but let’s say about 20 – 25%. Some get much higher, but that would be an ok number.
* Call to sale – 33%. Really good is 50%.

We’re looking for which one is the easiest to improve considerably.

Google ads are already pretty close to a decent level. Landing page is way under average. Call conversion rate is quite close to average.

So, a data driven decision would be: the obvious place to focus is on the landing page.

Step 4

Research which elements of landing pages will have the biggest impact. Most people agree it’s:
1. Audience you’re sending there
2. Your offer
3. Headline

Figure out which of these might need improving.

Make a change to that thing and track the results.

80/20 SOP – Advanced version

Phase 1 – map out your funnel

Map out your marketing funnel step-by-step on a piece of paper or a whiteboard

Add each step to a spreadsheet. Here’s a screenshot of the spreadsheet we use each week. If you want to be data-driven, get used to spending time in spreadsheets 🙂

Set up a model which predicts what would happen to your income if you change one of the numbers.

I’ll be honest. This is where it gets a bit mathsy. If you’re not comfortable with percentages or Excel then this might be hard work, so I’ve included a copy of our spreadsheet for you to start from.

Here’s a copy of the spreadsheet we use each week.

Here’s how the numbers work

  • revenue line at the bottom = revenue of enquiries x 75% (average % of projects that are won)
  • Enquiries = calls x 58% (average conversion percentage from call to enquiry)
  • Calls applied for = webinar attendees x 20% (average percent who book a call)
  • etc.

The model we use is in the second worksheet of this spreadsheet.

Find data for what other people with as similar a business as possible are achieving at each stage, and put a benchmark level of what you think should be possible to achieve (not the best of what others are getting, but something that seems totally realistic).

Step 2 – identify which area to focus on

Identify which of your numbers is furthest from the benchmark.

Try changing that number in the model and see what happens to the revenue number at the bottom.

Make a data-driven decision: if it has a big effect on your income then that’s probably the area to focus on.

Check that if you change that number it won’t cause problems elsewhere (e.g. you can increase number of enquiries, but you don’t have time to deal with any more enquiries).

If there are a few contenders then you also might want to change that number back and play around with changing other numbers.

So we might start by saying that we want to make more sales, but by the end of this phase we should have a much more specific focus.

For example, this week I’ve identified that we have good numbers of people registering for the webinar, attending the webinar, staying to the end of the webinar, signing up for a sales call and making an enquiry, but only 36% of them buy, and other people are achieving as high as 80% conversion rates from enquiry to sale. This makes me think I could get to 50% reasonably easily.

I also looked at what happened if I tripled our ad budget. According to the model, this would increase our income dramatically, but I only have 13 slots per week for calls, and that would take me over that 13 number. That suggests that the number of slots for sales calls is another limiting factor we could look at that would make a big difference. Maybe next week.

Step 3 – Narrow in more on the problem

So we’ve used the 80/20 rule so far to find what the top area is. Let’s use it again to narrow down to the highest impact element of that area. The one most likely to make a difference.

This is the least well-defined step of my data-driven process. I currently do this through a combination of meditation, research and editing.

I’ll write out the problem as clearly as I can. I’ll then meditate and get my head as clear as I can. Then I’ll read back through the problem and edit it till it’s clearer. I’ll then do some research into where we’re weakest in that step. Then I’ll read back through the problem and edit it till it’s clearer.

I might repeat this process about five times over the course of several hours. This is quite time consuming, but I’ve found it’s worth it because it gets me narrowed in on that top, most effective action.

For example – in the last phase I got to the point where I knew I wanted to increase the conversion % of enquiries to sales from 36% to 50%+. What is the current problem?

I went back through our CRM to look at all the jobs we didn’t win, and identified as best I could what we should have done better. I got this down to 3 things:
– I haven’t followed up with some of the people who didn’t buy, and they still might buy. The reason I didn’t follow up is the task for following up either didn’t get added or was lost with too many other tasks in my CRM
– I didn’t follow my own sales call system every time because there are some bits that aren’t mapped out precisely and because I couldn’t always remember every step

Other things that I looked at were whether to offer bonuses to make our proposals a better offer. Or to focus on how to build more rapport with clients.

I can definitely be better at building rapport, but I’m pretty good already.

I could definitely test adding bonuses, but this is something where my gut tells me that I could actually make things worse. If I offer our online training as a free bonus to someone who we’re wanting to run a campaign for then there’s some dissonance there. And I’m not sure what else we’d offer as a free bonus.

Phase 4 – Identify the top options for solving that problem

We’ve used the 80/20 rule to identify the top area, then we’ve used it again to choose the top issue within that area. Now we’re going to use the 80/20 rule to focus in on the top things to do to address that issue.

My next step is to find materials to study on that very, very specific problem and identify what everyone agrees on.

If I can I find one reliable expert and follow their advice.

If I read or watch information from a few people then I make a note of what they all agree on and start there.

For example – maybe one expert says that to improve the webinar conversion rate you shouldn’t teach, but should focus on inspiring people to believe they can achieve the objective.

Another expert says you should teach as much as possible.

Well – both work ok then. Don’t worry about that.

But if they both agree that you should give a clear and strong call to action at the end. Well – you need to do that.

I’ve found that this stage is a great point to get others involved. If I can put a very clearly defined problem in front of my contacts, mastermind, colleagues or even non-business friends then it’s sometimes possible to identify what to do really quickly.

For example – Heather Shannon from my mastermind was able to identify that I was talking too much in my sales calls and not asking enough questions and I immediately increased the conversion rate dramatically.

Steve Forrester was able to identify that I should implement SMS follow up in my Facebook Ad campaigns, and we got a huge increase in response rate.

Back to my sales example.

My problem was:
I haven’t followed up with some of the people who didn’t buy, and they still might buy. The reason I didn’t follow up is the task for following up either didn’t get added or was lost with too many other tasks in my CRM
I didn’t follow my own sales call system every time because there are some bits that aren’t mapped out precisely and because I couldn’t always remember every step

So it’s now reasonably straightforward to see that I should:
– Follow up better after sales calls
– Follow my own data-driven system better = role play sales calls more
– Map out every step of sales call better (eg write up answers to objections)

How can I do those things?

I watched this video from Chet Holmes about following up with prospects. He explains the process he recommends for effective follow up. I copied that and added a step to tag these follow-up tasks with people who made an inquiry as important so I do them first.

I watched another video from Chet Holmes about the sales process and identified that I don’t have enough questions about the prospects’ pain points in my sales call script. I ask one question, but then don’t dig deeper.

I went back through the last 20 projects we didn’t win and wrote up answers to the most common objections.

Then lastly I added a task to practice my sales call script every week.

In this process I also identified that I could probably improve this sales process by adding in bonuses and improving my close. But they aren’t solving the very specific problems I identified.

Phase 5 – Check if it’s the smallest possible thing

What I’ve learnt is that if I change anything big then it will take me longer to implement it, and it’s more likely that it will have an adverse effect on something else in my funnel.

Whenever you change something it affects other things. We want to make the most laser-targeted improvement possible.

I therefore identify the smallest possible thing I can do to fix the specific problem I identified.

By just changing the smallest possible thing, I’m taking the 80/20 rule to the next level.

Most results for least effort. That’s what 80/20 is all about.

Looking through what I chose I think those things are quite straightforward. So I’ve not got anything to cut, but normally I have a few things here to cut back down to size.

Phase 6 – Check it won’t break anything else

I found that if I made changes to two consecutive steps in my funnel it made it more likely they could affect each other and cause an issue. I also found that it was harder to tell which thing didn’t work if one of them turned out to be a bad idea.

For example, when I automated the webinar and change the call to action in the webinar then one didn’t work, but it took me 7 weeks to identify what the problem was. 7 painful, frustrating, weeks.

I’ve therefore started to only change things that are further apart in the funnel. I don’t have a hard and fast rule over how far apart the two parts have to be before changing, but quite a long way apart is the way that I’m thinking about it.

Results this has got me

For me this has been incredible and it’s meant that every week I’ve made an improvement to my marketing funnel that had a clear and obvious effect.

Avoiding temptation

On average this takes me 5 hours to figure out. I’ve found it’s really tempting to just come up with an idea and start working on implementing it. But that thing could easily be something that doesn’t have a very big effect at all. So I’m constantly having to remind myself to only work on the things I identify through this data-driven process.

I’ve spent months before working on things only to find out they had little impact long term. 5 hours is less than that.

How about you? Do you make data-driven decisions? How do you decide what to do next in order to increase revenue?

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