Anyone who’s reading this post, tradie or not, I want you to ask yourself this question. “Who could potentially buy my business off me in 5 years time?”
All too often I hear tradies (which are typically a small business) tell me, “I am my business. Without me, it has no value”.
Let’s clarify one thing right now, that is not the case.
Over the years, I’ve personally worked in organisations that frequently acquired companies in order to grow their business market share. It happens all the time, however in order for that to happen, there needs to be a couple of (critical) elements in place that make a business acquirable.
Today, I’m going to look at one of those elements, which is building your client and prospect database by implementing a ‘Sales Funnel’ and more to the point, I’m going to show you how you can do it in your business.
Your website is not just a pretty online presence. It should be the foundation for a seriously powerful marketing tool.
Having a vision for your company is critical. Not enough business owners have a clear understanding of where they want to end up, so it’s no real surprise they’re disappointed that all of their hard work over the years has not created them any security.
FACT: In the majority of business acquisitions, the takeover company is looking to acquire a database.
In todays environment, it’s pretty rare for someone to purchase on the first point of contact. Typically speaking if you’re selling a product, the stats say that it will take an average of around seven points of contact or ‘touches’ before the purchase takes place. This number will differ for a lot of emergency based companies, as people that visit that site are in desperate need of getting something done, but lets focus on the average and lets use a ‘home renovation’ company as an example.
If I’m looking to renovate my home, I’m going to take the time to conduct some research and get a few quotes. I’m not going to rush into anything, making sure I’m well prepared. Statistics tell us that even if someone has come via a referral, 70% of us are going to search them online regardless, so this is where a having a sales funnel in place is going to become really important.
I’m going to visit that site (and many others) but I am not likely to buy straight away. This means that I’m going to eventually leave that website and potentially never return.
70% of Australians will do their own research for a company online, regardless of weather or not that lead has come via referral.
Now if I am the home renovation company and I know that statistically, people that visit my site are not going to buy from me immediately, I am going to want to find a way that I can stay in contact with that person, because I know that if they don’t buy right now, they might buy in the near future.
So, how do I keep in touch with these (potential) customers? How can I build a dialogue with them and keep my business fresh in their minds, so when they’re ready to move forward, I’m at the forefront?
Put yourself in this scenario for a minute.
You’re looking to renovate your home in about 12 months time and you’re researching companies on the internet to find some suitable builders.
You come to XZY Renovations (all names made up for purpose of article) and they look like they offer everything that you need. They have good, legitimate reviews and they have a nice looking gallery with some great projects behind them. You take a note of XZY Renovations details somewhere and intend to get in touch with them when you’re ready to move forward.
You then come across Sales Funnel Renovations and again, they look like a great solution. Pretty similar to XZY Renovations, however this website has something cool on it that immediately grabs your attention. On their homepage, there’s a complimentary document called
‘5 EXPERT tips on how to save a fortune on your home renovation’
If you’re serious about renovating, there is no way you wouldn’t want to read that document. And this is where it gets cleaver.
Naturally, the report has to be emailed to you, so when you click on the link, you get sent to a page that allows you to enter your name and your email address. Once you’ve done that, the report is sent via automation straight into your inbox for you to read whenever you like.
By opting in to receive that document, you have made it clear to Sales Funnel Renovations, that you are interested in renovating at some point and more to the point and most importantly, you have opened up the communication channel, so a dialogue can now begin.
From Sales Funnel Renovations’ point of view, they have someone that is interested in their information. It’s now up to them to provide it.
It’s all about educating, building trust and keeping in contact and regardless of weather you have 1 staff member or 100, the best way to do that is through automation. Automation allows you to set up an email sequence once and deliver it automatically with consistently every time .
Effectively, once the visitor receives their report, they enter into a sequence of automated communications that are generated via email and set to go out over the course of the next 3,6,12, or whatever months. This enables Sales Funnel Renovations to continually add value by further educating them, which in return gains them trust and also keeps them fresh in the visitors mind.
Keeping yourself in that scenario, how awesome would it be to receive an email once a month, that contained a detailed outline of a renovation project that had just been completed, that could give you ideas about what you could do with your own renovation.
XYZ Renovations had everything that I wanted, but so did Sales Funnel Renovations. The difference is that Sales Funnel Renovations was both cleaver and proactive in making sure that:
a. The communication channel had been opened,
b. It’s not up to the customer to get back in touch with them (because they’re busy and they won’t remember) and,
c. The customer receives useful, relevant information that adds value.
Implementing a ‘Sales Funnel’ into your company will completely turn your business around and the best part is, hardly any of your competitors are doing it.
So Sales Funnel Renovations has achieved a number of really significant things here.
- they have built an attraction model into their business.
- they have added a contact to a list of other (semi) qualified people.
- they’ve put themselves in a situation where they can start to build trust.
- they can now openly educate and at the same time exhibit their expertise and,
- they’ve proven to be proactive and professional.
So lets look at a general overview of the steps involved in building this ‘Sales Funnel’ attraction model, so you can see what you need to do in order to integrate this strategy into your business.
- You need a product, or service. Nothing happens without an excellent offer.
- You need to have a well built website. If your website is poorly built, or represents you in an unprofessional manner, then you’re behind the eight ball.
- On your website, you need to have a strong call-to-action that ‘Adds Value’ to the reader.
- Your call-to-action should take visitors to a landing page that speaks specifically about your offer.
- Your landing page needs to have an opt-in. Keep it short and sweet. The more fields that need to be completed, the less chance you have of someone doing it. Preferably, keep it to ‘first name’ and ‘email’.
- Your opt-in needs to tie into an automation sequence that delivers great (relevant) content and continuously adds more value.
If you want to see and experience how this process works, go to this link. I’ve created a short video series on the sales funnel process, complete with a bonus eBook.
We work with many trade based companies that are in highly competitive markets. There are plumbing companies in Sydney that spend $100,000 every month on advertising, so you need to get creative on how you position yourself.
Competing against companies like that on ad-spend alone is not an option for most, however where you can see great results is not focusing so much on bringing in new customers, but looking after the ones you already have.
If you do a good job, you have an 80% chance of retaining that customer in the future, so instead of blowing your budget on AdWords, why not invest in nurturing the (qualified) clients that have already purchased from you.
So you have the basic understanding now. If you’d like to discuss specifics around implementing this strategy into your organisation, fill in the contact form at this link, or give us a call on 1300 417 297.