Guiding a potential client from having no knowledge of who you are to working with your organization is simpler than you might think. Today, we’re talking about one highly valuable approach to personalizing this process – the sales funnel.
What is a “sales funnel?”
Let’s start with the common understanding that every customer—or potential customer—starts somewhere on a sales journey. Maybe they’re very aware of your brand and haven’t yet made a purchase. Another customer could be complete oblivious to your existence. No matter where these potential customers are in their journey, the desire of marketing is to move these prospects towards your business.
At its heart, the sales funnel is a marketing model that illustrates the client journey towards partnership with your organization. Instead of visualizing this journey as a road, we use the metaphor of a funnel to position marketing as the “gravity” that draws customers towards the final destination—purchase. At each stage in the funnel, marketing can employ different tactics depending on where the client’s need and your brand’s service offerings intersect.
One of the evolving trends in marketing today is the use of personalization to drive improved results from sales funnel execution. The linchpin of personalization is information. As prospects move “down” your sales funnel, organizations need to adapt their marketing tactics based on information about each prospect—both information the prospect has willingly given, and information that needs to be collected. This adaptability helps organizations position the right value proposition, using the right messaging, at the right time. That’s personalization. The benefits are well worth it—think shortened sales processes, more relatability, increased brand recall, and profitability.
How can I personalize my sales funnel?
Personalization is not a process that happens overnight, or without careful planning. At each step in your sales funnel, the client’s needs should become more explicitly defined. This can happen through marketing engagement, sales interaction, or more commonly a combination of both. The “bottom line” of personalization is a thorough understanding of where the customer is on their sales journey and what their desired business outcomes are. By knowing these two components, you can tailor your message to align your value with your potential customer’s needs.
At the top of the funnel, broad-scale tactics such as blogs and social media posts are beneficial for capturing interest and early engagement. If executed well, you’ll create opportunities in this broad audience for prospects to engage and become leads. From your broad audience, you move towards the path of building personal relationships.
As the funnel begins to narrow, it’s an ideal time to move towards evidence-based tactics like case studies. At this point, opportunities for personalization start to open up, and you have a chance to send content relevant to specific clients, industries or situations. The goal here is to show that you’re able to deliver on your promises with proven results and metrics in their industry.
Once a client is near the bottom of the funnel, you’re ready to move from information to action. At this point, clients typically want to have a consultation with your company to layout a potential partnership in detail, as well as see some sort of trial or demo when applicable. Don’t lose focus at this point—a trial or demo of your product needs to be value-focused and personalized as much as possible to the specific, personalized needs of your opportunity.
Where do I start?
Sales funnels are complex, and starting with a strategic mindset is critical. At Four Columns, we put strategy first, and we’re ready to partner with you in the process!
Find out how we can help you stay at the forefront of your industry by emailing us at [email protected].