A basic marketing concept that can have a huge impact on your profitability and the success of your business is ‘The Marketing Funnel’.
Many service professionals struggle with converting prospects directly into high paying clients. They make the mistake of trying to sell their high-end services without first developing a relationship with potential clients. The second mistake they make is to offer only a high priced service without any lower priced options.
Marketing experts suggest that we provide an opportunity for people to experience our services and expertise at different price points. The theory behind the marketing and sales funnel - sometimes called a pipeline – is that we offer something free at the top end of the marketing funnel, then a mid-priced option, and finally your highest priced services and products at the bottom of the funnel.
Here’s what you do to implement this marketing funnel strategy:
First, get lots of prospects in the funnel.
If you picture your funnel with the wide end at the top and the narrow end at the bottom, you want lots of prospects at the top of your funnel.
You need to first ‘cast a wide net’ by spreading your message to as many people in your target audience as possible. This would include prospects, current clients and former clients. You want to target your message so that mostly ideal prospects enter the top end of the funnel.
A great way to do this is by offering something for free or extremely low cost, such as an article, an ezine, special report, ecourse, audio download, a talk or a teleclass The purpose is to entice them to allow you to add them to your database and contact them again. This introduces you to prospects and provides an opportunity for you to demonstrate your expertise.
Then, guide them through the funnel.
Once prospects have experienced your expertise and start to know, like, and trust you, they are more likely to open their wallets and spend more money on your services and products. Each level of the funnel as you guide prospects through represents increased familiarity and the potential for increased profits.
You offer your higher priced services and products only after they have sampled the lower priced option. As you provide several opportunities for prospects to sample your skills and knowledge at lower price points, the middle of your funnel starts to fill.
You can make money while earning the trust of clients and prospects by providing low to medium priced options for them to try your services. Examples of mid-priced options would be an ebook, information booklet, workbook, audio program, group coaching program, subscription ecourse, teleclass or in-person group training, or assessments. Only then do you promote your higher end services, for example, your 1-1 services, weekend workshops, or home study program packaged with audio recordings.
What’s in your marketing funnel? Take out a sheet of paper, draw a funnel shape, and list the products and services you currently offer. Do you see any gaps in your offerings from free to high priced? Determine how to plug the holes by adding more product and service offerings and a range of pricing options.
Make it easy for prospects to make the decision to buy so your business becomes more profitable and you don’t have to work so hard to make sales.
You absolutely want to put this strategy of The Marketing Funnel into action in your professional service business!
Copyright 2006 by Jan Marie Dore. www.janmariedore.com
Author's note: Newsletter publishers are invited to reprint this article in its entirety, including author’s resource box and copyright information. Please send a copy of your reprint to firstname.lastname@example.org You may also use my photo (found at http://www.femalepreneurs.com/about.html ) with the article.