If you had to confess what the greatest struggle you have with your business is … and we called that struggle “X”, what would that “X” be?
Over the last 3 and a bit years, I’ve been talking with a lot of entrepreneurs and small business owners about their “X”.
And guess what … it’s probably the same as yours. Nearly everyone I talked to has exactly the same problem.
That business problem is universal. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a solopreneur, a mum or dad with a side hustle, a small business or a big organisation. The problem is … lead generation.
Lead Generation Is Tough
Everyone struggles to find leads.
Or if they ARE getting leads, they aren’t the RIGHT leads and those leads either don’t buy or they waste your time kicking tires.
Worse, they turn into the customers from hell who demand all your time and attention. PLUS they don’t want to pay you for your valuable assistance. It’s like they believe the universe (and your business) owes them for some reason.
So when I say that nearly everyone struggles to find leads, I mean 99.9999% of the people that I’ve talked to say this. Lead generation as their number one issue.
It is THE #1 thing that keeps them awake at night worrying about
So I was absolutely gobsmacked when John McCarthy, from Fly Me High gave me the lead generation results for a project we worked on together.
We had been building a lead generation funnel for a gastric surgeon in New Zealand. Have a look at https://gastricballoons.co.nz/ if you’re interested, so you can see what I’m talking about.
The funnel was built. Testing was complete and John had turned on the ads.
But He Had To Turn The Ads Off Almost Immediately
Temporarily, of course.
Because the lead gen funnel was so successful that the clinic could not cope with the demand from people wanting to come in for an assessment!
Now that’s a great feeling 🙂
Of course it took a bit more work to smooth things out until the level of demand matched the ability of the clinic to cope with that demand.
And now, this particular lead generation funnel just keeps going from strength to strength. It’s on track to do great things. Not just for the clinic, but for the severely obese people that desperately want and need the help the clinic can give them.
So What Made That Funnel So Successful?
I’d like to believe that it was the fantastic work John and I (via my business West Island Digital) did for our client … 🙂
But it’s more than that. After my part of the work finished, I cheered John on as he refined and optimised his client’s lead generation funnel. And I realised that the success came down to doing one very specific thing …
We Asked The Right Questions And Paid Attention To The Answers
In fact, we discovered the answers to five specific questions.
These questions (and their answers) made it possible to:
- attract the people who desperately wanted the help on offer
- were prepared to take action to get that help and
- were willing/able to pay for it.
And that, my fellow business owners, is what defines a great lead.
I want to share those questions with you … so that you can hit the ball out of the park with your own lead generation funnels.
But First I Need To Explain One Thing…
Our secret sauce for the assessment component of the funnel was a software tool called Leads Hook (NB: it’s an affiliate link … see note at the bottom).
Leads Hook makes it super easy to create highly effective lead magnets, quizzes and diagnostic tools. It has built in branching logic that lets you (automatically) give different offers or take people down different customer journeys…based on their answers.
Branching Logic is the secret sauce within leads hook for personalising your customer’s experience
Branching logic makes it possible to give your non-ideal customers something useful … while keeping them out of your sales centre or off your phones.
Those people may just go on to become some of your best customers in a few months or years, so you want to treat them right, right?
But knowing whether a customer is ideal or non-ideal depends on getting the right answers. And those answers come from those 4 key questions I said I’d share.
So here they are …
The 4 Questions You Need The Answers To
Question #1 – What’s Their Why?
Knowing people’s “why” is probably THE most important information you need to get from your customers and potential customers
As John reflected on the process of creating the funnel, he said that he finally figured out that, “the key is the intent”.
Figuring out WHY people want to lose weight was the secret to getting so much demand.
Because once you know what that intent is, you can structure your marketing material to address that intent.
And that attracts the people who will benefit most from your product or service.
“the key is the intent”
It takes a lot of work to get to the heart of what “intent” is, because “intent” can be different for different people.
We started out by asking intent-type questions in our LeadsHook-based online assessment tool (the front end of our funnel). Then John took it to the next level.
He rang up a truckload of people who came through the LeadsHook tool as leads and asked them what their intent was behind wanting to lose weight.
So the conversations kind of went like this …
…”Why do you want the gastric balloon procedure?”
…”I want to lose weight”
…”Why do you want to lose weight?”
…”So I can have enough energy to play with my grandkids.”
The goal of losing weight wasn’t really the goal. It was just a means of achieving the goal.
The REAL reason for wanting to lose weight was so the client could do something that really mattered to them
Once John started getting back the same answers over and over again from the leads he was ringing, he knew he had enough information.
We took that information back to the LeadsHook-based assessment tool and adjusted the original questions to match what people had told him.
Those answers were then used to automatically populate the sales letter/offer automatically generated at the end of each assessment.
So to sum up Question #1, you need to ask your customers what the intent (hidden or otherwise) is for wanting your product or service. Dig until you hit that gold ….
Question #2 – What’s The Big Difference?
What is the big difference that your product or service is going to make to your potential customer?
In other words, what is the value they expect to receive from it in the future.
What’s the change they are hoping to see in their life because of your product or service?
Going back to our example of people wanting to lose weight, the value they expect to receive is the joy of playing with their grandkids ….
Without having a heart attack or stroke or being too exhausted to keep up with all that energy.
To sum up Question #2, ask your question in a way that will help you discover the change they are secretly hoping for when they buy from you.
Pro Tip: get them to describe that future in THEIR words … not yours.
Question #3 – What’s The Value?
How valuable is your product or service to your potential customer? Is the value so high that it becomes a “must-have” for them?
And I’m not talking about money value here. I’m talking about value value 🙂
For example, let’s say I’m having a rough day.
My cat has coughed up fur balls all over the new carpet and one of my customers is being a little difficult.
And that “itty bitty shitty committee” in my head has woken up from its nap …. It’s busy shrilly informing me I need another bazillion hours of experience before I could possibly think of helping anyone solve their problems ….
And guess what …. it’s all dragging my mood down.
So I can do two things … go for a long walk or go out and buy a bar of chocolate ….
Let’s say I walk a long way to the shops AND buy the chocolate bar, promptly eat it and then walk home. All’s well.
So that bar of chocolate doesn’t cost very much. In dollar terms, its value is tiny.
But that walk and the chocolate bar lift my mood … which is super valuable to me
See what I mean?
That mood lift is worth the time and energy needed to go find, buy and eat that chocolate bar.
So to summarise Question #3, your job is find out how valuable … from a “does the job” perspective … your product or service is to your potential clients.
Question #4 – Is It Appropriate For Them?
This might sounds like a bit of an odd question, but … is the service or product you provide appropriate for your potential customer?
The gastric balloon procedure isn’t right for everyone.
So we set up the lead generation funnel in such a way that if the procedure was not appropriate for that particular person, they would be given a message saying so after just a few questions.
We did it that way so people wouldn’t waste time answering more questions, only to be told at the end they weren’t eligible. That would save people time and annoyance, right?
But guess what …!
After the lead generation funnel was turned on, people contacted John and angrily ask why they had been turned down for the assessment on offer.
They wanted that dream behind the weight loss so badly that being denied the permission to have the procedure done was devastating.
And that’s the thing … sometimes people want what you have to offer, but it’s actually not the right thing for them.
There were good reasons for saying “no”.
Not everyone can safely have the surgical procedure done. Depending on their previous circumstances, for some people, the risks are too high that something would go wrong.
For example, they may have already had a similar surgery before and their body can’t tolerate another one.
Or if they weigh too much, the risks are too high, too. These people will need to find some other kind of surgery (or even a lifestyle intervention) that is less risky for them.
So we tweaked the funnel to explain that better … and people could go away knowing that the doctor had their best interests at heart.
So a few tips here:
- Don’t make non-unsuitable clients go all the way through your lead generation funnel, only to be disappointed. Don’t waste their time or get false hopes. That’s just mean.
- Structure your funnel in such a way that non-suitable clients are identified early and the lead generation process stopped.
- Be clear about why they can’t be your client or customer.
- Most importantly … fill the “intent” and “value” needs of those non-suitable clients by giving them something they can use or act on. Do that even if it’s a small step towards addressing the real reason they want your product or service. In other words point them in the direction of something that IS suitable for them.
Pro Tip: Sell or give away the leads that aren’t a fit for you to other suppliers who CAN serve those people right now.
So to summarise Question #4, you want to quickly find out whether someone is the right lead for you. One of my business partners calls it “de-qualifying” leads.
In other words, it’s okay to actively discourage people (in a nice way) if they are not your ideal customer. In the long run everyone will be far happier that you did.
And there you have it.
These four questions will make all the difference in the world to your business if you ask them. The answers will help you create an effective lead generation funnel that is getting you the right kind of leads.
So here are those four questions again:
- Find out your customer’s “why”. What’s their intent behind buying your product or service.
- Discover the big difference they hope your product or service will make in their lives. What’s the REAL job they want it to do for them.
- How valuable is getting that “real” job to them? How important is it?
- Is it the right product or service for THEM … or are you doing them a disservice by selling to them?
I hope that’s been useful.
All the best with generating leads. And if you’d like to talk lead generation some more, click here to shoot me a message.
P.S. If you use my affiliate link to sign up for Leads Hook I will get a small commission at no extra cost to you. As a thank you, I’d be delighted to jump on a free half-hour Zoom call with you and show you the ropes.
Plus I’ll give you a simple decision tree template that you can use to create your own simple quiz, lead magnet or diagnostic tool.