How can you build and sell the perfect marketing funnel? On our 20th podcast episode, Mike Killen, the founder of Sell Your Service, lists the crucial steps of creating a high-converting funnel and explains why Thank You pages are vastly underrated.
Mike Killen is a leading British marketing expert and the founder of Sell Your Service, helping funnel builders achieve their maximum income potential through training, programs, courses, coaching and resources.
Mike has helped over 2,000 funnel builders sell more funnels to their customers and increase their maximum income.
First Rule of Selling Marketing Funnels – Don't Talk About Marketing Funnels.
Mike believes we shouldn’t be too technical with our customers:
“The first rule of selling marketing funnels is that you don’t talk about marketing funnels. The biggest mistake I think people make with their customers is they say, ‘Well, we’ve got all these opportunities, we’ve got a page builder and we can create landing pages and squeeze pages and opt-in forms and we can connect to people’s CRMs,’ and as designers and developers and creators, we get very excited about that and we understand that all of those coming together, just trying to convert a lead or a prospect into a sale and then a sale into a bigger sale.
We understand that that strategy is called a funnel, but we take for granted that our customers don’t know that necessarily. They might become confused by that. So the first rule of selling funnels is you don’t talk about funnels and you don’t say, ‘I sell marketing funnels,’ or ‘I build marketing funnels.’ Because nothing will put your customer off more than them hearing a technical term that you then have to educate them on or explain to them. “
Understanding Your Pricing Strategy First
One of the things we touched during the interview was the challenging issue of preparing a price offer for your client. Mike has a unique view on this subject:
“When it comes to selling, I think we all have reservations about selling a website for $10,000 or 10 grand or 25 grand or a marketing funnel for 25 grand. And we all kind of, we get ourselves in a bit of a bit of a panic about how much we should be charging. And I found time and time again the way to sell anything, and this comes from my heavy, heavy background in sales, is to not make a list of the things the customer wants and then think of a price.
It’s to think of a price first and then work out what you want to give the customer. And I think that’s the big mistake is a lot of funnel builders when they get into this area and, and you know, you’ve provided them with this new opportunity for opt-in forms, right? A lot of people are then going to say, ‘Well I want to provide that to my customer so I’m going to make a list of all the things that they want.’ And they could get an email list growth and we can put blog posts on opt-in forms and when we think, ‘Well, how much can I charge for that?’ And we do all sorts of things that are bad habits. We look at the market. We see what other people are charging. We ask our customers what they would pay for it and that’s wrong. That’s fundamentally the wrong approach.
Instead, what you need to do is think, how much do I want to earn per customer or earn per project or earn per year and work backward from that and think what am I going to have to deliver to justify that $25,000 price or that $10,000 price.
And that’s really a big, big part of selling marketing funnels is understanding a pricing strategy first and then working out what you’re going to deliver.”
Choose a Very Specific Niche
Finding the right niche might sound like a cliche but it has significant value when selling marketing funnels. Mike explains how we should choose a niche that fits our marketing expectations, and demonstrates through his own experience:
“The internet has changed the boundaries of where geography lies. We have customers literally all over the world. You’ve got customers literally all over the world and even as a small business or even as a one-person organization, you can have marketing funnel customers and website customers all over the world. The problem is that people try to remain generalists because they’d believe that that’s the best route to finding a customer.
Because if you’re open to all offers and open to all projects, then you’re more likely to find customers. As more and more funnel builders enter the market, and this isn’t a slight against page builders. Page builders have been instrumental, but as more people learn how to use page builders and marketing systems and automation systems become more accessible … I’m a big fan of Active Campaign for example, and their automation is for the equivalent of whatever it is, 70 bucks a month is 10 times more powerful than the things we were spending tens of thousands of dollars on per month just to get the same functionality.
So it’s clearly not the tools that separate you because they get easier and faster. It’s not being able to just provide everything because everyone is able to provide everything. So the way that you have to be able to find customers is by choosing a very specific niche.
One of the mistakes I think people make is that they say, ‘we look after small businesses and that accounts.’ Particularly in the Western world that counts for roughly 98% of most countries GDP. That’s not a well-defined market. Or they’ll come back and they’ll say, ‘Well I want to work in the service sector.’
I’m like, ‘Okay, well I don’t really know what that means because most businesses are service based and again, there’s not a lot that joins an accountant to a solicitor.’ There’s not really a huge amount that connects them. And then they’ll go after industry and they’ll say, ‘Well, we just want to build funnels for the manufacturing industry’. I think, ‘Well, there’s a difference between a six-person manufacturing operation in my small hometown compared to Pfizer or Eli Lilly, who are also massive manufacturing for drugs of course.’
So instead, we have to look at the parts of the process that we enjoy and one of the places we got started was with opt-in forms…
This is what, 2013, ’14. This is where we really started and we offered opt-in forms to businesses that wanted to grow their email list. But it’s not enough again, to just offer that service or product. You have to think, ‘Well, who would benefit from that? Who would value that?’ I know I want to charge at the time it was about 5,000 pounds per project. So I have to think, ‘Well, who has that kind of money?’
And you work backwards from there and customers are out there, customers with the budget are out there, don’t let that your current network or ecosystem tell you what they’re willing to spend because they are out there and they’re willing to buy if you find the right. For example, would be, you know, we work with online app businesses who help save their customers money and we help them sell paid licenses to their free users. That’s a niche. That’s something that you can go after and really dominate.”
Kids Can Earn Confidence Through Sales Training
Mike aspires to get sales training into the hands of every child in every school in the world. When asked why it is so important to him to get them started at such a young age, he answeres:
“That’s something that only in the last few months I’ve become extremely passionate and clear about. I’m part of a couple of networks, one of which was with a guy called Daniel Priestly, and they’ve helped you work that out.
The reason why is mainly around confidence. Confident businesses and confident people don’t take risks. The reality is if a business knows that they can make sales, even if they’ve got no customers and there’s nothing on the horizon, and for whatever reason, all of their customers are falling off a cliff. Every business faces that some point, they’re just … their customers and their influence and their leads. Everything just disappears. It happens. But if people have got the confidence to know, ‘I can make a sale’, ‘I know how to generate money and income.’ That creates confidence in myself and it creates security.
If I’m confident and secure, I’m less likely to make stupid decisions and take stupid risks. The reason that people are conned into … well, by con artists into giving them money is because they looking for getting rich quick schemes.
The reason that people, that kids, especially in many places around the world, get into things like selling drugs, is because they believe that that is the only thing that they can sell. Selling is not about making money and it’s not about closing the deal on a customer generating revenue. It’s about serving an audience.
If you learn how to serve an audience and make a really good argument and you understand how to make a good argument, you’re less likely to be stressed. You’re more confident. You know that you can get what you need and everyone is a salesman. We all like to kind of say, ‘Oh, I don’t like sales. I don’t like a secondhand car salesman. Sales is beneath me.’
Every single human being in the world at some point has to prove their point, prove that they’re worth something and prove their argument if they want something done. And if we understand how to sell at a young age and tell those stories, we become more confident people and I think we can kind of begin working on areas that really matter as opposed to some of the stuff that I believe is kind of wasted taught in school.
So that’s why I believe it’s important to teach it earlier on and younger.”
Thank You Pages Are Vastly Underrated
In the spirit of our recent CRO Expert Roundup, Mike shared with us a useful strategy:
“The thank you page for us is where we have generated so much revenue. After someone opts in, you guys have got this new opt-in forms and people opt-in and they want to download the PDF or the report or the video or whatever they have opted in for.
Instead of taking them immediately to the delivery page, instead of giving them that download, you say, ‘Thanks very much. We’re going to send that to your email address just to make sure that you’ve given us your real email address. We’re going to send it to your email address.’ And you redirect them to a Thank You page.
Now, from a specification standpoint, you can put your tracking pixels in there. You can put conversion pixels. One of the other tools that I use is called Oribi, which is my analytics platform. I don’t use Google Analytics and you can measure things much easier when you have the Thank You page.
On that Thank You page, you can then have a video or a sales message to that same person because you never know the person who just downloaded the report on how to sell your app to free customers might then want some training for $19. That Splinter product we talked about earlier or free access to you or even some paid consultation or coaching.
So offer a product on the Thank You page. Usually a sales letter or a video, sales video, and start to capitalize on people’s excitement and their trust building in you and we find that our thank you pages convert very, very well. So to me from a funnel standpoint, Thank You pages are vastly underrated.”