Create a high-converting lead generation funnel

Are you thinking of creating a sales funnel to generate leads in your business? Or do you already have a funnel, but it’s not converting very well?

In this article, I’ll be showing you behind the scenes of what a successful marketing and sales funnel looks like if your goal is to get leads, high-quality sales appointments and clients every month.

Limited on time? Here’s a quick summary… A successful funnel to generate leads and sales appointments consists of five high converting landing pages: an opt-in page, video page (free content), schedule page, application page and a thank you page. Want to learn how to put this funnel together? Watch this free video training I’ve recorded where I show how to create this funnel and get people going to the funnel each month… in a way that is automated, scalable and profitable.

Lead generation funnels: how to choose the best one?

Before you keep reading… You should know that there are literally hundreds of different types of sales funnels that you can create for your business!

In fact, here is a picture of me holding the “Funnel Hacker’s Cookbook” by Russell Brunson from ClickFunnels.

Funnel Hackers Cookbook

Inside, you’ll find the “recipe” for almost every type of funnel you can think of, depending on the goal of your business…

Is your goal to sell a book? There’s a funnel for that.

Is your goal to get people to buy a physical product in an online store? There’s a funnel for that too.

Because there are hundreds of funnels to choose from, it’s sometimes hard to find the right kind of funnel for you and your business.

So, what if like most of my lead generation clients, your goal is to generate more high quality leads and sales appointments with your ideal clients each month?

What is the best lead generation funnel specifically for that?

It’s called an ‘Automated appointment funnel’.

And if you don’t yet have this lead generation funnel in your business, that’s actually good news!

It means there’s HUGE potential for growth in your business as soon as you start using this new sales funnel.

The automated appointment sales funnel

The best lead generation funnel for getting appointments is called an ‘Automated Appointment Funnel’.

An automated appointment funnel allows you to:

  • Attract ONLY the kind of clients you want to work with. You will automatically filter out the “wrong types of clients” and not waste your time.
  • You can generate leads, sales appointments and clients on-demand and you’ll know exactly how many sales appointments and clients you are going to win every month with consistency.
  • You’re in full control. You decide how many new sales appointments and clients you want to win each month.
  • Automate your whole lead generation process

This funnel works incredibly well no matter who your target audience is.

It works for b2b, b2c or both – it doesn’t matter!

So, how do you create this automated appointment funnel?

Overview of the automated appointment sales funnel

An effective lead generation funnel to get sales appointments each month only requires 5 main landing pages. They are:

  • Opt-in Page
  • Video Page
  • Schedule Page
  • Application Page
  • Thank You Page

So, how does this lead generation funnel work and what does it all look like?

Let me show a real-life example below:

1. Opt-in page

The first stage of your lead generation campaign is your opt-in page. The idea is that you send targeted traffic to your opt-in page.

The opt-in page in a sales funnel is designed to generate leads with your ideal clients.

You can do this by promising to solve a big painful problem your potential clients have with a free educational video.

In order to access the free video, they need to give you their name & email.

Once you’ve got someone to enter a name and email, you have generated a lead.

See also: Is it a good idea to ask for phone number in an opt-in form?

It’s important to be very specific with the problem you solve for potential clients.

The opt-in page is designed to get ONLY your potential clients to “raise their hand” and say “Yes, I need help with this!”

Remember, you don’t want ANY leads going into your funnel. You only want the leads that are likely to convert into clients.

Here’s an example of what this opt-in page looks like:

Funnel Landing Page Example

And when people click on the shiny blue button, they see an opt-in form like this:

Landing Page Opt In

Note: I’m always split testing my opt-in page. So if you want to see the latest version of what it looks like, click here.

Tips for an effective opt-in page:

  • Big headline at the top. It’s important the headline on your landing page talks about the biggest and most painful problem your potential clients have and how they can solve that problem. This is so important. Without a headline that talks about a real painful problem that you can solve, people will not take action and go to the next step.
  • Be specific in your headline. A headline that says “How to get 10, 15, 30 or more sales appointments each month” is better than a headline that says “How to get more appointments”. The more specific you are, the easier it will be for potential customers to visualize the result. If they can visualize a real tangible result, they will be more likely to convert.
  • Be balanced in your headline. The big promise you make in your headline has to solve a big enough problem for people to be motivated to take action, but at the same time not too big where the promise sounds unrealistic to most people. That’s why my headline says “How to get 10, 15, 30 or more sales appointments each month” instead of “How to get 300, 600, 1,200 or more sales appointments each month”.
  • Make it clear who this is for. Don’t make your landing page a “one-size fits all”. For example, my landing page focuses on how to get appointments. This will automatically filter out people looking to make more sales in an eCommerce store (which are not my ideal clients). I also have landing pages that are specific to different niches such as financial advisors and accounting firms.
  • Keep it simple. There is nothing fancy on this page. It’s incredibly simple for a reason… Why? Because the fewer distractions you have on your landing page, the more likely your potential clients will take action and go to the next step in your funnel. Look at Google as an example. It’s simple, clutter-free and it works really well.
  • Make it fast. People are not very patient these days. The faster your landing page loads up, the more conversions you’ll get. This is another reason why keeping your landing page simple is a good idea. The more simple your landing page is, the faster it will load.
  • Avoid distractions. On the landing page, you want to remove as many distractions as possible. Don’t have a navigation menu. That is a distraction. Don’t have lots of images. That’s another distraction. Don’t have social media links. You want to avoid any and all possible distractions. The only thing you want people to do is go to the next step in the funnel by clicking on the big button to “learn more”.
  • Don’t give too much away on the landing page. One of the biggest things that can kill your conversion is giving away too much information before someone converts into a lead. If someone thinks “ohh I know what this person is talking about” (even if they actually don’t) then there’s a lower chance they will want to learn more. On the other hand, if you keep how your solution works relatively broad and entice them with curiosity, there’s a higher chance you can convert the visitor into a lead.

Any leads that go to your opt-in page will now have entered the top of the funnel.

2. Video Page

The video page is in the middle of the funnel. The video page is designed to build trust with your leads and motivate them to go to the next step in your sales process (e.g. schedule an appointment).

You can build trust with your leads by using a lead magnet.

The best lead magnet I recommend you use is a a video sales letter (VSL).

Why use a video sales letter?

Here’s the thing… Everyone says they can “solve a problem”!

For example, some business owners say “We can help you lower your taxes”, “we can help you plan for retirement”, “we can help you improve your productivity”, etc…. But actions speak louder than words. 

So, if you can actually SHOW people how to solve their problem, it will build a lot more trust than words can on their own.

A video allows you to actually SHOW people how to solve this problem.

Sure, free PDF guides and eBooks are nice, but a video is a much more powerful way to build trust and get people excited to work with you.

Video is also a lot more engaging. This means people are more likely to consume the free educational content if it’s in a video format vs a written format.

At the end of the video, if people want to learn more, give them the opportunity to schedule a call / apply to work with you.

Here’s an example of what the video page looks like:

VSL video Landing Page

Video landing page tips:

  • What should you say in your video? First, talk about your potential clients’ big problem. Let them see you understand them. Next, talk about possible solutions to that problem. For example, if you offer accounting services, one option is to do the accounts themselves and another alternative option might be to hire a freelancer. What are the pros and cons of each alternative solution? Next, explain what YOUR solution is and how it’s better for the right type of clients than the alternative solutions. Finally, tell people if they want to learn more about your solution, then click on the button below the video to schedule a call.
  • Keep the video length short (but not too short). The video is designed to build trust, so if it’s too short, you need to ask yourself: can I really build trust in a short 1 or 2 minute video? If you can, then great. But if you can’t, don’t be afraid of making the video a little longer to really educate and provide enough value to your potential clients. I normally recommend clients keep their video length between 5-10 minutes long. But in some cases (if you’re selling something more complicated) a longer video can work better.
  • Keep the video simple. You don’t need anything fancy on the video. You don’t even need to be on camera if you don’t want to. You can use a simple PowerPoint or keynote presentation to create your video. The most important thing is the content inside the video.

You can see a real-life example of what my video sales letter looks like by clicking here.

3. Schedule call page

The schedule page is designed to allow your prospects to easily book a call straight into your calendar.

The advantage of doing it this way is that you don’t have to go back and forth over email trying to find a time that you and your potential clients are both available to speak.

The prospect can just book a time to speak straight in your calendar.

Here’s what the schedule call page looks like:

What do you need to put on your schedule call page?

  • Use software to save time. Tools such as Calendly allow people to book a call with you straight in your calendar and can be integrated on your landing page by copy and pasting some embed code.
  • Try not to allow people to book a call too far in advance (more than 10 days). If they schedule a call too far in advance, they might forget who you are or not be as motivated to work with you.
  • Send automatic reminders. After someone has booked a call, it’s a good idea to send them automatic email and text SMS reminders. This will increase your sales call show up rates.

4. Application Page

The application page (or also known as your survey page) in your sales funnel is designed to get people to pre-qualify themselves before you speak to them.

It will also help you to learn a bit more about the person you’re speaking to before the meeting.

Here is an example of what this page looks like:

Application Page Example

Sales funnel application or survey page tips

  • Don’t ask too many questions. Keep it short and simple. Make some of the questions multiple choice if it’s possible.
  • Ask questions that are actually important and necessary. For example, the first question on my form is “What is your business website?”. This is important for me to know so I can do some research and learn a little bit more about the prospect before we speak. I also ask prospects which of our lead generation packages are they interested in, to make sure they have the budget to work with me.
  • Use online software to create your application form. You can use software such as Wufoo.com to create simple online forms and embed them on your website
  • In some sales funnels you can ask leads to fill out an application form first. If you want to get higher quality appointments, you can ask people to fill out an application form FIRST before they schedule a call. This is actually how I do it with my own sales funnel.

5. Call confirmation page

The call confirmation page is designed to let your prospect know that they have completed all the steps and that you’re looking forward to the call.

This is also a helpful page to put some additional resources about you and your company. It’s important that the lead actually shows up to the sales call, so if you provide extra information (case studies, free resources, etc) they will be more likely to be excited for the call.

Here is an example of what my call confirmation page looks like:

Thank You Page

Call confirmation page tips:

  • Say thanks. Let them know everything has been confirmed and what the next steps are.
  • Give prospects helpful resources. These can be links to your website to see your case studies, your blog or anything else that you think will be good for your prospects to check out before the appointment with you.
  • Share case studies. If you have client results to show, be sure to let them see this before the sales call.

Any leads that reach the call confirmation page have now reached the bottom of the funnel.

How to build a lead generation funnel (in detail)

If you want to see in more detail how to build a lead generation funnel, be sure to watch my free Masterclass training which goes through how to both create and promote your lead funnel.

In the free training, you’ll learn:

  • How to STOP getting low quality leads (and get leads chasing YOU instead…)
  • How to get 5-30 appointments each month WITHOUT spending a penny on paid ads (and then scale up when the time is right…)
  • The EXACT 5-step strategy to get predictable appointments each month (and then automate the whole system…)

And at the video I’ll also explain how I can help you or do everything for you if you prefer to save time and get faster results.

Best lead generation tools

Now that you know what pages to include in your lead generation funnel, it’s time to put it all together.

Sales funnel building tools

You can create your lead generation sales funnel by using any of the following funnel building tools:

  • ClickFunnels (what I used to use)
  • Kartra (what I use now)
  • Highlevel (good option for marketing agencies)
  • Groovefunnels (has big potential… but still catching up)
  • Hubspot (good for enterprise customers)
  • Or any other funnel building tool

Most tools to build lead generation funnels all do the same thing, but the reason most of my clients and I prefer to use Kartra is that it’s an all-in-one solution.

Kartra allows you to build funnels AND:

  • Send automatic follow-up emails
  • Video hosting and analytics
  • Sell products online
  • Have membership sites
  • And lots more

And it does all this for $99/month (the same price as most other landing page software that only does ONE thing).

Email marketing tools

You can send automatic follow-up emails from leads generation in your sales funnel using:

  • Kartra
  • Mailchimp
  • ActiveCampaign
  • ClickFunnels (Only on the $300/month package)
  • ConvertKit
  • Any other email marketing software

Video hosting tools

To host your video lead magnet, you can use any of the following tools:

  • Kartra
  • YouTube (not recommended since it has ads and other distractions)
  • Vimeo
  • Wistia

How to promote your lead generation funnel

You could have the best lead generation sales funnel in the world, but if no one actually sees it, it’s pointless!

So you need a way of getting people to see your new lead generation funnel.

Here are my top lead generation strategies to promote your funnel:

Google SEO lead generation (free)

Google SEO lead generation is when you answer questions your potential clients are asking in the form of a written blog post. In fact, the article you’re reading right now is a real-life example of this lead generation strategy in action. Throughout your article you also want to include links to your funnel (see what I did there?) so that website visitors convert into leads.

YouTube Search lead generation (free)

YouTube lead generation works similar to Google SEO lead generation. The main difference is that instead of creating written articles answering questions, you would create videos answering these questions.

LinkedIn Outreach (free)

LinkedIn lead generation allows you to reach out to potential clients who are interested in watching your video and learn more about how you can help them. LinkedIn works especially well for B2B lead generation, but it can also work for B2C too in some cases.

Facebook Ads (Paid advertising)

Facebook lead generation allows you to get leads, appointments and clients on-demand. The advantage to using Facebook ads is that it gets you quick results and is very scalable. The downside is that you need to pay for ads which can take a large chunk of your profits.

As you can see, 3 out 4 channels allow you to start getting qualified leads without even spending any money on advertising. Then when the time is right, you can use Facebook ads to scale up and get even better results.

To learn how to use these channels in more detail for lead generation, check out ‘Step 4’ of my free training by clicking here.