In a previous article, I wrote about the 5 Pillars to an optimal Customer Relationship-Building Funnel for coaches, which when set up correctly, can help you:
- Build visibility as an influential trusted authority in your industry;
- Generate leads with your ideal client; while enable you to
- Enroll your dream client with ease.
I also shared key statements you can ask yourself, to see whether you were on the right track to get these pillars in place. How did you go – were you able to tick all of the statements? (If you missed the article, you can read it and go through the statements here.)
Note: for those of you who shudder when you hear the word ‘funnel’ and you’re about to stop reading because you don’t think this is relevant for you – I get it.
Along with ‘funnel’, I also used to loathe the word ‘hack’, because the thought of setting up a ‘funnel’ and the thought of ‘hacking this and hacking that’ just didn’t align with the main reason I got into the business.
I wanted to be of support and service to my clients. To share my expertise and my knowledge so they could finally achieve the goals they dreamed about.
So, I struggled to see how the word ‘funnel’ and building strong customer relationships could even be mentioned in the same sentence.
“I realised a ‘funnel’ was a set of strategic steps I put into place TO support my ideal clients get clarity around why they were stuck, along with insights and information to help them come to an empowered and informed decision about whether they wanted to hire me as their coach, or not. And, if they really were my ideal client – the likelihood of them saying ‘Yes’, increased.”
Until I realised that a ‘funnel’ was just a set of strategic steps I could put into place TO support my ideal client. With the right steps and support in my funnel I could help my prospective clients get clarity around why they were stuck, along with the insights and information to help them to come to an empowered and informed decision about whether they wanted to hire me as their coach, or not. And, if they really were my ideal client – the likelihood of them saying ‘Yes’ – increased.
Because, when my funnel had the RIGHT pillars, the RIGHT steps, the RIGHT insights and information, it WOULD be of immense service and support to my ideal clients as I continued to build ‘know, like and trust’ with them, while build my reputation as an influential trusted authority – THE coach they wanted support from.
So, in today’s article – I want to dive a little deeper into WHY your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel works so well when you have all of the 5 pillars in place correctly.
Heard the premise that says your ideal clients don’t lack information – they lack ‘taking action’ on the information? Meaning, there’s so much information available that your ideal client could solve their challenge on their own. And, the real reason they continue to struggle is not due to a lack of information, but because of a lack of action.
I disagree. Especially when it comes to my ideal clients.
I’m an action taker – in fact, I’m a prolific action taker. I love learning and applying new skills and knowledge, I love new and bright shiny objects, so I’m constantly on the lookout for the next idea I’m going to take action on and implement into my business. And, so are my clients.
In fact, when I’m listening to (or reading/watching) information, my brain is already mapping out what I need to do to get that information into action.
So, taking action is NOT the problem.
Where the problem lies is this – just because I CAN take action, doesn’t mean I SHOULD take action, especially when it comes to actioning the information I’ve just learned.
“How do I know if the information I’m taking action on is relevant to me and where I’m at in my business? I’d say 80% of that action was NOT relevant to me, or the stage I was at in my business.”
How do I know if the information I’m taking action on is relevant to me and where I’m at in my business? Will it really help me? Or will just be action for action’s sake (i.e. being on the ‘take action’ – busy treadmill, however never really getting any closer to my goals because it’s not the right action for me to be taking?)
To be honest, if I look at all of the things I’ve taken action on in my business over the years – I’d say 80% of that action was NOT relevant to me, or my business needs for the stage I was at in my business.
So, while there’s a plethora of information accessible on the internet that your ideal client can access, that’s NOT where you or your expertise can best support your client.
Your goal is to help your ideal client get clarity on where they’re stuck and why they’re stuck, along with a streamlined set of steps (i.e your Signature System) the RIGHT steps to move them forward, and then provide them with ongoing support to get into action.
So, clarity on specifically where your customer is stuck, along with the RIGHT action steps to take in order to build the momentum they need to achieve their goals far quicker and with far less frustration, is the value you bring.
That’s what you should be focusing on when you’re mapping out the steps/pillars in your customer relationship-building funnel.
As you’re continuing to share valuable insights and information for your ideal client within your Customer Relationship-building Funnel, make sure you don’t just share the same information that everyone else in your industry is sharing.
Focus on the insights, hindsight, and foresight that only YOU can bring to the conversation through your years of experience and knowledge.
Because it’s the wisdom and knowledge YOU bring through longevity in your industry that matters! Showcase THAT as you build ‘know, like and trust as this goes a long way in building your reputation as THE coach vs just A coach when your ideal client is ready to move forward.
What’s the status quo, you may ask?
Status quo really just means the current state of affairs. How many businesses or even industries are happy doing what they’ve been doing for many years? That old saying ‘If it’s not broken – then why fix it.’
However, something may not be broken, however, could certainly do with a tweak or improvement.
“Make sure you’re not just sharing the same ol’ same ol’ information everyone else in your industry is sharing. Bring insight, hindsight and foresight that only YOU can bring through your years of experience and knowledge.”
Perhaps you’ve been able to come up with a new approach that is challenging the status quo of your industry – share it with your ideal clients and tell them why this new (or changed) approach is so important.
An example of where I challenged the status quo, was when I was in the career industry. Quite a number of my colleagues, along with the industry in fact here in Australia, were saying how important it was to have face-to-face meetings with clients. They believed you couldn’t really have meaningful coaching sessions with clients over the phone or via email. [Skype wasn’t even invented back then].
However, I couldn’t see why that wasn’t possible. I had colleagues in the US who were. So, I hired a coach in the USA, and the rest is history as they say.
I began working with clients not only across Australia via phone and email, however also across the USA and other countries too.
Another example is when I started using audio recordings as part of my work with clients in 2005 and eventually began my first co-hosted podcast in 2008 – when people for years would say ‘what’s a podcast?” “Why bother – no-one really listens to podcasts?”
I wonder what they’d say now.
The moral of the story is this: don’t let anyone tell you it can’t be done – or shouldn’t be done. Do it, get really good at it, and then who knows, years later those same colleagues may just come back and become clients so you can show you exactly how you did it.
Here’s an Infographic I created to help you build your thought leadership in your area of expertise by sharing insights that no other coach is speaking about. I call these your ‘core principles’ – the things that you teach that validate the importance of your Signature System and coaching program.
The online dictionary describes cohesive as: something that sticks together literally or figuratively. A united whole. A synonym for the word cohesive, which I like is the word, harmonious.
Your entire Customer Relationship-Building Funnel, including all of the insights and information you share, should be cohesive, harmonious, and working together.
One pillar in your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel leads to the next, from Pillar 1 right through to Pillar 5. One insight builds upon a previous insight and continues to lead your prospective client along the customer journey in a cohesive, unified and harmonious way while positioning and validating why you and your program are THE coach vs just A coach for them when they’re ready to move forward.
Are the pillars in your current Customer Relationship-Building Funnel cohesive? Does one piece of content continue to add value and build upon a previous insight you’ve shared?
Does it challenge the status quo with regards to the information that many of the other coaches in your industry are sharing? Does it bring fresh insight and aha’s for your prospective client as they continue to learn more about you and how you can help them? And does it continue to validate why you, why your program, and why now?
“Your entire Customer Relationship-Building Funnel, which includes all of the insights and information you share with your ideal client, should be cohesive, harmonious, and working together while positioning and validating why you and your program are THE coach for them.”
Here’s an example that’s relevant to the importance of being cohesive in everything you share and across all of the interactions – the touch points in your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel, with a former client of mine who was a Mortgage Broker.
She was expanding her Mortgage Broking business to include financial coaching to support her clients find savings in their weekly budget. This would enable them to pay off their mortgages far more quicker.
Through the message (and content) she shared, she was able to build interest and intrigue, however, her optin (which is Pillar 2 in her Customer Relationship-Building Funnel) was far from cohesive.
It wasn’t a Quiz or a resource that would have them start to look at various areas they could save money in their budget, which would have been valuable for her lead, while also allowing my client to showcase her expertise.
Instead, she gave them an ebook her bank had given her, full of bank jargon and terminologies, and pages of terms and conditions, which would make anyone’s eyes glaze over.
The information contained in the ebook was not cohesive, nor was it aligned with the message she had shared in her content or the coaching program, which could have supported her client. In fact, it would most likely have caused even more confusion and overwhelm for her lead.
And, the words ‘confusion’ and ‘overwhelm’ are not words you want your ideal client to use when they’re describing your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel and the information you continue to provide them.
Similarly, to the importance of your information, insights, and funnel being cohesive – it also needs to be consistent.
Take my Mortgage Broker client, for example, who was expanding her services as a Financial Coach to help her clients pay off their mortgages, quicker.
After providing her new lead with a Quiz, (Pillar 2 in the Customer Relationship-Building Funnel) here are some suggested topics she could send her new lead to provide even more value in her follow-up Email Sequence (i.e. Pillar 3):
- Common mistakes she sees new mortgagees make when it comes to their budgets (or lack of budgets) putting money in the bank’s pocket rather than their own pockets;
- The mindset change you need when it comes to the word ‘budget’;
- 5 Quick tips they could easily slash hundreds of dollars a year, and years off their mortgage;
- Where to find instant savings in their weekly grocery bill, which many households neglect, to name a few.
You can see from the various topics – they were all relevant to helping families save money, which could be paid against the mortgage so they could reduce the time it would take them to pay back to their mortgage. The message is consistent and is just the tip of the iceberg with the knowledge and expertise she could offer her clients.
Imagine if the information she shared was completely off-topic and irrelevant. They’d indicated they wanted to know more about how to save thousands of dollars and cut years off paying their mortgage only for her follow-up emails to be about a completely different and irrelevant topic.
The lack of consistency in the information she sent them would most likely have this new lead unsubscribed from her emails. A lost opportunity for her.
Last, but certainly not least, and just as important is point 5.
Each piece of content, each interaction, and each touch point you include in your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel should be adding value and continue to position you and your program as THE choice vs just A choice when your ideal client is ready to move forward.
In fact, the thought of working with you to achieve their goals is not only exciting, as you have successfully showcased your promise of value and promise of expectation to your ideal client, it also far outweighs the thought of doing it on their own.
Everything you’ve shared, from your carefully-worded emails through to the value you’ve provided in every aspect of your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel has confirmed why you, why your program, and why now. Because with you, your expertise, and your support they’ll be able to achieve their goals much faster with reduced frustration, time, and money in comparison to if they struggled to work towards their goals on their own.
And, that’s why YOU are the coach they want to work with.
There you have it, 5 reasons why your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel can build visibility, generate leads and enroll clients with ease when it’s set up correctly.
If your Customer Relationship-Building Funnel isn’t building visibility, generating leads, or supporting you in enrolling your dream clients and you’re not sure why this is something my team and I can support you with.
Book a time to chat and let’s see how we can support you. Go to: www.AnnemarieCross.com/LetsChat and book a time and I look forward to speaking with you soon!