Last week I did my first webinar. It was fun and one of the more nerve wracking things I have ever done! But I found it more fun than stressful which is why I am already doing another one. There was one huge mistake that I made though in the webinar. It is still bothering and frustrating me a week later.
I did a soft launch.
What’s a launch? A launch is when you try to sell a new product or service. A soft launch is when you lightly mention your product or service. You don’t sell it, you just mention it. This is what I did. Not good.
I was hoping that I would do this awesome webinar, provide a lot of value and people would join my class. I have to stop this “hoping” business! Businesses are built on hard work and sales. Not hoping someone will buy something from you.
Where I Went Wrong
1. I was scared
I have provided all this content for almost six months and it has all been free. The only thing I have ever asked people for is their email address. You, my blog readers, have been so kind to me. You have emailed me and chatted with me on social media. You have told me that my blog is impacting your life. I can’t put into words how much that means to me.
So I was scared to offer you something for sale. I was scared that you would think I was violating your trust. That here I was, just another person trying to get money from you like everyone does with real estate agents.
Because of this I did a soft launch and hoped people would buy. I was just plain scared and I know that it showed when I got to the slides about the class. People could sense my hesitation and started dropping off the webinar. Watching the attendee numbers go down did not help my fear either.
2. Didn’t follow the sales process
As you know with sales there is a process. You give value, you invoke fear, you handle objections and you close. I have never considered myself a natural saleswoman. I have my process of guiding people to a solution only after talking to them about their problems. But there is a natural sales process and I didn’t follow it.
I told the webinar attendees why landing pages are awesome. I talked about hot topics for a great opt-on offer and how to automate the process. But I didn’t tell people why they needed a landing page. I didn’t tell people how much it could change their business. I didn’t tell them how they could stop paying for leads from third party vendors by doing a landing page. I didn’t do any of the sales process. I mentioned the class, I didn’t sell the class. There is a big difference here. Mentioning a product or service doesn’t turn into sales. Selling turns into sales.
3. Didn’t work through value
Like I mentioned I didn’t give enough value about the class. Yes I gave the attendees value about landing pages and why they are important. What I did not do is give enough value about the class. I thought by showing how great landing pages were everyone would want one. But I did not give enough value that my class is the best way for you to build a landing page. That by creating a landing page you will pull in leads from your website. I gave value about landing pages, not about the class.
4. I made assumptions
I made two pretty big assumptions with my launch. I assumed that people would buy the class because I was giving away good content for free in the webinar. That they would feel compelled to buy the class because the free stuff was so good. I also assumed that people would buy because I have given away content for the last six months on my blog.
But this is a business not a charity! People aren’t going to just give me money because I have done something nice for them! It is my job as the owner of this business to say “Hey buy from me because if you think the free stuff is good imagine how great the paid stuff is.” It again goes back to the natural sales process at this point. I can’t assume people will buy from me just because I have written great content. I have to sell them on the paid stuff too. Besides, you know what they say about the word assume…
5. Bad sales page
If you checked out the sales page for the class it was not good! I was shooting myself in the foot there. Just like selling via my voice and the webinar, I needed to do that on the sales page for the class. I did not do that. I wrote about a few benefits. I kind of wrote about what you would get. But that’s about it. In all fairness to myself, the sales page was the last thing I did before the webinar. I was exhausted from working until 3am every night getting ready for the webinar. I didn’t follow the sales process at all on the sale page for the class. Even websites need a sales process, especially if you are selling something!
6. Webinar selling is strange
Like I mentioned my sales process is gradual and always one-to-one. I haven’t trained myself on how to sell to a group. Then add in the fact that I couldn’t see the faces of the people I was trying to sell to and it was just plain weird. What I learned here is that I need more practice on how to sell in this kind of format.
7. No follow up
My husband is a great sales guy. He asked me after the webinar “Okay great. Now what? What’s your follow up?” I said to him “Right now all I want to do is sleep. I will deal with the follow up tomorrow.” And yet I never did. I was sad. I was frustrated. I didn’t want to think about my soft launch and how terrible it went after I put all this hard work into the webinar. I just wanted people to buy from me. So I ignored the follow up and didn’t do anything.
How I am fixing it
Yes I was frustrated, frustrated with myself. Here I had this great opportunity and I did a soft launch. Ugh. So I picked myself up, got over my frustration and made a plan to change the outcome next time.
The day after the webinar I had my meeting with my mastermind group. The guys in my group are amazing and are great at sales. They made me walk through the entire webinar process. Then they asked what happened with the sales process. They are the ones who showed me what I did wrong. They are the ones that helped me set up a plan to change my outcome.
Here’s my plan:
1. New webinar
I am going to do another webinar on Thursday, April 2nd about the “why’s” behind a landing page. I am giving myself another shot at this and I hope my attendees will too. The new webinar will not be a repeat of the first webinar. This webinar will have even more new content. I’m excited about this one too!
2. Boost my confidence
I am going to take a look at all the emails, tweets, posts and comments people have sent me since I started blogging. I am writing good content. Content that is so good that you should see the paid for stuff! I am a business and I do need to make a profit. That is okay! I am going to practice the sales part of the webinar until I don’t feel nervous or bad saying it.
3. Follow the sales process
I am going to follow the sales process when I present my landing page class. I am going to write the sales process down and then add my sales pitch to it. This will help me to see what I am missing for my pitch and will help me not forget anything.
4. Set up better sales page
I am going to make the sales page better. I am going to explain the benefits. I am going to explain in great detail what you get in the class.
5. Be Clear
I am going to be very clear in what I am offering. I think I suffer from I know what I am offering but I don’t make it as clear for other people. I am going to run my pitch past my husband to see if he understands it. He will tell me if I am being clear or not. This will give me the opportunity to rework it until I am clear.
6. Do a VIP Launch
I just learned about VIP launches on Wednesday. I am going to offer one on my launch on the webinar and I am excited! A VIP launch is a limited time offer with a lot of extras for those that sign up for the class right away. I love the idea of giving extra free stuff to the people who sign up first!
7. Follow Up
Finally I am going have a solid follow up plan. I am not going to annoy people, but I am going to follow up via email. I am going to write the email plan before the launch so that I am not too burnt out to do it like I was last time.
How does this relate to real estate? Well I would ask you, are you guilty of a soft launch? The saying is out there “don’t be a secret agent.” You want people to know you sell real estate. You can’t casually tell them about it. You have to sell yourself. I encourage you to do what I just did. Take a look at different prospects you didn’t close. Write down what you did or talk about it with a colleague. Pinpoint what you could have done differently like I did. This is how we grow. This is how we get better. This is how we close more sales.
Tell me about your sales process in the comments below. Are you guilty of the soft launch?
Oh and speaking of classes…do you want to be the first to know when my VIP Launch happens for the landing page class? Email me at jennifer@marketingideasforagents(dot)com to get on the list!