You planned, you launched… you crashed. What went wrong? By Melissa Anzman (Certified Executive Coach & Launch Coachsultant)
September and October are well-known launch months – you probably noticed your inboxes flooded with offers from everyone under the sun and decided that it would be the perfect time for you to run your launch too.
So you got your act into gear, planned out a new product or program, got all of your ducks in a row… and positioned yourself to launch.
And as soon as you put your offer out there, it went… nowhere. Crickets.
Or, if not exactly crickets, your launch didn’t come close to meeting your expectations.
Leaving you looking around wondering why everyone else could have such successful launches when your launch fell short.
You’re not alone – in fact, more launches went the same way as yours, than not. A successful launch isn’t the norm, but the exception.
Yet, that’s not what we’re taught. That’s not what all of the programs out there say – choose a great time (ahem, September/October), plug and play your product into this launch sequence or program, and voilà – income success is beyond your wildest dreams.
But that’s not what happened with your launch, leaving you questioning, “Why didn’t anyone buy my product?”
Why Did Nobody Buy it?
Or if you’re anything like me, after a less than awesome launch, I was left questioning everything about my product: I must not be as awesome as I thought; I guess I’m not an expert in that field; perhaps I don’t know what my audience wants; maybe the content wasn’t up to far; do I even want to do this anymore?
Having a product that no one bought, will shake your confidence to your core.
The trick is to not get stuck in that space – and learn why no one bought your product.
Here’s Maybe Why They Didn’t
It’s so easy for us to blame a bad product when it doesn’t sell, but it’s not always the case – in fact, it’s usually not the reason your launch failed. Your content is likely amazing – because you are an expert in what you are delivering, but we have to start there.
1. Your Content Isn’t Good Enough
Take a critical look at your product itself – you’re now far enough away from it to really evaluate the pure content of your product.
Are you providing immense value? Is it easy to understand and follow? Does your ideal customer “get” what you are saying? Sigh, but – have you written “epic sh*t?”
There is so much content out there – yours needs to be considered the cream of the crop. So evaluate it – does it deliver on the commitments you made on your sales page? Do you create a transformation for your buyer?
If you are certain that your content is outstanding, move on to the next set of questions.
2. Your Audience Doesn’t Need What You’re Selling
This is where my failed launches have usually gone wrong. I created content that was amazing and it’s what I thought my audience needed (hello – you need it, I’m the expert, listen to me!). But at the end of the day, they could care less about the solution I was selling.
This is critical – and likely where your product is going wrong. And it’s also a bit of an ego blow. You may be the expert, but your audience isn’t you.
So put your ego aside and your well intentions for you are certain your audience needs. Instead, your product should be exactly what the audience is telling you it needs.
If I asked you “What one solution/outcome does your product provide?”, what would your answer be?
Can you summarize it down to one specific outcome? And is that outcome something that your audience has told you pains them?
The Buyer’s Perspective
Let’s think for a moment about why you buy certain products. Maybe you recently bought a program that sold you the prospect of getting more traffic, getting more clients or increasing sales. Or perhaps you went into a clothing store to buy a “must have” pair of jeans. Whatever purchasing experience you just had, I want you to think about why you bought it.
Was it the outcome you were seeking? Did the seller tap into exactly what you needed at that exact moment? Was it an impulse buy? Did you buy because you are at your wits end and didn’t know what else to do, so it was a last ditch effort to turn things around?
Whatever the reason for you, your buyers will likely have a similar thought process before handing over their hard-earned money for a product, service or program like you just launched.
Now focusing back on your own product – did you provide a solution to the reasons above? Did you alleviate the exact pain point that your buyer has?
For most of us with failed launches, the honest answer to this is… no or not really or not completely.
Gut check your response with actual research with your audience. You can visit all the best sites to see if they are using the language you are using or say they need a specific product or solution, but the great nuggets of wisdom will come from speaking directly with members of your audience.
This “trick” that Derek Halpern and Ramit Sethi swear by, significantly changed my launches… and it will provide you with incredible information and details that you won’t be able to get from sitting behind your computer.
So there is a lot of questioning and digging with this step – because this is the place that many of us get it wrong. This is usually where the product fails… we missed the mark, for whatever reason, of what our audience needs. But once you have this straight, you can move on to the next question.
3. Your Title Sucks
If you have determined that your audience does need what you are selling, according to them, and it’s still not selling – it’s time to look at your product’s name. This sounds like an insignificant issue and you are probably tied to your title… but here’s the truth: if your product doesn’t easily tell your buyer what solution you are providing them with in the title, it sucks.
Stop trying to be clever or cute. Stop selling a super awesome naming convention.
Sell the Solution You’re Providing
I’ll give you a personal example. When I started my business and blog a few years ago, it was called “Loosen Your White Collar” (hey to those of you who remember that). It was a super clever name I spent hours on choosing and getting excited about and so on. It was my nod at telling people that your career doesn’t have to be so uptight or something. I don’t quite remember why I thought it was so awesome. But what I do remember, is that no one got it. I was asked all of the time what it meant and why I chose it and worse – what kind of business it was.
Instead of calling the site something like – “Launch Your Job,” which, coincidentally will be the next version of my career site, or “Career Advice to Get Promoted,” I tried to be clever.
Buyers don’t “get” clever – they get solutions to their burning needs and desires.
Another example that may hit closer to home – if your product is titled “5 Secrets to Be Happy,” but your product is selling the solution of changing your environment, change your title to “Learn How Changing Your Environment Will Create Everlasting Happiness” or something along those lines.
Provide the solution to all of their dreams in your title… and more.
If you’ve made it this far on the list, there are other steps to gut check and research to figure out why your launch didn’t work as planned. I’ll be digging deeper on these items in an upcoming post (hint: your launch plan and sales page are up next).
For now, be sure to get on my list to get access to a special offer coming up on this topic and keep launching!
About the guest blogger: Melissa Anzman is the creator of Launch Yourself , where she helps high performers launch their business + brand to the next level, make an impact in the lives of others, and earn more income. She is the author of two books: How to Land a Job and Stop Hating Your Job, and the host of the Launch Yourself Podcast. Follow her @MelissaAnzman.