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Imagine you spend all your time, energy and money into creating a brand new marketing and sales funnel designed to get you leads, appointments and clients each month… and then it doesn’t work!
It can be extremely frustrating.
Now a lot of entrepreneurs at this point, will just give up.
“I tried it. It didn’t work. Let’s move on…” – they’ll say… (as they move on to the next shiny object)
But just because a funnel doesn’t convert the FIRST time you test it, doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve failed.
In fact, MOST funnels I test in my own business (and for clients) do not work perfectly the first time.
Does that mean the whole campaign failed?
Does that mean you should give up?
Not at all.
It means you now know what does NOT work; you can analyze why and then fix it.
So, let me show you how to diagnose the problem with a funnel that doesn’t convert well and then I’ll go through the some of the best ways to fix it.
How to diagnose the problem with your funnel
Just to be clear: my definition of a funnel is that it’s a series of steps someone takes to reach your end goal (which in most cases is to win a new client).
Here are the typical steps of most funnels:
- Step 1: Generate leads
- Step 2: Convert leads into appointments
- Step 3: Convert appointments into clients
Note: This is a typical funnel for a client that provides a business service (which are the type of clients I specialize in helping). A funnel for an eCommerce store or some kind of online product would obviously work slightly differently.
Now if you have a funnel in your business that isn’t converting, all you need to do is look at what step does the funnel stop working.
For example… if you’re generating lots of appointments but getting no clients, then chances are there’s something in your offer or your sales pitch that isn’t working well. Or, if you’re generating a lot of leads but no appointments, then you probably haven’t built up enough trust yet with your leads to actually motivate them to book an appointment. Or, if you’re not getting enough leads in the first place, then chances are your messaging or targeting is not optimized correctly to get people interested in learning about how you can help them.
Fix the weakest link in your funnel first
So to fix your broken funnel, all you need to do is take a look at your conversion rate numbers at each step and see what step in your funnel is your weakest link.
To fix the weakest link in your funnel, follow these steps:
- Propose a theory as to why it’s not working well and how you could fix it
- Test that theory
- Monitor the results for a period of time (usually 7-14 days)
- If it works, great. If it doesn’t, start again from step 1 and test another theory.
- Eventually, you will find the “winning combination” and fix the weak link in your funnel
That’s pretty much the process I follow for my own business (and for clients that I help too).
As you can see, the way you fix a broken funnel is completely logical, analytical and even scientific.
If you follow this simple process, eventually, you will find the winning combination.
For some clients that I work with, they nail this “winning combination” very quickly (in just a month or so). For others, it can take many months of testing to get it all converting correctly. And for others, it can take years to get right.
You might be wondering though, why does it take some people longer than others to get it right?
That’s a good question.
And from what I’ve seen working with clients who get FAST results vs those who get SLOW results, here’s what I’ve found…
The truth about getting QUICK results
A lot of marketers these days promise quick or instant results because they have case studies or stories of clients who got quick results.
But here’s what most marketers DON’T tell you…
The reason why those people got quick results is that they already have years of experience in their business, their marketing and their sales process.
In other words, they already knew what kind of messages in their marketing and sales are likely to convert well. So whenever they launch a new funnel or make tweaks to an existing funnel, they have a huge head start over everyone else.
So keep that in mind next time you create a funnel.
If this is your FIRST funnel, you haven’t done much marketing yourself and you’re still not 100% sure how to communicate the big painful problems you can solve for clients… Your results will be slower.
But just because your results will be slower doesn’t mean it won’t happen.
As long as you DO NOT GIVE UP and keep testing and tweaking your funnel over time… You will eventually find that “Winning Combination”.
How do you test your marketing funnel?
If you have a fairly decent-sized budget (at least $1-2k/month), you can test your funnel quicker using Facebook Ads. If you have a budget smaller than $1k/month, then you can test your budget for free (or very low cost) using organic client attraction strategies such as Google (SEO) or LinkedIn outreach.
Either way, there’s no excuse not to keep testing and tweaking your funnel until you find that winning combination.
Now that you know how to diagnose and fix a funnel that isn’t converting well… Here are my top tips on how to fix each step of a broken funnel.
Below I’ll break down the 3 biggest bottlenecks in a marketing and sales funnel (getting leads, appointments and clients) and some suggestions on what you can test and tweak to fix it…
Problem #1: Funnel not generating leads?
A lead is when you ask someone for their name and email in return for some free educational content. If you’re not generating any leads, here are some of the most common reasons why (and how to fix it).
- Do you have an opt-in page that gives people free content on how to solve a BIG PAINFUL PROBLEM? This is the no.1 reason I see a funnel not converting. You have to solve a big painful problem for someone and show them how to fix it. If you don’t, you’re not going to motivate them enough to take action and convert into a lead.
- Are you specific about how you solve this problem? For example, on my funnel I don’t say “Learn how to generate more leads” I say “Learn how to get 10, 15, 30 or more predictable sales appointments each month”. See how it’s more specific? In your opt-in page, try to be as specific as possible. The more specific you are, the more people can visualize the results you can get them.
- Is your opt-in page simple and clean? Avoid lots of links to other pages on your landing page (like a navigation menu). Also make sure the call-to-action (such as the button with your opt-in form) is clearly visible above the fold of the web page. Finally, make sure the web page works on mobile & tablet devices and it loads up quickly.
Problem #2: Funnel not getting appointments?
First of all, congratulations! If you’ve got this far, it means your funnel is generating leads. Now the problem is that your leads are not converting into appointments. If this happens, ask yourself ‘Why are people not booking an appointment with me?’ – Obviously, if they’ve entered their name & email to learn how you can solve a big painful problem they have, they are interested in what you do… So, you just need to figure our why they are not booking a call.
Here are some of the most common reasons why and how to fix it:
- Is your “free content” lead magnet a PDF guide, eBook or some other kind of written content? If so, I’ve found you can get MUCH better conversions with a video. But not just any video… A video sales letter. That is a 5-10 minute short video presentation that goes through how you can solve a potential clients big problem.
- Where in your video are people dropping out? Have a look at your video analytics and see if there is a significant drop off at any part of the video. If so, why? What do you say at that point in the video? Try testing another version of the video where you remove that part of replace it with something else.
- Do you give people enough motivation to book a call with you to learn more about your solution? It’s important that you give people some value in the video, but if they want to learn MORE then they need to book a call with you. Don’t give everything away in the video itself or it will kill your conversions rates.
- Do you follow up with leads who watch the video? For most people, a video on its own isn’t enough to build up trust and get them to schedule an appointment with you. That’s why it’s so important to follow up with leads on a regular basis with additional free helpful content… Once you’re following up with leads, keep in mind that leads can convert at different times. In my experience, some can convert quickly, others in a few weeks, some in a few months and some even in a few years.
The hardest part of a funnel for most people is usually this second step. Getting leads to convert into appointments.
So, don’t give up if your video doesn’t convert very well the first time you run a campaign.
I had to do about 7 or 8 different versions of my video before I finally got my video sales letter to convert well in my own business. It’s very hard to get it perfect the first time. So, keep tweaking and improving it and eventually, you’ll get there. Just don’t give up!
See also: How to convert leads into sales
Problem #3: Funnel not getting enough sales?
- Do you have lots of free helpful content on your website? Creating content that answers most of your prospects questions BEFORE they get on a sales call will dramatically improve the quality of your sales calls and your conversion rate. In my own business, I have content that explains what our lead gen services are, how it works, how much it costs, etc so they know as much as they can BEFORE they actually speak to me.
- Do you provide 10x more value than what you charge? This is a huge one for getting better conversions. You need to position your offer or service in a way where it’s a “no-brainer” for the people you speak to. How do you do that? Give them as much value as possible compared to the price they have to pay you. For example, on my pricing page, I charge a one-time fee to help someone set up a system that has the potential to bring in at least 10x what I charge over a period of 1-2 years. In your business how can you give someone 10 times more value than what they are paying you?
- Do you solve a big painful problem? The bigger the problem you solve for potential clients, the more you can charge and the easier it will be to sell it to them.
So, there you have it!
These are three of the most common reasons a funnel does not convert and how you can fix it.
If you’d like to learn more about how to create a funnel that is specifically designed to get high quality leads, sales appointments and clients each month then be sure to check out my free Masterclass training here.
Ashley Davis (or ‘Ash’ for short) is the CEO & Founder of Skyline Social. For over 15 years, he has been helping business owners with lead generation. Ash specializes in helping businesses get high-quality leads, appointments and clients each month in an automated, scalable and profitable way. You can watch his free Masterclass training to learn more.