Technically, anybody that is in your sphere of influence is a prospect AND is in the top end of your sales funnel… friends, family, social media friends, followers, connections, group members, etc. Maybe they read your Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ or Twitter posts, and maybe they have attended one of your presentations. The point is you have their attention.
You don’t necessarily need their permission to continue marketing them, however, because you are providing information that they find valuable – you have their attention. You could funnel them into an opt-in list, which essentially means they give you permission to contact them in the future (by email or direct mail), giving you a chance to provide even more valuable information to them. That is what the top end of a sales funnel is all about.
Basically when someone opts-in, they agree to receive information from you. So ideally, you get their email information so that you can continue to send these prospects relevant and valuable information.
The process of getting people to opt-in requires continuous experimentation. There are literally endless get people to opt-in to the top end of your sales funnel, limited only by your resources and imagination.
As the internet changes and evolves, new methods to market and capture leads surface thanks to advances and technology and ideas from internet entrepreneurs. In the old days leads were generated via methods like banners and newsletter advertising, which are still common today, but are now joined by more sophisticated options such as pay-per-click advertising, social media, blogging, podcasting and other tools and toys.
There will be several more articles on the Sales Funnel available here in the next few days, so why not Subscribe (in the upper right hand corner) so that you will get access to this series of blogs as soon as they become available. Also, feel free to comment below, I look forward to your questions or concerns.
The first article in this series – What is a Sales Funnel and Why is it a Good Marketing Idea
The third article is ready – The Sales Funnel; the Top End