How Many Funnels Do You Need in Your Business?
Before now, I used to view business funnel as a single component.
I mean, once you have your business, you should have a funnel for it, or at most, a funnel per market/audience segment.
I saw multiple funnels in the same business, for the same market, as unnecessary.
Yes, I believed that your audience should be served at different levels, from low to high. But I also believed that as long as it’s the same market, you mostly need one funnel; and only need to string as many upsells as possible together.
…if you’re into skincare, you’d have just one funnel for acne, as a sub-niche. (You can have another funnel for anti-aging, for example.)
The funnel can start with free stuff like videos and downloadable reports or eBooks and then move to low-priced digital products, and then to your core products (maybe soap) and then upsell more of your core products, then upsell them to an entire anti-acne kit that contains between 5 to 7 products, and then events and masterminds and every other thing you can use to serve your customer at a higher level.
It’s actually not a bad way of doing it, and some people successfully do it this way. I did, in the past.
I also always saw what people call entire funnels as mere marketing channels. I’d laugh when I saw someone say things like VSL funnel or Webinar funnel.
Basic funnel structure
I believed a basic funnel structure is: Lead Magnet => Sales Page => Upsell Page. And that every other funnel out there is just a variation of this basic funnel structure – which is true anyway. And each offer in your funnel could be promoted via any medium.
So your sales page could be a webinar or a VSL (video sales letter) instead of the traditional sales letter. Calling a medium an entire funnel sounded foreign to me.
There’s a lot of truth in this, and I’ve been able to keep things simple with this method and mindset.
Recently though, after deciding to open my mind to see how funnels are done by other successful marketers and business owners, I discovered something profound.
Basically, instead of stringing a lot of offers and upsells together in one long funnel, one can have several funnels throughout one’s business — for each sub-niche you serve, if you have more than one.
The concept of the Value Ladder is what finally made multiple funnels make sense to me.
A Value Ladder can easily be confused with a funnel if one is not being careful.
Value Ladder is the different levels at which you can possibly serve your customers/clients, and each step of the value ladder has its own funnel, or multiple funnels.
Where magic happens is that you let one funnel at each point of a value ladder to lead to the funnel on the next step of the value ladder. The end of one funnel can (and should) be the beginning of another funnel.
Okay, before we all get confused, let me make this a bit practical with an instance.
So, let’s use weight-loss as our example.
Funnels in a Value Ladder
Your value ladder has an entry point, and it’s either a free offer or a low-priced offer.
But let’s use a free offer here.
So for a weight-loss expert, many things can be given for free in exchange for prospects’ contact details; could be a recipe book for foods that aid weight loss.
At this stage, you want to have a funnel that attracts your dream clients, turns them into leads and then upsells them something cheap…just to qualify them as buyers (and to offset your ad costs).
This could be a complete meal plan developed with the recipe book, and with even more healthy recipes, then an accompanying video to demonstrate how to prepare the meals. This could be $27.
Mind you, this upsell, which is the end of one funnel, is actually the beginning of another funnel that takes your prospect to the next step of the Value Ladder.
For example, those who didn’t take the upsell at that point will later be marketed to, via email, retargeting ads, etc, with that low-priced product. Hopefully they’d be more open to buying your low-priced product, after they’ve gotten some value from the free one.
But this is an entire funnel that starts with your $27 product and can be sold with a simple sales letter.
You can then upsell buyers into another funnel, a Home Study – a video course you created to teach them virtually everything they need to achieve their dream weight…from workout plans to actual exercises, to a more premium meal plan and anything weight loss experts do to help people lose weight.
This can be priced at between $100 to $1000 and can be sold via a VSL or a Webinar.
The final offer at the top of your value ladder can be for those you’d wish to serve personally; a coaching program. This can be priced at anything from $1,000 (group coaching) to 2k, 3k, 5k and more (one-on-one coaching).
Interested prospects can be made to apply through a form, from which you select those you’d like to work with, after interviewing them on the phone.
Did you see the progress here?
Yes, all these can be one single funnel, but breaking it up into individual funnels unique to each level of your value ladder makes things easier. You can easily send someone back into your value ladder at the point they fell off with the funnel unique to that point.
Following the weight-loss example, if you want to do a promo for your group coaching program just to fill up slots, you’d simply market your application funnel to those who’ve bought your Home Study Program, telling them of the number of slots you want filled and how much discount you’re giving them for a limited period of time.
That is an entire funnel on its own.
An Application Funnel has the following steps:
1. A video showing the results they can get from working personally with you, ending with a call-to-action to fill a form.
2. An application page that contains the form – questions they must answer to qualify
3. A “Thank You” page where you can tell them more about the program and what the next step is.
That’s all. You simply call them on the phone to interview them.
…to answer the question I asked at the beginning: how many funnels should you have in your business?
Well, there’s no right or wrong answer; the answer is: as many funnels as is needed to move your dream customers/clients up your value ladder. And it’s not abnormal for some levels of your value ladder to have multiple funnels.
Personally though, I like to keep things simple. So I can test several funnels at each step of my value ladder, just to find the highest converting or most profitable. Once I find that, I keep only that one at each stage.
You can do that too,
Hope you learnt something today. If you have any questions, you can definitely ask me in the comments.
And if you need my personal help with your funnels, you can reach out to me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Funnels are the first supporting pillars in my Septuplar Sales System; they help you optimize your sales process, and take your prospects from strangers to not just customers, but repeat buyers.
I’d be more than happy to help you with this!
PS: Don’t know what a funnel is? Check back tomorrow as I deal with this topic here on the blog!
Meet the Author
Hello! I’m Oludami Yomi-Alliyu. I'm on a mission to help driven entrepreneurs grow their business and attain freedom through consistent, profitable sales. This is why I created the Septuplar Sales System, out of my experience turning around my business failure and now consistently getting returns of over 5x my ad spend.Learn more