Home Marketing & Sales Building and managing your sales funnel for success

Building and managing your sales funnel for success

by Vitaliy Rizhkov

Every single company has what’s known as a sales funnel. The funnel starts with searching for a client, continues by warming him up to the idea that he needs what you’re selling, and then concludes when you convert him into a paying customer. When a prospect converts to a paying customer, this represents the first sales cycle. Once a prospect makes a purchase, that puts that individual into an entirely different sales cycle in which you’re trying to convert that customer for a second time, third time, and so on across his or her lifetime. The better the product or the service, the higher the lifetime value you’re likely to receive from a customer.

In this post, I will try to give you advice on how to optimize your sales funnel by targeting your perfect client with the right offer.

Understanding the concept of the sales funnel

The sales funnel looks like an upside down triangle, with the widest end representing potential customers or prospects flowing in, and the opposite narrow end represents those who become paying customers. In a perfect world, you’d bring in tons of prospects to the wide end of the funnel, and every single one would turn into a paying customer: a sales cylinder if you will.

The reality is that most small businesses and companies can’t establish and manage their sales funnels. They have a funnel that works to bring in just enough revenue to stay alive, but not enough to grow their income. This situation also applies to those who are self-employed and work on their own.

So what does it mean to be able to establish a sales funnel and then effectively manage it? It means that you have to be able to convert prospects to paying clients with minimal losses and to increase the number of prospects when needed.

For example, let’s say you generate the interest of 100 prospects per month and can convert 30 of them into paying customers. Ideally, you should be able to increase the number of prospects from 100 to 200 and get 60 paying customers. You get the idea.

To generate that interest and then make them want to buy your product is the most important part. It’s an art if you ask me, and if you managed to figure it out, then you can scale the funnel and double and triple your earnings.

To make this happen, you need only two things: a unique market proposition and the right audience to target.

Build your unique market proposition

For your unique market proposition, you need to describe following: What exactly you are offering?

  • What kind of benefits your client will get?
  • Why they should buy from you rather than someone else?

When establishing your marketing proposition, don’t promise something you can’t back up or deliver. Think about how your business differs from everyone else. Think about your strengths. Don’t make claims like: we have the lowest prices! I’m sure you don’t. Don’t say you are the best photographer on the planet. You probably aren’t. Don’t say you will deliver photos within 4 hours. It probably won’t happen.

Pick the right audience

If your unique proposition feels spot on, but you don’t receive much interest from your ad campaign or other campaigns you are running, then the chances are that you are targeting the wrong audience.

Create an ideal customer profile, determining parameters like, age, gender, relationship status, income, car driven, favorite restaurants, employer, vacation spots, fears, what makes the customer happy, and so on. If you’ve been in business for a few years or more, you should be able to do this.

The better you know your customer, the easier it is to figure out why they buy from you or choose to work with you. Use this information to target the right audience with the right proposition. Then use the proper techniques to convert each prospect into paying customer.

Is your sales funnel working for you? What tips do you have for establishing the right market proposition and picking the right audience to target?

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