Steve Hofstetter, via his Steve’s Idea Facebook fanpage, is running the following newsfeed ad, which clicks over to a simple opt-in at FunnelSteve.com:
Before I review his pitch, watch this case study my mentor did with another student on creating “virtual toll booths.” It’s simple, scalable, semi-passive, there’s no ad spend, and you don’t have to deal with all the headaches that come with selling your own course or coaching program:
Okay, back to Funnel Steve. First of all, the ad itself is money. Top notch copy. Professional voiceover. And there’s just something about the punchy, plain black text over all white slides—like just the pace and simplicity of it all—that really sucks you in. I’d say, even more so than if that same text was used as a long copy ad, where you could just read it all on your own without the video.
The content is compelling as well. Rather than relying on hype or industry jargon that sounds sexy but says nothing, Steve walks you through the exact numbers of what one of his done-for-you marketing funnels (which is what he’s ultimately trying to sell you) might produce when it’s all said and done. In this way, if the numbers are to be believed, he’s making a strong, logical argument in favor of investing in one of his high-ticket, expert-only funnels.
And I’d say the numbers are pretty spot-on if you were running Facebook ads a couple years ago. Today, however, with Sam Ovens, Russ Ruffino, the two Traffic and Funnels guys, Dan Henry, and about eleventy-hundred other we-teach-you-how-to-launch-and-scale-your-own-course-or-consulting program gurus, I mean, just think about how many wannabe experts are competing for those precious newsfeed spots. Meaning, CPMs, CPCs, STDs (oops, wrong blog) are all going up.
Not only that, but the prospects you’re attracting through this “fairy tale funnel” are gonna immediately be peppered with dozens of your competitors’ ads as soon as they take action on yours. It’s almost like Facebook (and Google and YouTube) is too good at what they do. Their algorithm first helps you, majorly, by making it fast and easy (but pricey) to get targeted leads opting-into your sh*t; but then it stabs you in the back by following those same action-takers (aka your new leads) around the web, introducing ’em to course creators and consultants very similar to you, knowing if they opted-in to your sh*t, they’ll probably opt-in to their sh*t. So now, on top of rising ad costs, the people you’re trying to sell this hypothetical $3k or $5k or $10k program to have lots of options. And unless you’re head-and-shoulders above the rest, conversions are going down, down, down. So the cost to make a sale, based on what I’ve seen, is about double what it was just a couple of years ago.
So that’s what you’re up against. Does that mean you shouldn’t invest in a $10,000 Steve’s Idea funnel? Not necessarily. What it means is that you better be damn-sure you’re ready to compete if you’re gonna go this route. If so, and if you truly believe you have what it takes to win sales over the more established gurus with big names, big followings, deep pockets, boatloads of social proof, a strong team in place, well-oiled systems, and other sh*t you may not have yet… then yeah, I think FunnelSteve.com has your name on it. Hell, you’ll need a funnel that pops ‘n’ sizzles like hot bacon grease if you wanna stand a chance. Like, that’s not even optional. That’s just the cost of even getting in the game.
The sh*tty part, though, is that I’ve seen many-a-funnel get jacked once these pile-of-peanuts-for-a-brain #FunnelHackers see you running something that’s clearly working. Think about it: any Facebook ad with thousands of positive emojis and comments is obviously a winner. And today, more and more marketers have no moral issue straight-ripping someone else’s copy. And as for the rest of their funnel? Like their squeeze page, landing pages, emails, etc.? Those are all easily recreated too. It sucks, but whaddya gonna do?
The internet is your dream girl. And she’s into you. But she’s into everyone else too. She belongs to the streets. Like Jada. That’s the best way I can put it.
So yeah. Funnel Steve is great. The circumstances around running paid ads to promote your high-priced course or mastermind or whatever? Not so much. And it didn’t used to be like that. But it is now. And you gotta be realistic about it. Or you’re gonna wake up one day, $50k in the hole, and wonder what happened. Ya know?
This is why I f*cks with free traffic. I mean, that’s how you got here, isn’t it? And, based on what you were searching for, I know you’re interested in online marketing and advertising and, based on Steve Hofstetter’s brand, I can safely assume you’re pretty cool and not a deadbeat (or you wouldn’t put up with his edgy ads or be shopping for a $10k funnel, amiright?). Other words, you’re probably a much better “lead” than I could’ve plucked off of Facebook.
But it gets better. Way better. ‘Cause, on Facebook (or via YouTube ads or whatever paid source you wanna throw in there), you would’ve cost me, what, $8 ($12? $17?) to get in front of and get you this far into my content? Whereas, what’d I pay to pull you through 909 words (so far) of my message? Oh, that’s right: ZERO!
So if you were to buy something from me, it’d be almost all profit. And passive. ‘Cause once I hit publish, I’ll never think about this article ever again. And yet, it’ll put on boots and shovel sh*t for me, day after day… after day… for years to come.
Now imagine doing what I just did here, only for small businesses in specific cities that you cherry-pick based on two things: (1) how fast and easy you can rank for certain terms that’ll bring you buyers; and (2) how much you can make per lead. (And then sell said leads to an actual brick and mortar who does that service in that city.)
I’ll tell you: it’s exponentially easier than what I’m doing here; and what I’m doing here is easy… at least, for me it is. But it might not be for you. And you might not wanna write this much or this often or compete with other blogs ran by savvy marketers. And that’s where the model I first started off doing—aka renting little websites—comes in.