Preparing to launch an online program can be a daunting task. If you’re following a specific course like Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula or Amy Porterfield’s Digital Course Academy, the launch steps laid out for you to follow are extensive. If you’re not careful, your attempt to follow the entire program the first time you launch can actually keep you from launching at all.
The key to getting your first digital launch off the ground is to keep things simple.
The 5 Things You Shouldn’t Be Worried About During Your Online Launch
Having a Beautiful Website
Without a doubt, the first thing people think they need to do when they decide to launch an online program is to create a fancy website.
Well designed websites take time and money. And here’s the kicker… very few people will ever see a new website. Instead, focus on creating a great lead magnet (free offer) that the ideal customer for your online course would love to have. Once you have the lead magnet created, you’ll need a landing page/opt-in page where people can opt in for your free offer and an email service to collect email addresses. This is called your lead funnel.
Building an email list of people who are raving fans of what you have to offer means you have an audience when you’re ready to offer a paid product. Once you’ve begun building a list, you can start working on your website. When you first start launching, that website can be fairly basic. Include a Home page that explains what you do, an About page that explains who you are, and a Testimonials page that explains who you’ve worked with and how you’ve helped them. Before people pay you money, they are likely to check out your online presence, so a website is a good idea, but it doesn’t need to have all the bells and whistles before you can begin launching your products online. There will be time (and money) for that later.
Being All the Places on Social Media
As tempting as it is to cover your bases by being everywhere on social media, during your launch focus on the social media channels where you know your ideal client hangs out. Ideally you’ve researched this prior to your digital product launch and you already have a presence and a following there.
Just because you’re launching online doesn’t mean that you should suddenly join all of the online social media channels you’ve never used before just to cast a wider net. Stay focused on the places that work for you and where you know the people you want to join your program like to see your content.
Worrying About Perfection
Online launches aren’t perfect. They never go off without a hitch, even for experienced online marketers. There will be mistakes, there will be tech challenges, and there will likely even be a typo or broken link somewhere. There, I’ve said it. Now you can know ahead of time and stop striving for perfection.
Keep your mind focused on the fact that every day your launch is delayed because you’re perfecting some step of the process, your ideal client is looking for a solution to their problem that only you offer in your unique way.
While you’re stressing over the font you use on a landing page, the exact wording you use in your emails or if your checkout page is beautiful enough, someone is suffering. You owe it to them to get over your need for perfection so you can offer what they need.
Implementing All of the Things
Launch courses and programs you are following have a whole lot of steps. Give yourself permission to not try to include all of those steps in your first launch. Or even in your second launch. Start with the basics.
Things like joint venture partnerships, affiliate programs, and paid advertising are advanced techniques that shouldn’t be attempted on your first launch.
Likewise, combining techniques like pre-recorded video, webinars and live components are done by people who either have done many launches before or have teams of people who can help and support them.
Simplify. Focus on just getting your first launch done at its most basic before you worry about adding steps or you’ll find yourself constantly chasing a new idea or software rather than focusing on actually launching.
Using Complicated Project Management Software
I talk a lot about the importance of having a launch plan. In fact, I absolutely believe that without a well-thought out launch plan, it’s unlikely you’ll launch at all.
What you don’t want to do is sign up for brand new project management software for your very first launch. Too often people get bogged down in setting up beautiful plans with due dates, dependencies and recurring tasks rather than spending that time in actually executing the launch.
Launch plans can mean many things. Your first one should be simple: a way to keep track of your tasks, and due dates. If you are familiar with launching and are looking for a one-page checklist just to make sure you don’t miss anything, my Launch Checklist is ideal.
If you’d like a little more guidance and some video support, you may want to check out my Total Launch Planner and Guidebook which offers links, articles, and places to keep track of all of your useful links during your launch.
Many successful course and membership launches have been created using post-it notes or a notebook. Other digital marketers map out their launches using mindmaps on paper. Whatever you choose for your planning, don’t make creating the plan more complicated or time consuming than the launch itself.
It’s time to stop worrying and just get launched
Whatever seems to be holding you back in your launch, there is a solution. There is a way to keep moving forward. Launches can be a bit tricky, there’s no doubt, but once you understand where you should and shouldn’t be spending your time and energy it can be a lot easier to keep moving forward.
Someone out there needs what you have to offer. Someone is waiting for you to just get launched already. It’s time to stop worrying about why you can’t launch and to just get it done.
I’ve given you a few resources here, but if you’d like more help and want to discuss my launch manager services, you can schedule a call with me right here.