Funnels for coaching, consulting, or higher-end 1:1 services businesses are unique from a typical e-commerce funnel where someone visits your landing page, opts in, and then purchases online using their credit card.
Coaching funnels are more nuanced typically with a lower volume of higher quality leads that require a higher level of touch to get a sale.
Tracking the wrong funnel metrics, steps, or conversions can be costly – and applying the wrong “fixes” to your coaching funnel can tank your conversions.
A common coaching funnel has a much higher quality lead visit your website, and then opt-in, submit an application, schedule a call, and purchase.
In our recent Funnel Optimization Workshop we dove deeper into various funnel shapes, where funnels are broken, and even touched on some Fast Funnel Fixes for the Most Common (and Unusual) Business Funnels! We even spent a good chunk of our time on coaching funnels specifically.
Coaching Funnel Steps
The most common coaching funnels we work with will start with content creation, thought leadership, book authorships, traditional media, social media, and PPC at the top. In other words, generating awareness through your activities. These are all the inputs that fill the top of your funnel.
These all turn into website visitors (based on unique page impressions). You’ll track that in your web analytics tool of choice, like Google Analytics.
You’ll then move your website visitor to an opt-in (ideally), a coaching application, or to a call schedule.
What are you giving your prospect for an opt-in? This could be a lead magnet, an assessment, a coaching application, a free chapter from your book, resources, tools, and more.
You’ll then want to move your coaching prospect to apply to your coaching program.
A proper coaching application makes for a far high quality prospect and a more productive call then having someone cold schedule a call with you!
Once a call is scheduled, your prospect has to actually show up to the call. (Yep, you’re not the only one with prospects who don’t show up to their scheduled call! We’ll get to strategies to deal with that shortly!)
Once on a call with you, your prospect then has the opportunity to invest in coaching with you.
If they choose to, ideally you have an upsell.
And then, down the road, they’ll ideally continue coaching with you after a year.
So to recap, your coaching funnel will likely look like this:
- Calls Scheduled
- Calls Attended
- Purchased Upsell
- Renewed at 12 Months
Where Most Coaching Funnels Fall Apart
Everyone’s funnel is different, but with coaching funnels in particular, we often see at our Mastermind that coaching funnels have a high quality prospect who visits the website, but a low opt-in rate and – at times – a low show rate.
See, each conversion in your funnel (progress from one step to the next) has a percentage and a name.
For example, the percentage of people who click your PPC ad and visit your site is your Click Through Rate (CTR). The number of people who opt in after visiting your site is your Opt-In Rate. The number of people who show up to the call they scheduled is your Show Rate. And so on.
Typically, our Mastermind Members are great at closing a sale once a qualified prospect is on the call. And we’ll assume you are, too.
That assumes there’s a proper opt-in page and application in place to qualify – and disqualify – prospects.
Without properly attracting the right prospects – and repelling the wrong prospects – in your landing page copy, opt-in offer, and application process, you’ll end up with a low show rate for your calls and a poor quality prospect when you do hop on a call.
Fixing Your Leaky Coaching Funnel
So how do you get more of the right visitors to your site?
How do you increase your show rate to your calls?
And how do you increase the profitability of your sales?
Each kind of leak in a funnel has a different fix.
For example, if you’re getting opt-ins, but not applications, look at your follow up. What kind of automated – and personal direct – follow up do you have in place to reach out to a lead and get them to apply to your program?
If you’re getting calls booked, but your show rate is low, again, look at your follow up. Are your prospects getting a call confirmation email and a calendar invite so the call shows up on their calendar automatically? Are they get an email and SMS reminder of their call? What’s on your thank you page after they book the call?
What about if your website is getting tons of traffic, but your opt-ins are low? How are you attracting your website visitors? Are your ads congruent with your landing page and with your offer? Are your ads both attracting the right suspect and repelling the wrong suspect? Is your opt-in offer above the fold? Is your offer compelling enough? How well do you know your avatar?
If you don’t have an upsell in place, could you? What else do you have to offer that increase the Amount (the “A” in my FAQs to Profitability) of the transaction? Do your coaching students pay one time or do they join a recurring program to increase the Frequency (the “F” in my FAQs to Profitability!) of Transactions?
This iterative process to find the worst performing part of your funnel, fix it until it’s not the worst performing part of your funnel, and then repeating, is your key to improving the throughput of your funnel and growing your coaching business!
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