No one could’ve predicted the events of 2020! I mean I certainly didn’t foresee being involved in 20 launches in 2020!
But 2020 has indeed been the year of the launch for me. I’ve had 4 launches in my biz alone…which means a whole LOTTA content…
Soooo many lessons learnt, which is why I’m sharing 20 lessons from 20 launches in 2020.
So if you’ve been thinking about launching…read on my friend!
1. If you don’t have an email list…get onto it STAT!
Social media is great…but it’s also noisy AF.
You’re competing with millions of other businesses to get in front of your ideal audience.
Throw in the ever-changing algorithm and the fact that you don’t own your social media channels – meaning *touch wood* if Insta and Facebook go down – you have another way to speak to your peeps.
A direct line straight into their inbox.
2. Create buzz around your launch.
You gotta spend some time building hype and preparing your community for what’s to come.
Drop teasers that something exciting is coming. And while you’re creating that buzz…
3. Build a waitlist.
Don’t let that anticipation fizzle out…make it count! Invite people to sign up to the waitlist to find out first when your new product / service / course launches.
You can further entice them to sign up to the waitlist with an incentive – free download, discount, free add-on etc
Building that waitlist shouldn’t stop when doors close…keep encouraging sign-ups, so when you launch again…you have a warm audience of potential customers ready to buy!
4. Don’t obsess over every single decision.
Look I get it! It feels like a big decision to you…BUT your choice of course platform is NOT the sole reason someone will purchase your course.
Don’t waste time obsessing over things that don’t have a big impact on the success of your launch. Sometimes it’s these little details that can even stop you from launching.
Done is better than perfect. You can always change things later.
Sure you can have a gorgeous looking sales page or a fancy course platform, but if you’re not speaking to your aligned audience – what’s the point? And on that…
5. Know your audience beyond their demographics.
Knowing your audience’s demographics (aka age, marital status, income etc) isn’t going to be that helpful when it comes to launching. The juicy morsels of information you should instead focus on include:
- Understanding where they’re at in their life
- What keeps them up at night?
- What are they struggling with? That you can help them with
- What have they tried before (and it didn’t work)?
You want to really know and understand your audience so you can really hone in on messaging that speaks to their soul. If your messaging isn’t aligned to what your audience really really wants…nothing else matters.
6. Your pre-launch content matters.
You don’t just wake up one day and announce to the world that your new thing exists… Well, you can.
…You might feel a touch disappointed when your offer is met with no DMs, no sales, no clients.
The key to launching is generating interest from the right people, building excitement, and preparing your audience for what’s to come.
In marketing speak, this is called your ‘launch runway’. When you do get this part right, you’ll have those clients tapping ‘buy now’ quicker than Harry Potter chasing after the golden snitch on his Firebolt.
In its simplest form, your launch runway IS the content you consistently create and share ahead of launch day. It’s not just about dropping a single post a day or week before, and hoping you’ll make $10k.
Think of this launch content as your normal content…on steroids. It’s similar to the content you usually create, but the NEXT LEVEL when it comes to connection and intentionality. Every post/email/story makes up a piece of the puzzle.
7. Use different forms of pre-launch content.
Mix it up a little – don’t focus only on social media.
You want maximum impact and eyeballs on your content. This doesn’t mean you have to create forkloads of content – instead work smarter not harder and repurpose your content across multiple channels. This content helps you build your launch runway ready for launch day.
Examples of pre-launch content to consider include:
- Opt in freebie with automated sequence CTA to join waitlist
- Podcast (yours or as a guest)
- Guest masterclasses
- Blog posts
- Launch emails
- YouTube videos
- Facebook / Instagram Live
8. You need to have a plan (soz).
If the thought of a plan leaves you feeling a little ick as you’re more of a “wing it” kinda person…soz but you still need a plan!
You’ll thank me for it later.
There are SO many moving parts to a launch so your brain is going to need a little support. I suggest doing a brain dump of all of the things you need to create, set up and do ahead of your launch. Use a project management system such as Asana, Click Up or Trello so it’s all in the one place.
This pre work and planning will make launching a heap easier. Having a solid plan, especially for your content also removes the fear you might have of showing up and knowing what to say.
9. Set your launch goal.
Set a minimum and a holy fucking Batman goal for your launch. Having launch goals will help you keep going when old mate self doubt shows up (and it will!)
10. Share your excitement with your audience.
Get excited! When you show up and share your product / service / program from a place of excitement, your energy will be felt by your audience.
They’ll want to share the experience with you – so invite them along for the ride with you! If you’re not excited about what you’re launching…why would anyone else be?
11. Everyone buys differently – cater for them.
News Flash – just because YOU purchase a certain way…doesn’t mean your audience will too. Don’t assume everyone is like you…knows what you know…wants what you want.
Sure it’d be awesome for you if every single person was a “buy now” kinda person…but the reality is that everyone makes purchase decisions differently and based on a number of factors (that are always changing)!
This means when you’re launching you need to cover your bases and cater for different types of decision-makers.
How can you create incentives for fast action takers and create urgency for more considered buyers?
Whatever the reason that stops you from showing up and sharing with your community…remember that no one benefits from you hiding yourself and your offer because you’re scared of showing up, of being judged or [insert your other excuses here].
12. You have to show up and promote your offer.
Yes, even on stories!
I know, I KNOW!
You’re worried you’ll make a mistake… Or you won’t know what to say… Or you’ll look silly
But here’s the thing – it’s not about you…it’s about them (your people). You’re in biz to solve a problem that your community has. They need what you’ve got to offer.
You can’t expect to sit on your couch and say nothing and “hey presto” your launch is a sold out success.
STOP being selfish and instead try to show up from a place of serving – of wanting to help your community. Take the pressure off, have some fun – you might even be surprised how much you enjoy it!
13. Focus on the key messages.
When it comes to creating your launch content, pick a handful of key messages to focus on across your launch. Don’t overcomplicate it or try to speak to every single pain point and feature you can think of… Instead choose those juicy pieces that speak to the soul of your audience.
Ask yourself…”What do they need to know right now to help them make this decision?” What is their most prominent struggle right now and what transformation can expect when they work with you?
You should be using the same messaging across all your launch content platforms.
Repurpose this messaging across your launch emails, social media posts, FB advertising, IG stories etc to really deepen the impact of these key messages.
14. You have to speak about it more than once.
Shocker I know…but nobody will know about what you’re launching unless you tell them about it…and do it more than once.
Of course it would be amazing if you mentioned your new thing once and you were inundated with orders and sign ups that you didn’t need to continue to talk about it…but this won’t happen on your first launch.
Now I’m sure you’ve seen the whole “sold out my program with one email” kinda messaging doing the rounds on social media…but don’t be fooled – there is A LOT of behind the scenes prep work that goes on prior to this kinda success!
The reality is that consumers need to hear and see a marketing message many MANY times before they make a purchase decision. Considering the sheer amount of content and the competition to get it seen on social media – this number will always be increasing.
So get comfortable talking about your program, service or product. You will get sick of talking about it…but remember NO ONE sees every single thing you post (unless they’re your Mum…or your stalker) – so keep shouting it from the rooftops!
15. Even when you think no one is watching – think again!
When you launch, the open rates of your emails will decrease…
You’ll get less likes and comments on your social media posts…
Your IG story views will drop…
And you’ll start thinking you should just stop because no one is even listening or watching what you’re doing…
Before you throw in the towel I want you to remember that there is always someone watching…
Someone paying attention…
Someone hanging off every word you’re saying…
So keep going because you never know which email, post or story is going to lead to them hitting that buy now button.
16. Human touch matters.
It’s so important to keep the human touch in your launch.
Whether it’s voice notes, personalising your launch emails, or responding to every DM and comment on your social media – it’s those little touches that help the people in your community feel like they’re more than just a $$ to you.
They’re not just a number on your follower or email list – they’re real people with dreams, desires and dogs – don’t forget that!
17. Be Consistent.
CONSISTENCY is KEY!
I don’t know how many times I’ve said this…but I’m not going to stop!
Consistency builds real trust – aka it’s a key part of the old marketing chestnut “know, like and trust”. When people TRUST you, it puts them in the best position to buy from you. You can’t expect to just show up and post once and people will start throwing money at you. This is exactly why your pre-launch content matters just as much as your content when your launch officially begins.
Show up consistently, create valuable content consistently, have a consistent message, engage consistently and you will consistently have people who want to buy what you’re selling.
18. Follow Up.
While it’s easy to hit publish on your launch content and wait for people to come to you with questions…be proactive!
Life gets busy…
Things come up…
People aren’t thinking about your launch 24/7 like you are…
Pay attention to the people paying attention – those:
- On your waitlist
- Who attended (and participated in) your launch trigger
- Who click through to the sales page
- Watching your IG stories
Sometimes you need to be the one to make the first move. You can totally reach out to the people who are engaging with your content and see if they have any questions – just like the shop assistants who ask you if you need any help finding something.
These conversations can give you clarity and insight into if your messaging is hitting home with your people…
AND help you to alleviate any reservations that person might’ve had about signing up.
You’ve created this product / course / service to help your people – so go straight to the source for all the insight you need.
19. Prepare for the rollercoaster.
Buckle up! Your launch is guaranteed to be a rollercoaster ride of emotions.
People will buy on the first day of your launch, and they will buy on the last day of your launch. In between it’s likely there will be crickets.
And a lot of the time you’ll be waiting around for your next sale which can feel like f-o-r-e-v-e-r!
Old mate self doubt will come for a visit (or two) and you’ll be tempted to burn it all to the ground or to call the whole thing off. But before you do, there’s two things I recommend scheduling into your launch plan:
- Plan a little time out in the middle of your launch. Right around the time when the mid-launch wobble is scheduled to arrive. This is for you to switch off from launch mode and do something for YOU. Treat yourself to a manicure, pedicure, massage, float, lunch at a cafe…whatever brings you joy and gives you a break.
- Ask your biz bestie if they can call you mid-launch for a bit of a pep-talk. To remind you why you’re putting yourself through this launch and why you’re going to nail it.
Be kind to yourself.
20. Promoting doesn’t stop when doors close.
So you’ve closed the cart on your launch…
BUT before you close everything down and switch your focus…
STOP, WAIT A MINUTE!
If you’re planning to do another launch of your program / service / product, then promoting doesn’t stop when doors close.
In fact, you should be continuing to build your waitlist in between launches to help future launches.
It’s likely there were people who were really close to purchasing during your launch…but for whatever reason they didn’t this time. So it’s in your best interests to share social proof (testimonials, people using your product etc) every chance you get. Some people won’t buy until they see others using / participating / joining.
It’s not about launching once and then forgetting them until you launch again. Focus your energy on engaging with and getting to know your community on an even deeper level.
By doing this, you’ll make future launches easier as you’ll have spent time nurturing those relationships so it’ll be an easy purchase decision for them next time.
Bonus Tip. REST
Launches can be draining AF. You need to allow yourself the chance to rest and replenish your energy.
The first time I launched the School of Content Wizardry, I closed the cart on Friday and started running the program the following Monday. It’s safe to say I was EXHAUSTED!
So when I launched the second time around I scheduled a week in between cart close and the program beginning.
You’re not a machine…it’s ok to rest!
And there you have it – 20 lessons from 20 launches in 2020! I’ve learnt something from each and every launch I’ve been part of, so I’ve hope you’ve found these tips helpful. If you’re planning on launching soon, but you just don’t know where to start – My 1:1 Content Wizard Series is the perfect container to prepare for your launch.
I’ll share all the spells and insights I’ve gained from those 5-figure launches and together we’ll map out your own unique launch runway so you’re ready to cast your spell and launch in 2021.