In today’s episode, I’m going to share with you my launch mistakes and what I do differently now.
If you’ve ever wanted to know what I mess up (remember: I make mistakes so that you don’t have to!), this is going to be a particularly helpful episode for you.
Let’s dive in!
I definitely make a lot of launch mistakes.
My goal as an online business owner is not to avoid mistakes altogether. It’s to make my mistakes quickly and make them once.
I make lots and lots of mistakes in launching, make them once (if possible), and then move forward and learn the lessons so that I can get my launches working more effectively each time around.
Here are the top five launch mistakes I’ve made, and what I do differently now…
Mistake 1: Jumping from launch to launch to launch
Sometimes even with overlap between different launches!
This has been the fast track to burnout, stress and launches not converting particularly effectively for me.
I’ve had to relearn this one over and over again.
I make far too many products. I find myself going through a cycle of having lots and lots of products, refining down to the core ones, and then creating lots and lots of products again.
I’ve learned to embrace that cycle for myself over time. But I also know that if I overlap my launches, my conversion rate of each launch suffers.
That’s because the most powerful and important time in a launch is the last week of the launch.
If I’m already thinking about the next launch, then chances are that I’ve actually checked out of the previous launch and I’ve missed the most critical time of that launch to get those conversions coming in.
Mistake 1: What I do now…
Not only does each launch get its own time and energy and focus, but I also put a bit of space in between my launches.
Rather than jumping from one launch to the next to the next, I make sure I’ve got a good three to four weeks in between each launch.
This time is spent focusing on:
- Nurturing my audience
- Recentering myself
- Finishing off what I just launched
- Reviewing my previous launch and looking at the numbers
- Starting to ramp up to the next launch
I must admit, in early 2021 when I was preparing to go away for an extended period of time, I squeezed my launches together. Then again in early 2022 when I was trying to rebuild my business after eight months away, I squeezed my launches together.
It was another lesson in making sure I had space, because those first few launches did not do very well. I can see now upon reflection it was because I tried to squeeze them together too close and I had a little bit of overlap again.
I wasn’t completing the launches, and I wasn’t seeing them through effectively.
Lesson learned again… spread them back out.
Mistake 2: Doing it all on the fly
This is what I did for my first 12–15 launches.
I didn’t pre-write emails in advance. I didn’t even have a plan of what the second webinar was going to be when I ran the first webinar.
Some of that was actually fortunate because I was able to learn and adapt as I went. But it also meant that I missed a lot of opportunities.
I would get to the last few days of my launch and realise I hadn’t tried certain things or covered certain messages, and I then needed to jam a bunch of content and information into the last few days.
That meant that the last few days of the launch were really stressful instead of exciting and amazing. I would end up extending the cart close because I wanted to make sure I got a few things in.
Then my cart close dates started to feel like they were flexible and not boundaried.
It became so uncertain whether it was the real cart close or not. I think that energetically I put that out to the universe because I’d then get a bunch of people reaching out asking to join after the cart had already closed.
I definitely don’t recommend doing it all on the fly.
Mistake 2: What I do now…
I prepare a lot of my launches in advance.
Right now, I know right what I’m launching in three months’ time, and in six months’ time.
Most of that launch preparation is done in advance.
Having that done in advance – systemised and filed really effectively – also means that I’m not reinventing the wheel every time I re-launch. I’m not starting from scratch with launch preparation.
When I’m launching the Take Off program, 75% of that launch is already done before we even start, because there is so much stuff from previous launches that we can continue to use.
The more I can prepare before launches, the more I can be present in those launches, the better my conversion rates are in those launches, and the more people I get into the lead magnets for those launches.
Doing it all on the fly has definitely been one of the big launch mistakes I’ve made. Something that this has particularly impacted is my Facebook ads…
Mistake 3: Sporadic ad strategy
- Think about my ad strategy in advance
- Warm up my audience with ads in advance
- Have a plan or framework set up to be able to use ads to the best of their ability
One of the big things I use ads for these days in launches is retargeting. But you need to have your Facebook pixel set up correctly on your website, you need to make sure you’re collecting warm audiences, and you need to do a lot of connecting Facebook to other platforms or other parts of your launch process.
Rather than just boosting a good post from a webinar, I want to make sure I have ads that get people to content before the webinar, which makes the webinar look even more appealing and enticing to them.
I want ads to remind people about the webinar, so we’re improving and increasing live attendance rates and people watching the replay.
Something in particular that I didn’t use was conversion ads. I really didn’t use conversion ads for my launches all the way up until 2020, maybe even 2021.
I mostly used my ads to just get people into the launch. They relied on organic reach on social media and my emails to get the conversion done.
Mistake 3: What I do now…
When I use conversion ads in my launches now, I’m seeing far more visits to the sales page, and a far higher percentage of my leads for that launch engaging in the upsell.
I definitely still have a lot of work to do when it comes to nailing my Facebook ad strategy. But I couldn’t even get close to nailing that strategy by just using those sporadic ads during my launches.
When it comes to launching, I recommend going organic for the first couple of launches, then using some sporadic ads to improve signups to your lead magnets, and then having a plan on how you’re going to progress into a more consistent and more strategic ad strategy.
For me, that means hiring an ads manager. The last thing I want to be doing during my launch is focusing on running Facebook ads and checking numbers. That is robbing me of important time during my launch to connect and be present with my audience.
This brings me to the fourth of my launch mistakes…
Mistake 4: Not being present
Specifically, leaving the conversion part of my launch to emails, social media posts, and the sales page.
The highest conversion action I can do in a launch is to be present with my audience.
If I’m managing ads, scheduling social media posts, writing emails and reviewing my sales page during a launch, I am not going to be as present with my audience.
High connection equals high conversion.
That still stands when it comes to launches.
Mistake 4: What I do now…
Now I’m ultra present during my launches.
In particular, I’m present with my audience by:
- Being live on social media
- Being very responsive to questions and comments in the DMs and on my social posts
- Responding to email queries and people wanting to ask clarifying questions during the launch process
I’m hyper-present on the last couple of days of my launch, to make sure that people know I’m there and able to answer their questions and I can talk about the big value proposition of the launch live as much as possible.
This is why I don’t run my own Facebook ads. I have a Facebook Ads Manager.
I’ve worked my way up to that stage of Facebook ads strategy. I can now invest in that Facebook ads strategy because I know it’s going to convert. Whether it converts this launch or the next launch.
That’s the fourth of my launch mistakes… leaving the conversion all to pre-recorded, pre-written and pre-done parts of my launch.
I know now that the most important impact on my conversion rate in my launch is my presence.
Mistake 5: Waiting until the launch
I definitely made this mistake very recently, and continue to make this mistake over and over again.
The more I launch, the better I get at it. But I will often wait until the launch has begun before I start talking about the value of the program.
It means that if my audience is jumping into that launch and they come to the webinar without having ever heard me talk about that program, they are far less likely to convert.
If they’ve already heard of it, they’ve already seen a few success stories from it and they’ve already heard me talk about what it’s like inside that program, they’re far more likely to convert.
Mistake 5: What I do now…
I talk about my programs fairly consistently throughout my podcasts, emails, and social media content, even if I’m not launching them.
You’ll hear me mention the Take Off program when I’m talking about startup, you’ll hear me talking about Leverage and Launch when I’m talking about launching courses and programs, and you’ll hear me talk about the Accelerator when I’m talking about some of those bigger, more scaling parts of having an online business.
I know that people having familiarity with my programs before they dive into the launch improves the chances that they will actually buy that thing during the launch itself.
I ramp up early, I talk about my programs consistently all the time, and if at the particular time that I’m talking about that program, someone clicks over and it’s not available for them to purchase, I make sure there’s a waitlist or instruction for them to let me know that they’re interested in that program when the doors reopen.
Most of my programs don’t have a cart open and cart close very consistently. It’s pretty much available all of the time to join and just get started straight away, but there are times when I do close the doors to Take Off or Leverage and Launch.
If that’s the case, I just change the sales page over to getting people onto a waitlist so I can let them know when it is available for them to purchase again.
Those are my five top launch mistakes and what I do differently now.
I’d love to help you with launching your group program – whether it be a membership, course or a VIP group.
Make sure you come and check out the Leverage and Launch program (wink wink) to see how I may be able to support you to get your course or membership off the ground, create it and get it launched to a hungry audience.
As always, if you have any questions about the launch mistakes I’ve made or anything else, feel free to slide into my DMs on Facebook or Instagram.
Thank you so much for joining me for this episode of the Heart-Centred Business Podcast.
Until next time, I cannot WAIT to see you SHINE.