Thought I’d repost this here.
This is an article I wrote for Funnel Magazine. I asked them to link to my blog and they said no. They linked to A4D.com but didn’t even use a real link so I could get the backlink weight for SEO… so no need to promote their article. 🙂
Hope everyone is having a great holiday season and can’t wait for 2018…. it’s going to be HHUUUUUGGGEEEE!!!!!
See you at Affiliate Summit West.
“Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail” – Benjamin Franklin
Doesn’t it feel great when you find success?
Do you ever get frustrated by not being able to repeat it predictably?
Did you know you can have the best marketing skills like copywriting, designing, conversion rate optimization and still not predictably find consistent success on a large scale?
As a speaker and owner of A4D.com a CPA network, I talk with 1,000’s of marketers & entrepreneurs all the time. Some have been doing it for years but still aren’t achieving their goals. They seem stuck on a hamster wheel doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.
You might be saying “but Jason, marketing is way too unpredictable… there’s no way you predictably get results in a chaotic space like marketing.”
It may feel like there’s so many unpredictable things in marketing that it would just not be possible to get to some level or predictability… but this is not the case.
In this article, we’ll talk about how we can synthesize, the process of marketing, down to a formulaic step by step approach that will get you predictable results like you’ve never seen before.
This way we can see continued success time and time again.
The only way that I’ve been able to create over $500,000,000 in online sales and stay successful over a 13-year period is by following predictable models that we’ve built over time.
I see a lot of people talking about doing things like taking massive action, learning copywriting, learning to build lists, etc. That’s all great but all those things come from building a strong marketing funnel where you can spend $1 and make $2.
Do you want to know the magic formula for making this happen?
I bet you do… and there isn’t one.
No matter what some douchey guru sells you as their flavor of the week. There’s some really simple basics strategies that never change. Learn these and you’ll consistently produce results. I’ve watched 30-50 trends over the years of how some guru is telling people they’re going to get rich.
Our strong process starts with this very simple step…
That step is setting a goal for the funnel you’re building. Then reverse engineering a model of how you’re going to make it happen.
To start let’s go through an example of something most of us do every day.
Do you know how to drive a car? Good, I thought so.
Stop and imagine yourself as the best driver in the world. You know how to stop, go, turn, drift, etc etc. But you don’t’ know where you’re going…
How useful are those skills if you don’t know where you’re going?
Would you jump in your car without having a clear destination? We typically think of a clear destination before ever think about getting in our car. Our car is just a tool to get us there.
A funnel is the same thing.
When we think about using the car the first thing we do is pick a “specific” destination. Then we start to work through the most efficient route to get to our specific destination.
In planning this route, we might consider things like road construction, traffic patterns and the speed limits of the roads we’re going to take.
With this in mind, we’re going to call this process of planning our drive “the Framework”.
And our Framework for building our funnel and planning it’s success is going to have 2 parts.
- Layout or steps
- Financial model
I like to think of our model as a crossword puzzle. We want to layout the box where things go. Then all the other skills you acquire, like copywriting and analytics, will help you improve your odds of success.
Choosing your funnel steps.
Let’s talk about picking a Layout, Flow or steps first. Typically the best way to start this is just grab something that’s already working the marketplace. There’s a lot of places you can find these for example: courses, forums but my favorite is looking into the real and doing what Russell Brunson calls Funnel Hacking.
Find someone that is buying a lot of advertising to their funnel. How do you know someone is buying a lot of advertising to their funnel you ask? Easy; monitor some websites that your consumer would be reading daily. Then start to monitor the ads that are running on those sites. If you see an ad running for a long time there’s a strong chance this funnel is working.
One thing to note; as you go through this process is make sure you’re using “incognito mode” in your browser so that you’re not getting any retargeting ads. Retargeting ads, for those that don’t know, are ad networks that drop a cookie on your browser and target you specifically again and again because you showed interest in their product.
If you’re a Clickfunnels user you can just go to the Clickfunnels marketplace and most of the major marketing flows are already out there.
Once we’ve chosen our funnel steps we’re going to want to build a financial model.
Here’s the Magical Step that most people miss.
We have to build a simple financial model so we have targets that we’re trying to hit.
Set very achievable targets.
What do I mean by this? Here’s a simple example.
If we have a 2-step funnel
Sales Page -> Checkout Page->Thank You Page
We’ll need to build a formula that we think will be successful. Then once we build that formula we have clear targets to hit. We’re not going to just put it up and test. We’re going to have targets and make sure that our financial model works “first”.
To keep it simple we’ll say that we’re buying traffic from Facebook. Based on past experience we know that Facebook clicks cost on average, at scale, roughly $0.75. Now I know there’s people out there that are going to tell you that you can get clicks for cheap… But we don’t care about that stuff. Our goal is predictability.
So, we need to build our plan on things we can get predictably and sustainably.
If we know we can get lots of clicks consistently and sustainably at $0.75 cents we’ll start there.
In order for us to break even we’d need to earn $0.75 a click that we send to our funnel. Does that make sense?
Funnel profit per click >= $0.75, >= means greater than or equal to
We said we were using a simple funnel with a sales page that sends to a checkout. With this there’s 3 things we need to look at.
- Sales page click thru rate (CTR)
- Checkout conversion rate
- Average profit per checkout
Knowing this let’s go through an example.
If our sales page CTR is 30%, our checkout conversion rate is 5% and our average profit per checkout is $20. Is this going to be profitable for us?
Let’s work through it. If 200 visitors come to our site. That means we’ll have 60 people land on our checkout page based on our 30% CTR.
Now we have 60 people on our checkout page and 5% of those convert to sales. Which gives us roughly 3 sales for each 200 people that come to our site.
We know that each sale is worth $20 profit for us. Therefore, we make $20 x 3 sales = $60 for each 200 clicks that go to our website.
This means that we’re making $0.30 per click that comes to our website…
Should we run this campaign?
Remember our equation from above?
Is $0.30 >= $0.75, sure isn’t so that means we’d lose $.45 cents for every click we’d send to this funnel. Do you want to lose that amount for every click you get? Didn’t think so.
Now that we have a basic model we can start to tweak things. There’s multiple levers we can pull in order to make this funnel work. But we definitely don’t want to go live with the funnel as it sits.
Some ideas of things we could do.
- Make more profit per sale
- Increase the checkout conversion rate
- Increase the sales page click thru rate
- Add 1 click upsells to increase value
Now keep in mind we want to make sure we stick with numbers that have a high probability of success. Don’t say you’re going to get a 20% cart rate as there’s a low probability that’s going to happen.
Your forecasting gets more accurate over time.
The great part about working off a framework is that you can easily measure improvement and know where to put your effort.
I see people that don’t use planning and frameworks they typically keep starting over, build another funnel vs. iterate through improvement. You want to create predictability in your marketing otherwise it’s all going to see like a mystery as time goes on.
As I’m sure you can imagine once you’ve built 5-10 funnels, run test traffic to them and got data your predictability gets better and better.
For this reason, we tend to stick to similar markets/personas (so we know click prices) and similar funnels (so we know predictable steps).
To get started I highly suggest you go to some of your older funnels and build models around them.
In order to exercise this planning muscle, go to some of your older funnels winning and losing funnels, break them down and reverse plan them.
- What was the destination?
- What was the click price?
- What was the goal for each step?
Then start to ask yourself at each step what could you improve to make that funnel a winner?