5 Things I Learned from a 10 Day Product Launch

When I first heard about Gumroad’s Small Product Lab challenge, I was intrigued and frankly, a whole lot intimidated. The concept is that, in 10 days, the participants would conceptualize, create, and launch a “small product.” I didn’t think I could come up with an idea in 10 days, much less an idea that was feasible, marketable, and that solved a problem that actually needed solving. I signed up anyway and the emails promptly got lost in the inbox shuffle.
Then, Gumroad ran the challenge a second time and a group of us decided to tackle this challenge head-on. Long story short? Last Thursday, I launched my first ever ebook: The Ultimate E-Course Toolkit!

launch-in-10-days
launch-in-10-days

The entire process was such a whirlwind; I’m still a bit shellshocked (and recovering from sleep deprivation) from it all. Nonetheless, I’m so glad I committed to doing it this time around and managed to create 26 pages of super sexy worksheets, planners, calendars, and resources that I can both sell and send to my e-course clients. YAS!. I learned so much from doing this,  so after 10 days of craziness, here are my top 5 takeaways from the SPL challenge!

1. Plan, Plan, Plan

One of the best parts of the SPL challenge is that, even though it was a super tight timeframe, they plan out what you should be doing each of the 10 days. Plus, they have you create your own gameplan to carefully map out every aspect of what you’ll be creating, how you’ll be delivering it, and how you’ll promote it. When doing something like the SPL challenge, it helps so much to make a plan, and force yourself to stick to it!

2. Get + Stay Organized

I’m pretty bad at this, if I’m being completely honest; organization is definitely not my biggest strength. I found, though, that at least having some semblance of organization was crucial to succeeding here. For me, the best way to organize my ideas was a combination of trello and a master document where I put all of my links, research findings and other notes. I began the challenge with a super detailed outline and referred back to it every time I’d start veering off course.

3. KISS (Keep it Simple, Stupid)

You’d think this one would be a no-brainer, but at some point I found myself with 20+ pages in the Toolkit and wondering if I needed to add even more sections! 10 days seems like a good chunk of time but in reality, when combined with client work and, ya know, life things, 10 days is a crazy short timeframe to create and sell a product of that size. Keeping it simple and sticking to my original plan was the only way I was able to launch in 10 days, and even then it required an all-nighter to pull it off.

4. Embrace the Unfollowers

Despite the fact that my email announcing the toolkit was the first one I’d sent out in over a year and included an exclusive discount, I still got a few unfollowers. My initial reaction was to be bummed (ok, and a little indignant), but then I reminded myself that it was a good thing. Why would I want people on my email list who don’t care about what I have to say for the first time in so long? And if they’re not as excited as I am about this crazy entrepreneurship rollercoaster that we’re on, then why bother trying to appease them? My list might be a little smaller, but at least I know it’s full of people who are interested and invested in what’s going on.

5. Have a Support System

This was definitely what got me across the finish line with the SPL. I had a group for accountability and was in the SPL Facebook group as well, where we all shared our progress, worked through our (many) challenges, and helped promote each other. Having other people to bounce ideas off of and cheer me on was great, and it also inadvertently created a bit of a “peer pressure” effect for me – since I’d publicly committed to creating and launching the toolkit in 10 days, I had no choice but to follow through!

Oh, and a bonus #6? As always, done is better than perfect.

If you’re curious about the toolkit or are ready to snag your copy, head on over here! If you’re planning on creating an e-course any time soon, you won’t want to miss out on this crazy good resource.

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0 thoughts on “5 Things I Learned from a 10 Day Product Launch”

  1. Hey, Lindsay! Fellow SPL-er here. It’s funny because we started off pretty much the same way: signed up for SPL the first time, emails got lost, signed up a 2nd time, came out triumphant! I wrote my own SPL in review post here: https://stefgonzaga.com/how-i-created-and-launched-a-new-product-in-10-days/
    Your book looks really great! I can’t wait to include it in my roundup of SPL products blog post. Also, I agree with each of your take-away lessons, especially “Embrace the Unfollowers.” It just means it’s preparing for the people who do WANT to listen to what you have to say.

    Let’s stay in touch! Congrats again for launching. 🙂

  2. One note about sending to your list: If you haven’t mailed them in a long time, you can expect a few unsubs. The challenge is to bring the rest back into the fold. Put together a 3 or 4 email sequence to get them excited about what you have to share with them. Additionally, from now on, make it a point to email them two or three times a week. You’ll be surprised how this will make all the difference in the world! Good luck, and great job w/ the challenge!

    1. Great idea on the sequence! Though I’ll never email people that often, I know how much 2-3x a week emails drive me crazy, unless it’s a course, so there’s no way I’ll put my subscribers through that 😉 Maybe 1-2x a month though!

    2. Great idea on the sequence! Though I’ll never email people that often, I know how much 2-3x a week emails drive me crazy, unless it’s a course, so there’s no way I’ll put my subscribers through that Maybe 1-2x a month though!

  3. Congratulations! That must have been quite a crazy ride 🙂 it sounds exciting and I might actually join in the next time around.
    That are some great lessons to keep in mind, especially the organizing part.

    Now one thing I wanted to address, and I see Phil has already wrote it.
    Unsubsribes probably have less to do with you announcing your product, and more with not writing people for the whole year.
    One, the majority of folks simply forgets about you and that they even subscribed.
    Two, warming them up with something before you send out a straight sales email sure helps as Phil puts it “bring people in the fold”.

    The thing where I disagree with Phil is the frequency of writing. Personally, to me 2-3 times a week is way too much (both as a reader and as a sender). I tend to email my people once or twice a month, and the engagement has been good.

    Hope this helps!
    Now that you’ve finally broken the ice, don’t fall off the radar again 😉

    1. You’re absolutely spot on with the idea of warming people up. I definitely was off the radar a long time (though interestingly, in the same circles as almost all of my unsub’s online). And yeah, there’s NO way I’d do 2-3x a week…if for no other reason than I can barely blog that often, much less email! 1-2x a month is golden. Thanks for all of your input, lady! You should definitely join in next round, it’s a really good experience.

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