No, You Don't Need a Massive Following or Huge Email List to Succeed With Your Launch
Remember the cool kid's table in the high school cafeteria? How could we forget, right?
Getting ready to launch your new offer might bring back some of those high school insecurities. You look around at other brands with massive 7-figure launches and feel like you’re sitting at another table entirely, waiting to be “that cool.”
Newsflash, though: You already are that cool. Your launch is the cool kid's table in the cafeteria — at least as far as your audience is concerned. Whether you have a 6-figure business or not, whether you have 1 million followers or 312, you have everything you need to succeed. Because it’s not about the numbers – it never was. What’s going to make your launch a smashing success is your killer engagement and awareness.
Here’s what you need to know about how to succeed with your launch — even with a small following.
The downside of a large audience
Most brands start like yours — with a small but mighty audience. Their original followers or customers or clients are now die-hard brand loyalists who will shout their brand name from the high heavens. Because of that, those same brands may now have thousands of people on their mailing list and large sales numbers.
But do you know what else they have? More expenses, refunds, advertising costs, and customer service needs.
Because the bigger you get, the more expensive your launch will become. It’s an important principle to remember when you’re launching for the first time. Your brand will never be as lean and hungry to succeed as you are now and that’s a huge advantage.
Plus, there’s the whole issue of metrics. You know that you want more engagement — but have you ever thought about how a larger audience means lower engagement? More people who don’t see your posts, more people who don’t open your emails. That drives engagement metrics down. That’s why I believe it's better to have 50% engagement with 500 people on your list than 3% engagement with 5,000 people on your list.
You can do so much more than you realize right now, even with a small audience. Keep reading to hear a few.
Your small following can still = big conversions.
Here’s the thing that most of us didn’t realize in high school: the real cool kid's table was your table. The one you shared with your friends, the people who you knew and who hung out with you every day. Those relationships were what made the teens years fun (or at least less traumatizing).
It’s the same thing with your brand. What’s going to make your launch successful is the relationships you have with your audience and the connections you make with real people.
Marketing isn’t only about selling to a wide pool of people who barely know your brand name let alone what you sell. It’s about building relationships that keep people coming back. You want to show your audience who you are and how you can help them. Here are the three things you have to do to make the most of a small audience:
Show the eff up
Really, this is the biggest part: you showing up. Talking to people. Connecting with them.
How do you do this? Find your audience where they are. Hop on TikTok, share on your Instagram Stories, make the Reel, write blogs for the people who’ve asked questions about your area of expertise. Whatever your audience is doing or asking for, start doing that.
Show who you’ve helped
Show what you are doing to really support your audience. Yes, it’s about the offers you create but it might also be about the transformation you’ve provided a client or a customer who was thrilled with their end result.
You have to show people what they can get out of what you’re offering — and the best way to do that is to share social proof. This is also a great way to grow your reach (and therefore your audience, which is kinda like inviting the cool people to your lunch table…).
Show them you understand
Make sure your audience knows that you’ve either:
a.) been where they are
b.) have helped other people who are right where they are
There’s a reason you created this new offer or the solutions your business provides: to help people with a particular challenge or goal. If you want to make the most of a small audience, you need to start by sharing that!
How to use your small audience to your advantage
So… you want this launch to be a success. You don’t want to just overlook your small-but-dedicated following and you want to really lean into the flexibility that a smaller audience has to offer. Here’s what you can do to make that happen:
Engage, engage, engage
You’ve got to talk to your audience. I mean really talk. Get to know the people who are following you and have real conversations. DM them, comment on their posts, follow them back. You can’t buy brand loyalty off $27 Instagram ads but you can create it by showing up and getting to know your people.
Plan, plan, plan
There’s nothing sexier than a good launch checklist. Plan for every contingency and cover all your bases by creating a clear launch plan before it’s crunch time. Make sure it’s clear what you are offering, how you will test it, what you’ll do to promote it, and how you’ll onboard buyers who opt in to this new offer.
Take your audience along for the ride
Pull back the curtain and let your little army in on the behind-the-scenes goodness of your offer. Share the creation process or a “now I can laugh” situation about the time all your tech broke. Tell them why you created this new offer.
Whatever you do, don’t just spring it on your small audience the day it goes live — that’s like telling your high school lunchmate that you’re moving tables after you move tables. They’ll feel left out, and you don’t want that. You want to make them feel included and invited to move with you, right?
(I’m almost done stirring up our collective high school trauma, I promise.)
Let your audience share feedback
Ask your followers or buyers for feedback on the progress you’re making on your new offer. Take polls, ask questions about preferences, and let them express themselves in their own words. Let them have a hand in the creation process — and you can actually use their input to guide your creation and marketing for the launch. #WinWin.
Harness the power of your squad
Ask your friends, your loyal followers, and others to share your news. Consider creating an affiliate program or just offering fun “Thank you” gifts to people who share your launch with their audience.
Plus, this is a great time to leverage your current audience to grow an even bigger one: Prep your social media posts, blogs, emails, videos, or even TikToks so they’re all ready for the big launch day. Plan to be a guest on podcasts that release around your launch time or offer to create a joint venture webinar with someone in your audience.
Really tap into the power of the squad you’ve already built. I’m betting they’d be excited to show up for you.
Don’t wait to launch — your audience won’t grow if you don’t
You may have never made it to the cool kid’s table in high school. But you’re creating your own now and welcoming everyone in. Don’t forget how good it feels to be on the inside and to feel like you belong – that’s the feeling you’re giving the audience who has maybe been with you from the beginning. The OGs.
If you’ve planned your launch right and taken your small audience along for the ride, they’re going to be right there with you on the big day. And they’re going to invite their friends.
Don’t wait for another 100 followers before launching. Your army will help you grow. All you have to do is pay attention to the people who’ve helped you grow this far, create offers that serve them, and make them feel included in the process! Et voila — a successful launch (and no more eating alone).