Writing techniques for each part of the sales funnel
Sales funnel writing is written with the goal of getting your prospect through the conversion stages of your funnel. First of all, to share an email address and eventually become a paying customer. A well-executed sales funnel creates loyal customers who buy again.
The different stages of the sales funnel represent the stages that your prospect’s state of mind goes through when they consume your offer. The intention of each step is specific and therefore requires a unique approach to ensure that the copy matches the individual objective of each section.
Successful writing is incredibly specific. How you understand your audience and connect with their journey will have a huge impact on the effectiveness of your sales funnel. The more targeted your message, the more conversions you will get and your Customer Lifetime Value (LVC) will increase.
It is imperative to chart the mental journey of your ideal customer so that you can identify how your message should be targeted at every turn.
Whether you are a aspiring copywriter who has just started taking copywriting courses or if you are a business owner who has hired a copywriting agency, it is always important that you understand what copy techniques are implemented at each stage of the sales funnel.
Let’s take an in-depth look at each individual section and how you can create your copy to match.
1. Awareness stage
This is the time when you first grab a prospect’s attention. They now know your business and what you offer.
At this point, the messages will be broader and more focused on education. Talk about more general questions that are still relevant to your niche or customer avatar. Your content should give value to the reader, we want them to come back or seek more. Position yourself as an expert and show them you know what you’re talking about.
One way to look at this step, in conjunction with the next, is to remember “KLT: Know, love trust”.
- Know – It’s the element of consciousness, they know who you are.
- As – If they like what they see, if they are interested in the content, they will stay.
- Trust – Confidence will continue to grow in the following stages of the sales funnel, but it starts here.
Don’t push for sale at this point in the journey. Give them time to learn about you and your brand. When the stars align and the coffee is perfect, a few prospects will buy immediately. Especially if they’ve already done their research or gone past the decision barrier. But most often this stage is a slow combustion. You are still building a relationship.
Examples of awareness-raising mechanisms:
- A Facebook advertising campaign
- Informative and SEO-optimized blog posts
- An optimized corporate website
- Engaging social media posts
- Relevant infographics or charts
For a funnel entry point that is a social media post or advertisement, make it compelling! Talk about pain points right away – show your audience you know them. You will be able to retarget and test your ads as you receive data on what works and what doesn’t.
If you are promoting a blog post as a gateway to your funnel, the copy should incorporate solid SEO principles. Pay close attention to the prospect’s intention, what got them here? Make sure the copy of the funnel itself flows from one state of mind to another so that the prospect doesn’t feel disconnected.
2. Interest / Hook step
This is where your copy should get people in the meat of your sales funnel. The goal of the writer goes to draw attention to the education of the visitor. While continuing to generate interest and confidence.
The copywriting on your landing page should restore why they clicked in the first place, why they chose to take the next step. There should be no surprises, other than the incredible value they see.
Take the time to develop a solid “HSO”. It means “Hook, Story, Offer”.
This is a headline, challenge, or question that gets attention. A strong hook is crucial. It should grab their attention immediately. The faster you can make an emotional connection in the hook itself, the better. It makes them curious and they keep reading.
Make a deeper emotional connection with a well-crafted story. Show them a before and after victory. This keeps them interested and engages them long enough to take the next step in the funnel.
The official purchase offer comes the next step, but that’s where you set it up. Show them the outcome they want, how they feel now versus how they might feel if they took advantage of your item or service. You want them to imagine they’ve already made the buying decision and what that reality might look like. What tools or processes can you provide that will help them achieve the result they dream of?
HubSpot says 96 percent of site visitors are not ready to buy right away or on their first visit. Exploit this interest by offering something of value in exchange for their name and email address. They are called lead magnets.
Lead magnets are your opportunity to show off your exclusive techniques or story. Establish your expertise and donate (part of) proceeds to gain your prospect’s trust.
Common sizes for lead magnets include:
- Tips and tricks
- Favorite tools
- Mind maps
In HubSpot’s “Inbound Traffic Status” from research conducted in 2018, they reported that a well-developed quiz can also be an effective primary magnet. Remember, successful writing is incredibly specific. Your quiz should focus on the interests and goals of your target market, make it personal. Develop quiz topics that will give relevant results, not just a piece of fluff. It will make a memorable connection to a niche interest and pique their curiosity.
When developing a lead magnet or any other opt-in offer, focus on the overall value it will bring. What will this tool accomplish? What do they get out of it? What is the result sought by the prospect? By highlighting these benefits, you will automatically increase the perceived value of your offer.
3. Decision stage / call to action
This is where you bring him home. We made this visitor a total stranger to become an interesting prospect. Now we are turning them into paying customers.
Writing your sales funnel here should educate your audience and prepare them for a purchase. Reinforce the interest of your hook and the pain points of your story. Reiterate the benefits of your offer.
At this stage of your funnel, prospects are looking for social proof:
- Case studies
- Clear advantages of your offer
- Industry award / recognition
- A powerful value proposition
- Video demonstrations
If you’ve designed your sales funnel writing correctly, your potential buyer will be aware that they have a problem they want to solve and will look directly into your solution.
Now is the time to present your best offer.
Your best deal should be your most expensive option, offer it first. This establishes a baseline and will indicate how they perceive your lower level offers. Give them options, but highlight which one you actually want them to choose. Use a decoy offer by presenting a cheaper package or model. Then make your intermediate or next offer so much more valuable that the choice is made for them.
Your call to action should be very focused, always address the same family of pain points and respond directly to their needs. Offer promotions, discount codes and limited time bonuses.
It should be personal, using words like “your” and “my”. Write with action verbs and power sentences. The buffer says the 5 most powerful words in English are:
- At once
Writing in this phase of the sales funnel should communicate some level of scarcity or urgency. When does the offer expire? When does your basket close? Is this a limited access program where only the first 50 enter? Use it to compel the reader to act immediately.
Test your CTA landing pages, familiarize yourself with your numbers, and reassess regularly. Add another piece of social proof or provide a return policy or trial period to alleviate any last remaining objections.
They are here, you have their attention. Your job now is to make them pay.
4. Action / sale stage
If your prospect has hit the bottom of your sales funnel, you’ve passed the moment of truth. All of your amazing writing has paid off, literally! The sale has been closed and the money is on the way.
Now the real work begins.
Writing at this point in the sales funnel needs to be written to start building customer loyalty. Someone who will buy from you over and over again. Ease any concerns of regret, reiterate these benefits. Reinforce the bonus they received by taking advantage of this offer NOW.
Thank them for their purchase and welcome them to your community. Keep your new customer engaged by including them in your email campaigns with value-driven content and potentially more offers. They remain a prospect for all the offers they do not have bought yet.
You have already paid the customer acquisition fee for this lead. It is much more profitable to market and retarget someone who is already buying what you are selling.
Writing Sales Funnels: Worth It
Sales funnel writing cannot be compared to any other form of writing. Each step presents its own distinct challenges and the author must consider the buyer’s mindset at each checkpoint. By writing your copy or work with a writing agency to communicate message specific to each individual phase, you will have the best chance of achieving the highest level of impact.