Prosperity Pyramid – How to do away with the traditional sales funnel and stop cold calling

We have all heard of the ‘sales funnel’ for business. Traditionally we have been taught that we find our leads and pour them into our sales funnel. As we work through the sales process, creating more and more touches to our leads we work ourselves into their conscious. As they get to a point where they recognize our business and maybe our name we may get the opportunity to talk to someone other than the gatekeeper. One day we may even get to do our sales presentation for the prospect and from that we will get some sales. You may have even been told that it’s a numbers’ game. I was taught that out of 100 ‘No’s’ you will get 10 ‘Yes’s’, so if you get enough ‘No’s’ you will meet your quota for sales.

It is a proven process and still works for some industries, but really what is happening is our customers are becoming more educated and aware of their options. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to hear nine ‘No’s’ before I get one ‘yes’. Today we have to work harder to create a relationship with our clients to even get that first call. Jill Konrath, author of “Selling to Big Companies” really understands how the sales process and corporate purchasing mentality has changed. Konrath writes, “When you think about all the big companies out there, it’s incredibly seductive to want to keep all your options open. After all, just about every corporation “could” use your products or services. Right? … Not so.”

If the traditional sales funnel does not work any longer then how do we fill our business without cold calling? In many teachings and books, like those from Konrath, or “High Trust Selling” by Todd Duncan, they talk about the relationship. The relationship is where we can build this new sales model, “The Prosperity Pyramid”.

In “The Prosperity Pyramid” model, the customer starts by choosing you. Right from the start you are filling your inverse funnel with people that have selected you as a person they want to know and potentially purchase from.

Filling the Pyramid (bottom up)
So how do they do this? They come for the gift. The free gift is their first transaction with you. Since it is free, you will have many more people interested in the ‘free’ then will purchase from you, but they are there of their own free will.

The free gift has no cost to your clients and requires no time from you. You can give this away all day long, year-after-year, forever and it should not affect your business negatively. The gift should have great value to your prospects. As consumers we get all kinds of “FREE” in our purchasing lives so something that is perceived by them as valuable is a necessity.

Starting the sales
Unlike the traditional sales funnel, the sale does not only occur when the prospect pops out the end of the funnel, it happens all the way up the pyramid. Each product that the client is introduced to costs more, requires more of your time, and will have less people buying in, until your reach the peak of your pyramid. At the peak is your highest costing product. Only a few of the people that were initially introduced to your product through your free offer will want to take your relationship this far, but by the time they do they are purchasing your platinum product or service which will require a lot of your time but will make you a lot more money on a single purchase.

What are the benefits
Using this model will allow you to leverage your time on the smaller products or services by being able to offer them to the masses at a reduced cost. For example, a membership site may have a yearly fee of $150. If all you do is get 15 people to sign up every month you will have $2250 per month. If your next product is a downloadable product that only requires the time of initial creation and shipping then you are spending a little more time at this but it may get you $397 per purchase. If you sell 10 per month  that is $3970. Then your bigger product may be one-to-one or small group sales, where your time is required for training or consulting. You may only get one of these a month but it could be a $2500 sales. Now with all three of these products you have monthly sales of $8720, that is over 6-figures per year. You’ve only made 26 sales in that month not one of them was ever a cold call. Remember, they came to you.

These are not large numbers so hopefully you can see where leveraging your time on the smaller products so you can spend more time adding value to your high-end products becomes appealing not only to your prospects but also to you as a business owner. For your prospects, they may not be ready or able to purchase the high-end products, but getting in on the ground floor allows them to get started working with you and your services. When they are ready they can always move up the pyramid until they have what they need from you.

Why do they continue to purchase?
What keeps them interested in you? Your traditional and online marketing campaign is how you stay in touch with them. You will need to continue to offer them high-value content in the area of your expertise so that you can remain ‘top-of-mind’ with them. Invite them to your events and teach them how to get what they need. Make them into savvy buyers so when they are ready to buy they will purchase from you.

Relationship has always been a part of a sale, but today’s customer is much more commodity savvy and definitely populated with more female buyers. Relationship is the biggest part of purchases these days, so start by building a relationship with the people that really want to buy from you, instead of everyone you think you could sell to. It will take less of your time, cost less in the long run and you will be able to leverage your sales process to grow well beyond the $/hour model of the past.

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