This is what drives a funnel strategist nuts about sales funnels

“What drives you nuts about funnels?”

A close friend and colleague asked me this recently in preparation for a funnel workshop I’m hosting for a talented group of copywriters.

Today, as I spend this snowy, sunny day (rare in Finnish winter) eyeball deep in research prepping for that very workshop, I finally have some good answers for her.

The thing is…

I’m finding that there’s a lot missing from funnel discussions…

especially when it comes to selling high-ticket service packages + coaching programs.

I’m sure you’ve seen the hype-y funnel-cult style headlines:

“make money on autopilot”
“don’t leave money laying on the table” 
“make $100K this year” 
“the perfect funnel”

(Honestly, I know I used a few of them when I started in the space.)

The deeper I go into the funnel world, I realize that people talk about funnels like they’re magic. But…

They aren’t. They’re systems. And they only work when ALL the system elements are aligned.

These types of convos set unrealistic expectations for service providers, coaches, freelancers, and business owners like you. They ignore the other parts of the system needed for funnels to have positive impact on your bottom line.

Wanna know what’s missing?

That’s a dumb question. Of course, you do. So here it goes…

First, you’re not going to make money on autopilot if you’re selling high-ticket service packages + coaching programs.

I’ve worked with a few clients who had the impression that having a sales funnel meant they wouldn’t have to sell anymore. The funnel would sell for them.

That’s not the case when you’re selling high-ticket service packages + coaching programs.

You still have to take a sales call, build trust, show value, explain how the process works – all before your prospect is ready to hand over his or her credit card info + sign a contract.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m a huge fan of automation.

What funnels can automate is your lead generation process: identifying leads, qualifying them + getting them scheduled on your calendar for a consult / sales call.

They bring you qualified leads 24/7, grow your email list, establish some authority, save time, and can even eliminate cold prospecting.

But (in most cases) they will not make you money on autopilot. You still have to have a sales conversation to actually sell.

Second, a sales funnel alone isn’t going to guarantee you $100K or more this year.

These hollow revenue promises leave 2 very important factors out of the equation:

  1. Average project/client value. How much do you charge per average project?
  2. Your capacity. How many projects/clients can you serve in a month?

These two things influence how much you can make with a funnel.

Here I’ll show you what I mean with some real numbers.

Let’s assume you’re selling $500/mo. coaching packages. And your capacity is 10 clients per month. For the sake of simplicity, let’s also assume you can work at full capacity for all 12 months of the year.

With some simple math, we can easily see that your earning potential is:

$500/month x 10 clients = $5000/month total revenue
$5000/month x 12 months = $60,000/year total revenue

Since your funnel can automate your lead generation and keep you fully booked, it helps you meet your highest earning potential.

But it doesn’t change it.

The only way to get on up to $100K per year is by charging more (i.e. more expensive packages) or increasing your capacity (i.e. hiring some help).

Third, 99% of the conversations I’m seeing in this space are all. about. the. money.

Here’s the problem with that…

Have you ever had a profitable contract with a pain in the a** client?

I have. And I can tell you that, after a while, the money doesn’t matter as much anymore. You just want this client gone.

Funnels can (and should be) about more than just making money.

Who you attract with your funnels is equally important for your business. Do you want more pain in the a**es or more dream clients?

I know which one I want. And I’m betting you’d agree with me.

And those, folks, are just a few of the things that get me frustrated about the funnel space: hype-y cult-like convos that ignore other factors in the system and set unrealistic expectations.

Share this post:


Lookin' for more like this?

Subscribe and score juicy sales-boosting insights you won't hear anywhere else.

A few times a month, you’ll get my best marketing tips, in-the-wild copy reviews, and firsthand experiences solving real-world conversion problems. Sign up for weekly-ish emails. Unsubscribe anytime.