For the last two weeks you got a peek behind the curtain of my biggest launch yet. I told you what went right and wrong and everything in between.
I also told you why one-on-one services are far more profitable than large group programs, and I promised to reveal some numbers to prove why.
But before I do that…
You should know that that the thought of revealing the specific numbers behind my launch makes me very uncomfortable.
There’s a reason hardly anyone in this industry shows the REAL numbers from their business!
At the same time, I really wish someone would have been this transparent with me years ago about what “next level launching” looks like.
So here we go…
The actual numbers
For this Make It Work Online program, we enrolled the most amazing clients. Smart, motivated, driven action-takers who are ready to get their businesses moving, get clients, and create consistent income doing work they love and making a difference for others. (I love my clients!)
The total revenue was around $420,000.
Add in payment plans and the Get Your First 1000 Subscribers downsell, that’s about an additional $25,000.
Sounds amazing, right?
And it is, until you add up what it cost to generate this revenue.
The launch expense list
Running a large-scale launch isn’t something you can do alone—especially if you want to get enough sleep and not burn yourself out.
Personally, I like to work with a team of experts who are each amazing at what they do.
As a result, my launch expense list looked like this:
- Facebook ads
- Facebook ad manager
- Copywriting support
- Backup VA and customer support
- A team of people to help me review applications
- Sales and affiliate commissions
- Community manager
- Web and tech support
- Professional video shooting and editing
- Credit card processing fees
- Additional software expenses
Then there’s the program delivery expenses, which includes paying my amazing team of talented coaches to serve our clients.
Also—sad as it is—there are always clients who default on payments.
For this launch, the above expenses add up to just about $130,000.
And this isn’t including the web and tech costs and professionally shot videos from the last launch that we reused (totaling another $20,000). Which would bring us to…
The monthly business expense list
Aside from the launch team I have in place, I also have my “core team.” These are the incredible people who help keep jennyshih.com running smoothly month after month. I pay most of my team on a regular retainer.
This means, in addition to my own salary, my ongoing, monthly expenses include:
- Almost full-time assistant
- Content strategist and copywriter
- Web and tech support
- Secondary VA support
- Many different tech services and software like website hosting, email marketing, shopping cart, and webinar services, just to name a few
- Payroll taxes
Plus other non-recurring expenses like legal, travel, training, supplies, etc.
In total, it costs between $20-25,000 every month just to stay in business.
Then there’s Uncle Sam. (For you non-US folks, that’s taxes.)
So, at the end of the day, after this launch, and after we set aside the seed money for the next launch, my business pretty much just breaks even.
(Bet you didn’t see that coming!)Click to TweetNo sugarcoating here! @jennyshih shares the REAL numbers behind her most recent launch.
On top of it all, launches are risky
The other tricky part about a launch like this is that most of the expenses (except for things like affiliate commissions) have to be paid before I make any money.
Launching on this scale requires I have everything ready and paid for in advance, including Facebook ads, sales pages, email sequences, workshop materials, video training… everything.
This means I need cash on hand (or a very fat credit limit, and I don’t have that much room on my credit card) to be able to even launch in the first place.
For those of you considering launching your own program or course, it also means you have to be 100% certain that your offer is viable, or you’ll be left in a huge pickle with massive debt.
And even then, there are so many scary “what ifs.” What if it doesn’t work this time? What if I get sick during the launch? What if our website goes down? What if our credit card processing breaks? What if…?
There are infinite things that could go wrong, and just like that—Poof!—I’d be screwed and my team would be too.My Personal Recommendation for YouThe Hard Truth of What It Really Feels Like to Run My Online Business
Now, let’s compare that to when it was just me…
My monthly costs were a few hundred dollars (excluding hiring coaches for myself), leaving me with huge profit margins.
On top of that, it was much easier to serve my clients.
Plus I had honed my coaching process so the work was easy. (This was back when I was my sickest, so I’m grateful for the ease I created.)
My take home pay was twice what it is now, give or take.
So this leaves me regularly asking myself why I’m not back in that business model. The money makes so much more sense!
Then I remember Lesson #7: I love teamwork so so much!!
Teamwork is a big driver for me because it allows me to work in my zone of genius.
(I’m an “Arranger” if you know StrengthsFinder or a “Lord” if you know Wealth Dynamics. If you don’t know either, just imagine the role of an orchestra conductor and translate that to business; that’s me in my genius zone.)
This is why I’ll continue to deliberately choose this path because it’s more fun and fulfilling. Fulfillment, personal growth, and fun over profits. That’s success on my terms.
This is why I say over and over and over to my clients:
Don’t switch to groups because you think it will make you more money.
Stick with one-on-one as long as you continue to love the work. It’s more profitable, way less stressful, comes with much lower risk, and takes so much less time and effort when you add it all up.
Now, I’d love to hear from you.
What do you think when you read these numbers?
What surprised you?
Do they make you more likely or less likely to launch your own group program?
Leave a comment below and tell me what you think.