Answer: Great question Melody. Assuming that you have a blog or at the least a website in place, let’s take a look at the sales funnel stages.
This is the basic framework for your sales funnel. Your frame is flushed out by your content, packages, and products. That’s a whole other conversation. For now I’ll share the tools I recommend to my clients when I work with them to set up their sales funnels. This list includes free and premium tools.
(Recommended for Newbies) Lead Pages—when it comes to building opt-in and landing pages, LeadPages.net is one of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal. They’ve tracked and tested a variety of page styles to determine which ones convert best, and their templates make it super easy for you to build pages quickly. Drawback: You cannot customize the templates easily. But if you are not a techie person, you may not want to.
Leadpages and Get Response have a monthly fee. A free landing page tool that a few of my Brilliant Business Girlfriends recommend is InstaPages – its’ a plugin for WordPress.
Mailchimp -Their entry level plan is free but you do lose some of the functionality like the ability to send autorepsonders. It’s a great way to get started with email marketing, especially with the recent updates to the user interface.
Get Response—Probably the easiest email manager on the market. The visual interface is clean, making it easy to learn and use. The basic level starts at under $25 a month and offers both autoresponders and broadcast emails, list automation, and segmenting, so you can send emails exactly when—and to whom—you want.
Ontraport— Formerly Office Autopilot. Ontraport offers shopping cart functionality as well, so you can create powerful funnels that are fully integrated with your sales process. The benefit is that you don’t have to try to synch your cart with your email system, since it’s completely self-contained.
Infusionsoft—At the top of the list is Infusionsoft. It does customer management, funnel setup, mailing list, and even membership sites. It requires a higher investment of capital and time. The learning curve is steep for a newbie and non-techie – but you can always hire an virtual assistant that’s certified in the system.
If one of the phases in your sales funnel is inviting prospects to a free discovery session, you need to have an automated tool. There is nothing professional about emailing back and forth to try and find the right time. I’ve used several tools over the last six years and here are the top three: Time Trade, vCita, and Satori.
Whatever you choose, it needs to be easy for your prospects to use and send automated reminders. Another feature to consider is how easy (or how complex) is it for people to reschedule.
What do I do? I use Satori and Time Trade. I use Satori for my contacts and billed clients. I use TimeTrade to schedule podcast interviews, collaborative calls, and Get To Know You Invitations.
TIP: I’ve branded the link prospects can use to book a complimentary session with me. It’s www.TalkWithTai.com.
If you are just getting started, here are the simplest solutions:
CRMs are not the same thing as email systems. You may have 5000 subscribers to your list, but only be actively tracking 25 leads that you want to nurture into clients. These are people that you reach out to with direct calls, emails, and social media posts engaging them beyond your newsletters. This is also the best way to track and nurture relationships to people that you’ve connected to at networking events.
You have a lot of options when it comes to building a bankable sales funnel. Explore the items I’ve listed and then choose what will work for you in each category. I recommend building the framework for your sales funnel simply as you can, using quality tools that won’t break your bank account but don’t skimp on the experience you are creating either. Once you’ve had your sales funnel running for two to three months, you’ll be able to notice patterns, strengths, and weak points. You’ll also be able to plan for how you can upgrade your tools or system to increase efficiency.
By the way. You could do this all by yourself OR you could sign up for the next Positioned to Profit Course and get step-by-step guidance on creating a profitable sales funnel.
Tai Goodwin on a mission to help 10,000 women entrepreneurs create more joy and wealth in their life and business. She's the CEO of Aligned + Bankable and creator of the Bankable Brilliance Course. An intuitive business growth strategist and teacher, her specialty is helping clients create bankable business models that allow them to increase their impact and income without burning out. Tai is a former corporate trainer with a master's degree in instructional design and over 20 years of experience designing course, training programs, and certifications. She is also the author of Girlfriend, It's Your Time and founder of Brilliant Business Girlfriends.