That’s no funnel!


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In a recent blog post, Seth Godin advises marketers to devise a more efficient funnel.

The thing is, some funnels are more efficient than others. Expose your idea to ten of the right people and it catches on with three of them. Other ideas or offers need to be exposed to far more people (and go through more steps) before they’re likely to convert someone.

So, the next question is, what is an efficient funnel? No, wait, scratch that. Because the problem starts with the metaphor. The process isn’t a funnel at all. A filter? Strainer? Panning for gold?

A funnel takes everything you throw into it and squirts it out a smaller opening. If only marketing worked like that! But when you begin with 10,000 emails or 1000 ad clicks and end up with 30 prospects and 5 sales, that’s no funnel.

Let’s leave the name for now. The real question is, how can you structure a process that increases relevancy as you continue to touch each prospect? If you’re able to understand and track (via good profiling) their areas of interest, you can devise further contacts that are more specific to their needs. That’s how you get higher returns.

From your first contact, you need not just to “expose your idea” to them, but find out the problem they’re trying to solve, and tailor subsequent efforts to them according to what you’ve learned. It’s more work, but if you keep bombarding them with irrelevant stuff, they’ll bail on you. On the other hand, the more relevant they find the experience, the more likely they’ll bring others into the conversation.

So, if it’s not a funnel, what is it? Any suggestions?

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Thompson Morrison
Thompson Morrison has spent the last couple of decades figuring out how companies can listen better. Before co-founding FUSE, Mr. Morrison was Managing Director of AccessMedia International (AP), a consulting firm that provides strategic market analysis for the IT industry. His clients included Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, IBM, and Vignette.


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