How the marketing flywheel is Replacing the Funnel

 Photo courtesy of 360mix.net

Photo courtesy of 360mix.net

Has the marketing funnel been a standby sales model for your company? You’re not alone. In marketing terms, a funnel is the traditional way that customers are viewed in a sales process. The number of people aware of your product, the number of people interested, all the way down to purchasers gradually decreases in number. This model is being phased out, in favor of a momentum based sales strategy, called the marketing flywheel.

Jim_info_graphic-01.png

However, this view of sales is changing into a more momentum based approach to sales. The funnel model does make sense to a lot of businesses, but it is missing one vital piece of information: how to people who have purchased your item affect people who haven’t purchased your item, or are at different stages in the sales process? That is, the funnel doesn’t account for what happens after a sale. After all, once something reaches the end of a funnel, it just hits the ground, right?

Because of the funnel’s lack of representing the effect of momentum, a new model of sales has been introduced: the flywheel. The flywheel analogy is based off of the flywheels use in powerplants, cars, and trains. The purpose of a physical flywheel is to have a large rotating wheel to maintain momentum and smooth engine operation. Chances are you are already starting to see how this analogy makes sense for marketing.

The flywheel sales method is about making sales, and then using that sale to make more sales. The flywheel sales model fits perfectly with inbound because inbound methods pay attention to customer satisfaction after a customer purchases a product. For those unfamiliar with inbound methodology, check out the infographic below.


Jim_info_graphic-02.png

The flywheel model accounts for the “delight” stage of a sale, where your customers have purchased your item, and are in a position to influence others as to whether they are satisfied or not. The continuing cycle of successful sales producing more successful sales is what makes the flywheel so powerful. As mentioned before, the flywheel is a momentum-based approach to marketing.

So how do you make a flywheel? You make your customers so happy that they are going to feed into producing more sales momentum by influencing others.

What are the other ways that a flywheel represents a sales strategy? Well, friction is what works against the flywheel. It slows it down, it steals it’s energy. Common places where friction exists in marketing are:

  1. A difficult onboarding processes (how hard is it to sign up for your product or service?)

  2. A lack of customer education in what your product is and how it will serve them.

  3. Misalignment between customer and the sales team (misalignment of goals between customer service and a customer as well).

Basically, it is key that the customer and the sales team are on the same page. The sales team exists to educate the customer, to help the customer, and the customer is seeking a good or service that they need. This understanding between the two is crucial for a sales process to gain and maintain the circular momentum that the flywheel delivers.

In conclusion, the flywheel is the new funnel. It accounts for the multiplicative effect that sales has on other sales. That is, as the flywheel gains speed, sales start to become easier because of the energy generated by happy customers influencing other potential customers.

Are you a marketing agency looking for a partner for HubSpot or WordPress builds? Contact Spin Group today. And no, we won’t even end the blog with a bad pun about Spin Group spinning your flywheel or anything like that.