Some marketers create a product, sell it, and then brainstorm their next product.
Smart marketers, however, are always thinking several products ahead.
But they don’t just brainstorm a product idea. Instead, they brainstorm an entire sales funnel. That’s what this blog post will help you do too.
Planning Your Sales Funnel
What we’re going to do is start at the entry point of the funnel and work our way through bigger and more expensive products.
Answer these questions to help you plan your sales funnel:
- Will you have a free entry point into your sales funnel?
- What type of product will you offer as a lead magnet (AKA, the freebie used to get people onto your mailing list)?
- What offer will you promote from within the lead magnet? In other words, what is your entry-level product?
- How much will the entry-level product cost?
- How will the lead magnet (the free product) naturally lead people to purchase a paid product?
In other words, this sequence of products is where you plan how to create a “useful yet incomplete” lead magnet that turns your readers or users into buyers.
For example, you might offer a weight loss report that provides 27 weight-loss tips. To learn more, people would need to purchase the paid product to get a complete diet and nutrition guide.
Using an Autoresponder in Your Sales Funnel
What type of initial autoresponder series will you upload to help convert subscribers into customers? Specifically:
- What primary offer will you focus on promoting?
- What secondary offer will you promote?
- How many messages will you include in your initial series?
- What is the content of these messages? An example would be “Five Secrets of Weight Loss,” which iare five emails that each share a secret and include a pitch for a paid product.
- Will you use soft sell, hard sell, or a combination across the series?
- What other low-priced entry-level products will be in your sales funnel? List them all here along with their cost. Be sure to note whether these are one-time fees or residual fees (such as monthly membership fees). Generally, these are products that cost from a few dollars to about $25.
- What mid-level products will you put into your sales funnel? These are product that range in price from about $26 to $99.
- What high-price (premium) products will you put into your sales funnel? These are products that cost from $100 on up and include access to you.
- What entry level services will you offer?
- What mid-level priced services will you offer?
- What high-priced services will you offer? (e.g., coaching and consulting)?
Create a Sales Funnel from Your Existing Projects
What if you don’t have an existing sales funnel setup? No problem. If you have several products already created and online with Buy Now buttons and delivery systems in place, then you can create a very nice sales funnel.
To begin, go through each of your products and answer these questions:
- What will you cross-promote from within each product?
- What will you upsell on the order form?
- What will you promote from the thank you/confirmation page?
- What will you promote in the follow-up series of emails you send to customers?
- What will you promote from within any associated membership sites, forums or other groups?
- What will you promote during live events?
- What affiliate offers will you promote from within your sales funnel?
- List the products, their prices, and your commission rate.
Will you be shipping any physical products? If so, what will you promote in the “ride along” flyer that you include in all shipments?
Sales Funnels with JVs and Affiliates
Do you have any joint venture partners with whom you’ve agreed to do co-endorsements? This includes swapping product recommendations and links:
- Within products.
- On newsletter thank-you pages.
- Within the newsletter emails.
- Within lead magnets.
- On paid-product thank you pages.
- Within the paid products themselves.
- On ride-along flyers.
- In follow up emails.
- In upsells.
If you’ve made these sorts of co-endorsement arrangements, list the following:
- Where your product recommendations will appear on their sites. This will help you to decide the best product for them to promote.
- You want to choose something that is as closely related to their product or service as possible.
- Where their product recommendations will appear in your sales funnel. This is important so that you don’t have areas on your site where you have a circus of advertisements. (You want to help people, not overwhelm them with pitches.)
Fine Tune Your Funnel for Sales
Now that you’ve done a rough outline of your sales funnel, it’s time to fine-tune it. Go back and look at your list of products. Ask yourself if they naturally lead into each other.
In other words, are they tightly related so that someone who orders the entry level product will naturally also want the mid-prices and premium products as well? If there isn’t a natural flow, then go back the drawing board and fine-tune the funnel.
An Example of a Simple Sales Funnel
Let’s suppose you’re selling information about blogging. Your products in your sales funnel might include:
- At the beginning of the funnel, have a variety of basic entry-level and mid-priced products which give people the basics of setting up a blog, driving traffic to it, creating content and monetizing it.
- A big-ticket home study course that offers in-depth and advanced training. This could even be a physical product, which tends to increase the perceived value.
- A one-week premium eClass that includes personal coaching. And/or a membership site where people get access to new themes, blog plugins, PLR content and article templates.
- Ghostwriting services for content. (You don’t have to do it yourself – you can be the “middleman,” where you subcontract out these services to a group of reputable writers on your team.)
As you can see, anyone who enters the funnel at any point is likely to want to purchase additional products since they’re all closely related, and they naturally lead to each other.
That’s just one example.
No matter what niche you’re serving, you should seek to create a similar suite of products, and then actively cross-promote these products from within various points in your sales funnel.
So go ahead and set some time aside to work on this planner and sketch out your sales funnel. Be sure to also test products and campaigns as you insert them into the funnel so that your entire funnel converts as highly as possible.
What are you thoughts regarding your sales funnels? Let me know below.