I wanted to do an episode about the 5 lessons that I learned launching Social Media Online Summit 2020 yesterday. I do this online conference every year, and I thought it would be fun to summarize what I learned - from planning to mindset - so that you can apply the same lessons to your launches!
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Hey fellow online business owners! Welcome back to this week’s Hack Your Online Business podcast. I decided to move this Thursday’s episode to today because I was in the midst of a launch, launching Social Media Online Summit 2020, and I wanted to do an episode about the lessons that I learned launching this online conference.
I do this online conference every year, and this year I started planning and working on it first week of January. So it was definitely a busy January and the final 2 weeks leading up to yesterday’s launch was definitely very intense.
Now if you ever want to connect with me or reach out to me, you can find me on Instagram at @thisischrystan. You can also find more of my content on YouTube, you’ll find marketing and business videos on my channel. Just search for Chrys Media, that C-H-R-Y-S Media. You’ll see the channel pop up.
So let’s jump right in. We hit a 5 figure launch which was absolutely great for a launch that was launched using purely organic marketing and took a month worth of work, but it was still 30% less than what I wanted. The thing that I’m happiest about this launch was not so much the revenue that we earned, but the fact that we had more attendees signing up for the online conference.
Now this is a 100% paid online conference so you needed to pay for a ticket to attend this online conference. Yet we had more attendees that some of the in-person social media marketing conferences! So that was really the icing on the cake for me.
And looking at the past month, there were definitely moments where I thought we won’t even gonna hit 40% of the targeted revenue. And that brings me to my first lesson.
Scarcity mindset. Scarcity mindset leads to fear which then leads to blockages. Now, if you’ve been following me for a while, then you know that I am huge on mindset.
You can learn the marketing strategies and the tactics, but if your mindset is weak, if you don’t believe and you worry that no one is gonna buy your stuff, then guess what? No one is gonna buy your stuff.
Your brain is so powerful, yet it cannot differentiate between reality and what you’re visualizing. So if you’re launching something, or even if you’re not launching, if you’re constantly thinking about how no one is going to buy or sign up, it is going to be a flop, your brain starts to think that this is the reality.
And when your brain starts to think that this is a reality, it starts to affect the decisions that you make, the enthusiasm that you have, the vibes that you put out and people can sense it, so many things.
So in the early weeks of launching and we only had a few people signed up and I was freaking out, I looked at a post it note that I had written on my whiteboard a while back, and it says “Abundance is everywhere. Scarcity mindset blocks abundance”.
So I wrote this down after reading about how abundance can be blocked by scarcity mindset in Denise Duffield-Thomas’ book, Lucky Bitch. And when I stared at that post it, and I have a lot of post its on my walls, on my whiteboard. I looked at it, and in that moment, I just closed my eyes and released the fear in me that no one was going to sign up.
After that, I started to focus on the feeling of abundance and how I was going to celebrate a successful launch. Which by the way guys, I’ll be booking a nice massage after I’m done recording this podcast.
So first lesson, make sure that you’re not in scarcity mode. If you find that you’re freaking out about how your launch is going and not many people are signing up, first check to make sure that you’re not blocking abundance from flowing with a negative mindset.
Alright, the next lesson I learned is less woo woo. Find a way to cross-sell, upsell and downsell in order to maximize your revenue. So let me first explain what a cross-sell, an upsell and a downsell is. A cross-sell is when you offer related product recommendations on the checkout page to prompt them to buy additional items that increase the value of the purchase.
An upsell is getting a customer to spend more by buying an upgraded or premium version of what’s being purchased. So for example, during check-out you might offer the audio version of a printed or e-book for a discounted price.
It’s easy to confuse upselling with cross-selling. Upselling typically involves trading up to a better version of what’s being purchased, while cross-selling involves offering the customer a related product or service.
And then downselling, that’s where someone has declined your product or service offer (sometimes by simply clicking the close button on the website) and you offer them an alternative product at a lower price. Just a caveat here, the downsell must not simply be a cheaper version of the original offer. It must be significantly different in some way which justifies the lower price. Because you don’t want to train people to believe they will be made a “better offer” simply by saying no to the original offer, then they will always say no.
So for this launch, I did a cross sell in the checkout process. So when someone adds a ticket, they’ll be first prompted if they want to also add the session notes which are the transcriptions of all of the sessions. 24% of the attendees ended up adding the session notes to cart.
At the same time, we also offered an upsell of the value pass plus audio for those who were interested in the value pass. So the value pass gave the attendees 48 hour access to the sessions, and they could upgrade to the more expensive value pass package with 48 hour access plus downloadable audio of the sessions. We were able to upsell the more expensive ticket to 52% of them.
For the downsell, we will be selling the session notes and audio files to those who did not sign up for the online conference, but might now be interested in getting the audio files or the session notes.
So no matter what you’re launching, always think about how you can cross-sell, upsell and downsell. It will really help you to increase the value of each purchase.
Many times, I see business owners focus on trying to launch new things in order to increase revenue. But if you just take some time to look at what you’re already selling and see if you can cross-sell or upsell your existing customers or clients, or downsell a smaller priced item or service to your audience who are not buying your product or service.
So here’s an example. If you are coach and you have a mastermind. You can always upsell them to a one-on-one or cross-sell another program that you have. And you can downsell a PDF workbook for those who can’t spend much on a mastermind or a one-on-one.
Alright, the third lesson that I learned from this launch is you need a launch marketing plan. When you’re launching, you can’t just pop up one day and say hey here’s my thing, buy it. Even the biggest brands and people like Marie Forleo or Amy Porterfield or Grant Cardone, they have a launch plan when they are about to launch something new.
So I am going to covering my launch system more in-depth in another episode, but I want to share my launch marketing system. Before you launch, you need to have a warm audience to launch to. If you are brand new to running an online business and no one knows who you are or there is no way to reach the people that know your brand, then that’s the first thing you’ll need to focus on when you’re launching.
As a benchmark, I suggest having an engaged audience of at least 1,000 people, and this will be across email, social media, and Messenger chat bot. Now what I need to really highlight here is when I say "engaged audience", I mean your open rate plus your engaged social media following, NOT simply the total email and Messenger bot list number plus total social followers.
So if you have 1000 people on your email list now but no one is engaging with your emails and very few people are opening your emails, you don’t have 1000 engaged audience. You might have a hundred or 200 maybe.
So first thing, identify if you have a big enough audience to launch. If not, you’ll need to spend time on your marketing first and focus on audience building and nurturing.
I personally have a few thousand people on my email and Messenger list plus my social media following, but I am also tapping into the lists of the 39 speakers that are part of the conference. Of course, not all 39 speakers ended up sharing with their audience and very often that happens, but we were able to reach the audience of the speakers who ended up sharing about the online conference.
Now once you have the engaged audience, the next thing you wanna do is to have a launch plan. My launch plans last from 2 months to a week, but launches can run for weeks or days. You’ll also want to determine how much time you’ll need to launch based on the type of product or service you’re selling, the cost of the product or the service, and the type of launch that you want.
Not all launches are big launches. Higher cost products need longer for people to buy into. If you’re doing a small launch or a beta launch, then you don’t need a launch that runs for months.
Now my launch plan starts with creating the content (in this case the conference sessions), creating the landing page, as well as deciding on the launch trigger. Now the launch trigger is something that hooks them in. That could be a 5 day challenge, a mini course, or for this launch, I gave away 2 free sessions which they could get inside of their Facebook Messenger.
So I would create content on my authority, so why join this online conference. In this case, I was focusing more on the authority of the speakers. So I created teaser videos, I sent out emails about the speakers and their achievements.
I also focus on creating content on the customers. What problem is attending this online conference going to solve? What are the challenges they faced? You’ll want to demonstrate that you understand their problem.
Which brings me to another type of content that I create, where I talk about the problem. So I talked about how social media marketing is constantly changing and what used to work for Facebook ads or Instagram marketing in 2019 might not work in 2020, and how frustrating it is to keep creating content for social media that is not bringing in the ROI.
The fourth lesson that I learned from this launch is partnership and affiliates are so important. Affiliates help to share about the event and you only pay them a revenue commission when they successfully refer someone. So if you are launching a course, can you find affiliates with a list of your target audience and give them a commission for every student signed up?
The last lesson that I learned is something that I think we all know but sometimes we forget, and that is people love waiting till the last minute to buy. Sometimes it’s buyer’s psychology where they don’t feel the urgency until they see the final hour warning.
So remember, you’ll want to promote the hell out of your product or service during the last week of your launch. Give the people who are on the fences a gentle or hard push to get them to the checkout page. Some people need to be reminded because we mustn't forget, people are busy and they might be interested the first time they saw your content, but life is chaotic and maybe they forgot about it. So don’t feel shy at all about sending multiple last minute emails or social media posts.
So I hope you found this episode useful and I’ve given you ideas around your own launches. Launches can be scary but there are things you can do to ease your launches. One of the things you should do is have a support system.
And if you’re looking for a support system for more than just your launches, I want to let you know about my brand new Hack Your Online Business mastermind for online business owners that is now open for applications. This mastermind is led by me, your marketing mentor, and is focused on marketing for online business owners as well as being a support group and community with other online entrepreneurs and myself.
Over the past 10 years, I’ve been in digital marketing and running my own Messenger marketing agency, Chrys Media. I’ve spoken on stages such as Social Media Day and Social Media Week and have taught marketing to brands like Thinkific and MeetEdgar.
So in this 6 month mastermind, we’ll be having themed months, all focused on marketing and accountability. The goal is to get you closer to your business goals and achieve them. So if you want to learn more about the Hack Your Online Business mastermind that has very limited spaces only, go to hackyouronlinebusiness.com/mastermind.
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