Seven Things #6: Product Funnel

In the Daily Seminar membership site Jason and I launched yesterday, we're going to be opening up parts of our business that we don't like to give away for free...

Here is my long term business plan... otherwise known as a map of all my current upsells:

It's a slightly out of date map but you get the idea.

That chart tells me exactly what I need to work on next.

I update it regularly (using Visio) but I used to do the same thing with my whiteboard.

Each of those boxes represents a sales letter. When they try to order, the arrows represent the different upsells that I present to them. So they can either: yes, I want to order this package... or say, no, I want this bigger package, and get moved to the next box.

As you can see, the PHP in a Box, Full Blast PHP, and Guerilla PHP stuff is on the bottom. Three packages around $100, upselling into a $200 bundle and then up to a $300 bundle.

I've blurred out the stuff that's not released yet (most of it is very close to being released). Obviously it all points to a giant package in the middle that I will price at $1000.

The ovals represent surprise bonuses I still need to integrate into my products. I'm applying the Ben Prater Refund Reducing Formula on those as loyalty bonuses... autoresponder follow-ups timed a week or two after a purchase. I offer that bonus in exchange for a testimonial about the orignal product.

The dotted lines represent upsells that I haven't connected yet. If I was working and was in a copywriting mood, I should probably spend 30 minutes writing the 1 page sales letter that upsells Full Blast PHP into the PHP in a Box plus Full Blast PHP bundle.

The white boxes mean they are products without video. The red boxes mean those products do have video. Common sense tells me that if I am in product creation mode, I should finish up the videos for Simple PHP 1, 2, and 3.

Because THAT means I can upsell visitors to a $100 product, upsell those to a $200 product and finally a $300 product just by writing a couple more pages of sales copy.

If a box has an "F" letter it means I am satisfied with the number of automatic followups that buyers of that product receive. When I am in followup creation mode I take one quick look at this chart and work on followups for a box missing an "F."

If a box has a "T" it means I'm satisfied with the number of testimonials for that product. If I feel a product is lacking in testimonials I can blast a quick mailing to my sublist for that product, check my old threads or blog comments to canniblalize into testimonials. Maybe even single out some of my active buyers and interview them over e-mail, and turn that into a testimonial.

I teach in Fast Food Copywriting that the only reason you are after testimonials is for proof. You don't need testimonials to sell a product, only to give proof.

Each box also has a bount of the number of scripts, price, video running time, and download size so that I can easily total them up in any bundle to give a "thud" factor -- when I say a product has 2 gigabytes of content, people say, "Wow!"

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Comments (13)

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  1. Mitch says:

    It’s great that you let the visuals be your “TODO” list, and, depending on what you feel like doing at any moment, you can just glance at the map there and decide where you need to focus your efforts.

    I like that.


  2. Robert, thanks for another thought and action inspiring post.

    I know the Thud factor impresses a lot of people but I’m buying less video based tutorials as our broadband is low-quality and relatively high-priced.

    I’ll still buy where I’m sure of value. A Guarantee is good but downloading 300 meg of unscripted talk, especially where it nothing but reguritation of Power Point slides is more than disappointing – it wastes a lot of time.

    Some presenters could tighten up their presentations and cut the length of their tutes.

    I get 3 copies of each email from you, probably because I have bought most of your offers.

    Can you tell from your testing how many upsells most of your buyers will click through and still buy? I would expect that many would click away after a couple unless they were getting a very low price on the original product they started to buy?

    I intend to set up a flowchart like the Funnel. The other information should be kept in mind and some of it would help customers if presented on download pages.


    John Williams

  3. I think maps like this help one enormously to see the overall strategy and let you to quickly zoom in on what needs to be done. I need to do this type of thing more instead of jotting down quick diagrams on pieces of paper which tend to get lost and forgotten. I feel a New Years resolution coming on…

  4. Eugene Humbert says:

    Nice layout. Now, if I had a product to sell, or a reasonable expectation that I could do something like that, I’d be in hog heaven. As it is, I’m just piddling along building websites, which is my passion and hobby.

    Being realistic, I lack the graphic skills and imagination to really excel at what I love doing, so I just keep hammering at it until I get it right.

    Love your work… there are some real great ideas lurking there.


  5. Robert,

    This is a very inspiring post. Using a map like this is a very good way to see the big picture of your product funnel (and whether you are working on too many things that don’t fit!)

    You’ve also made great use of color coding and other visual keys to make it easy to gather useful information at a quik glance.

    Now, I’ve got to go and get my own work this organized!

    Have a great trip to Hawaii,

    Andrew Seltz
    The Go-To Guy!

  6. Robert, what a post, damn some people would sell that info for $97, record it, video it, make a powerpoint of it and then do a screencast, and then up the price! lol seriously good stuff have tweeted about it

  7. Gren Bingham says:

    This was the straw. I’ve been fed up with myself for a whiloe now for trying to keep everything in my head … You’ve convinced me to try am trying those new fangled discoveries, paper and pencil, to capture concepts.

    Best regards,


  8. Grandmapeg says:

    Haven’t seen an organization chart with color, initials, and ovals to represent things done or still to do. Very smart. Thank you.

  9. Hey Robert,

    you should make that map clickable- each box linking to its product.

    even I have never heard of some of them!

    (The Great Cookoff?)

  10. Bob Stovall says:

    Hey Robert,

    Wow, I always think I am organized until I see someone who really is. Once again, you’ve raised the bar. Excellent post.

    Have fun in Hawaii.

  11. Lance Tamashiro says:

    Thanks for this Robert. I have been trying to get my head around this sort of thing for a while now.

    It makes it so easy to someone else’s system.

    One question I had was this..

    Does each of those represent a different list as well?

    And then the customer is moved up to the next autoresponder as they move through your funnel?

    Thanks again, this is a great article.

    Maybe you could go into a little more detail for the Daily Seminar members???


  12. I echo Lance’s above question… I’ve had a tough time moving people about with GetResponse. 1ShoppingCart could do this sort of stuff, but they sucked majorly in terms of support and not being assholes.

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