There’s one thing you have to know about business: The “inside” of someone’s big launch never looks like you think it does.
No matter how glamorous the videos or how big the launch numbers seem, you simply can’t know what’s really going on until you get a peek behind the curtain.
You can’t know how easy (or hard) it is to run a big launch.
You can’t know how streamlined (or messy) things are on the inside.
You can’t really know how profitable a launch is—even if you do the simple math of program price times paid participants.
You can’t know a lot of things just by looking from the outside.
Thankfully, I learned this lesson early on when I started working as a VA for some fairly successful business owners. What looks one way from the outside is very different from what was happening on the inside.
That’s why, starting today and running for three weeks total, I’m excited to give you this:
A peek behind the curtain of my biggest launch ever.
I’m revealing a bit of what went right, what went wrong, and some insights from in between.
Let’s dive into Part 1 of this three-part, behind-the-scenes look at my most recent Make It Work Online program launch.Click to TweetThe inside of someone’s business never looks like you think it does. @jennyshih takes you behind the scenes of her most recent launch.
Lesson #1: Keeping it “the same” is still a ton of work
I’ve talked before about how I use a mix of intuition and strategy to build my business. That’s why, although I knew my next Make It Work Online launch was going to be in January 2018, I waited and waited and waited until I felt the internal GO signal to start planning.
This signal didn’t come until late. Like end of October 2017 late. (Too late. I won’t wait for the GO sign that late again.)
I thought that since we were “keeping it the same as last time” that it would be rather simple on the logistics front.
Very similar sales page, very similar sales emails, nearly the exact same launch videos…
No big deal, right?
Um, wrong. So, so wrong.
Because even though everything was almost the same, I am a stickler for details.
Which means every single word used on landing pages, emails, sales pages, you-name-it, still had to be read, reviewed, tweaked, fine-tuned. And we had a lot of words to review!
Lesson learned: You’re never keeping it the same, even if you are. Start way sooner than you think you should, especially when adding in a two-month pre-pre-launch like I did!My Personal Recommendation for YouAre Launches Worth It? What I Really Think About Launches, Products, and Group Programs
Lesson #2: Long lead-ups are great but exhausting
A new strategy I tried for this launch was to offer Make It Work Online Prep School, a two-month lead-in to the Make It Work Online Workshop.
During these two months, I gave weekly actionable lessons with assignments to help people take action in their businesses and get used to my teaching and coaching style.
This was a great way to introduce a new audience (cold traffic from Facebook ads) to me and my style and to help folks make progress way before I sold them anything.
It was super fun, very eye-opening, and a great way for me to support business owners regardless of whether they join my program.
Offering two months of fresh content while also trying to prepare for the launch while also trying to be mega active in the Prep School Facebook group—all before even launching—left me exhausted.
I didn’t go into the Make It Work Online Workshop and program launch with a full tank of gas. This meant I didn’t have as much energy to give to the launching and selling as I would have liked. That was a bummer.
Lesson learned: Lead-ups are good, but either I need to do them differently or skip them simply for energy management’s sake.
Lesson #3: Launching can be done success on your terms style
Even though I was working hard and ended up more tired that I would have liked, I still took good care of myself during this launch.
I slept a full night every night. I ate well. I went to yoga, took walks on the beach, and enjoyed nightly sunsets from our deck.
That’s because for my entire professional life, starting back during my first job at age 22, I’ve been focused on creating success on my terms. Working fewer hours, having time for life outside of work, and deliberately making choices about where I spend my time and energy.
Success on my terms is essential, even during launch time.
And to make things a little better better, my husband and I have a deal: Since we’re not moving to Southern California (where my spirit longs to live) for a variety of reasons, we travel down south for January and February to get out of the Oregon rain and soak up the SoCal sunshine.
It’s not a two-month vacation; it’s life and work as usual, just from a sunny spot on the beach.
This means, during my biggest month of the year—the January launch—I had the pleasure of working hard with a fantastic view.
For me, this is such a good idea!!
When my brain got stuck or I needed to wind down, the solution was to go outside to rest my noggin and rejuvenate.
If I were home in the cold, wet Oregon weather, it would have been much more difficult for me to refuel between webinars, recalibrate over lunch, and wind down at night. I tend to feel more sluggish when it’s 40 degrees and wet and dark…
Lesson learned: Success on your terms is not just a “sometimes” thing; it can be an “all the time thing,” and for me, it must be. Plus, beach!!
Lesson #4: Holding intentions for impossible goals is a great—and terrible—idea
Late last year, I started a new practice where I visualize a mind-blowing, successful end result (in all areas of my life).
I do this to see what ideas come to mind, what mindset blocks I spot, and inspiration that flows.
It’s been an incredibly powerful practice, and I shared the details of exactly how I do it in episodes 126 and 127 of the Success On Your Terms podcast. (It’s also something I teach my clients to do, in-depth, in my Make It Work Online Accelerator program, and they’re loving it, too!)My Personal Recommendation for YouSuccess On Your Terms podcast
I used this practice to prepare for this recent launch after a friend encouraged me to shoot for higher numbers than I thought was possible.
By doing this practice regularly, I cleared roadblocks, took some bold steps, and decided to try new things—things I wouldn’t have otherwise thought to do if I hadn’t been doing this visualization.
In fact, it’s those things that made ALL THE DIFFERENCE with this recent launch and will make a huge difference for my clients as well.
So in that sense, holding intentions for an impossible goal is a valuable strategy.
And that’s exactly why I encouraged you to claim your BHAG earlier this year!
At the same time, I personally struggle with aiming for super high, nearly impossible goals because of the huge let-down I feel when I don’t hit them.
With this launch, we hit our threshold goal—which was amazing. But because I was so focused on the almost-impossible-but-let’s-try-anyway goal, I couldn’t fully enjoy the success we did have.
Of course, though, that’s a ripe opportunity for some massive mindset work of a different kind, opening me up for some more digging up, sorting through, and healing of old thought patterns that simply do not serve me.
Lesson re-learned: Mindset work continues to be an essential, unescapable tool for business success. And shooting for big goals is still a good idea!
The Lessons Keep Coming…
In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you.
What of the above lessons surprised you? What seems pretty obvious?
As I say, clarity comes from taking action, so tell me what actions you’ve taken in your business over the last month or so and what lessons you’ve learned in the process.
I can’t wait to hear from you in the comments below… and see you back here next week for Part 2!