How to Pre-launch your course

Does the thought of launching make you tremble with fear or overwhelm? I get it. Launching is scary. There's a way to make it less scary, though: plan and pre-launch.

I get a number of questions about how I launch. But no one ever talks about the pre-launch, i.e. what you do BEFORE your launch. And it’s critical.

So how do I pre-launch? With 3 simple steps.

1 - Start with a survey

Before you start your launch, survey your audience. Your survey can be as short or long as you want. I’ve used both styles.

The point is to send a survey to:

  • find out what challenges your audience has with your course topic (and how you can help) 

  • give them the opportunity to add their voice 

  • get your audience excited about your offer

  • let people unsubscribe (this is a good thing; focus on your true fans)

Tip: If you want to learn more about prelaunch strategy, check out the book Launch by Jeff Walker. Some of Jeff’s strategies work better for different markets, so YMMV.

2 - Create valuable content

I know, this sounds super obvious but hear me out...

If you started with a survey, you’ll gain insight into what your audience values. That makes this step a lot easier. But even if you didn’t survey your audience, that’s okay.

You can still do market research to find out what your target audience is talking about in regards to your topic, or look for common questions that pop up in your inbox.

Then create content that answers those questions or solves specific problems. You don’t need to provide the full solution either. It's up to you how much value to deliver.

This step is all about creating content that answers real questions--not assumed ones.

Tip: look for expensive problems, i.e. problems that cost your target customer time or money that you can help solve. 

3 - Set expectations for your launch 

The last step is to prep your audience for your official launch. This should just be a simple email where you set expectations. It should contain:

  • The date and time of your launch (when the cart opens)

  • Any introductory info they need to know about your course to decide if it’s a good fit

  • A call to action (i.e. reply w/ questions)

There’s more, but these are the 3 big steps in my pre-launch strategy. Now you can use them too.

The key is to plan your pre-launch along with your launch.

  • That’s why Finish Your Damn Course! (FYDC) breaks launching up into two modules.

  • It's why every FYDC student gets a planning spreadsheet, scripts, and a sales page review.

Because launching is scary for me too.

It's taken years for me to feel like I have any idea what I'm doing during a launch. But it’s less scary when you have guidance, tools and a schedule. 

Click here to learn how FYDC will help you create & launch your course.

-Janelle

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