How to Build a Sales Funnel for Your Coworking Space
It's a common situation when you open a new coworking space, invest in its stylish design, buy ergonomic furniture, powerful hardware, etc. Innovative technology provides a futuristic experience to the guests. Seems like you are offering a competitive service... So why customers don't come? Maybe they simply don't know about you? Are you working on your marketing funnel?
Not sure what is it? A sales funnel is a marketing technique that helps you make sales without hiring special sales staff, without cold calls and growth hacks.
A simple effective sales funnel will help you drive human traffic, convert those people into customers, and make them love your brand.
A sales/marketing funnel includes several stages — awareness, interest, consideration, and conversion.
Firstly, I will give you actionable tips on coworking brand building (brand awareness), which is the first stage of the marketing funnel. Read on and very soon you will be able to set up your own marketing funnel and make your business profitable without involving pushy sales tactics.
Each stage of sales funnel requires some time to implement but as it starts to work you are going to see positive changes and profit growth almost immediately.
Let’s see the big picture of the typical marketing funnel and then drill deeper into the brand recognition stage.
A marketing funnel is a special system developed to attract people and convert them into customers to your coworking business (or any other kind of business).
Here is a simple scheme demonstrating how sales funnel work:
Why marketers are using a funnel shape? Because each lower stage is smaller than the preceding higher one. This happens because not all people who get to know about your coworking space actually come to work there. In other words, they “drop out” at each stage of the funnel.
Here is an example.
You are a modern coworking space located in Rumford, US.
Two hundred people who live there work remotely. From time to time they get tired of staying at home all the time and go to Google in search of a good solution for their problem.
You have a nice website promoting your coworking space and ranking for "coworking space rumford" on Google. So, nearly a hundred people click through to your site.
You offer a 10% discount for those who sign up for your service and become a member. Nearly fifty people are seduced by the perspective and fill in your forms to get a coupon.
Then they get back to usual daily rituals and only twenty-five freelancers use their promo code to close the deal.
You see, people drop off at every stage👥, so the top part, which is Awareness, is always larger than the bottom part, which is Conversion.
Maybe you have already tried to create a marketing funnel for your coworking space. You have probably seen another diagram of sales funnel including lots of arrows and if/else conditions. I don't feature it here because the goal of this blog post is to encourage you to make the first step and not to overwhelm you, especially if you are a newbie to marketing.
We will avoid overcomplicated techniques and stick to their simple analogs.
Just for your information. The marketing funnel will work for you under two conditions:
- You have excellent service.
- You have the market of prospective buyers.
In other words, you have found your product/market fit.
Well, when this is settled, let’s start building your own funnel.
At the stage of brand recognition freelancers having a problem with shared workspace get to know about your service because you are closely related to their problem.
Ways to market your coworking business:
- Publish articles on your blog or third-party resources.
- Participate in a podcast or get a shoutout from the host.
- Run a Facebook ads campaign.
- Rank high on Google.
- Attend conferences and speak there.
- Shoot videos for YouTube.
All of the above ways are relevant as soon as they tell the audience about your existence. There is a chance of getting customers straight away. This happens if people are strongly frustrated with their problems.
Even if the rest of the audience doesn't hurry up to sign up for your service, they know that you are connected to their problem. And it's time to apply the following coworking marketing tips. Remember that you aim to make sure that the potential leads go through each step of your lead funnel becoming the paying customers that find your service as a solution for their needs.
Talk as much as you can about the problems freelancers face when they don't have a dedicated space to work. Raise people's awareness of the issue, persuade them that it's important, that it's not good to procrastinate, it's much better to tackle and resolve the issue. Show people the way to solving the issue, connect it with your brand and the service you provide.
Your objective is to let even more people know about you in the process.
How can you expand your reach? You must "broadcast" your message across all available marketing channels.
If this seems too time-consuming to you, start to hang out in the main channels where you can meet your customers.
Google is the first stop destination for everyone. Where do you go when you have a question? You put it into Google search and get the answer.
Believe me, your customers do the same. They turn to Google with their problems and google for answers when having questions.
This is how most of the customers discover any business, including your coworking space.
Here is the process.
- You publish content on your corporate blog.
- The blog posts you publish rank well in Google.
Side Note: You can track your keywords using a Google rank tracking tool.*
If you do everything right, searching for relevant terms people find your content and read it. They remember that you are related to coworking business. If they look for coworking business-related content in the future, they’ll likely think of you.
The mere-exposure effect is a psychological phenomenon by which people tend to develop a preference for things merely because they are familiar with them.
What is the marketing strategy behind high content rankings?
- You need to do keyword research to find relevant topics your target customers are searching for. Use specific tools to simplify the task (Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush Keyword Research tool, Moz Keyword Research Tool, etc.)
Pro tip: Target a broader topic at this stage because you need to reach as many people as possible.
- Then research SEO metrics to make sure your post has search traffic potential (Keyword Search Volume, Return Rate, Keyword Difficulty, etc.)
- Follow the best SEO copywriting practices while writing.
You may change the process, but keyword research is a required step. You may use this keyword research guide adjusting the points to your needs, resources, and industry.
Use your favorite marketing tool to automate the process. Don't have the one? There are plenty of them on the net. Some are free, yet very helpful.
Why did I place YouTube right under Google? Because it's the second largest search engine in the world.
All of us love YouTube and use it on daily basis. It's safe to say that the resource is a cultural life-changing phenomenon. It brings millions of videos closer, actually, they are a click away.
The video resource is around since 2005. The total number of people who use YouTube is 1,300,000,000. However, the channel is still pretty neglected for businesses.
Do you post coworking-related videos on YouTube? For most coworking owners the answer is No.
Yet, I believe that you should be there. Look at the WeWork channel. They joined YouTube in August 2013 and have 10,489,030 views at the moment.
How do they know what to shoot? The process for YouTube is pretty much the same as Google. Do keyword research to determine the topics, then produce quality, engaging videos to rank on YouTube.
What result should you expect? Improving your brand recognition and human traffic increase.
No doubt Google is cool. It can answer any question in any language. Though sometimes you want a personalized answer that grounds on individual experience or you don't need a definite answer, you just want to discuss a particular topic.
Where do you go when you need the above? To an online niche community.
Online communities like Reddit, Facebook groups, Slack communities, and others are places where people sharing similar interests gather. Here, they can discuss relevant topics, ask questions, share problems, banter and make friends. There is a community for every topic you can imagine including coworking of course.
Join coworking communities if you want to reach your target audience. Most popular of these sites receive millions of visitors a month. Have your finger in the pie and drive them to your website.
For instance, Reddit enjoys around 1600 million unique visitors a month.
I tell you this because want you to understand the power of communities. I advise to share your coworking space running tips regularly and participate in discussions.
Here are a few guidelines as to coworking marketing strategies/principles applicable to online communities.
- Every online community has its rules. Read them and follow. If you flout the rules, moderators will kick you out or even ban.
- Don't try to sell and pitch all the time. No one likes a community member whose only goal is making money. You must focus on adding value.
- Build trustworthy friendly relationships with members. Become a valuable community member by participating in the discussions and contributing.
- Follow anti-spam policy. You can't just enter a group, drop a link to your website and leave. This will lead you straight to the ban.
I don't say that you can't promote your coworking space. But you should establish yourself as an authoritative member and only then start your gentle marketing campaign.
Many people in the coworking industry have already built a large audience of loyal readers, listened and viewers.
You can reap the benefits of their efforts. By partnering with influencers you get the chance to expose your brand, service, and message to an entirely new audience.
How can you accomplish this? Offer them awesome content. They built their audience from valuable content, which is a tough job. Convince them that you are great in producing content and they will be happy to introduce you to their audience.
So, how can you contribute to influencers' content? Appear on their podcasts, webinars, present at a conference, become a guest editor on an email newsletter, or guest blog to share your expert tips. You see, there are lots of ways to partner with influencers.
Where should you start? Begin by building a list of influencers you dream to collaborate with, find their email addresses. When this is done send a highly personalized outreach email to figure out if they are willing to work with you. Your chances for success will significantly increase if you show them what’s in your offer for them.
At the second stage of building a sales funnel for your coworking space, you need to hold prospective customers that are already hooked.
People are familiar with your coworking brand because they have read your content. Now they want to know more. Most likely they will go to Google and start their research using specific queries like "how to choose a coworking," "women-only coworking, etc."
They may also start to look for industry leaders: best rural coworkings, the biggest coworking spaces around the globe. This way they will get a clear picture of what is happening in the niche in general.
Have you guessed what to do? You must rank for those specific search queries and let them find your content. Become a niche expert who can educate people and get followed.
In other words, you need to gently prod the prospects down the funnel demonstrating how your coworking brilliantly solves their problem.
Consideration is the third stage of your marketing funnel.
Your prospective customers not only acknowledge their problem, they already know the solution. Besides, they figured out that your coworking space can provide the best solution for them.
Yet, it's not time to celebrate. If people know about you and know that you can solve their problems, it doesn't mean that they are ready to choose you. You have your competitors on the market and they offer alternative solutions that may seem awesome to the customers.
Be sure, they will study most if not all of the available alternatives.
Supposing you know a lot about Apple. Does it necessarily mean you will buy an iPad? You may opt for Samsung Galaxy or Sony Xperia.
Your goal is to persuade people that your coworking is the right space to come regularly.
You can do this showing a unique selling proposition (USP). Think about what differentiates you from the competitors. Maybe your coworking offers unlimited free coffee and tea, maybe you arrange business training, maybe your coworking is more like an office center with marketing consultations, accounting services, and other discounted goodies for members.
What do you do when going to buy, say, a new laptop? You start to compare a model of your choice with similar gadgets: MacBook Pro vs Dell XPS. If you are not sure about the model, your search will have these parameters: best/top notebooks of 2019.
Remember that your prospective customers will do the same when choosing a coworking space. That's why you need to rank for search queries which include modifier terms like “vs,” “best” and “top.”
Supposing you have people following you but for some reason, they don't convert into paying customers. You need to push them again.
You can do it explaining why you are different in a sequence of emails. It should be like a story. Each next email should give more information on what's in your coworking for them.
Here is a kind of draft concept that will help you create the sequence.
- Elaborate on the idea of why a person needs your service.
- Educate them on some aspects of coworking. For instance, how to choose the best coworking space.
- Tell them some news about your coworking (maybe a new service, event, training.)
- Let them discover the value of your service. For instance, tell that your coworking was founded specifically to help entrepreneurs grow their business and enumerate the facilities you provide for the purpose.
- Tell customers a story of your coworking, why you are doing what you are doing. People are curious and like stories, they help them to feel involved.
- Give an answer to a common question that most of your customers ask.
- Compare your hub with competing spaces.
You can go farther than just sending emails and arrange a consultation call, for example.
At the stage of conversion, your prospective customers are almost convinced that you provide the best solution to their problem.
This means you need to push them for the last time. Give them one more compelling reason to click the “sign up” button immediately.
At andcards we offer to schedule a demo or try coworking space management software. A coworking space owner or manager gets the opportunity to tear and wear the software with all its features without any investments.
For coworking space you can do the following:
- Offer the first day for free. A prospective member can stay at your space for the whole day and use all its utensils for free.
- You can create a sense of urgency offering limited time membership sign up at a reduced price. In this case, you can remind a prospect a few times that a limited time offer will expire soon and they should hurry up.
- Review your checkout process, it's utterly important to provide a smooth and user-friendly experience here.
- Give them a discount to convince to take a decision, though, I don't think that discounts are really a great strategy.
After all the above stages your prospective member will be happy to close the deal if the buying experience is pleasant enough.
The stage of conversion if a perfect moment to upsell your services. Offer the customer something wholesome in addition — yoga classes, food catering, extended membership, whatever.
I have already mentioned in the beginning of this guide that leakage is in funnels nature. Before we finish, I'd like to calm you down a bit. Leakages are not something you can not fix. Measure every stage to detect the issue in time and take action depending on what your metrics say.
- You can measure awareness in the number of visitors who come to your website.
- The level of interest can be measured in the number of people that sign up for your email.
- Measure click-through-rate for your emails to know if there is an excessive leakage at the consideration stage.
- Conversion is measured in the number of people actually purchasing a membership.
When you have numbers at hand, compare them with previous months and accurately detect the problem if any (seasonality, a drop in traffic coming from one channel, loss of keyword rankings, and so on.)
This is the easiest part. Major ad platforms like Facebook, Google, and Quora allow you to generate a pixel, which you can add to your website's
Not too hard to guess. Find out the stage where the prospects drop off and retarget them with the offer that takes them at the next stage of your funnel.
For instance, if users don't subscribe to your email newsletter, offer them to join your email list.
People hate it when they can't find an answer to their question on your coworking landing page. They just abandon it.
You can easily solve the problem with live chat. A good e-conversation is a great help at any stage of the funnel. Live chat allows to answer all hot queries and tenderly guide the prospects to the next stage.
We, at andcards, advise Intercom to enable live chat. It allows to segment the prospects and send them an automatically generated message encouraging to move to the next step or attach the offer like in the case with retargeting, which I described above talking about pixel code.
After reading this article, you have a basic understanding of the click funnels notion as well as the main principles of their work. Maybe you have even started to create the one for your coworking space. Still hesitating and leave for tomorrow? This is not the best strategy to market your coworking space and maximize your revenue.
I advise you to start small. Focus on building a simple funnel. Notice and fix the issues that come your way. Backlog the opportunities for growth that appear.
After you succeed with the simplest model, you can go ahead and add more advanced stages to the traditional funnel. These may be Retention and Advocacy. You may want to create a superior onboarding experience for new members or a media community only for customers that is intended to encourage discussion and help those who need it.
Why should you continue with adding new stages to your funnel? Because when you managed to acquire new members you want to keep them, you want to transform them into loyal customers. What's more, you want them to recommend you to all friends, which will enlarge your customer base.
Do you have questions on the marketing strategies mentioned above? Want to see a bigger picture of the whole process? Refer to the Lead Generation Funnel Infographic from Albacross.
If you have any questions on building a sales funnel for your coworking business please shoot them my way. Maybe you have your personal experience to share with the community? Some secret tips I didn't mention in the tutorial? They are welcome in the comments section.
P.S. *Don't forget to tell your friends on socials how to build a marketing funnel. Position yourself as a niche authority!*💪