What is an Inbound Flywheel?

An inbound flywheel model is similar to the machine that stores rotational energy. When you add energy to a flywheel, it starts to spin. If you add more energy to it, it spins faster. And unlike a funnel, where the only way to maintain a constant speed is to keep adding stuff to it, and flywheel will keep spinning unless some other force comes along and slows it down. Inbound businesses use the flywheel model to build trust, credibility, and momentum. It’s about adding value at every stage in your customer's journey with you.

The inbound flywheel is basically composed of three stages: attract, engage, and delight. Inbound businesses use the flywheel model to build trust, credibility, and momentum. It’s about adding value at every stage in your customer’s journey with you.

Inbound Flywheel

From a business perspective, the rotation of the flywheel represents the growth of your business, and happy customers provide the energy that fuels that growth, either because they buy from you again or because they bring new customers to you by promoting your product to other people in their network. But if you produce unhappy customers, either by selling to people who are a bad fit for your offering or by overpromising and under-delivering, they’ll work against your flywheel and slow your company’s growth.

Let’s talk about how funnels and flywheels fit together. Because funnels aren’t going away. The flywheel represents your company as a whole, but you’ll still have funnel-shaped charts and graphs representing the effectiveness of different processes within your company, and it’s important to make sure those funnels are fueling your flywheel. The most important of these funnels is your sales process. Your sales process defines the steps your sales team helps a qualified lead complete on their way to becoming a customer. If you look at a chart of your historical sales data, you’ll probably find that a lot of people make it to the first step of your sales process, a slightly lower number of people make it to the second step, and so on until the final step, which the least number of people make it to.