Tune into this episode of the Domain Magnate show as Micheal Bereslavsky and John Ainsworth, CEO of Data Driven Marketing, chat about the value of creating purposeful and powerful funnels for your business.
John is an intelligent, talented and thoughtful campaigns manager. He brings to the table a wide range of marketing, campaigning and sales skills and insights. John is the CEO of Data Driven Marketing.
SKIP TO THE GOOD PARTS:
- 0:45 – 1:25 John talks about Data Driven Marketing.
- 2:01 – 4:29 John explains the difference between a good and bad funnel.
- 16:16 – 18:49 Creating a powerful funnel to increase revenue.
- 33:40 – 36:13 John chats best way of sending out email promotions.
- 46:01 – 47:35 John recaps the value of a good funnel.
Michael Bereslavsky 0:12 Hello there guests, welcome to this episode of the Domain Magnate Show. We have with us today, John Ainsworth, CEO of Data Driven Marketing. Hi, John.
John Ainsworth 0:25 Hey, how you doing?
Michael Bereslavsky 0:27 Thank you for joining us. So I’m really excited to get into this discussion about funnels. But before we get into it, can you tell us a little more about the company you run? How big is it? How many people do you have?
John Ainsworth 0:42 Yeah, so Data Driven Marketing is an agency that helps online course creators to increase their revenue 20 to 100%, through improving their funnels. And we’re relatively small, we have a team of five of us, and we do about $20,000 a month in revenue. And what we’ve been doing is developing a lot of systems and resources with the plan being to then launch into group coaching. So we can help a huge number of people. So a lot of our focus so far has been like a boutique agency, so that we build up all these systems, and then we’re going to launch out and help out hundreds of people through our group coaching.
Michael Bereslavsky 1:26 That sounds pretty good. So John, you are an expert on funnels. And I’ve been around online marketing for, quite a while, probably over a decade and a half. And I’ve used funnels from time to time, but I think I’ve never really got a good understanding of how they work, or why are they so important. So I think that’s a good point to start. So can you explain, like, why is it important? and How big can it be the difference between having a good funnel and a bad funnel?
John Ainsworth 2:01 Yeah, it’s a really interesting one, because certain businesses, having one of these automated funnels isn’t really the right solution for them, it’s not the thing that they need to have in place. And for other businesses, it’s like, absolutely astronomical kind of difference that can make. So there’s a couple of groups of people, I find who it really is huge boy, if you’ve got a ton of website traffic already, and then you’re not getting the conversions, you’re not getting the number of people from that who are signing up that you wish you had. A funnel is probably the solution, the bit in between. So take for us with our clients, we’ve got a lot of online course creators who might have 20,000 50,000, 100,000 website visitors a month, but they’re not really making all that much revenue. If all you do as you have your courses available for sale on the site, some people will buy them, but really not that many. And if you’ve got all you’ve got as a sign up on your site as a newsletter, then a tiny proportion of people will get into your email list, but not that many. And so if you set up the whole process, and you optimize every stage, throughout that you can get three, five, ten times as many people turning into clients as you would have done otherwise, you can get much bigger sales. If you’ve got a SAS business, and you are trying to convert more of your site visitors into customers, then that’s going to make an enormous difference for you. And we’ve worked with a SASA business for a while now. And he’s in that time, I think five times his revenue is just hit a million dollars a year recently. And so there are certain businesses like that, where they’ve got the traffic and they they’re not converting people. The other time that a funnel makes an enormous difference is if you want to scale through ads. So if you’re trying to scale a business through ads, then you need to be able to make your money back on the ad spend quite quickly unless you’ve got an enormous reserve of cash in the bank. So most people want to make that money back in 7 days, 14 days, 30 days, some people it’s like, okay, we can wait 60 or 90 days, something like that. But you need something that’s going to convert a new visitor into buying something relatively quickly so that you can get the cash back and put more money into ads. And the sooner you make the money back, the sooner you have money to spend on ads again. And so if you’ve got a business with a great funnel at the front end, then you can scale, the size of it and the email list size and the size of the business astronomically. And most people don’t really understand this and don’t really get it and they’ll spend money on ads and get frustrated with it. But if you can get that money back quickly, then it’s it’s huge for him.
Michael Bereslavsky 4:30 Yeah, that does sound like a huge difference, if you can get 10 times more clients. That’s definitely worth the investment.
John Ainsworth 4:39 Right, right.
Michael Bereslavsky 4:40 And so you mentioned courses, online courses, probably most businesses that sell online or digital products would be where you would really want to have a good funnel right. Or businesses that sell at least, basically sell like higher value products would that be accurate to say?
John Ainsworth 5:02 Yeah, the kind of people where funnels make an enormous difference SAS businesses online courses. It the ones that…anything that’s basically selling something actually online where it’s a relatively…where you’ve got like a some way of someone starting spending money at a relatively low number, if you’re doing something where you’re like I want to be selling people something for 10, 20, $30,000, you’re probably going to work better through networking and referrals and making connections with people I say probably because there are times when you can run, extend, you know, marketing agencies with expensive services selling through funnels as well, it does work, you just have to have a slightly different type of funnel at the front end for that. You might have something where you have…so for an agency, you might have a ad through to a video that promotes a free call with somebody that then gets them into a cheap audit that then kind of there’s these little stages, little steps along the way to get them into spending more money. But I know quite a few people who are doing those more expensive offers who find that that type of marketing doesn’t work as well for them. If you’re selling something cheaper, then having a having a funnel is huge. It’s like it just works beautifully. Well, it’s very much the style that fits. What have you found in the past? Because you mentioned you had some businesses where you’d had funnels, and sometimes we haven’t, what’s the ones that have worked for you with having a funnel?
Michael Bereslavsky 6:29 Yeah, that’s interesting. So you mentioned that the lower cost products, actually, the funnels are more important there. I was thinking it might be the opposite of the higher cost products. But I guess it makes sense, because then if a decision is quick, then it’s a low cost product than a good funnel would would get them to just buy right away. Yeah, for us we’ve had, I think a lot depends on the size of the purchase. Right? So we’ve had a few really successful funnels. So we had a site in the dating niche a few years ago. And it had a funnel, selling some digital products selling an E book, or an E book, and I think maybe some videos, some digital products. And the funnel was pretty good. So we haven’t really changed much since we acquired this site. So people would go, they would sign up with a newsletter, there was a lead magnet, they would get to download something for free. And then they get a bunch of emails sequence so they can go and buy the ebook. And I think it costs something like $20 or $30. So the conversion rates were pretty good. We also had some examples where it just didn’t work. We had a website and education niche. And it was mostly monetized for ads. But then we decided to just go and build an E book and sell it to people. It was a site about different international scholarships. And people just didn’t really buy the book the sales for quite low. I think we tried promoting it, we tried building a better funnel, we tried like putting it a different place on the site. So what would you say? Because you haven’t seen the site, so it’s probably difficult for you to diagnose. But just off the top of your head, if you had like, what are the main reasons why funnels don’t work, products, digital products don’t sell.
John Ainsworth 8:22 Yeah, so the hardest things to get right in my experience, are first of all, building up an audience and secondly, getting product market fit. And so we tend to come into people where they’ve already got those things in place so that you’ve got a product that the audience really likes and they’ve got an audience who is then going to be interested in that product. Those things like getting product market fit is really hard, and involves a whole load of trial and error and trying to figuring out the audience and really understanding their problems and getting all that stuff exactly right. So my suspicion from what you’re saying is that something about the product market fit wasn’t right in that case that there was something about that ebook that didn’t quite appeal to the audience that maybe it solved a problem that they said they wanted to solve. But actually, they weren’t as bothered about it, as they said they were or something about the way that it was gonna solve it or the problem that the timeframe that you’re able to promise it to them in…and all those kind of things can have an impact. So as an example, what we like to do with the very first products that we’re offering to people, either on the site, or when they’ve just signed up to the email list is what we call a tripwire product. And that’s a name from digital marketer. And we try and make that into something that’s going to solve their problem within about a week. So it has to be a pretty small specific problem, but it’s something where they go okay, I can get this quite cheaply. And in a week, I can get an improved a distinct improvement by doing ideally 15 minutes work on this thing a day. And if you can promise that and it’s a problem they actually want to solve, then you tend to convert quite well at that stage. If you try and solve too big of a problem, or it’s going to take them too long, or it’s going to be too much work or any of those kind of things. And then they don’t convert as well. So you’ve got a line, a whole bunch of stuff there, which is not terribly easy. I do what I see at least as easier work, which is you come in afterwards and go right, you’ve got that bit figured, now we’re going to apply standard funnel structure is to actually make sure that converts much better at a much higher percentage of people buy it.
Michael Bereslavsky 9:31 That’s a good point. Now that I was thinking about it, we haven’t really thought about it in that, like in that structure. So what does a typical funnel look like? Can you give us maybe show us an example if you have something you prepared? Or just explain? Like what would the the most simple funnel look like? And how would a really good funnel look like generally?
John Ainsworth 10:52 Yeah, sure. So what I’ll do, I’ll share my screen now matters. I need you to enable screen sharing. Perfect. So this is a system called analytics. And what this allows you to do is map out funnels visually. And so what we’re typically seeing in terms of funnels that people have is they’ve got their website. And they’re getting traffic into the website from somewhere, let’s say Google. Maybe from Facebook traffic’s and they’ve got some organic traffic coming in already. And typically, what people do is they have whatever they’ve got available for sale, mentioned on the website. So in our case, we’re normally working with course creators. So it’s, they’ve got a number of courses available on the site, and they’ve got maybe, let’s say, three or five different courses. So they have a number of different sales pages. After that, people will go through to an order form. And then after that, they’ll go through to a thank you page. And that’s kind of typically what people have got on the site. And then a lot of people will have a opt in some kind of a lead magnet. And so a lot of times, it’s not mentioned in a lot of places. So it’ll be on the homepage. And it might be at the bottom of some pages, but I have an opt in. And typically people are getting an opt in rate of about naught point five to 1%. That’s of website visitors. That’s pretty standard.
Michael Bereslavsky 12:35 Is that across all industries, more or less, like under 1%, one half percent?
John Ainsworth 12:41 Yeah, that’s I’ve seen that across software and online courses, and e commerce and agencies, that seems to be pretty standard nought point five to 1%. Now, a good rate is about 2%. A great rate is about 5%. And the best we’ve ever managed to get is eight and a half. So that just gives them context, I’ll come back to like how that’s possible in a bit in terms of mapping this out. So after somebody opts in, what most people do is they then send them some emails, and they’ll direct, redirect them immediately to a thank you page saying thank you for opting in. And this is like completely normal. I’ll give an example. So I’ll pull one up here. So if we sign up here for the lead magnet, we just get a thank you message that comes up straightaway. And that’s like what most people have on their websites.
Michael Bereslavsky 13:40 And do you have on that website, do you have some kind of lead magnet or something they promise you for signup?
John Ainsworth 13:48 This one? Yeah. So this was a, this lead magnet was a…it’s gone now, because I’ve signed up for it. I think it was like a five examples of, hiring ads or something on those kind of lines. So most people then after that send out a number of emails over the course of the next few weeks and months, and they send them out on a semi regular basis, and it’s not terribly organized. And then every so often, people will send out a few emails with a promotion. So let’s say right, it’s Black Friday, I’m going to send people to one of my sales pages and make a 50% discount something like that. That is typically the most typical thing that we see. That’s kind of the structure of where most people are at the moment. It’s pretty mediocre in my experience in my you know, opinion, to me to talk you through kind of what the ideal version of that looks like.
Michael Bereslavsky 14:45 That certainly makes sense. Now what I look at it, this is pretty similar to what we’ve done with many, many sites, kind of have you feel low effort without really focusing on the funnel as much And is that something that often loses a lot of leads? Like how can you say it’s sub optimal? How big of a difference between this kind of funnel and the really good funnel?
John Ainsworth 15:09 Yeah, in terms of if you have the same amount of website traffic without not including slides, right graphics or ads, anything like that, you can generally increase the revenue of something like this two to maybe five times the revenue by implementing the right kind of funnel. Yeah, it’s a lot of work. But like, that’s the kind of increase that’s, that’s doable. We’ve seen clients go from making three to 5000 a month up to making 40,000 a month so far. We’ve seen people managed to increase their opt in rate between two and probably the highest is 10 times more email subscribers per month.
Michael Bereslavsky 15:55 Okay, so that’s a typical funnel. That’s actually what we have. Right now domain magnate. Now I feel a little bit embarrassed. But we do have that. Yeah, people people sign up, and they get some emails occasionally. And sometimes the emails includes some promotions and products. That’s right.
John Ainsworth 16:16 Yeah. So I’ll take you through some of the things that you can put in place that make this convert way, way better and pretty powerful. So the first one is, and this is very, I mentioned this first, because it’s very straightforward to put in place. So instead of having people go to a thank you page, let’s say, you are selling a low priced ebook or something similar, you send them instead of sending them a thank you page, you send them to a sales page immediately. At this stage, about two to 3% of people are ready to buy straightaway, they’ve gone to your website, they liked the look of it, they signed up for your email list, they’re in the state where they can think of the problem, they’re nice and clear on it, and they’re ready to buy straight away. So you can redirect them to one of your dollars, offer it for $27, something like people will sign up at that stage. The thing that you do after that, and this is unbelievably straightforward. And I’ve used this in the last couple of weeks with a coaching client help him to double his revenue straightaway, just by implementing, this one idea is something called order bumps, and upsells. And this works when you’re selling digital products. So on the order page, instead of having just credit card details, you put in an order bump. And an order bump is basically where there’s a tick box and two sentences description for someone to add something else to their order 40 to 60% of people will add this extra thing to their, to their cart, if you have the right offer at that stage.
Michael Bereslavsky 17:47 That’s an upsell, right?
John Ainsworth 17:50 That’s an order bump. So there’s a there’s order bumps and upsells. An order bump is just a tick box on the on the checkout page. And an upsell is what happens on the next page, which is only doable with certain kinds of funnel software. But somebody has just bought, they’ve put their credit card details in they’ve clicked pay the payments gone through all good. And now you show them another sales page with another offer available on it. And they can click Yes, please add to carts or Yes, please also charged me for this. And it’ll also charge their credit card, they don’t have to enter their credit card details again. Or they can click No thanks. I’m not interested in putting an upsell in order bump in place typically will double the average order value of what people are spending if you get it right. And so if you have these behind every place that you’re taking orders, you can double your revenue just through that one idea. It’s super powerful. And very, very few people have that in place.
Michael Bereslavsky 18:51 That is huge. So that just adding an extra product in the order cart and then at what point do you show the upsell? Is it after they’ve already made the order or before?
John Ainsworth 19:05 Yeah, after they’ve made the order the upsell come straight after they’ve made the order. Try and find an example of an upsell page to show you.
Michael Bereslavsky 19:21 What about sites that just have one product that sell one service?
John Ainsworth 19:28 Yeah, so the way that I like to look at that is if somebody has only one thing, what can you offer? That’s the more expensive version of it. And this is like a lot of my job when I’m working with people is about trying to help them understand what their other offers could be. Because let’s say you’re offering let’s say you’re offering a course. And you could also offer as the as the upsell would you also like coaching and now maybe you don’t want to do coaching, but maybe you’ve got somebody who could do the coaching that would go along with the course as well. And so you look at what would that fit? Would that be a good match for your audience? Would that be something that would fit for your business, if you’ve got multiple products, it’s nice and straightforward. You just offer one of your other products or the other thing that you know, fits in with it. And if you’re doing a course, and you don’t want to do a ton of these one to one sessions, maybe you could do a group thing that goes with it. If you’re selling something that is a basic course, maybe you record a Q&A video that also goes with it. That’s the order bump, that’s like a little extra thing that goes alongside it. The trick with a lot of these things is what can you do to help the people who want to spend more money to get a better service from you. And I recognize if you’ve only got one thing, creating more products is time consuming and awkward. But it also if it can double the amount of money you’re making, it’s like, oh, that’s that’s pretty good, you know. So there’s kind of a balance to be found there. And you can also offer somebody else’s product, that’s possible as well. There’s lots of creative ways to kind of figure this stuff out.
Michael Bereslavsky 21:05 And should it be a more expensive product or a less expensive product that you have to offer?
John Ainsworth 21:11 Yeah, so generally, the order bump should be a similar kind of price to the to the main product that you’re offering, maybe slightly cheaper, the upsell should be something more expensive. So in our case, if we’re doing one of these kind of funnels for online courses, courses are cheap, you know, relatively cheap. So we’ll be looking at the initial tripwire might be $27. The order bump might be $37, the upsell might be $97, something in that kind of price range. If you’re doing if you look at Click Funnels, if you sign up for any of their products, you’ll see you can sign up for the software for free trial. And then you add in your credit card details. And it also asks you would you like to buy a course that goes with this as well. So they’ve kind of combined software and courses together?
Michael Bereslavsky 21:59 Yeah, that sounds good. So what would be some more advanced looking funnels?
John Ainsworth 22:06 Right. Yeah. So I want to show you a couple of examples here of what these actually look like in place. If you are looking here at an upsell. If you see this, your order is successful, it’s gone through you’ve bought your main offer, you can add a ticket to this event. That’s like an example of an upsell.
Michael Bereslavsky 22:27 So this is a conference like related conference to you. And it’s a live conference. That’s reasonable. And how do you have some data? How often do people do it?
John Ainsworth 22:47 Yeah, so well, it depends on the price of what you’re offering, as the upsell. But typically 15 to 30% of people will buy the upsell, if it’s within the price range of about three times what they just paid. So if you do the math on that, if it’s three times as much, and a third of people buy it, you’ve managed to double the order value. So you’re going back to in terms of what else could you put into make a funnel more advanced. If we take this where we’ve got someone going through to the upsell, you can put…hypothetically, you can put an infinite number of these upsells, there comes a point when there’s diminishing returns, and it’s just a little, you’re worried that you’re gonna be too annoying to people. But you could put a second upsell, I do sometimes people’s third upsell as well. Or, alternatively you can have a down sell. And what a down sell is, is basically the same idea, but just saying to people instead, so you didn’t buy you clicked the no thank you very much button. And it says, would you like a payment plan? Maybe you don’t want to spend all that money in one go for offering something more expensive? Would you like to have that in three payments? Or would you like to have the option of only paying the second half if you feel that it was worth it and take some of the risk away from people, that kind of thing. So that’s your front end, tripwire funnel. The next thing that we see that works unbelievably well, his webinar funnels, and a lot of people don’t do this, because they’re kind of scared of how do you actually do a really good webinar and they don’t understand the automation for it, but they work very, very well for selling more expensive offers. With webinar funnels, you can sell stuff up to about $2,000. And the way that we do that is we send people through after they’ve gone to this opt in and they’ve signed up and they’ve either bought or not bought that trip wire, we’re going to start sending them some emails. And in those emails, we’re offering them an indoctrination sequence useful little bits of information. And they can get the full version of it if they sign up for the webinar. So in all of those emails, we’re promoting sign up for a webinar and this is known as a Just in Time webinar or an evergreen webinar is something done using software, it happens automatically every 15 minutes. Huge, huge benefit of doing this evergreen is the attendance rates on an evergreen webinar are about two to three times as good as they are on actual live webinars and second benefit. You don’t have to do them live all the time.
Michael Bereslavsky 25:23 Yeah, I’ve seen it quite a lot online. And it always strikes me as odd. Because it’s pretty obvious that it’s not a really live webinars, if it says always gonna start in two minutes, and then you wait two minutes, and it says, again, it’s gonna start on 15 minutes. Doesn’t that make people think that maybe this whole, the whole thing is fake? Or doesn’t that make them lose faith potentially, in the products?
John Ainsworth 25:49 Yeah, I think there’s two important ways you can dress that. One is you don’t have to say that it’s like, you don’t need to say to people, this is actually happening. Like we can just say, it’s the webinar and start, you know, it starts in 15 minutes. So you’re not, I think it’s important not to lie to people. The second part of it is…the second part of it is it, it works better with people who are in audiences who are not digital marketers, digital marketers, and people who work in doing digital marketing, know all of this stuff, they’ve seen it 100 times. But if you’re promoting a language learning course, to people where English isn’t their first language, or you’re promoting a knitting course, or you’re selling software for helping people with some, you know, some obscure like a maid services, they don’t know about this kind of thing. So they they either assume that it’s live, or they’re not bothered by the fact that it’s a, you know, an automated webinar that that isn’t, it’s not something that they’ve kind of become immune to that they’ve seen a lot of times, this tends to work way better in none digital marketing spaces.
Michael Bereslavsky 27:05 Now that makes sense.
John Ainsworth 27:09 So the way these kind of funnels work, you send people to an opt in, you redirect them to the webinar that plays every 15 minutes, you then point them at the end of that three to a sales page. Now, the reason that webinars are super powerful is that you can provide an enormous amount of value in an hour, you can really help people, you can build a lot of trust, you can build up your authority, you can show people how the world really works with regards to this thing that you are selling. So let’s say for example, that you are selling marketing services for a people doing tour operating businesses that are seven, maybe seven figures now at the moment, that’s not a great market to be in. But you get one of these webinar funnels with a client like that a couple years ago, and it worked, it worked great at the time. And a lot of those businesses don’t understand that they can use digital marketing in order to be able to scale their business, they’ve had certain ways they’ve driven business in lots of referrals, lots of networking, that kind of thing. And they don’t understand that they can also use a digital marketing funnel, and they can have Facebook ads to grow their business. There’s all these things they don’t understand about the way that it works. And if you can explain those concepts so that they get it. And then at the end of it, if you’re making an offer of a course or a done for you service like these guys were, then they’re much more likely to go with you. Because now they trust you. You’ve explained how the world works. And they’re also more likely to hire you because they understand that your solution solves their problem, because you’ve explained the entire concept. So you’ve got this whole hour to build up a lot of trust around that. And you point people to the sales page. And if they don’t buy, then what you can do as you can then follow up with specific email sequences. So someone might have an email based on if they attended but didn’t go to the sales page, or they went to the sales page, but they didn’t buy or they didn’t ever attend in the first place. they opted in but they didn’t actually attend then you’ll have different sequences for each of these people. And this is part of the beauty of automation is you can tag people based on where they are and what they’ve done. And therefore send them exactly the right kind of information, the right kind of useful email that gets them back on track.
Michael Bereslavsky 29:27 And you mentioned before that there is an opt in rate is like half percent to 1%. What’s kind of average rate for email open rate or clicks for most of these kind of things?
John Ainsworth 29:42 Yeah, so the average open rates most people is 20 to 30%. And we see that across a number of different industries and a number of different clients. These emails tend to get a slightly higher conversion rate, open rate, because they are so specific because they’re really target to where people are in the process, and they’re very specific to their situation. And also, because it’s earlier in the process, you tend to see open rates decrease the longest anybody’s been on your email list. There are a few people who see increasing open rates because they’re unbelievably expert copywriters. But for most people, that’s just not realistic, and it’s going to decrease down in time. In terms of the numbers with this kind of a funnel, like, what we’re seeing is about 55% of people will actually attend that webinar, after they’ve opted in for it, if you’re doing it with just in time automated webinar. And somewhere between one to three, possibly 5% of people who opt in are actually going to buy what it is you’ve got available at the end. And because that conversion rates relatively low, but the content is long, what fits is to sell something more expensive in this kind of funnel. So something around a minimum of 500 up to maybe $2,000, something in that kind of range.
Michael Bereslavsky 31:05 Okay, that’s pretty good. So so a webinar funnel is going to be started with an email with some lead gen, some magnet lead. And then yeah, they go to webinar. And then after the webinar finishes, right away, you get a sales page. Okay, good.
John Ainsworth 31:29 So that is, that’s a more you asked about what’s a more complex kind of additional funnel that is much harder to build is much harder to get right. It’s not what we normally suggest to somebody to do second, it’s normally like eighth in the list in terms of building this out. But you can be asked about what’s the more complex stuff. So I wanted to show that the thing that we recommend to most people to do second is just start sending more email promotions, it’s the simplest thing to increase revenue, we’ve had clients go from 10 to $20,000 a month in revenue, just by sending two email promotions a month instead of one. So that’s the it’s a very straightforward kind of system. If you normally have a few emails go out every couple of months. Instead, figure out what what else could you promote every other week, we find two promotions a month is really good kind of a balance that allows people to have enough time to put everything together for it. And then not and provide enough value and content to the email list to keep them warm, but also make enough offers. And we have some clients where they’ve only got one main course and they also sell affiliate offers, or they find different hooks different ways of making that same one promotion that they’ve got, there’s a kind of a number of ways of cutting this, if someone’s got lots of products, it’s very straightforward. We just recommend every two weeks do another promotion of something. Once you’ve gone through everything, or six months, whichever one comes sooner, cycle back through and start again.
Michael Bereslavsky 32:58 So that’s that’s an interesting one. I think I’ll ask you a specific question. So for Domain Magnate, we have an email list. And I usually just send it once a month, once every few months, because I feel that we don’t have that much going on to really send everyone an email about it. So I usually just send it once there is something interesting. But I have held a feedback from people wanting to get more emails. But how can we really prepare emails in an efficient way? And, you know, add something useful, something interesting to people, what are some common ways of doing it?
John Ainsworth 33:40 Yeah. So when you’re doing email promotions, there is a very beautiful and elegant way of being able to send out the content that is both useful, and also makes the sale. And there’s two different systems that we that we see. One of them came from a lady called Shona Beckwith, she runs perfect English grammar. And she is she’s very focused on being helpful and useful to all of her, her clients, all of our customers and she sells courses for English, English grammar for people who are you know, non native speakers. And so what she does is she has a course that’s going to be sold, and she’ll put it on discount for a week 30% off. And during that week, every day, she will send a useful little tip from in the course. So she’ll just take something people can do in 2, 3, 5 minutes, put it into the email. And then at the end of the emotional say, if you’d like more exercises, tips, helpful stuff like this. You can buy the course that goes with this for 30% off this week, and every day for five days. She sends out those tips and has that promotion. On the sixth day, sorry, on the fifth day, you then send a second email that is just promotional saying last chance to get this three hours left, and otherwise it’s going to get back up in price. So that’s one system, one method. And the other one that’s slightly more promotional is this same concept, pull out useful tips from in the course for the first three days. And then the next three days is purely promotion. So it’s saying, here’s the benefits of the course, here’s the problems that you’re going to solve, suffer. If you don’t get this, here’s no reasons why you should go and buy. Here’s a testimonial, here’s a case study something like that. And that’s a system method used by Tom Sears from Blues Guitar Master. That’s where I learned from Tom and I were in a mastermind together. And he has 12 courses. And he has 12 promotional sequences or with 16 emails, and he cycles through every three months and just goes back to the start again, he just runs through that. And it makes some 10th’s of 1000’s of dollars every month, and it’s just, you know, beautifully elegant. The two of those are very similar, both contain a lot of value, both keep the unsubscribe rate pretty low. The promotional one works slightly better. But not everybody is…some people are more comfortable with one that’s just content.
Michael Bereslavsky 36:14 Sounds good. So basically adding some some useful tips or running some promotions from time to time. And would it be better to send people longer emails or shorter?
John Ainsworth 36:28 There’s pros and cons with that. So if you’re going to send longer emails, you have to be good enough at writing to keep people’s attention throughout the whole thing. So they actually get to the end or get to the bit that you’re most interested in reaching. If you read any stuff from Andre Shafran, you sign up to his email list, he will do enormous long emails. And he’s the guy I mentioned earlier, whose open rate actually goes up over time, because he’s so engaging, and he’s so much fun, and you trust him so much. And it’s so helpful, that people love them, and they want to read more. For most people, I would suggest shorter emails, I think just a story, a useful tip a case study something like that in a few 100 words, and be done with it for the day. And that’s a better model for most people to use.
Michael Bereslavsky 37:18 So here’s another interesting example, Dealflow Brokerage, which is a M&A advisory firm. We send out emails once we have a new listing. So once we have a new listing, we send out the email and everyone can see what the new lead is, but other than that, we don’t really spend a lot of emails occasionally surprises reduced on the listing, or if we have some kind of promotion, but there are no promotions here. Because it’s, not really a product, it’s more like a service. And so what would be some ideas to consider, that’s one thing. But the other side of that is we don’t actually know if people want to see a lot of emails, because our main value from the list of courses to keep clients long term. So we are not really looking to make some small sales, we want to give people better service. So how would we know if people want to get more emails? Or fewer emails? If we want to get some tips on those?
John Ainsworth 38:19 Yes, so it’s the first sentence of what kind of content one of the beautiful things with with the mixture between content marketing and promotions, is that you can use content to help people to change their worldviews so that they are ready to buy stuff. So let me ask you a couple of questions about it. The people on your email list, are they all at the stage where they’re thinking, great, I want to buy something as soon as a good offer comes along, I’m going to snap it up. Or is there a certain portion of them who may be they don’t know enough stuff about what would be the right kind of thing for them to buy? Or why they may be should be buying something that’s more expensive, for example? Or what are the things that your audience doesn’t know about that stops them from buying from you?
Michael Bereslavsky 39:05 Yeah, that’s a very good point. So we do occasionally publish some new content, new articles, and then they send it out to people. But we could we could do that in a more coordinated manner. And then, like, send an email with some specific questions. Right. So that’s a good idea.
John Ainsworth 39:23 Yeah, so one of the things that we try and do throughout the emails to combine, always trying to combine useful content with something that’s going to move somebody closer to buying, is looking at what is the things that are stopping them at the moment? What are their objections to buying, and maybe it’s that they don’t believe this is going to work for them. Maybe it’s that they think that this is too expensive or that there’s a lack of trust or whatever it happens to be in your situation. And then you can use case studies or articles or teaching people something useful or what have you in order to move them further along to being a hot prospect. That kind of action ready to spend money, we find this, there’s a model of people who are unaware of there being a problem to being problem aware to being solution aware to being aware of your solution, and then all the way through to being hot and ready to buy. And so what we’re trying to do with the content is move people from being at the cold end of that spectrum towards being the hot end. Because then when you send out a listing, they’ll be like, Oh, great, I’m ready, I’ve got set up everything in place, I know, I need to get something great, I’m gonna go ahead and put in an offer or whatever it might be in your case. And I think that where it becomes easy to justify spending money on creating the content, because you can see, oh, I’m not just sending out useful nice content, I’m sending out useful content that also is going to lead to an increase in the in the top line.
Michael Bereslavsky 40:53 That’s very nice. And regarding the second part, so how can you tell how often you should actually send emails to the specific list?
John Ainsworth 41:03 Yeah, it’s an interesting one, I don’t know for definite in your, circumstance. But for most people, we find some way to few emails, some people who send, so you should send at least one a day, we tend towards doing normally about three a week, five during the promotional sequence. You’re looking at an audience, though, who has a much longer timeframe for making their decisions. So it seems like it would make sense to send quite a lot less often. So it might be one or two a week, I would guess that in your circumstance. I don’t have a hard and fast rule for how to figure that one out. I mean, one thing you can look at is, what’s your unsubscribe rate? And does that go up too much when you’re sick if you start sending more emails? And what is the increase in the amount of money that you’re making? Because you know, if the email list goes down, but you make way more money, it’s like, okay, fine, we could probably do some other stuff to build the list up more. But in advance of that, it’s just a rule of thumb, I would say for you, I would guess at one or two emails a week would probably be good.
Michael Bereslavsky 42:07 Yeah, that sounds like good idea. That’s great. So you’ve learned quite a bit here? And can you tell us what would be some sites that actually don’t need a funnel?
John Ainsworth 42:27 I think there are certain businesses where they are…they are better served by working through networking and referrals. And it tends to be, in my experience, stuff that is way more expensive. And you can do a small number of deals. Like there’s a guy I know who has built up a couple of businesses in the technology space around security, and he did a lot of it through, they would go to conferences, and they would talk to people who were, you know, doing multi million dollar deals with, and they’re taking them out for lunches, and they’re building up, you know, relationships with them, and their website…and if they’ve got a funnel, it’s just not that relevant is not really the way that stuff is done in the industry. Most stuff that is online that is built around, do you have a big email list? Can you afford to spend money on ads? In order to grow that list? Do you see a direct relation between the list size and how much money you make, most of those are like a great fit for it. Which is I’m guessing most of the businesses owned by the people who you’re working with. I see some people who prefer to go with the ads model instead. And almost always, you will make more money from building up a funnel and having products than through ads. But if you don’t have products, or you don’t want to spend the time building the products, then it’s like, well, then there’s not much point to the funnel, you might as well just stick at that stage with the with the ads model.
Michael Bereslavsky 44:08 And how would you know, where it’s worth really investing the money and effort to build a funnel and sell products? So for example, we have many content sites in niches, like, you know, dogs and cats and different things about pets, or something like from different home Improvement related niches. Yeah, like affiliate sites, for example. So does it work?
John Ainsworth 44:36 Yeah, I think it’s really, really easy way to test this kind of stuff is with affiliate offers. So if you say right, I’m thinking about selling courses. Or I’m thinking about selling ebooks or something like that. Try selling somebody else’s one. First find something for an affiliate deal from Clickbank or something similar, whatever looks to be like a really high quality product that you can then go and test selling it, promote that out, put up on your website, put it out as a tripwire put it up on us promoted to an email list. What’s the response rate? How many people buy? Do you tend to get people actually, from that audience buying something? If you do, then it’s like, oh, I could make 100% commission on this. If I had my own product, right, it’s worth going and putting the time into into creating it. I think that’s the easiest way to test it out. The other thing to take into account though, is do you have the time? Or do you have somebody that you could put in charge of creating that product? Because product creation and getting product market fit right, is really time consuming and it’s really hard. So if you have that, then great. But take that into account before starting work on this kind of thing I’d say.
Michael Bereslavsky 45:51 That sounds good. Well, thank you. Are there any other things that I haven’t asked you about that are really important to know about funnels?
John Ainsworth 46:01 Yeah, I think the one thing I mentioned it briefly earlier is that the ability to scale a business with ads is one of the biggest reasons why funnels are valuable. So I talked a lot about what do you do to convert your current traffic, more your current traffic into sales. But if you have this in place, and you get it working well, and then you’re able to scale with ads, you can take a business to being 2, 5, 10 times the size of seen before, through the ads part of it, even after you’ve done all the work on the rest of the business. And there seem to be these different parts of the online marketing space that don’t really kind of are not totally aware of each other. Like in the affiliate space, you have some people who do affiliate work through ads, and you have other people who do affiliate work through organic traffic, and they don’t tend to kind of come together. And when you if you have an all ganic site that’s got a bunch of traffic, you build a funnel, you make it work well enough that you can then start to scale it with ads, you can take that to a much, much larger kind of a size. My wife does Facebook ads for people who are, you know, multi million dollar businesses doing millions of dollars in ad spend. And I see people just not even being aware of that space, that that is a thing that exists that they could reach up to that kind of size. And it involves an enormous amount of work and a lot of changes. But I just think it’s something people should know that that is doable that that exists.
Michael Bereslavsky 47:35 Absolutely. So you think that for most content sites, if organic traffic that are monetized by ads, or like Amazon affiliate and other affiliate offers, building a funnel can really help increase revenues, because from what we are seeing here, like very few websites in the space actually have funnels, let alone just many of them just don’t even have an email list and email form.
John Ainsworth 48:04 Yeah, we had one client who she was monetizing through ads, she had loads of traffic, she was making $3,000 a month, she’s now making $40,000 a month through a funnel and products. Well, it’s not like it’s not a bunch of work.
Michael Bereslavsky 48:17 But what did she do? What kind of niche is that? What did she do?
John Ainsworth 48:21 That’s the English grammar, one that I mentioned earlier.
Michael Bereslavsky 48:24 So she just I implemented in email sequence that the funnel added some more products and that’s it. Same amount of traffic?
John Ainsworth 48:33 Same amount of traffic. Yeah, I think she has increased her traffic in the meantime, I think but it’s not increased whatever that is 15 times. So, what you said was right, she has put those things in place. But you mentioned the word, just, it’s taken like two and a half years of work on doing all of that stuff to make it happen, you know, but it is a dramatically larger amount of revenue from it now than it was.
Michael Bereslavsky 48:57 Yes, it is. Well, thank you, John, that was very interesting. How can people reach out to you and tell us more about your service?
John Ainsworth 49:06 Yeah, sure. So people can learn more about us on datadrivenmarketing.co or they can join our Facebook group the advanced online course creators group if they are a course creater and want to learn more about this. We have a podcast that we publish interviews in that group first off and and then share the the art of selling online courses is the podcast. And if people want to get help with actually building these funnels, then we have a service. We have a limited number of customers at any one time but we have a service doing this if they want to learn more about how to do this themselves or have a team learn about it. Then we have a group coaching program where we teach you about that as well.
Michael Bereslavsky 49:51 Oh, thank you, John, pleasure to talk to you
John Ainsworth 49:53 thanks to you Michael. Thank you.
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