If you launched a new product or collection recently and didn't quite get the results you were hoping for, here is my best advice for what to do next.
Plus, I share a little story of my past launch screw-ups too!
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Here’s the thing – if your product launch fails, it’s likely because not enough people knew that you even had a new product available, which means no one saw your launch marketing, which means they’ll have no idea that you’re even repeating yourself.
If you heard me say launch marketing and you thought to yourself – what launch marketing – may I direct you to episode 127? How to sell out your next product launch. In that episode, I walk you through my simple 4-step system for implementing a full-on launch marketing campaign. And to be honest, I’ve never seen a launch truly fail while following this process, even for new businesses. To me, a true fail is no orders at all – and even then – it’s not really a failure. It’s a lesson.
For instance, back in June, I opened the doors to the Lounge, my membership for eCommerce business owners. And while we did follow a launch process, we didn’t sign up as many new members as we were hoping for. But I still don’t consider it a failed launch because we learned a lot of lessons.
One, and this is something we knew would affect our results, though it had more impact than we anticipated, was that eCommerce entrepreneurs didn’t want to invest in a recurring membership at the beginning of the summer when they were getting ready to take a break from their business. We had A LOT of people tell us they wanted to join, but would do so the next time we opened the doors in September.
The other lesson we learned was with our ads. We were testing a bunch of different campaigns, one of those advertising our free 5-day workshop to cold audiences. We allocated a good portion of our ads budget to this and they didn’t perform very well. And this is the one I kinda kick myself for because I totally should have known better. This was a cold audience who didn’t really know who I was, and sure it was a FREE workshop, but our most valuable + limited resource is time – so why would a stranger want to commit to spending so much time with me if they weren’t even sure I could get them results?
Now, if you’re selling a lower ticket product, you might find success with conversion ads to cold audiences. Back in the day this worked really well for a lot of businesses, but consumers are getting savvier, less trustworthy thanks to a few bad apples, and with the changes it internet privacy FB has a lot less data to work with when trying to find your perfect customer so even if these ads successful they can be pretty expensive.
What did convert well was those who we sent to a free opt-in, basically the step before the workshop + then invited them to the workshop after they signed up for the free opt-in. In fact, you might be one of the people who found us this way!
This time around we are not allocating any of our budget to direct conversion ads and are focused only on lead generation. We’ll get them converted to the workshop after we get them in our orbit.
If you have a failed launch, I want you to look back at what you did and what the response was the same way we did. First, identify what might have gone wrong so you can tweak your approach the next time around. And be real with yourself, even if you did have a launch marketing campaign, did you really go all in?
Now, when it comes time to relaunch you can just start from scratch, but if you feel like you need a way to reframe it so it feels fresh here are a few ideas:
- A flash or seasonal sale
- A birthday or anniversary celebration – yours or your business
- A Staff or Founder Favorites Feature
- Tie it into an upcoming holiday, whether official or social
If it was a singular product launch you could switch up the offer and make it a bundle, either with your own products or by partnering with a complementary business. If it was a collection launch, consider creating a bundle with a hero piece and the one that garnered the least amount of interest and then offer up some of the remaining items of the launch as a cross-sell.
Ultimately, just because you didn’t catch traction with the initial launch, doesn’t mean you won’t the next time around.