The word “launch” brings up all sorts of different emotions: fear, anxiety, excitement. Your reaction will probably vary depending on whether you’ve run a launch before, what your results were, and what your energy levels are. A launch that feels fun rather than stressful or terrifying might seem out of reach, but there are things you can do to not only bring it within grasp, but truly feel like you’re launching like a boss.
If we’re being straight with you (which we strive to be), we used to hate launching, to the point where we declared ourselves to be a launch-free business at one point. We had gotten so worn down that we forgot that there were parts of launching that we actually genuinely enjoyed.
It took some trial and error, but we eventually learned that launch-induced stress and overwhelm didn’t have to be our reality—and it doesn’t have to be yours either.
We’re diving into the vault to share a still-relevant podcast episode about how you can gain confidence in your abilities as a business owner and launch like the boss you are.
Catch the replay below as we jam about:
The biggest mistakes you can make during a launch and how to avoid them.
How to actually enjoy the process of launching (Yes, it’s possible!)
How to make sure your message is crystal clear throughout your launch, from your copy to how you show up in livestreams.
Click the image below to watch the episode:
No time to watch it all? Here’s the skinny:
00:00–2:35: Welcome and Introduction!
2:35–8:35: Common mistakes in launches
8:35–15:00: How to enjoy your next launch
15:00–25:00: Our Leader Up! launch breakdown
25:00–29:30: How to make sure your message is crystal clear
29:30–37:50: What is your audience’s journey?
37:50–39:47: Wrap up and Leader Up Community!
NOTE: The last segment of the episode talks about a program we’re no longer running, so feel free to skip 37:50 to the end!
Common mistakes in launches (2:35):
There can be a lot of different moving pieces to a launch, and any one of them can add stress to your pile. That’s why we’re highlighting a few common mistakes you can easily avoid when you get ready for your next launch.
Mistake #1: Not enough lead time
Some launches have a lot of moving pieces. Depending on how elaborate you want to get, you’ll have to wrangle copywriting for a sales page, email sequence, social media posts, and training materials.
Not to mention design work and tech details, like hooking up your purchasing options and making sure each component of the launch works correctly.
Every launch is different, but each one is guaranteed to require at least a small amount of set-up time.
Which leads to mistake #1: Not giving yourself enough lead time.
This isn’t just the first mistake, it’s also the most prevalent. Launching takes time. It takes preparation. So, as a rule of thumb, give yourself a minimum of six weeks to plan.
This is especially true if it’s your first launch. Once you have the system figured out, you may be able to throw together a launch quickly, but often that’s not the case. And if you’re working with a team, it’s even more important that you give them time to create the materials and put everything in place.
Even if you have all your ducks in a row, ask yourself this: Do you have the leads? Have you given yourself enough time to get the leads? Do you even know how many leads you need?
If the answer is no (or a big question mark), you may want to visit them in-depth before you set a launch date. Doing this reflection is an important part of learning how to launch with confidence.
Mistake #2: Failing to manage expectations
I don’t want to poo-poo on being spontaneous too much—after all, it works like a charm for some people! A warm or hot audience of raving fans may respond well to a spontaneous launch, but don’t expect too much from cold traffic (especially at a higher price point).
At the end of the day, it’s all about managing your expectations. If you’ve never launched before, have no list, don’t want to invest in ads, haven’t tested your sales journey, and are testing a brand new offer, you’re probably not going to be making a million dollars off your launch.
Does that mean you need to launch a ton, build a huge list, put a ton of money into ads, and create the perfect sales journey to have a successful launch? No. But the more time and energy you put into knowing your numbers, understanding your audience, and learning from past efforts, the better you’ll be able to predict your success and launch like a boss.
Mistake #3: Losing touch with your audience
Remember those leads questions up above? Let’s revisit those.
When you’re launching, it’s to offer a service or a product to an audience. Not just any audience—your audience. Which means you should probably know who your audience is, where they hang out, if they’ve evolved over time, and how you’re going to connect with them.
If you don’t have this worked out from the get-go, you risk spending a lot of time (and money) spinning your wheels.
Avoid these mistakes and learn how to launch with confidence by paying attention to…
To avoid each of these mistakes, pay attention to how complex you’re making your launch, where your audience members are coming from, and your general energy levels.
And remember, there can be too much of a good thing. You may give yourself more lead time and find you’ve actually given yourself too much and it’s exhausting. Be flexible and willing to adjust. You’ll find your sweet spot eventually!
How to enjoy your next launch (8:35):
Caveat: What has worked for us won’t necessarily work for you. There is no gangbusters 110% formula that’s the silver bullet to successful launches. It doesn’t exist. Each business is unique and each business owner has their own preferences.
So with that out of the way, the structure that works for us has always been offering a free challenge that leads into the launch itself. This method has helped us build our list, launch group programs, and stay in touch with our audience. And, most importantly, we love running them. They’re fun!
While a challenge might not be right for you (maybe you’re more of a webinar person), there are a few things you can do to keep your cool during what could become a stressful launch:
1. Be willing to experiment from launch to launch
While it’s a good idea to remain consistent within a single launch, don’t be afraid to experiment between launches and find what works for you. Maybe you tried a challenge and found it exhausting. Give a webinar a try. Maybe you’ve had your eye on virtual summits. Maybe you want to do a video series. It doesn’t matter: Just be willing to play around and try different things to figure out how to launch in a way that makes sense for you. You may land on something you never realized you’d love.
2. Lean in to the FUN!
I know. Some of you are looking at us putting “launch” and “fun” in the same sentence like we’ve been out in the sun too long. But it is possible to have a fun launch if you set the intention from the get-go. We’ve done this in a few ways: We celebrate small victories, make sure our entire business doesn’t ride on the success of a single launch, practice self-care during downtime, and more.
Make it fun. Celebrate stupid stuff. Don’t take yourself so seriously.
3. Look back on your past work
You don’t need to reinvent the wheel every launch. Look back on past launch content and see if there’s anything you can repurpose and reuse. It definitely takes the load off. And don’t worry about sounding like a broken record. These days, you have to if you want to be heard.
Need a reliable way to keep track of your launch content? Our free content inventory spreadsheet is a great resource to get you started!
4. Crunch some numbers, yo
When I majored in English, I thought I was done with math for good. Ha. That one blew up in my face. Luckily, I surprised myself by finding I actually enjoy crunching numbers… when they’re tied to our launches. It’s real data, living in the real world (not some abstract word problem), with real implications.
If you’re not looking at your numbers, it’s easy to set unrealistic expectations for yourself and your launch. Know your conversion rate, know your ad spend (if you’re running ads), and know how many leads you need in the door to get the number of buyers you want. Having a complete understanding of the details of your launch can help you increase your confidence and feel like you’re launching like the boss you are.
Leader Up! launch breakdown (15:00):
At the end of the day, it’s not about the mechanism. It’s about the customer experience and clear messaging. That’s what sells.
At the time of recording, one of the most successful launches we had was our Leader Up! launch. Here’s why:
We practiced a healthy amount of detachment.
Yes, we had goals. But our business wasn’t hanging on them. So, when we hit our goal, it was a great celebration (but if we hadn’t, it wouldn’t have wrecked us).
We’ve run 3-day, 5-day, and 7-day challenges, and in our experience shorter is better. You guys are busy and so are we. You want quick, actionable takeaways, and that’s what we want to give you. By limiting the free challenge to 3 days, we were able to deliver without overwhelming.
Shorter Open Cart Period.
We kept the cart open for 7 days (down from 2–3 weeks in some past launches). It was great knowing that we weren’t hanging on an open cart forever.
We supported one another.
Okay, we have an advantage (sort of) in that there are two of us. We both committed to showing up and held one another accountable. But even if you’re riding solo, you can do this. Reach out to a biz bestie or your team (if you have one) and let them know that you’re getting ready to launch and could use some support.
We worked on our mindset.
Mindset is a mindf*ck. It really is. But it’s so freaking important. During this launch we spent a lot of time making sure we were in the right frame of mind throughout. This meant lots of tiny celebrations throughout, so we didn’t feel like everything depended on cart close.
How to make your message crystal clear during a launch (25:00):
Alright, time for our favorite topic. You guessed it—messaging! Being North Star Messaging + Strategy, you won’t be surprised to hear us say that messaging is the most important part of any launch (or anything, really). Without a clear message your audience won’t know what they’re being offered, why they want it, or how it will help them.
Which means they won’t buy.
Which is not so good for you.
So, here’s how to launch with crystal clear messaging so your audience knows exactly why they should work with you:
1. Know who your launch is for
Is it for your entire audience, or just a segment? Is it for a new audience that you’re building (and if so, what do they look like?). Who are your target audience members and where do they hang out? What are they frustrated by that you can help them with?
All of these questions will get you on the right track. To have a clear message you have to know who you’re talking to. After all, the function of a message is to connect your business with your audience’s needs. How can you do that if you don’t know what they’re looking for?
3. Know how to prepare your audience
If you’re working backward, you’ll eventually get to where your audience is now. Your starting point. The trick is to provide them with a little bit of content that will help them take the first steps toward resolution. You don’t want to give them too much (hello, overwhelm), but you don’t want to skimp either.
If you know your person and you know how you’ll help them, think about what the journey will look like. Are you drawing a half map or are you totally clear?
For example, for Launch Up! we hosted the Evolved Entrepreneur Challenge, where we helped participants do an audit of their content and figure out where it wasn’t reflecting how they’d grown as business owners.
By the end of the challenge they had an idea of what to update, what to delete, and what to create. But we didn’t throw them into the creating stage. That’s what our services are for.
By offering something you know they need in the free content, which naturally leads to the paid content, your audience is able to experience how you can help them. Ultimately, you build a bridge between your offer and your audience.
4. Don’t mince words
Don’t be cute. Don’t be coy. You can help your audience and you know it—so tell them. When you beat around the bush, you cost yourself valuable sales (and your audience valuable help). Now, that doesn’t mean you need to sound like a used car salesman. You can lead with integrity and honesty and ask for the sale.
Be clear. Be confident. You’ve got this. You’re a boss, so launch like one!
What is your audience journey (29:30):
Let’s quickly revisit the whole audience thing. I mentioned above that it’s important to know who your audience is. But that doesn’t mean you need to be totally responsible for them.
Don’t attach yourself to your audience’s decisions. They’ll buy or they won’t. You can lead them to water with epic content, amazing offers, and compassion for their pains… but at the end of the day, they need to do the drinkin’. True leaders don’t force themselves upon others.
Empathy is your friend. At the end of the day, someone in your audience may not buy this go-around… and that’s okay. They might buy next time. They might refer someone to you. They might just appreciate you. When you run a launch with compassion and integrity, there’s room for all of this and the people who commit with their wallets.
Launch Like a Boss with a Launch Strategy Intensive
Set yourself up for success with your next launch with our Launch Strategy Intensive. You’ll have the chance to sit down with an expert who can examine your plan step-by-step and offer personalized recommendations for how to optimize it so you can launch with confidence—and maybe even enjoy the process!