Thinking about launching a new or existing product or service? The “Behind the Launch” series is just for you.
There is no one way to launch.
Here we feature launch stories to entertain, educate and inspire you. Have a launch you’d like to have me feature? Submit your story here.
Here is Licia Morelli’s Behind the Launch story
Tell us about your launch.
I started the process about 2 years ago when the book was first picked up by Tilbury House Publishers. It’s been an interesting process because in tandem with the book starting I was also starting to build my business and create a platform at liciamorelli.com.
As we got closer to the ship date for the book’s release I began talking about it more and more via social media and my newsletter list. Please keep in mind that my list has 1300 people on it and my Facebook page has about 2800 people. These aren’t crazy big numbers that I’m working with 🙂
When the book went up for pre-sale at Amazon we started a Facebook ad that announced its upcoming release. I’ll be honest here – this is where I spent the most money. I hired a FB ads account manager and spent about $750 for the month prior to the ship date on ads. We pre-sold 1500 copies of the book during the pre-sale time.
I also connected with the amazing ladies and gents that did testimonials for the book and from there they announced on their own social media and in their newsletters. This was fantastic for organic exposure and really created a lot of sales as well. The final piece was incorporating it into my own newsletter list and announcing to them as well. This generated more buzz on social media and brought more awareness to the book itself.
What were your goals for your launch (sales, list growth, exposure)?
My main goal for my launch was to sell 1500 copies of the book before its ship date on September 7th and to sell through the first 3000 books buy December 1st (We sold 3500! Ya!) I also wanted to be able to sign a second book deal (which I’m in the process of doing) and grow my list and social media platform, which I was able to do.
How much did you invest in the promoting your launch?
Month 1: $750
Month 2: $500
Month 3: $500
Facebook Ads Manager: $600
How many did you sell and what did you make in the end?
We’ve sold about 2800 books and I’ve personally made about $1500 for my cut, the total for book sales has been $47,460.
What’s the biggest lesson you learned about launching?
The thing about launching a book is that you have to understand if you’ve gone through a publishing house you’re not going to make a ton of money until you hit critical mass. What you’re gaining is credibility and expert status in the marketplace. You’re also setting yourself up for new opportunities as well as new book deals. This was a very different experience for me because I wasn’t the sole owner of the goods so I saw a different “revenue” aspect of this launch. I knew this launch was less about me making a boatload of money and more about me getting my name out there in a much bigger way with a publishing house supporting me as an author.
For folks who are self publishing – launching a book could make fantastic money once you’re upfront costs are paid for and if you launch like you launch a course or an offering then you’ll see great rewards.
Were there moments of overwhelm, insecurity, or doubt? How did you slay your launch monsters?
I think with any launch that I’ve experienced there’s always two launch monsters that show up. The first is the “Imposter monster” where I feel like I’m faking my way to “expert status” and the second is “Failure Monster” where, when I start the launch process I feel like I won’t sell anything or be successful.
My best way of slaying these monster is by reminding myself I only need “20 seconds of courage” (stole that from the movie “We Bought A Zoo” 🙂 and knowing that I can do anything for 20 seconds and if I can get through the initial leap of getting to the next step and having courage then it won’t be as bad as it seems.
The other process I use to slay the monsters is when I’m feeling overwhelmed like I won’t sell anything or no one will buy and I notice myself hitting refresh on Amazon or in my emails I have to take a moment and see that I’m gripping to an outcome. When I feel myself doing this I take a deep breath in, let it out and when I let it out I say to myself “Allow” . When I say this I can feel my whole energy shift and I can let go of the push, push, push of trying to make something happen and instead I can trust that the work I’ve done and continue to do will ultimately pay off.
What’s your advice for others who want to become launch warriors?
My best piece of advice for others to become launch warriors is if something isn’t feeling good or you feel like a part of the process feels inauthentic then switch it up. As long as you’re in line with what feels good to you (and you’ve done the work and are launching for the love of it all rather than the money of it all) your audience will feel good too and will feel good buying from you as well. Our fans can spot desperation from a mile away and when they spot it they don’t buy. So make sure you’re coming from a place of service when you launch and you’ll feel good, your tribe will feel good, and the goods and services that you’ve lovingly put together will sell.
For your next launch, what will you do differently?
For me I will space out my offerings a bit longer. I went from a course launch right into launching The Lemonade Hurricane because it’s the way the timing worked out and I think my list is needing a bit of a break and reset so the next time I’ll for sure space it all out differently 🙂
Licia Morelli is the bestselling children’s author of The Lemonade Hurricane: A Story of Mindfulness and Meditation (Tilbury House Publishers), creator of the cancer research based, Morelli Foundation: Collaboration for a Cure and internationally acclaimed psychic and founder of The House of Woo: 4 Weeks to Recognizing Your Own Psychic Hits to Get Ahead in Business and in Life. Licia has been featured in Boston Magazine, Publishers Weekly, Barnes and Noble, elephant journal and Tiny Buddha.