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Why list building is still the most popular type of ad objective

In today’s episode I want to talk about launch debriefs, why they’re a must and how to go about them.

Let’s first talk about what I mean by a launch, because there are lots of things that you can launch. When I talk about launches I’m speaking about a sales period for an online program, course or membership. 

 So what happens with a client launch is that we spend a certain amount of time building up the client’s audience, we also build their email list and then they open cart for their program, generally with an event like a webinar or challenge.

Some of my clients launch in addition to having an evergreen funnel, which means that their courses can always be purchased and the cart never closes. For these launches the incentive to join during a launch is often a bonus that expires.

Other clients have specific open and close cart periods and they run their programs for a predetermined amount of time. 

Whichever way you want to do this, you need a launch debrief.

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Website: www.newschoolofmarketing.com
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Transcript

Welcome to the New School of Marketing podcast. I hope you’re well and keeping warm. I know that parts of Australia have had some really cold weather, including us here in Tasmania. I actually had to test my fire building skills last week because it was freezing and I had both kids at home – like I do every Wednesday. Normally I spend the majority of my day in my office where I run the heat pump (for non Tassies, that’s a reverse cycle air conditioner) but with both my little ones home we spend our day in the lounge room when we’re not going out. So I built my first fire in the fireplace and only had to resuscitate it once because it had almost gone out. After that it was blazing and toasty warm, we could pretty much sit in our t-shirts all day.

It’s actually quite funny how many things in life are analogies for my life as an ads manager. As I was thinking about how I had to revive the fire, I realised that it’s often the same with marketing and funnels. Sometimes our launches are doing well, but then they almost fizzle out so we have to take action to revive them and get that flame going again.

Anyway, that’s what I want to talk about today too. About launches and how to get better and better.

So, in today’s episode I want to talk about launch debriefs, why they’re a must and how to go about them.

Let’s first talk about what I mean by a launch, because there are lots of things that you can launch. When I talk about launches I’m speaking about a sales period for an online program, course or membership. 

So what happens with a client launch is that we spend a certain amount of time building up the client’s audience, we also build their email list and then they open cart for their program, generally with an event like a webinar or challenge.

Some of my clients launch in addition to having an evergreen funnel, which means that their courses can always be purchased and the cart never closes. For these launches the incentive to join during a launch is often a bonus that expires.

Other clients have specific open and close cart periods and they run their programs for a predetermined amount of time. 

Whichever way you want to do this, you need a launch debrief.

But before you have a launch, you need to set some goals and have your infrastructure in place to support your launch goals. 

I won’t go into the infrastructure today, but let’s quickly touch on setting some launch goals. 

If you’ve never launched your course or product before, or you haven’t launched in the way you’re launching now, you’ll need to set some goals that you aspire to and that you think are realistic, but keep in mind that this launch might be a test and you’re initially collecting data that will help you improve future launches. 

So, let’s talk about launch goals.

Your first goal should be to determine how many students you want in your course. Of course you want as many students as you can, but let’s keep it realistic and look at the size of your audience.

  • How many subscribers do you have on your list?
  • How many of these subscribers are already students (so you exclude them)?
  • How many of your subscribers are the right fit for your offer?
  • How engaged are your subscribers?
  • How many people follow you on Instagram and Facebook?
  • How engaged is your audience?
  • How many website visitors do you have each month (excl. students)?

You need to know these numbers to make informed choices on how many purchases you could expect to make with your current audience and also how many new people you need in your audience and on your list to make additional sales. 

Based on your current audience, how many sales could you make?

Based on your goal, how many people do you need to add to your audience?

So once you have your launch goal, you get to work on reaching them. 

Generally the way a launch works, or at least the launches I work on with my clients, is that we run Facebook ads to increase my clients’ audience and list, which are then followed with open cart or retargeting ads. 

Even though I only work on the advertising component, I do need to know about the other numbers in the funnel to know if a launch was successful or where improvements can be made. 

Sadly too many business owners who launch for the first time skip over the essential debrief and they’re onto the next thing – especially if they didn’t get the numbers they wanted.

It’s so important to look at all of your numbers, and try again. 

There are quite a few successful online marketers out there that advocate for working on a funnel, ONE funnel, as long as necessary until it makes you a million dollars and I have to agree with them.

Launching once and then moving onto the next thing isn’t going to bring in the big bucks, you’ll just keep chasing your tail.

That’s why a launch debrief is so important. You need to look at all of your numbers to see where you can make improvements. 

First, send all of your subscribers an email to ask why they didn’t purchase. This will give you the biggest insight and most valuable information. If you’re worried that nobody is going to respond, offer them an incentive for talking to you or completing your survey. 

You need to know why people didn’t purchase so that you can rectify it. 

They might be confused about the offer, they might have unanswered questions, they might not want it in the format it’s delivered. You need to ask them.

After that, look at all your numbers.

Start with the top of the funnel:

  • How many new people did you add to your list so that you could email them?
  • What was the opt-in conversion rate on your landing page?

Then work down the funnel:

  • How many people actually downloaded your opt-in gift (if it was a download)
  • Or how many people actually watched your video training or attended your webinar
  • What were your open rates for each of the emails in your funnel?
  • How many emails did you send and did you remind people enough about cart closing?
  • What was the click rate on your emails?
  • How many people visited your sales page?
  • How many people added to cart?
  • How many people purchased?

It’s called a funnel because that’s what it is. I’m going to be blunt here and say that the amount of people you put in at the top determines how many people end up purchasing, ie. coming out at the bottom.

Of course it’s slightly more complicated than that, because you need to put the right type of people in at the top, then nurture them, and nurture them and nurture them until a number of them purchase your offer. I also don’t like talking about people in terms of numbers, because they’re people. Actual human beings with families, lives and feelings, but at the same time launching is pure maths and a little bit of creativity thrown in. As much as I dislike saying it, it is about the numbers – and your relationship with your audience. 

Ok, so now that we’ve established that, let’s get back to the debrief.

You need to analyse each stage of your funnel to see where you can make improvements. 

BUT, before you make any changes and try again I want you to only make ONE change and then try again.

There might be several stages of your funnel that could do with improvements, but you need to pick ONE. Choose the one that you think will have the biggest impact.

Make the change and then try again.

The reason for only making one change is that if you make multiple changes, you won’t know what made the difference in the end. 

So if your email open rate was low, make a change to your email subject to see if it improves. If it does, do another debrief to see if you can make more changes. 

I know it’s tedious and as a course creator you’re hoping to get onto the passive (or leveraged) income bandwagon and sit back and relax, but for the majority of entrepreneurs it’s a different story.

The ones that stick with it and keep making improvements see results after a while. 

I’ve been doing this for over 8 years now and I’ve never met a funnel that worked straight out of the gate, and even then, the ones that do work still get tinkered with to see if they can be improved.

And then after a while you might need to replace your lead magnet, or come up with a different webinar title and content. 

The work is never done really. 

But if you have a solid offer and you know your ideal clients well, you’re already a long way ahead of everyone else. So keep going, and make sure that you debrief and review your launch each and every time.

And if you’re ready to add more people to your audience, I highly recommend using Facebook ads to grow your audience and your list – but only if the rest of your funnel is working and converting.

If that’s you and your funnel, get in touch with me if you want done for your Facebook & Instagram advertising or join ADvisory, the must-have-online program to DIY your ads. 

I’ll drop the links to both in the show notes and I can’t wait to connect with you. 

 

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