Ever heard of the sales funnel? Sales funnel is a marketing model that is used to understand consumer behaviors or buying patterns and deploy a strategical approach for a better business of the brand. Sales funnel tracks a customer cycle right from brand awareness that raises the interest of the audience which further leads to individuals considering of making a purchase and then the final stage is the conversion or the purchase. The sales funnel has helped the marketing and sales professionals ideate and implement a custom strategy for various domains. But when we look back at it, did anyone wonder why do these sales funnel fail sometimes? Has any sales professional ever come across the idea that the sales funnel doesn’t quite work for them? A few must have. What is it that makes the Sales Funnel fail? After all, it was invented for the success of any business that follows it diligently.
The sales funnel or the purchase funnel or the marketing funnel as they call it was invented by E. St. Elmo Lewis an American advertising advocate in 1989. The funnel was later proposed by William W. Townsend in 1924. Although various marketing professionals and researchers have created a modified version of the same, the base of the funnel remains to be the same. This brings us to the question of how effective can a 95-year-old theory be? After all, people change and so does consumer behavior. The industry scenarios change to an extent where a marketing campaign may not be as effective the second time. The marketing scenarios change by the blink of an eye and the professionals from the industry need to keep track of it. Below are 5 main reasons why your marketing funnel may not be delivering to its fullest potential and what you must do about it.
We have advanced and come way too long from the ’90s. Initially, by awareness, the sales funnel simply considered targeting the masses and picking out those who showed interest. Today, the advancements help us gauge intent and we must not follow the ‘hit the masses’ technique any longer. The idea here is to make a shift from ‘mass awareness’ to ‘target audience specific’. Your marketing campaigns could be narrowed down to your specific target. Your target could be as diverse as ‘which domain you try to cater to’ or as simple as ‘gender specific’. Know your audience and channel your campaigns accordingly.
We live in the digital age where we no longer count number or footfalls by physical numbers. We have stats in place that speak well about how many people visit your brand and how well does your brand show up to the ones who actually need or want your services. Are we in real terms making good use of these stats? When we speak of allocating huge sums of marketing budgets, do we ever think of check our traffic and stats to analyze the best place to give in our money to? If yes, you are going right. If no, you must reconsider investing in the real audience, right where your traffic comes from.
The one thing people don’t seem to have today is time. The digital revolution has transformed everyone’s retention span to seconds. The idea is not to keep them engaged by restricting them to access your brand; it is to engage them in as many healthy ways as possible. When someone tries to access or reach out to your brand, be it for purchase, overview, inquiry or registering a complaint, make sure they can access and reach out to the brand without restrictions. A user-friendly approach is key towards creating happy customers. Is your brand being user-friendly for your audience?
A little extra effort never hurt anyone. While you may reach out to the masses or your target audience, try making your offerings personal. A personalized offering through any brand makes the end user or consumer or potential feel valued. Be it emails messages or shout-outs; keep your offering personal always. While you filter your target audience, you can always go a step ahead for your brand’s identity. A personalized approach can help retain your brand image and the end user will always remember your brand further serving the purpose of brand registration. Wouldn’t you like it if someone makes a personalized offer rather than a vague one?
At the end of the day, everything a business does only sums up to one thing- customer satisfaction. What does your effort mean at all if your customer isn’t really satisfied at the end? A lot of big businesses make this mistake. They only focus on sales and forget to check if what they sold actually make the consumer happy. It isn’t the sale that makes most of the difference; your consumer can buy something similar to your offering from some other brand. Give them a reason to choose you and stick to you. Customer service does not only helps you create a brand reputation but also helps build a loyal customer base which is much needed with so many brands to compete with.
Make sure the leakages in your marketing funnels or sales funnel are rectified as per the 21st century before it’s too late. Like Katherine Barchetti smartly quoted, ”Make a customer, not a sale”. It is very easy to simply sell for the name of it, what a brand must focus on is building relations rather than pushing their offerings. Times have changed, and it is time your marketing funnel does too.