How to Build & Maintain a Sales Funnel As Powerful As a Twister
Everyone at some point in their life has seen a tornado, either in person, or in movies, documentaries or on TV. We all know of the horrible devastation that they can create, how they have the potential to decimate everything in their very path. Twisters and tornadoes pick these up and destroy them; funnels on the other hand direct things to where they need to go. You use a funnel to pour liquids into a container so that it does not just run everywhere and create a huge mess to be cleaned up. Think about the last time you added oil to your car. You grabbed a funnel, and you directed the precious motor oil to the engine where it will lubricate the parts and keep things running properly. Our business funnel is the same concept.
Think of your customer as the motor oil. You do not want them to run all over the place- you do not want them having to investigate this company and that company before they come to you for a product. You want them to be one-minded, to be focused on your name, your product, your brand, discounting and disregarding all others. From the moment they first hear about your product or service, from the first time they notice your name or other information, they should be directed by the funnel to the sale, and hopefully to the level of satisfied and repeat customer.
At the top of the funnel is the curious customer, at the bottom is the satisfied customer. When you do the right marketing research for your particular product, you will know what it takes to make the sale from those most likely to need or want it. In business, this is known as “creating interest”. You create interest by speaking to a customer about something they need, or something that they want in the words and style that makes them feel as if you were directing your attention to them, expressly. After all, everyone wants to feel special and important!
After you have created an interest, you must then make sure that the customer develops a sense of urgency, a sense of need. (Need can be something that they would like to have, whether it is important or a legitimate ‘need’ or not.) The need can be overwhelming to some customers or may be important enough that they will check things out, but may hold off a day or so before committing to a purchase. That is okay, as long as you keep both the interest and the need levels high enough.
With needs comes certain expectations that are inherently or expressly given by the marketing campaign and by the product itself. The customer wants the item to work well, of course, and to accomplish all of the promises made. But, the customer also expects other needs to be fulfilled as well. They expect that they will receive prompt and competent customer service when they order, check the status of their orders, complain or contact the company for any reason. They expect that the site will be secure, so that their personal information, especially their billing info is free from thieves. They expect that there will be adequate follow-up after the sale is completed (especially important in goods and services that will have built in use life) for instance a supply of vitamins will only last for 30 days or so, and then will need to be reordered. If they were not as good as advertised at the start of the funnel, or the customer service was lacking in any step of the chain, that customer is less likely to continue on with that product then.