Well, you guys know this by now—I’m an open book 😉 which is why I’m walking you through my ~biggest~ launch ever, teardown style. Here’s the catch: this wasn’t a “3rd times a charm” launch…it was EIGHTH times a charm launch… Aaand spoiler alert—I still made a chunk of mistakes. 😬😬
If you’re going into a launch period or a promo campaign as a small business owner, then hear my heart on this—I want to do everything I can to help equip YOU to keep getting out there and bringing truth into a really broken world.
What Went Right This Launch:
1. Playing the long game.
There’s a Ray Kroc quote that I love. Essentially he says, “Yeah, this was overnight. But 30 years was a really long night.”
So, case study time: this was the live launch of my signature offer Copywriting for Creatives, which is the done-with-you version of the brand messaging and website copywriting service the agency side of my business offers. It’s one of 3 courses I have, in addition to The Copy Bar template shop & agency side of my business.
This👏🏻is👏🏻not👏🏻the first time I’ve offered CfC. It’s not the 3rd. It’s not the 5th. Or even the 6th or the 7th. It’s the EIGHTH. The eighth. It’s taken almost 5years of launching it & 1,000 students to get here. I wanted to start off with this one because I have worked on launches for my clients and sometimes it’s so hard to see their numbers and then come back and sit at my desk and be like, “You know what? What I’m working on looks nothing like that.” That is okay.
Like you’ve heard me say before: her calling is not your calling. My friend, play the long game. Focus on making a ~really~ good product or service, get dang good at that offer
Teardown takeaway tip: Don’t get sloppy or careless about your offers. If you’ve built something you believe in and you’re seeing steady results, the market wants it, keep at it.
Don’t give up, friend. Keep going.
2. Talking to people constantly.
All my boundaries went out. the. window. I had my phone with me on the couch, in bed, at dinner. I was constantly talking to people during the 8 days that the cart was open for this launch.
I would be talking to potential customers or new customers and students and a lot of times they would say this is a great feature that you guys have, a cool customer service thing. Is this really Ashlyn? And I would send a picture of myself and say, “Yeah, it’s really me. It’s just me over here.”
One more little tip with this—after you’ve consistently stuck with something and you have a body of work that you can showcase—one of my *favorite* things to do is when somebody comes to me asking, are they a fit for this offer, I can point them to somebody who is just like them, who went through this and you can let their work and their testimonial help them decide if it’s a good fit or not.
Tear down takeaway tip: Get in the trenches and talk to your people. Don’t be above it—get in the weeds and actually start talking back and forth to your clients and your customers. Thank them. Help them get what they want, whether it’s with you or not. I always feel like it’s like that Miracle on 34th Street quote where he says, “If we don’t have it, we’ll point to somebody that does.” That’s the attitude that I want you to have here.
3. The numbers.
So, I knew that my goal here was to have 169 students (the product’s $897…you can do the math on that). That’s what I needed to hit in order for me to cover my launch costs—paying my team, my contractors, covering our ad costs, and then covering any redevelopment costs. Also, I always set aside about a 1/3 to go into taxes, and then with the rest I’m pulling out and giving, but I’m also reinvesting back into the business.
If you’re not quite sure how to calculate the numbers on a launch, which I get, it’s a lot of math, then click here to download my prime to launch playbook. I give a calculator in there that you can use!
Let me boil this down and say: I knew that I needed 5,400 people to land on my sales page or see the offer, knowing that I typically convert at about a 3% rate.
Yep, 3% is the going rate for a good launch. I actuallyyyy ended up converting at 5%, which I NEVER in my wildest dreams expected. But like I said, I’ve never hit anything near that before. I think it’s just over and over again, putting something out there.
Tear down takeaway tip: Question all your numbers. Like I said, 3% is a going rate for good. That means 3% of everybody who sees that offer will typically buy during a launch. I don’t know if that’s lower than you think or higher than you think, but I bring this up because I want you to always question your numbers.
Why are your expectations a certain thing and are those expectations based on actual truth and data or are they based on emotion?
4: AD messaging.
I adjusted all of our ad messaging to be more aware of what’s going on right now. Which for me, I was launching during the coronavirus pandemic (I talk more about ad copy and messaging and how to do that here).
Takeaway tip: I absolutely learned that I need to go in and readjust my AD copy for what’s going on in the world at any given time.
I love it when I hear someone say, “Webinars don’t work anymore.” Because I want to say, “Yes, they do work. They don’t work if they suck.” And ya girl has got no problem soaking up some free education on a free webinar. 🙋
Yes, my numbers, my client’s numbers, would show that people do still sign up for webinars and they’ll sign up in droves for them. BUT you have got to make that webinar worth it.
My personal belief is you need to be comfortable with giving away your tips and your tricks and your strategies and *maybe* getting nothing for it.
A few other webinar-y things here:
- I changed the hook and the title. When I started doing copywriting in the creative space, no one knew what “copywriting” was. So, I used “website words” as the webinar’s title. This year I changed it because there is a market sophistication and people know what copy is now.
- I also went for it and showed my face on webinars, which I don’t usually do because it felt awkward looking at my notes and also talking to people.
Now, back to number crunching…
As a copywriter, if I can’t get 30% of the people that have registered to show up, then I don’t think I’ve done my job in the onboarding sequence. This launch, I actually hit 40% show up rate on one webinar. I’ve ~never~ hit that high before. Always adjust your expectations and think about exactly how many people will be coming to this.
Takeaway tip: I want you to consider webinars if you haven’t before and really make them worth it. The second tip here is to understand that some people just don’t like webinars and that’s okay. They may be too busy or they would rather see your offers. So, make sure that you have some way to tell people who never sign up for the webinar about the offer. They may want it, they just didn’t want to come to your webinar.
6. The Sales Page.
I could talk about sales pages all day long— I looooove them.
I used my sweet 16 sales page template (you can find it in my shop here), I use it all the time in my business and that’s what I used to layout my long-form sales page.
The more I’ve put out this offer, I don’t scratch the sales page every single time and start from the bottom. I want you to think about this when it comes to any copy you’re writing in your business.
There’s a lot of that data that we actually need to look at to see what worked and what didn’t. I adjusted this sales page based on what worked and what didn’t work in the past. Like I said, eight times, baby. 💪💪
Teardown tip: Be a persistent tester. The constant grind of always having to rework your offer can be so exhausting. Make sure that you’re starting to measure what works and what doesn’t. Be inventive, be curious, and put your page in front of people that would be a dream and ask them what they think about it. Listen to what stands out to them and what don’t they really understand.
I prayed a lot. Sorry if this is woo, I’m pretty upfront about my faith and what I believe. I prayed a lot about this launch. Pretty common in the entrepreneurial space to hear people talk about visioning exercises or meditation exercises. For me, I know at the end of the day all this planning should work, only if God allows it.
Some examples of the things I pray for:
- I pray specifically over numbers. Again, it comes back to knowing my numbers and what I actually need to make and need to hit to keep the lights on in my business.
- I pray specifically for anybody that’s going to be showing up to the webinar, that they would walk away knowing something that they didn’t know whether they buy or not.
- I also pray for people that are coming into the offer, that we would get the right people in and none of the people that are not a great fit for it.
- I pray that the gospel is heard in what I do.
- I also pray against any sinful pride or materialism that can come in in a launch. You’re just seeing a lot of numbers and I just want to protect my brain against any of that and stay focused on the task at hand.
No matter what you believe, there are so many outside circumstances and things that can happen in the world that can derail or shift things and I just want you to be aware of that.
What Failed This Launch:
1. Following up with people who were a good fit
I definitely recommend having a waitlist, but sometimes we had people fill out the HoneyBook application to work with me and my team for one-on-one work and either their budget was a little lower or what would suit them best in business is going through this program. I don’t have a good system for going back and saying, “Hey, heads up. That thing I told you about is actually available now.” that’s a big miss on my end. I’ve got to figure that out at some point.
2. I feel like I’m going to be sick before the first webinar of any of them that I do
Inside Primed to Launch, I call it your hype piece, but I’m talking here about your challenge, your webinar, your video series, whatever you’re doing to get people excited and tell them that you’ve got something new available for them.
Here’s the thing. I don’t think I could ever practice enough, but I probably just need to practice a lot more. Historically you’re going to have most people sign up for the first webinar. Therefore, the most people attend—that’s also the same one that you’re figuring out all your tech, hiccups, and you’re making sure you know what to say when…it’s like a perfect storm.
I guess I need to keep practicing. Part of me,. like I said, feels like I can’t practice enough.
3. Disabling the chat
We did not show the chat on the webinars. So many people asked if this it was live and I wanted to say: “Yes, it’s absolutely live!” —that could have been alleviated if we showed the chat. Typically we have not shown the chat because there are hundreds of people in there and it flies so fast that it’s pretty distracting. But to be honest, it may show some great energy. I’m going to try it next time.
4. I did not have an affiliate program in place or a military discount
I said before how much I believe in affiliate programs. I’ve got a lot of students inside this program that also wish we had an affiliate program and I wish we did too.
However, at this point with everything going on in the world, I didn’t think it was the time for it. So, we didn’t offer that this time, but I would love to in the future.
5. Didn’t note every person
In 2017, I put a sticky note on the wall in my office for every single person that I wanted to come into my program. I ~loved~ it because I could write down their name each time we had someone join and become a part of it. I want to go back to doing this because it just makes it real. It boils it down to putting names to faces and I want to do that again.
If you’re going into promotion and/or launch period, I hope this helps you! As always, drop a comment if there’s something specific I can help you with! You’re doing GREAT, friend.
Are you still looking for a few more launch mindset shifts (Lordy knows I sure do!) ?? Make sure you watch this video where I tell you a few other things that I’ve learned when it comes to your mindset as you enter a promo period.
P.S.—don’t forget to click here or below to grab your free launch checklist!
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