Sales and marketing pros have been using funnels for a long time because it's a lead management system that works. By the same token, the secret to successful surveys still lies in the thinking behind sales funnels. That's why we’re diving deep in this series, down into the machinery of sales funnels, a popular but often misunderstood concept. On the other hand, everyone knows what a survey is, particularly that they just don't tend to work very well. It's easy to get non-actionable feedback, lose faith in the process, and stop trying to get feedback altogether. But surveys aren't dead, they just need to take a few cues from sales funnels.
What's a Sales Funnel, Anyway?
You might be using sales funnels right now and not even know what they are really, and that's completely understandable. Leads move through this funnel and become prospects, then finally customers after making a purchase. Or they are ditched at the beginning because they don't fit or don't show any interest. Each stage of the funnel removes objections to conversion. Every lead is a wild card until the person shows a little interest in what you're selling and becomes a prospect. They still don't know if you deserve their money, but they're listening. Once they convert and pay, they're a customer, one bound to become a repeat customer if you did your job right. Funnels allow sales and marketing pros to focus on the leads that are hot and let the funnel nurture the rest until they’re hot too.
Sales Funnels Optimize For Best Results
You don't market to leads, prospects, and customers in the same way because they all have different concerns. But that's how most businesses survey their customers, just one big group and the same dozen or so questions. In order to ask the right questions, you have to know your customer segments, then build on that knowledge through repeated surveys. Sales funnels understand this by leading customers through a proven process highlighted by continuity. If your PPC ad copy ties in closely with the following landing page, you'll be more successful because continuity makes customers feel confident and it soaks up any potential confusion in your messaging. This is just one way sales funnels optimize; the point is you need to know more about your customers and use this knowledge to keep improving your surveys. Good thing you can do that by applying sales funnels to survey designs.
TWEET THIS QUOTEThe traditional approach to getting feedback doesn't convert, so adopt something that does and apply the wisdom of sales funnels.
Applying Sales Funnels to Survey Designs
The traditional approach to getting feedback doesn't convert, so adopt something that does and apply the wisdom of sales funnels. Actually, surveys have been doing this for a while in the form of giveaways as incentives, which mirrors sales funnels using lead magnets like ebooks. We use the techniques of personalization and segmentation in a staged approach that always drives home your message.
- Segmentation: Sales funnels change their content based on the customer segment because relevance increases conversions. We do the same with the timing, personalization and the content of the questions asked in your surveys. One main benefit of segmentation for sales funnels is greater growth potential. With surveys, the greater growth potential lies in making surveys more and more effective over time, which is why FeedBACC suggests recurring plans.
- Personalization: Countless people open emails every day just because they contain their first name. People still blasting out form-letter emails are getting cookie-crumb conversion. You get out what you put in, and your surveys are no different. Why can't your surveys be personalized too, and in ways that go way beyond simple tactics like using first names? One way to think about the personalization of surveys is that it delivers on the promise made to each segment: to ask the right question at the right time.
The bottom line is that your business can get much better feedback by using FeedBACC to give your surveys the power of sales funnels. Segmentation separates your respondents, and personalization makes their survey questions fit the characteristics of the segment, and they are asked these questions at the time of greatest relevance. You probably hear that it's normal to fight for feedback, that it's just the cost of doing business. This isn't true -- you have market questions like every business and we get answers. You should have solid, actionable information on every aspect of your operations, so don't settle when it comes to things like understanding why your customers aren't biting on the new product launch.
In the next part of this series, “Out With the Old Surveys, In With the New Funnels", new funnels get explained in more detail.
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