Episode 56 – When your launch is keeping you awake at night
Welcome to the Brew Time Podcast. I’m Fiona, your vegan marketing mentor. I’m here to walk you through all the content marketing choices you have so that you can grow your vegan and ethical business.
This podcast episode is in collaboration with The Happy Tea Company. Sustainable herbal tea. Grown in Worcestershire with love.
When your launch is keeping you awake at night
Launches can be stressful and nerve-wracking. Usually, a lot is riding on a launch and you’re full of hope and excitement but at the back of your mind is the worry that isn’t not going to go as well as you hope.
So before you plough on into your next big launch, let’s look at some of the things you need in place to give it the best chance.
Think of it as a campaign
Way back when I used to release records, we treated every release as its own campaign. There was a checklist of things I needed to do but because my lovely boss kept reminding me – it was also not a sausage factory – I also had to think about what each individual launch would need.
When you’re launching your next product – think about it as a campaign. So you’ll need some basic things for each launch regardless. And you can split this up into pre-launch and post-launch.
Now, how long you need for a launch all depends on what you have in place, to begin with.
For your pre-launch stage, if you’ve already got an email list or a spreadsheet of people you know who are interested in what you do, then your launch is going to be much quicker.
You need to warm them up a little to the idea that you’ll be selling something to them and then off you go.
Okay, you need some other things as well.
But if you don’t have that email list yet or you don’t feel like the people who follow your blog, podcast, videos, socials whatever are fully into what you do, then you need your launch to take a little longer.
This foundational stage is not something you need to spend years doing. You might just need to do some networking, talk to some people, and put a bigger push and effort into a particular part of your content strategy.
Whatever you do, don’t get distracted by trying to find new people on a brand new platform. Remember, with a launch, you are talking to the people who already know and trust you.
One of the things you can do is get together the people who already love you and get them to recommend your products.
But when you think of your launch as a campaign, you can see it as its own little bubble where you drive a load of energy for a short space of time and then settle back into your “business as usual” stage.
What people miss
As launches are fun and shiny and exciting, it’s quite easy to miss out on the big important thing you need to do – and that’s set a sales goal. Be realistic. Your goal could be a number of sales or a financial figure. So I need to sell X to make Y or I want X amount of people to buy.
I read a really nice way of looking at sales goals from Brennan Dunne and that is to use your email list size as an indicator of the success of the sale. So if you have 100 people on your list and you sell £1000 then each person on that list is about £10 on average to your business. Whereas you could have 300 or 400 and make the same income but your cost per head on your list is much smaller. So you have lots of people on there who, for whatever reason, didn’t buy.
And I like this because the people who open and read your sales emails are the ones who are most likely to buy.
Okay let’s do a quick list of practical things you need for a launch:
– Sales page
– Marketing assets
– Mobilise your people
– Know how you will deliver
And that’s it.
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Now there might be some tweaking to this. You might want to use paid ads or build some PR, guest posts, and blogs around your launch. You might want to get a little creative with it.
Don’t forget that print media or other marketing campaigns can really help, especially if it’s a big launch. This takes more time and money but will have a return on investment.
For example, when Seed and Bean launched in Sainsbury’s they advertise for a chocolate taster job. You had to buy a bar from Sainsbury’s and send a review with your receipt to apply for a year of free chocolate tasting.
You don’t have to go this big but if you get creative, there are things you can do for your launch.
What about when it’s all going a bit wrong?
Okay, your launch isn’t going as planned. You need to look at who is close to buying. This means checking out your email list, seeing who is clicking the sales page, talking to them or sending them a nice message. It’s going that extra mile to make them see this is the right thing for them.
It’s not about hard selling but about looking at the people sitting on the fence and giving them the support they need to make a decision. Often at this point, you have people who you don’t realise want to buy from you. They just need that nudge.
I once joined a community because I was offered a free pizza. I don’t really eat pizza. But that idea pushed me to commit rather than drag my feet.
When the launch is truly keeping you awake at night, you might also need some outside eyes on it. Someone who is a step or two away from your business. Sometimes you are too close to see what’s going on for yourself.
This might be hiring someone like me or it might be talking to a business friend. Or sounding something out in your networks. But don’t let a launch let you lose sleep. Get someone to look at it. Pick apart what’s going on and check you’ve done everything you can on your list.