Is Social Media Part of the Sales Funnel?

We all want to think that there are separate boxes for us actively trying to market to clients and then the times when we "turn the marketing off". For instance when you post a photo of a sneak peak of your latest client work you are clearly "marketing" - trying to target new clients, showing your work, telling your glowing testimonials. But when we post a photo of our coffee with a notepad or a yoga class selfie we think we aren't marketing at all. That we are just sharing the latest of what we're up to. Babe, that is a foolish way to use your online presence and it's a mistake that many of you are making. 

Some experts say that your sales funnel doesn't start until after your clients convert from social media channels. I think they're wrong.

Inside Dream Job to Day Job we talk a lot about the "sales funnel". What it is, how you can structure your own, how it leads clients in a natural way, etc. I talk about my method of selling and how I follow the "free, free, free, marry me" method. It's basically to showcase that there are a ton of "free" or very low dollar things that go into the base and the foundation of our sales funnel. The reason why it's the foundation is because those are the things that build know, like and trust between you and your clients. We know the obvious "free" things like our blog posts, our online interactions, our newsletters, but I think a lot of us aren't putting enough weight on the value of our social media presence, namely Instagram.

There are some out there that argue that Social Media isn't part of the sales funnel. They say that the sales funnel doesn't start until those clients are actually on your newsletter. That those clients can hang out on your social media channels and never make the switch. This, babe, is exactly the reason why social media is part of the sales funnel. 

I'm not saying you can't post yoga or latte selfies, but you need to do them deliberately and make them match your brand. I shared in this post about the only photo editing app I use - I highly recommend you go check it out and download the app. Here are some great examples of accounts showing the "everyday" totally branded.

@thinkcreativekc | @hellotrishamarie | @brianahramos 

@theunexpectedtype | @nikolemariephoto | @hilarymaloney

None of these posts were intended to actively market to clients. They were all sharing everyday outings, thoughts and what they were doing (coffee/ice cream dates, lunch, shopping at the mall, getting new things in the mail, out with friends). However, every single one of these images fits in nicely with the "business" posts they have. It's a seamless transition from everyday personal life and business marketing. Finding that balance, babe, is key. Here are some things to keep in mind (like a checklist) before posting a "non-business" image.

  • Am I showing too much of the actual scene? Is there a way I can crop this in more to be deliberate in what I want to share?
  • Do the colors in the scene match my brand?
  • Is there an inner message that I can tie in with my audience with this personal share? (example: how meeting up with a friend for a coffee date totally re-sparks your creativity and work drive)
  • Can I add myself in this image in any way? An arm holding the ice cream cone, the peek of the feet, etc.
  • Can I edit this image to be consistent with other images in my feed? There's no reason to have dark and grainy images if you don't have to - unless you met Beyonce in the most poorly lit room then think of another way to share your personal detail. 

By following these guidelines you will be laying the foundation of your sales funnel so strong, babe. You're building know, like and trust with every branded image you share. You need to be giving clients reasons to come to your feed and they need to be able to know what to expect from you. By sharing personal details (beautifully) you let them in on some behind-the-scenes - clients love this! They will be ready to make the leap to your email list only when these foundations are laid.