Why do you need a sales funnel? Sales funnels are a hotly discussed topic in the marketing world, and the ‘funnel bros’ out there will have you believe that you need one to solve all your marketing problems. But what are sales funnels? And do they actually work?

In this video, we’ll show you how to better understand what funnels are, and how to use them to get more customers without being like funnel bro?

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Sales funnels are a hotly discussed topic in the marketing world, and you’ve probably seen some funnel bros, who are like:

“Hey, you need a funnel, bro, that’s what’s up.”

So, you’ll either think that sales funnels are the answer to all of your marketing problems or they’ll scare you away from ever building a funnel (especially when you see how many steps goes into building one).

But you don’t want to be like ‘funnel bro’, they just want your money.

So, what’s a small business to do?

We’ll show you how to better understand what funnels are, and how to use funnels to get more customers. 

What exactly is a funnel?

You might be wondering: “What exactly is a funnel?”

The word ‘funnel’ might conjure up images of you shoving people into a kind of sieve-like funnel system, and just kind of hoping that some customers come out of the other end in one piece.

But we don’t think that accurately represents what a funnel should be all about.

So, let’s call it what is it…a path or journey that takes someone from not knowing who you are all the way through to ultimately buying from you.

And if you think about it that way, it really doesn’t seem so scary, sleazy or slimy anymore.

We believe that everyone in business should know the path that potential customers take. Even if you are reliant on referrals right now, you should know how to move someone from a potential customer to a paying customer.

The Problem With the Traditional Sales Funnel

The main problem with thinking of this sales path as a one-directional stage by stage funnel is that it can be difficult to know what the next best step for our potential customers is.

This means that all we can ever do is build a funnel based on guesswork at every stage, and guess what we think should come next. So, what we end up doing is guesstimating and then automating that guesstimating.

That doesn’t mean that funnels are inherently bad, or don’t work, but the fundamental problem with funnels is that they are built on educated guesses.

What ebook will attract the right people?

What sales emails will hit that problem? 

We can never be 100% confident, and sometimes not even close to 100%. Business is not black and white, and it’s really not easy to create a high-converting funnel based on guesswork.

Why We Prefer the Loyalty Loop

Our good friend Drew Davis actually hates the term funnel and instead he uses the term loyalty loop.

You can check out his explanation of the loyalty loop here.

In a traditional funnel potential customers and actual customers are going in a downwards direction, and you’ll lose them if they don’t take action.

Instead, as business owners, we need to continually inspire our customers and our potential customers to take certain actions, which lead to more actions and eventually to sales and beyond.

We love this way of thinking about it, as it’s all about taking your customers on a potentially, never-ending journey rather than letting them fall out at each stage. It allows us to constantly re-inspire people to come down that customer path and to buy from us.

Do You Need A Sales Funnel?

Yes, you need a path that takes someone from not knowing who you are to becoming a customer.

However, that doesn’t mean that you should spend all your time guesstimating what path your customers will take, and create all your lead magnets, landing pages, sales funnels and everything else based on that guess.

At least, not yet…

Guesstimating and automation rarely works the first time. Instead, we recommend that you take things a little bit slower.

How do you take Claire from someone who doesn’t know who you are to a potential paying customer? 

And will this be the same pathway for your next lead Rob?

And what about Gary?

Documenting the different steps or paths that potential customers might take in order to become a customer might seem like a slower process. However, once we have the data that tells us how we actually move someone from lead to customer, then we can start to automate that process more and ultimately build a funnel or a loyalty loop that converts way better.

Let us know in the comments, what your thoughts are around sales funnels.

If you aren’t sure where to start, we’d love to show you how to get going. Our membership ATOMIC has all the training, the support, and the accountability you need to start generating clients on demand.

You can join thousands of entrepreneurs right here — we even have a free starter plan to get you going.