Today I want talk to you about launching.
I know that this is something that you’ve tried, and it hasn’t really gone to plan.
Or you’re thinking about trying and you’re just terrified that it’s going to be a total flop, total waste of time and money.
And these are common fears, and it’s really common for these fears to come true when people don’t go about launching the right way.
I don’t like to say right or wrong because there is no right or wrong with businesses, it’s all around what works for you.
But with launching, there definitely is a better way of doing it, and there’s also a couple of things that are common that happen when you launch, and when you launch things multiple times, that a lot of people don’t realise.
You might not realise this is totally normal, until you’ve launched a few times yourself, and it can be quite disconcerting when it’s your first time launching, or even your second and third, and you’re like why does this stuff keep happening to me?
There are three types of first launchers.
And when I say first launchers, I don’t necessarily mean the first time you’ve ever launched anything.
I mean the first time you launch a particular product.
And there’s three really specific different types of launches, and things that happen with each one.
Launch #1: The Boom then Bust Launch
This is for those who might not have launched anything yet.
They’ve been growing an audience for a little bit, they’ve been giving great value, they’re really, really super primed, ready to create something.
And their first launch goes pretty well, and they’re like ‘oh this is awesome, that was easy, I’m going to do that again.’
And then their second launch doesn’t go so well, and even if they haven’t necessarily changed much about it, they don’t really understand why the second launch would be worse than the first.Surely if something worked well the first time, it should work just as well, if not better the second time, right?Click To Tweet
So the thing that happens with these boom launches, when it’s the first time, is most people who have been hanging around, giving value, engaging on the internet for any kind of period of time, normally they’ll have a few super fans.
And these are the people who have just been dying for you to do something, for you to give them some other way of working with you or helping them with that next step.
They are that bit more engaged and looking for more intentional help, not just reading your blog posts, or watching your broadcasts.
These people, the second they saw you were going to do something, they’re like ‘hells yes, I’m 100% in’, they click buy, they were probably your first customers through the gate.
The problem then with your second launch is those people have all bought from your first launch.
So, second launch is pretty much for people in that situation, your second launch is more of an accurate measure of how well the different puzzle pieces of your launch actually performed as a tool for conversion for selling.
When your first launch doesn’t go as well as expected, people start to scramble.
And that’s when people go ‘oh well obviously everything I’ve done is no good, and I’m going to throw it out and start from scratch and do everything completely differently’.
And then they just start trying all sorts of new stuff to try and replicate the success of the first launch.
The problem with that is you’re not being strategic about it.
The fact is that with your launch, if someone’s bought at all, even if it’s less people than bought in your first, that’s great and that means that you have done something quite well.The process of improving your launches in the future, all comes down to taking a little bit of time and going 'okay, well what have we done, or what did I do that worked?'Click To Tweet
You need to look at your numbers, you need to go look at all the emails that you sent, what had the best open rates, and what had the best click through rates?
Look at your sales page and say ‘okay, from the number of people who looked at my sales page, what percentage of people bought?’
If you did a webinar or if you did a challenge, or you used a marketing tool to promote and sell your product during that launch, go ‘okay, how many people were in my challenge, how many people participated? How many people saw the offer that I gave to them, and what percentage did you sell?’.
You should be able to see the bits that worked better, and the bits that didn’t work so well.
And what you want to do then is be deliberate here, go, ‘okay, well, this bit didn’t work so great, so we can play with that bit, do that bit again, but this bit worked pretty well. Those emails worked well, people clicked through, but maybe the sale page didn’t convert very well’, so you go ‘okay, maybe I need to rework the sales page’.
You also need get into the mindset that it might take you a couple of launches to get your marketing tools, or your puzzle pieces right.
And that’s fine, that’s normal.
I’ve spoken to friends and it’s taken them ten launches to get it perfect, where it’s converting really, really well, and then they just do that launch over and over, but tweaking as they go and refreshing slightly, just so it doesn’t get stale, but not trying new things each time.
So, if you’ve had a launch where the first time you did it, you got good sales and the second time not so much.
I strongly encourage you to not completely start from scratch and don’t panic.
Just know that it can and should take several cracks at it.
And the best way to figure out and improve each of those elements is to try and do it in between the launch and send just a little bit of paid traffic to it.
If you’re only launching every three months or every six months, that’s a long time to wait to test out an element you’ve updated.
And it’s also a lot of pressure to put on that new element.
Because you don’t want to spend weeks setting up a launch, spending a whole bunch of money on some Facebook ads or even hiring some help for it.
Then you have these sky high expectations of it doing really well, or you’re a bit screwed. That’s pretty common as well.
Live launches are not the place to test new or updated elements.
If you go through the process of looking at the launch that you just had, and you identify one or two spots where you could make a pretty good improvement.
You want to test it before your launch.
For example, if your webinar sucked, and no-one bought on your webinar, you can go and rewrite your webinar or update it.
Then do the updated webinar live.
Send some Facebook traffic or even just send the invite to a portion of your list, go to that webinar, and then you’re going to be able to test and go week one, did that do any better?
If it did, try a couple of other things and just be really deliberate about it and be okay with it taking a bit of time.
Launch #2: Slow Start Launch
Now, the second type of launch is the slow start launch
This is when you’ve spent all this time, money and effort, and you’ve set up what should be this amazing launch, and you open the gates, and you only get a few sales and it’s really disappointing.
And there’s a voice in your head going ‘maybe I’m no good at this, maybe this product sucks, maybe no-one wants it, maybe I should just throw it all away’.
If that has happened to you, my advice to you is to treat your first launch (as my friend Laurie calls it) as the get it done launch.
The first time you are getting a product out to market, there are two boxes you want to tick.
Get it done
One is that at least a couple of people bought it, which shows people want this.
This could mean that with a slight tweak of your messaging, more people will buy it.
The next purpose of your first launch is to actually get everything done.
The course, the product or the service, you’re creating is done and it’s set up and the delivery of it is done and set up.
And you’re going to get a few people going through it, you’re going to get their feedback, and you’re probably going to go and improve some things, so next time it’s even better.
The third part of it is to get that feedback.
So those people who are going through, ask them what they love about it, what stands out to them and how you could improve.
You want to find out what they saw as being the solution that your product was providing.
Quite often, one of the problems that comes up for people is there’s nothing wrong with the product, it’s just the way that you’re describing it to people.
It’s really important that you’re speaking to them in the language that they use and that you’re speaking to the problem that they think they have.
When you’re marketing or creating your sales page and writing your emails and social media that around a launch, make sure you are using your audience’s language.
That first launch is really market validation, it’s getting the product done, and it’s getting that first feedback.
And that first feedback from people going through is gold.
You can use that for headlines or on sales page copy.
Your customer’s feedback is what should be going into your marketing copy.
So next time you’re going to be using the stuff that already works, you’re going to have tested a whole bunch of new stuff, so you know that works, and you’re going to have a lot more time and energy in this launch anyway because you’re not creating a product, you’re not completely making it up as you go along.
You’ve already done it all from the first launch.So your second launch then has a much better chance of being better and you just follow that process again and again.Click To Tweet
Yes, it can take some time, and it should, because if it was way too easy, then everyone would be doing it, and then they’d be no value to what we’re doing.
Launch #3: No Start Launch
This is the rarest one and the one that people are the most afraid of.
The no start launch is when you release a product and literally nobody buys it.
Firstly, you might just need to change the messaging, change how it’s offered, change what time you offer it or the different ways you offer it.
You want to go and play detective.
Reach out to some people who you saw opened and clicked and read stuff, but they didn’t buy and just say to them “Hey, this is my first time running these products, I want to make sure it’s awesome, and it’s really giving great value. I’d love if you could give me some feedback on what you thought was good about the product, what did you think wasn’t so great. Were there any reasons that stopped you from buying?”
Some people are going to be annoyed by that, but if these are people who are your genuine super fans they’re not going to be upset by this, they’re going to be glad to help you.
Use it as feedback, not as failure.
The next time you go to launch something, I really encourage you to pre-launch it.
Don’t create something until at least a couple of people have bought it, and the beauty of that is, you get to be really open and honest with your audience.
Don’t just get them to say yes, because a yes is easy, you want them to actually vote with their credit cards, say ‘if you would like to get one of the very first spots, to help be one of my beta testers of this brand-new product, it’s going to be great, beta price, it’ll be up and running’.
Tell them when, give them the details, tell them what’s going to be in it, and say ‘and I’d love to get your feedback as well, so we will be co-creating this together, and you can let me know exactly what you need’.
Make them feel a part of it and get a few sales through the door to market validate.
It shows people want this thing that you’re creating and then go and create it.
And follow that same process next time.
Get your feedback, get the people going through it, make those improvements, get the exacts words from them they used as to why they bought your product, what they liked about it, what the problems are they’re hoping to get solved.
Use those in your next round of marketing and be totally okay if things take longer than all of those pretty pictures on Instagram tell you they’ll take because there are some unicorns out there.