B2B Sales Funnels

Let’s start off with the basics: ‘What is a sales funnel?’

A sales funnel is a series of web pages that walk the user through the process you would like them to follow to either buy your product/service or provide their details. Traditional websites complicate the process. Customers must ‘figure out’ where to go and what to do, which can reduce the results for the marketer.

While sales funnels are not new, the concept has been popularised by ClickFunnels founder Russell Brunson. ClickFunnels is an application that helps entrepreneurs set up their own sales funnels. As most B2B clients of mine will say, “That will only work for consumer products.” And, yes, for the on-line purchasing segment, the evidence will show that consumer products do much better.

What B2B can do is to use the concept to match the objectives of lead generation and building a targeted database.

The sales funnel is different per business or product/service. However, many have the following items in common:

  1. Hook

    The hook is the advertisements and content used to entice people into the funnel.

  2. Lead Magnet

    This is a value offer given to people in exchange for information such as an email or cellphone number. The value offer could be a case study, white paper, in-depth video, or anything really.

  3. Core Offer
    This is the main product or service that the business provides.

  4. One-Time Offer

    This is the digital version of the supermarket checkout where you are standing in line waiting to pay for your trolley of goods, and there are racks of sweets and treats just staring at you. Retailers know there is a very high probability you will buy something from those racks, as you are already in purchasing mode. The same applies online: Once you have entered your credit-card details, there is a high probability the person adds another product to the checkout.

  5. Thank you
    This page has two aspects. One is to thank the person for their input, and the second is an opportunity to show the person another aspect of your business.

I still don’t see how this would work for a B2B business?

Let’s focus first on the Lead Magnet. Your B2B company has intellectual property that, if given to your potential clients, would really help them. Let’s assume you are an architectural firm, and your clients are developers and construction companies. Do you think it would benefit them to know where in Africa the most work is coming from, and what new techniques or trends are happening from the architect’s perspective? Perhaps a detailed case study .PDF that summaries the experiences and advice from top architects, which would definitely benefit developers and construction companies.

Traditionally, our agency would prepare a case study and send it to the media for publishing. While this is positive publicity and builds the architect’s brand, it does not maximise the opportunity to generate leads and build a marketing database.

The next step is to promote the case study to the target developer and construction companies. This can be done with advertising platforms such as Google, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, and media such as Engineering News and Construction World. People would click on the ‘hook’ and be taken to the lead magnet page. You need to drive traffic into the funnel.

People will arrive at the Landing Page. This is a simple page giving slightly more information on the case study, and has a form asking them for their email address in exchange for access to the industry case study file.

Once the person has completed the form, they are taken to the Core Offer page. This page contains the full case study for download, and provides links such as ‘Speak to ABC Architects about your next project’, with a form asking for more details. The person has been given a goodwill gesture, and can now enquire about the services available from ABC Architects.

The first objective achieved here is the marketing database. The person who has expressed interest in the technical in-depth case study obviously has an interest in high-level construction and development, and it would be a pretty safe bet to assume they are in the industry. We now have this person’s email address to be able send them relevant information in the future. The person will also be indebted to your brand, since you have provided an item of goodwill.

The second objective is for the person to identify the need for the solution available from ABC Architects, the call to action: ‘Speak to ABC Architects about your next project’. This is the most valuable objective, as this is the lead that can be converted into sales.

In this situation, in my opinion I would skip the One-Time Offer Page and go straight to the Thank You Page, which thanks the person for providing his or her contact details. This is a good opportunity to promote other aspects of the architecture firm, such as its interior design service, for example.

The final step is to evaluate the steps of the funnel with the data provided. Which step in the funnel is not working? Funnels need tweaking and editing, as they very rarely work at the outset. We need to look honestly at the lead magnet, the layout, design, and flow, and work from there to increase the results of the funnel.

If you are interested in a consultation to develop a sales funnel for your business, feel free to contact us!