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The Ins & Outs of A Book Funnel



The Ins & Outs of A Book Funnel

I often get asked about my book funnel so today I’m doing a deep dive into one of my favorite book funnels. 

I want to share some stats with you: 

  • From January 1st, 2019 to June 18th, 2019 we have grossed about $154,000 in revenue.
  • The average customer has spent just under $40. 
  • This year we’ve sold 3,877 physical books and 973 digital books.
  • We’ve sold 788 audio versions of the books which have produced $37,000 in revenue.

We’ve achieved these numbers through our free plus shipping book funnel. 

We’re giving “Publish, Promote, Profit” for free. All someone has to do is pay $7.95 to have it shipped directly to them, anywhere within the United States. 

It costs $14.95 to ship to Canada.  We don’t ship overseas at the moment, but there is an ebook version for $5.60.

We also offer a coaching upgrade: 

  • 118 people have purchased coaching with us which has produced $22,546 in revenue.

I want to be totally honest with you about how much this has cost. This year I’ve spent almost $246,000 with this free plus shipping funnel to make $154,000. 

Anyone who does the quick math would see that I’ve lost $92,000 in this book funnel just this year. Why would I want to lose money on this funnel?

Because I’m going to make it up on volume. 

This might sound funny because I technically can’t make it up on volume because the more I sell with this funnel, the more I lose. I literally lose money on every book I sell.

So why would I do that? It’s simple: because of my backend offer. 

What you’re selling with your book is what matters the most. 

Here at Best Seller Publishing, we offer a done-for-you publishing service from ghostwriting, to the book launch, to media and PR. 

So in this roughly 6 month period in which we’ve lost $92,000 in book sales, we’ve earned another $2 million. 

When you break down the math, we’ve spent about $16,000 a month to earn $400,000 a month just through this one funnel. 

Now that’s impossible to do if you don’t have a great back end offer. Don’t worry about all the numbers. We didn’t start with that many zeros. 

This has grown over the years to a point where we’re comfortable spending thousands of dollars a day on Facebook ads, and traffic via YouTube, Google, Facebook, and LinkedIn. 

So ignore the numbers, and focus on the process.

We’re bringing people who have never heard of us into our world by offering a copy of my best selling book, for free. They could buy it on Amazon for $24.95, or they could pay the $7.95 for us to ship it to them. 

Ultimately, we’re trying to not just sell books, but to bring more clients into our done for you services at Best Seller Publishing.

They start with a small purchase so they can learn about our company, see if we’d be a good match, and then build some trust. They then have a consultative sales call with a member of our team to go over details and any questions they have, so we can hopefully close that sale. 

This process works in dozens of different industries, from selling software to coaching and consulting services. There’s no reason it couldn’t work for your business as well, as long as you have that great high-value backend offer in place. 

There are obviously tons of other book funnels, but this one if my favorite. 

Let’s go over exactly what this funnel looks like: 

  1. The Offer. On the first page, we go into detail about all of the reasons they should invest in this free plus shipping book. There’s also a video they can watch to learn more. 

Some people still get annoyed and ask how we can call it free when it still costs them $7.95. I tell them they can go on Amazon to buy it for the full price, or they can just cover shipping. We’ll print the book and do everything else. 

I don’t worry about people who get upset here because they’re probably not my clients. Instead, I worry about serving my potential clients. I want to get this book into as many hands as possible. 

  1. The Upsell. Our first upsell is the audio version of the book and a six video training course I’ve put together.

I sell this offer for $47 and it is totally digital. It gets fulfilled automatically through our ClickFunnel system. Almost 20% of all people who buy the free plus shipping book, also purchase this first offer. This upsell had added $37,000 in revenue in just 6 months. 

  1. Coaching Offer. This costs $297, or three payments of $97. 

Ultimately with this offer, we really just want people to fill out a free strategy session application. Most people don’t immediately fill out the application, but we have an autoresponder sequence through Active Campaign that brings them back so we can get them onto a one on one call. 

We often try, although it’s not as much as I’d like, to outbound dial every single purchaser of our book because when someone purchases the free plus shipping offer, they give us their telephone numbers. If someone has given us that $7.95, we want to talk to them. 

When we do call, we’ll let them know their book is on the way. If they’ve already received the book, we’ll ask if they’ve read it yet and if they like it. We’ll then ask if they’d like a one on one coaching call. 

We’ve actually converted $45,000 in deals from an outbound call to a buyer of the book who never filled out an application because these are still people who want all of the services we offer. 

Our backend offer is what makes this possible. 

It doesn’t work by losing $92,000 to get books into people’s hands. It works because I have something that is a higher investment, is more involved, and is a guaranteed service that we offer to help people with whatever their needs are surrounding their book. 

Let’s talk mechanics. 

Are these books fulfilled, shipped, etc. via myself or my company? 

No. This funnel is not in any way, shape, or form connected with Amazon. In one sense, Amazon is our competitor. Amazon is selling the book through its own traffic for $24.95 and $11.95 for the digital version. 

Why am I competing with Amazon through my own funnel? 

Because I do not get the buyer information on any purchases made through Amazon. 

I can’t go back and offer them additional things for sale. I need to send people to my funnel directly via YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, etc. so they can go through it. I don’t send them to Amazon to have the book printed and shipped. 

Instead, we use a fulfillment company. We use Mike Frederick at Corporate Color Printing. Mike is fantastic. We’ve had such a great experience with his company. 

It should cost anywhere between $7.50 and $8.50 to fulfill an average sized book of about 175 pages with a soft cover. This is done without you ever touching it. 

When we first started, we actually sold and fulfilled it ourselves. You can print 100 books on Amazon for about $300, about $3 a book. We used to have those books shipped to our homes and then every time someone buys, we’d fulfill and ship it ourselves. 

Is that a hassle? Yes. It’s a hassle when you’ve sold 5,000 books. That’s not something you want to do when you’re selling thousands of books, but in the beginning, it may be a good idea to do it yourself. 

On the other hand, someone like Corporate Color Printing can integrate directly with ClickFunnels and can fulfill it for you. They print for me as well, which is one of the reasons I moved from the previous fulfillment company to Mike’s company. I wanted someone who could do all of it directly in house so I would never risk running out of books. 

At this point, we prefer to have the entire process done by someone else. We want to be hands-free because we’re moving a thousand plus books every month. Our goal is to move even more books, but right now we’re barely able to keep up with the leads we get from it. 

Questions I’ve been asked:

  • I have no idea what my backend offers should be. How do I build the right kind of backend offer that delivers a high value? Do I need to create all new products? 

If you’re already giving away all of your products, then yes, you do need to create new ones you can sell. You can’t give a product away for free and also sell it. 

However, products are not the kind of high ticket backend that I would recommend. 

If you can take one of your products and create a process around that product so that somebody can be coached by you in a group format, and then they can implement that process, it becomes infinitely more valuable. 

As an example, we just started our free event model coaching. The free event model is really an information product, right? We’re teaching on it and recording everything, but an information product is only worth on the low end $300 and on the high end $1,500 – $2,000. 

We sold our information product for $8,000. 

We’re able to sell it for that much because we created an eight-week system around it where my business partner and I are going to help people implement the things we’re teaching. 

We have a group call together, then we do a group Q&A and we’ll even help people one on one to help them integrate every element of it. 

So if you have something within your course that creates some type of transformation in someone’s life and you can create eight weeks of value where you help them implement it, the value of that goes from $500 to $5,000. 

The key is that it has to give your clients/customers great results. 

  1. How do I get more high-quality testimonials for my book? 

I do a lot of live events, usually three to six a year. At these events, I try to over deliver and I bring a videographer. They record me speaking, and then I have them ask people for video testimonials. 

Besides that, I ask.

Sometimes when people ask me for things, like my autoresponder sequence, or another kind of tip, I’ll ask them to shoot a video testimonial for me. They’re almost always more than happy to. 

You want to ask and incentivize it. It shouldn’t be one-sided. You should not just be giving and giving, without anything to show for. You should also ask your clients/customers for a video testimonial in return. 

There are no shortcuts to getting those testimonials. 

I hope this has been helpful for you.

Please share your funnels and successes with us by tagging us on social media, we’d love to see them!

Comments (8)

  1. This is great! I love the insider look into your business and what others can do to get that bookfunnel going. Thanks Rob!

  2. I love how you master a model and then transparently share that model with your customers and prospective customers. I am a fan and grateful to be in business with you all.

  3. Hey Rob- I’ve gone through your book and funnel, you’ve got an incredible service! I’ve written a book, but studying what you’ve done and apprecaite the transparency and helpful insights you’re sharing.

    In the last 7 or 8 emails I’ve read from you- they outline what many coaches charge thousands for. Thank you!

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