You’ve done it, you took the plunge and rebranded your business, your website is nearly finished….but now what?! CUE THE PANIC! What do you do next? It’s time to launch that baby!
There are four steps to launching your new website with a bang!
1| Pick an official launch date.
Check your calendar for a time when you can be free from any major client work because you will be crazy busy during launch week.
You want to pick a date that’s a few weeks after your website completed so you have plenty of time to get things in order.
Do not rush yourself. But, also don’t wait for everything to be perfect. Things will never be perfect. That’s why you’ve cleared your calendar for the week.
You don’t want to put off your launch because then you are missing out on clients but you also want enough time to do it right. 2-3 weeks is a good time frame from the day your website is complete until your official “launch date.” This is also a good buffer in case the design takes a little bit longer because that sometimes happens.
Also, let your designer know that you are planning to do a big launch/reveal on that date so they know ahead of time. They will probably be excited about just as you are.
So, pick a date and stick to it.
2| Start building buzz.
You want to start building buzz about a month or so before your launch date. You want people to be curious about what’s going on, but you don’t want to draw it out so much that they forget about you. Here are something you can do to start building the buzz about your new website.
Here are some of my favorite ways to start building that excitement. There’s also a freebie at the bottom of this post with 24 ideas to get you started.
- Get a coming soon page up on your website. You can even add a countdown during the last few days to really build excitement. Give them a place to get on your email list to get info when you are ready to launch.
- Share behind the scenes and sneak peeks on your social media and in your email newsletters. Things like getting a delivery of new business cards, a picture from your branding photoshoot or a selfie of your face when your designer sent you a screenshot of your new about page. Anything fun like that. People love sneak peeks!
- Do a free 5-day email challenge the week before your launch. This will really help get people on your email list and build the buzz before your launch. Bonus points for this one, because this is something you can reuse later as an opt-in or sell as a mini-training.
- Do a giveaway or contest the week before your launch. This is another great way to build your list and get people excited about what you offer. You definitely want to make sure your giveaway is targeted towards your audience to make it really effective. You could give away a free coaching session or entry to your course. Something that won’t take up too much of your time but its really valuable to your ideal client.
- Collaborate with other creatives! This, I think is one of the most exciting ways to boost your launch. With a perfectly timed guest blogger spot or podcast interview you can really expand your reach! The other creative is going to be sharing your info right at the same time you are sharing about something really exciting happening soon which means New followers will get caught up in the excitement! Magic will happen.
One more fun way to create buzz is to create a video about your launch or go live. You can talk about the why behind the changes and what you are most excited about. If you do something edited you can even run those as an ad on Facebook and Instagram to get a little more reach.
When I launched my course, Adobe Illustrator for Non-designers. I actually made a video for the people who would NOT like the course, and it was really fun to lead with that.
Think outside the box when it comes to building buzz. This should be fun!
Ready for the easy part, grab this freebie and you’ll have 24 things you can do build buzz around the launch and a calendar to help you schedule it all out!
Build Your Launch Checklist!
3| Prep everything ahead of time and then double-check … twice.
This is all about being diligent about getting things in order for a smoother launch.
Have things for people to do when they get to your website. You want to have blogs post ready for people to read when they get to your website. You want to have an awesome freebie for them to sign up for. Links to follow you on social. Things for them to buy!
It’s literally the worst when someone launches and website and there is NOTHING THERE! Actually, the worst is when it has things like coming soon or filler text for weeks and weeks.
So have stuff for people to do when they check out your website! (see why you gave yourself buffer time!)
Test all your links and forms! If you said there was a link….make sure there is an actually a link to go to. I can’t tell you how many times this happens to me because I tend to rush things. Don’t do that. Learn from mistakes.
Order new business cards or whatever printed materials you need.
Test your links and forms again. Check for mistakes. Ask a friend to help you with this in exchange for coffee on you!
When you are ready to “go live” you want to be prepared so you can change everything at the same time. You don’t want to have one logo on Facebook and another on your website.
This is also a good time to make sure your systems are solid. After a big launch, you will most likely have an influx of inquiries or orders. Make sure you can handle them, which is why you really really want to test everything!
4| TELL EVERYONE!
Tell your biz besties, tell your mastermind group, tell your real-life besties, tell your mom, tell your grandma. TELL EVERYONE.
You really have to tell everyone. I hear so often from women with an online business that they don’t want to announce to their family and friends about their business, and I understand the fear of judgment. But let me ask you this if you opened up a little cafe in your town….wouldn’t you tell everyone you know about it? Why is your online business any different??? You really do have to jump over that mindset hurdle.
Sorry for the tough love.
Announce it on your email list, several times.
You can even ask certain people to share about your launch. People like your photographer and designer. Anyone who helped you get to this point! Anyone who is also excited for you! If you feel comfortable doing so, ask them to share about it. The team of people who helped you are definitely going to want to shout you out and so are the people who love you and support you!
Ask people who are well known in your industry to give you a shout out! It’s uncomfortable, but this is how you launch with a bang.
Send snail mail postcards to those who’ve supported you along the way and past clients! You can thank them for supporting your business, let them know where to find you now, and remind them you are still alive!
This is also a great way to generate momentum after your launch because eventually, the buzz will die down, but a postcard in the mail goes a long way towards reminding people how they felt when they worked with you!
Step five…wait. I said there were only four steps…. this technically isn’t a step but it’s important for any launch! HAVE FUN. Be yourself and have fun. Your excitement is going to wear off on those who check out
Launching doesn’t have to be stressful. It might be a little but stressful because it’s new to you but it CAN AND SHOULD be really fun! Be sure to grab this list of ideas, it will really help you come up with fun ideas!