One of the questions I get asked a lot by business owners is whether or not they should incorporate live launches or evergreen funnels into their business in order to gain new paying customers. Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all response – the answer varies wildly depending on a whole range of circumstances that are unique to you and your business, and the products and services that you deliver.
Firstly, you need to consider the difference between the two options; live launches are generally time consuming and personnel heavy affairs, with you ‘opening the doors’ for a particular product or service (which may have limited availability or only run at certain points throughout the year). Live launches require the investment of significant time and effort grabbing the attention of potential customers and nurturing them, over a period of a few days or weeks, into paying customers, perhaps with the help of a free webinar or challenge designed to demonstrate your knowledge and skills. Though this personalised care and support can result in significant sales when delivered effectively, there is no guarantee that the blood, sweat and tears invested in your live launch will make it financially viable.
At the opposite end of the spectrum we’ve got evergreen funnels – where the gateway to purchase of a product or service isn’t necessarily managed 24/7 by human gatekeepers, but rather by automated tools and processes. For example, if you’ve got a course that you deliver online that people can start at any time (rather than participants all starting together on a specific date), then they can enter the programme at any time. Live launches for this kind of product just aren’t viable as you’d be live every waking hour, so these processes can be automated, using a pre-recorded webinar or free download to grab the attention of potential interested parties, and automation software then gently nurturing them (via the sharing of useful information and/or offers) into customers of your non-time sensitive product or service.
There are some businesses that find greater success with live launches, whereas others may be better suited to evergreen funnels – here are a few things that it’s worth considering to determine what is the appropriate option for you:
- Value of your product vs value of your time – Are you selling high ticket items that people may need a little extra persuasion to buy? Or are you selling a product or evergreen course for £50? If it’s a high ticket item – i.e. long term coaching or a high value membership programme – then it’s likely that YOU are one of the important selling factors. Would you sign up for a membership programme that costs £11000 per year if you had never met the programme leader? The answer is probably not, so if you are selling high ticket items, consider whether an automated launch will give prospective clients enough of ‘you’ to encourage them to make a purchase.
- Team capacity – Do you have a team behind you who can manage your social media, liaise with potential and existing clients and ensure that your website, payment processers and other integral tech tools are working efficiently and effectively across a period of intensive engagement? If it’s just you, a live launch could be a challenging and draining process – not that it is impossible! It’s just that you’d need to consider potentially outsourcing tasks or seeking expert help to set up effective sales funnels prior to the launch so that there is a reduced risk of potential downtime.
- Platform capability – manual vs. automated process? Do you have sales and marketing automation tools available for use in your business? If not, then you are limited to a live launch and may find that this isn’t as streamlined or cost-effective as it could be. Even if a live launch is your preferred method of launch, it’s worth carefully considering whether any aspects of the launch (and associated customer care and support) could be automated to help you work more efficiently and ensure that customers always receive the highest level of care and support possible.
- Potential uptake – is this a product or service for which you anticipate hundreds or thousands of people to want? Or is this something that only a few people may be interested in? Though the value of your items can impact your overall decision too, it’s worth ensuring that your systems and processes are robust enough for the estimated sales of your product/service. Again, automation can help you to deal with a heavy demand for your services even if you want to carry out a ‘live’ launch.
- Do you only have capacity to open sales for this product/service at certain points throughout the year? If you are offering a course with pre-defined start and end dates, or are selling products that only come into stock at certain points throughout the year, a live launch could be an appropriate option for you, as the pre-launch and launch period are a specified number of days/weeks. If, on the other hand, your product or service can be purchased by anyone at any point throughout the year, then clearly a live launch isn’t an appropriate option for you – you’ll be on live sales duty throughout the year whilst also dealing with all of the other aspects of the business! For evergreen courses and membership programmes that don’t have fixed start and end dates, evergreen funnels can be a great way of getting the attention of new, prospective clients and nurturing them into paying customers whilst you focus on other areas of the business.
There are a number of things that can have an impact on your decision to launch ‘live’ or via an evergreen funnel, but whichever you choose to embrace, we can help.
Book a Discovery Call today to find out how automation can help you to work more efficiently and effectively and drive sales in your unique business.