Top 5 Launch Lessons of 2017/18

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No matter how successful a product, service, or program launch, there are plenty of lessons to be learned. Launches are a vehicle for upleveling your entire business, as well as yourself!

Here are my top 5 lessons from our last four launches:

#1. Prepare ahead so you can be in the flow and have fun.

Because I know I can pull off anything in a pinch, I used to work on my webinars and slide shows up until the last minute, under a cloud of tension. But NO MORE!

Now I map out my launches about a year in advance. But I don’t actively work on them until a few months ahead. That gives me lots of brainstorming time before I actually get into action.

My last launch was totally stress free because almost everything was complete two to four weeks ahead. That meant I could be totally present in the moment during the launch. And it was a blast.

You can’t attract clients if you’re a hot mess of stress.

#2. Invest in support so you can generate more income.

I used to focus on how much money was going out, instead of the return on investment down the road. I tried to do a lot by myself or not invest in marketing support that would assist me in attracting new clients… because I was a penny pincher. I didn’t trust that what I was offering would make clients come running.

Now, even when it’s a bit scary, I invest in tools that I know will make us more visible to potential 5-Star Clients… like running Facebook ads, professionally shot and edited videos, and giving my team members bonuses for their time and energy.

And for goodness’ sake, hire someone who knows the behind-the-scenes technology if you don’t! You can spend hours trying to figure something out that they can do in 20 minutes.

Not all investments have immediate R.O.I… but they always do in the long term.

#3. Try new strategies, but evaluate their impact on your time, well-being, and income.

I love doing live webinars, and my potential clients love them too. Based on that, we did two extra webinars during our last launch. It was fun in the moment, and yes, we got new clients, but nine live online events in a two-week period was a bit much for my team and me, energy-wise. Next time if we want to add more webinars, some will be live, some not.

We also tried a pre-pre-launch email campaign this time that took a bit of energy, but nobody responded. I wasn’t surprised. The idea wasn’t something that turned me on, but I was curious to see if it’d work. We won’t do it again. =)

#4. Don’t try new technology that you’re uncomfortable with during the launch.

New technology, no matter how simple it seems, can go rogue on you during a launch. Even when you try it out beforehand and it works, you never know if you accidentally touched the wrong button in the settings.

Yeah, that happened to us on two totally different platforms in our last launch. And there’s nothing worse than the stress of a tech glitch when you’re doing something live online, need an email broadcast to go out, or need to process a payment.

#5. Have a backup plan for all systems.

I’ve heard so many nightmares about a critical system failing during a launch and literally sabotaging up to 50% of potential sales. Every time I’ve heard one of those stories from a peer, I ask my team to get a backup system for that area of our business.

For years we’ve had backup systems and never needed them, until the last launch.

I did two webinars in a row where I sent attendees to a registration page that wouldn’t load. People wanted to give us money, but our website was slow as molasses. Devastating.

We thought the problem was ours and fixed after the first time. But when it happened again, we found out it was the website host having company-wide issues and had to make several phone calls to get it fixed.

My team had a backup server that we moved everything to before the next webinar! Having backup plans keeps stress to a minimum and allows you to stay in the game with a positive outcome.

We have backup tech people, merchant accounts, customer service people, and more. It doesn’t take a lot of time and rarely any money to have help on standby. And it can be a launch saver!

Oh! And lists. Have lots of checklists. Even if you think it’s something you’d never forget… write it down on a master list. Small things forgotten can make a big impact on your sales conversions.

#6. BONUS Lesson: Don’t be on vacation and launch at the same time.

Yeah, I tried that. It took me two launches in a row to learn that lesson!

I was at my family’s lake house during my summer launch with a small laptop, a cell phone, and my normal landline phone. I thought I could pull it off since most everything was done before I went there.

It was scorching hot with no air conditioner while I was doing my webinars… while the rest of my family was out on the boat having a grand time.

And I had to use my cell phone as a hot spot to be on the internet out in the woods. Needless to say, the connection was so slow, everything took ten times longer than it would’ve at home. Super bad idea all the way around.

Then I did it again for my winter launch. Everything was done long before Christmas vacation, so why not take the kids snow skiing for a week even though it would overlap a couple of days of my launch? Because a lot of emails and communication still needs to happen… especially during a launch where you have 40 or so people promoting you!

I came home a day early… cured of the fantasy that overlapping a launch and vacation is a smart thing to do. (We take plenty of vacations a year… so I’m sure I just had a bad case of FOMO with my family!)

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