Tripwires: How you can get customers tripping and stumbling into your marketing funnel

Have you been struggling to convert your leads into loyal customers? As an online business owner, using a tripwire in your marketing funnel can be an effective strategy to drive conversions and generate additional revenue. 

And yes, even those “tripwire” sounds like bro-marketing jargon that will instantly make you cringe, its effectiveness is unmatched.

What is a marketing tripwire?


A tripwire is a low-cost offer that’s designed to jumpstart your customer into your marketing funnel. The goal of a tripwire is to get a customer to take the first step towards making a purchase, and then to use upsells or cross-sells to get the customer to make additional, more expensive purchases, thus increasing their average order value.

The idea behind a tripwire is to create a sense of urgency or scarcity in the customer’s mind, encouraging them to make a purchase before they lose the opportunity to do so.

By asking the customer to take a small, low-risk action now, it opens the possibility of that customer making a larger purchase down the line.

Why should I use a tripwire in my marketing funnel?

Tripwires can be a valuable tool for generating revenue, building relationships with your customers, and collecting valuable data that can be used for your future marketing efforts.

Several reasons why you might consider using a tripwire in your marketing funnel include:

  • Generating revenue: While a tripwire is just a low-cost offer, it still generates revenue for your business. For example, even if the customer only purchases the tripwire, it can help to offset marketing costs and contribute to your bottom line.
  • Building relationships with your customers: By offering a tripwire, you can establish a relationship with a customer and get them to take a small action that demonstrates their interest in your business. This can be a good way to build trust and establish credibility.
  • Collecting customer data: A tripwire can be a good way to collect customer data like email addresses or contact information which are valuable for future marketing efforts and can help you to segment your audience for targeted campaigns.
  • Upselling or Cross-Selling: A tripwire can be a good way to get the customer to make additional purchases. Once the customer has made their initial purchase, you can use upsells or cross-sells to get them to buy more expensive products or services.

Why are tripwires effective in marketing?

Wondering why tripwires are so effective? It’s simple. With such a low investment, your customers won’t need to overthink their purchase. One of the primary purposes of a tripwire, if not the overall goal, is to encourage customers to buy something immediately.

As soon as they get a glimpse of what you can provide and it helps solve their immediate problem, you’re able to build their trust and they will become more willing to buy additional products or services from you.

How can I create a tripwire for my business?

Follow these six simple steps to create your first marketing tripwire.

  1. Identify your target audience: First, think about who your target audience is and what type of offer they might be interested in. Consider their needs, interests, and pain points, and tailor your tripwire offer to meet those needs. Yup, just like anything else, it’s imperative for you to understand exactly who your target audience is, what their needs and goals are, what’s holding them back from achieving those goals, and how you can help them.
  2. Determine your tripwire offer: Next, decide what your tripwire offer will be. This could be a discounted or free trial offer, a low-cost product or service, or a template of some sort. The goal is to choose a product or service that won’t break the bank and be a no-brainer purchase. And remember, first impressions matter most! Especially when trying to retain a customer. So whether you create something from scratch or use what you already have, you need to ensure this is a high-value product that can solve a specific problem your ideal customer is having.
  3. Set the price: Determine the price of your tripwire offer. Keep in mind that the goal of a tripwire is to get the customer to take a low-risk action, so the price should be low enough to encourage the customer to take action.
  4. Create a sales page or landing page: Create a sales page or landing page for your tripwire offer. This should include a clear and compelling offer, as well as a simple and straightforward call to action.
  5. Promote your tripwire: Use marketing channels such as email marketing, social media marketing, or paid advertising to promote your tripwire offer and drive traffic to your sales page or landing page. This part is vital because if you don’t have any traffic to your sales page, there won’t be any eyeballs viewing your content and no eyeballs mean that there are no humans holding swipe-ready credit cards.
  6. Follow up with upsells or cross-sells: Once the customer has made their initial purchase, follow up with aligned offers to upsell or cross-sell additional products or services. This can help to increase the overall value of the customer’s purchase.

If you’re feeling stuck, here are a few additional tips to get your customers tripping and stumbling into your marketing funnel:

TIP 1: Design a targeted marketing campaign around your tripwire.

As mentioned previously, you’ll need to create a sales page that clearly communicates the details of the tripwire, including the price, features, benefits, and testimonials (if you have some).

However, you don’t just need to present compelling copy with persuasive language that resonates with your ideal audience on the sales page alone.

If you have a free resource that’s aligned with your ideal customer’s soon-to-be-fulfilled needs thanks to that low-ticket offer you’re about to present to them, start there!

Downloading a valuable free resource will always help to encourage conversions, increasing your chances of making a future sale.

TIP 2: Continuously test and optimize your tripwire marketing funnel.

My motto in marketing has been and always will be “Test, don’t trust.”

Keep testing and optimizing your tripwire to ensure it performs as effectively as possible. You can try out different pricing strategies, alter your messaging, or even swap design elements on your sales page to see what works best for your audience.

The most important part here is to only change one thing at a time. A/B testing will become your best friend during this process.

And although you might not see big results immediately, you can continually fine-tune your tripwire marketing tactics until you identify the path that results in maximum conversions.

TIP 3: Repurpose your tripwires as bonus “gifts” for your larger offers.

With the goal of upsells and cross-selling in mind, your tripwire will undoubtedly pair well with your overall offer suite.

Get the most out of your tripwire offers by utilizing them as bonus aspects of your larger offerings.

For example, my ClickUp Content Calendar System was a key part of my recent live launch for my content marketing membership, Content Catalyst. While nearing the end of the launch, I broke out the ‘bonus gifts’ to elicit that last bit of FOMO and increase urgency in order to gently nudge those prospects on the edge of enrolling, over the edge. All new members received a copy of my low-ticket product (the ClickUp Content Calendar System) for free as a bonus for enrolling during that specific launch.

While it created no extra effort on my part to include the tripwire product, the new members quickly became obsessed with how well the two products integrated and couldn’t imagine organizing their membership content without it.

A total win, win if you ask me!

Wrapping Up

Following these guidelines, you should better grasp a tripwire’s functionality, advantages, and how to implement it in your marketing funnel effectively. 

It’s a fantastic method for online businesses to increase sales and profits. Establishing a low-priced offer, targeting your ideal customer with a well-designed marketing campaign, clearly communicating its value, and upselling related products or services that can genuinely help your customers is a surefire way to expand your business quickly. 

Looking for more actionable marketing insights? Be sure to subscribe to our Weekly Download email series that’s signed, sealed, and delivered to your inbox every Wednesday. The Weekly Download is where the Pané Marketing team shares our best marketing strategies, insights on buyer psychology, and tips for your business to transcend its revenue potential.

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