Episode #98: What To Do After A Bad Launch

I don’t believe that launching has to be hard, but it does bring up all the feelings, especially when you’re disappointed with the results.


Listen to the Episode:

Ruth Poundwhite 0:00
I don’t believe that launching has to be hard. But it does bring up all of the feelings, especially when you’re disappointed with the results. So off the back of a bad launch of my own, I am sharing what to do next. And some important mindset shifts to consider. As you keep working towards your bigger vision in your business. You’re listening to quietly ambitious with conversations about how it really feels to build a business that honours your whole self unapologetically. And that includes who you are, how you feel, what you really desire, the impact that you want to create, and importantly, the money you want to make. I’m your host, Ruth Poundwhite. And my superpower is supporting sensitive and ambitious humans to make more money by fully expressing and owning all of who they are. Let’s dive in.

Ruth Poundwhite 0:59
So today, we’re going to be talking about what you do when you have a bad launch. And I just want to share what inspired this is me having a recent bad launch of my own except I really don’t actually consider it to be bad. It was bad in terms of the fact that I disappointed myself in terms of what I was hoping the outcome would be versus what it actually was. But it was so good in so many other ways. And I’m going to share that with you in this episode. So the first thing I want to talk about is, what do we define as a bad launch. So I could say that my most recent launch was bad because it didn’t bring in the number of people and it didn’t bring in the the money, like the number of paying people and the money that I was hoping for it to bring in. That said, it was really good, because I really grew my audience by quite accidentally a significant chunk. I really, truly connected with them through doing a free course to kick off the launch. I love the content that I created as part of this free course. And I’m actually going to turn it around and repurpose it into a paid thing. And what have I already said, I, you know, I had fun sharing that with my people. And I have no doubt that I laid some incredible foundations, and that some of those people are going to go on to come and work with me in the future. So in all ways, except for the money and the numbers. The launch was a real success. i Oh, yeah, I know the other thing, I was gonna say, I didn’t burn myself out doing it, I was very relaxed, I was very in tune with myself I wasn’t pushing. So in all ways that launch was actually a success, apart from the money now, rewind a bit to the first time I launched my rest and rise group programme. That was a good launch. It was actually my first five figure launch in this business. And the reason I share that is because firstly, you can make really good money without having five figure launches. So my son is shouting in the background, but that I’m just recording these episodes imperfectly with him at home. But yeah, you can make really good money without even having a five figure launch. And past me would have been thrilled with that yet. So it was good money wise, it was good because I was launching my new programme, but it felt so difficult to me. So it was a good launch. But actually, it felt bad because I was massively stretching my comfort zone. And I had all the feelings come up. I was basically stretching in terms of like deepening what I was saying I was doing a free challenge in that launch where I was really going deep. And saying stuff I’d never really talked about before in my business or some of it anyway, I was launching a whole new programme with a whole new framework. So in case you’re wondering, I think already mentioned, it was my rest and rise group programme, which by the way, is an amazing programme. And it’s still open now. But at that time, I hadn’t run it yet. So I didn’t know how amazing it was going to be. I had to put that faith in and trust in myself at the same time as stretching my comfort zone and what I was talking about. And it resulted in loads of feelings, which by the way is really normal. But at the same time that launch was really hard. And in between the first launch that it was a success in terms of income, but difficult in terms of other stuff. The most recent launch that was successful, always apart from the income. I did do a launch in the middle and I just want to highlight this because that was a successful launch in terms of income and a successful launch in terms of it being really easy. I need to highlight that because it is so possible. And it is it’s possible. That’s basically what I want to highlight. Okay, so this was the first thing I wanted to say what do you do after a bad launch and I really want you to consider why it’s bad. Really, really consider why you feel it was a bad launch and if it does come down to money. Ask yourself what was good about it. Aside from the money, because that is usually something that is worth celebrating or worth being proud of yourself for, that you’re not giving yourself enough credit for when you’re so focused on the money and the numbers. And the next thing I want to say is just be kind to yourself, honestly, no matter what happens in a launch, it takes nothing away from who you are as a person, absolutely nothing. Your business results mean nothing about who you are. At your core, you are enough, you are enough whether you have a five figure launch, you’re enough whether you have a six figure launch your enough whether you have 100 pound launch enough, or whether you have a launch where you sell nothing, you are always enough, failure is actually really, really normal in business. And that’s partly why I want to talk about it in this episode. Failure is really normal in business, it’s also really normal to have ups and downs, like I’ve just described, like two successful launches back to back then one that wasn’t so successful in terms of income. Failure always leads to growth, failure always leads to two lessons, if you’re open to them, it’s a really normal part of entrepreneurship, the key thing is that you need to keep going. So one failed launch, two failed launches, even three, four, however many it takes, they do not mean that your entire business is a failure, they certainly don’t mean that you are a failure.

Ruth Poundwhite 6:26
But you have to use the information, you have to be willing to use the information and keep trying and keep putting stuff out there and keep going. Which leads me on to the next point I want to talk about. The thing is if you have a bad launch, and I shared this with the people in my restaurant rights group, because as far as I was concerned, the prep, I already had people in the group. So you know, I already have a wonderful group of humans. So it’s not that I’m not running the group if the launch wasn’t success. But the thing is, they know that I was launching it, and they would they would know how many new people come in, right? And they might be expecting a lot of new people. And if that doesn’t happen, then I have to explain that to them. And I was thinking about that. And I was thinking okay, so is it really like a fear of what my clients will think if this launch isn’t a success, that makes me feel bad about it. And I decided that, no, I don’t want to feel bad about it. Because this is such a valuable lesson for my people in that group. So I came in. And I said to them, you know, the launch didn’t go as expected, I was really convinced that I was going to have six new people in that programme from that launch, and I didn’t, and what I shared with them, and what I want to say here is the fact that it doesn’t change my overall vision, I have a vision for my business as a whole, I have a vision for my group programme rest and rise, I have an impact I want to create in the lives of the people that I work with. And I have an impact that I want to create in my life. My overall vision is not to have six people in a given launch. That is not my vision, that is just a short term, like a means to an end type goal, right? My vision is not to have a certain number of people in my programme a certain amount of money in the bank, although Yeah, I want to make more money, and I’m owning that. But my vision is bigger than that, you know, the goal is not to have a certain number of people in any given launch. So I hope I’m making this clear. But whatever your results are day to day. And whatever your goals are day to day is, is different is part of but it’s different from the overall vision, the overall vision stays the same, the overall vision does not change, no matter what the results of the day to day activities and launches may be. So I hope that I’ve made that clear, because, I mean, I know what I’m saying. But I also aware that it could sound a bit confusing, I don’t know, let me know how this lands. But my overall vision is absolutely the same. It doesn’t change based on one launch, which basically reinforces the point I was saying earlier about getting back up and doing again, the overall vision is still there. So I’m willing to keep working towards it. And this is a shift that I’ve had probably over the last year, year and a half about goal setting, knowing that the goal is my vision, the goal is happening. It just might not happen on the timescale that my ego wants it to happen on right. And that’s the thing like I’ve recently asked my people, my clients a question, how does it make you feel? If so, I asked them to basically say this phrase in their head. I am 100% sure that that the I should have read this before I started saying the book God, I’m unhappy. I’m 100% sure that the money and success I’m dreaming of in my business is happening, something like that. I also my clients to kind of imagine themselves saying it or say out loud and let me know what brings up for them and The really most common response that came up for them was Yes, I believe it, there is a part of me that knows it is happening. And so what I think is that’s your, like, deep down wise person with knows that anything is possible, right? That inner part of you. And there’s a part of them. That is like, why not? Why hasn’t it happened yet? Why isn’t it happening quicker? Why isn’t it happening better? Why isn’t it happening easier? And that’s the human ego part, right? But the thing I want to say about that part is, what if it’s happening exactly the way it’s supposed to happen? You know, like, had I not had that bad lunch, I wouldn’t have been able to share this content with you now, I wouldn’t have been able to show up. And by the way, when I showed up in my restaurant, rise group programme and share these lessons with my clients there, I was not doing it from a place of like apologising, or saying, you know, like, like, I’ve let you down by not giving you the example of the best of a launch. I’m sharing it from a place of, you know, empower that, like, I was empowered as a leader in that group, to share with them, you know, this is part of business, this is part of the journey. And it doesn’t change my vision, my vision is still on track. So it’s normal to ask yourself, why isn’t it happening sooner? Why isn’t it happening on exactly the terms that I am hoping for, and exactly the way I wrote down in my journal,

Ruth Poundwhite 11:26
and that’s your human side. And it’s totally fine to feel those feelings. But just know that the journey has a purpose as well, it absolutely does. So your overall vision hasn’t changed. And I think that’s probably the most important lesson of this podcast episode that I want you to take away. But I do have a few more other points to say. So I will get to them. And I’m on a time limit. Because I’ve got to be somewhere in 10 minutes time. So let’s hope I can say it all in within that time frame. The next thing I want to talk about if you had a bad launch is firstly, give yourself a break. Like it’s really important, I think to decompress after a launch, especially if it’s a bit more of a high energy launch. Like the way I described my first launch of rest and rise, you know, when you’re really stretching your comfort zone, because sometimes it is uncomfortable when you’re stretching. Like I don’t think launching has to fundamentally be hard, because I know that’s an ingrained belief that we all have. So it’s important for me to speak to that. And at the same time, sometimes it is hard because it is a stretch, that’s okay. So give yourself time to decompress. But then I do recommend within, you know, a couple of weeks of the launch ending, definitely while it’s still fresh in your mind, to write down all the lessons that you learned from the launch, like it’s really important. And I have a whole mini course, at the time of recording it. I don’t have it up for sale yet. So I don’t know how much it’s going to cost. But I know it’s going to be really low cost. So at the time this episode is live, that mini course will be available, it’s called God, you know what I should have actually looked at what I called it, I can’t remember, it’s called journaling for lunches or something like that. Anyway, really powerful mini course. And I think that most of you listening to this, if you’re benefiting from this episode, then definitely get the course it’s going to be a really low price. But basically, I recommend that you sit down with your journal, write down all the lessons, all the feelings that came up all the things you would have done differently. Do it with compassion, compassion for yourself, like don’t do it in a way that you beat yourself up. Because the truth is, no launch is ever perfect. There’s always things we would have done differently. That’s why we’re writing down the lessons because we’re learning from it, right? So yeah, write down all the lessons and how it felt and stuff. But also ask yourself was the product in alignment with what I wanted to sell? Was it a really aligned offer was I really aligned to the price was anything any part of it out of alignment. And again, it’s just another learning piece, sometimes we can be convinced that something is fully in alignment. And it’s not until afterwards that we see where where the shaky bits were. So it’s totally fine to learn from it. And sometimes you’ll find that it absolutely was in alignment, and it didn’t sell the way you wanted it to. So then you can, instead of looking at the energetic side of it, you can look about the strategy, you can look at the strategies you can think about the messaging, like how did I convey the transformation that I offer my people? How did I speak to where they are now and what they where they desire to go, and how my offer kind of bridges the gap between the two play those two things. Maybe it’s a case that I didn’t give enough people like didn’t give enough time to warm up in the pre launch phase, or it could have done something differently, like free challenge and got people more excited. Maybe I was just too busy during the launch. And I needed to create more space in my calendar just to connect with myself and really tune into what I really want to say to my people here. The key point here that I really want to stress is you don’t need to reinvent the wheel every time so just because a thing didn’t go well one time doesn’t mean you need to burn the whole offer to the ground. That’s why we check in with our alignment. And that’s why we check in with some elements of the strategy. But changing a bit of messaging or changing the tagline or something is not the same as burning the whole offer down to the ground and starting from scratch. And I think that it that a lot of business owners have a tendency to keep keep doing that and getting a cycle of starting from scratch that they don’t really give it a chance to take off fully. So I just wanted to add that kind of caveat there.

Ruth Poundwhite 15:24
So yeah, checking your alignment, checking the strategy stuff. And then the last thing I want to say is really checking in with what deserves celebrating, but you’re not allowing yourself to celebrate because it hasn’t been good enough. So for example, in my recent launch, that was kind of a bad launch, I disappointed myself, it wasn’t a total failure, I still got new people into my programme. So I launched my rasterized group programme got new people I and then off the back of that launch my quite ambition. four week course. And I got lots of new people into that the total money I earned from the launch was not the same as the previous two launches I’d done. And it didn’t, it fell short of my expectations. But even me from like 18 months ago would have been thrilled with that amount of money. So it was really important for me to check myself and say, Okay, I’m really saying, this wasn’t good enough, this isn’t enough. And I feel like that’s a bit of a scarcity mindset thing. Like, like I said, past me from 18 months ago would have been thrilled. So this is where I think I want to encourage you to celebrate even the little things that did really go right. You know, even if you only made one sale, celebrate that sale. Like even if you had a group programme, and you only sold one space, and you ended up not being able to run the group celebrate the fact that one person did want to do it. And if you are earlier on and I said this to my restaurant rise people again. Like at this point, it’s kind of easier to celebrate because I’m still doing the programme. And I’ve already got the clients but earlier on in my business, it would have been the difference between running the programme or not running it at all. So I get I get it and I see you if you’re in that position, too. But celebrate any interest you had celebrate any growth you had in your audience, celebrate those connections and conversations you had with your people, celebrate you stretching yourself and your message, celebrate you showing up and doing justice, celebrate everything that you’ve learned in this process. Celebration is the opposite of the, you know, scarcity, mindset lack kind of thinking. And it’s so so important to honour how far we’ve come, even if we fall short of our own expectations. And just remember that every time we’re working towards a goal or a new milestone in our business, by the time we get there, there’s always something new in our sights, I think it’s really natural, especially if you identify as ambitious or quietly ambitious. So just honour that past version of you who wanted what you now have, take a moment to pause and reflect on that. Even if you fell short of what you wanted. Some past version of you would have been really, really proud of what you’ve done. So yeah, I think that’s what I wanted to say about what to do after a bad launch. And I hope that if you take away anything from this is that there’s really no such thing as a bad launch. Like, I think there’s a What’s the phrase you win or you learn? It’s totally true with launching. And I know it doesn’t feel like it. And I know it can bring up all the feelings Believe me, I know, I know that. And I’m actually just want to, you know, celebrate this publicly here, the fact that it hasn’t, it really hasn’t gotten to me that much. And that is because I’ve designed my business in a way that it doesn’t rely on any one launch. And if you are in the phase where your business does rely on any one launch, I feel for you, you haven’t done anything wrong, but I share this just so you know, it’s possible. And you get to design your business in a way that one launch doesn’t make or break your income. And remember, one launch means nothing about you as a human. Okay, so I think I’ve said it all I’ve done it well within my time limit. And I just want to say if you want to work more deeply on this stuff, this is the kind of stuff I do with my clients. This is the kind of stuff we talk about and work on and you know, get you back up to keep going and keep reaching new levels in your business with the failures along the way. Then get in touch about my one to one I am fully booked at the time of recording this but I have a waitlist. So you can sign up to that now if you know it’s for you, especially if you’re you want to make some positive changes shifts in your business in 2022. Or talk to me about restaurant rise is an amazing programme. It is an amazing community. My clients are doing amazing things and supporting each other in beautiful ways. And you know, we’re here for the hard times as well as the great times the times when it is tough and the feelings are coming up during a launch. And often that support that level of support can really, you know, make all the difference in how you show up and call those people in. So get in touch go to my website, Ruth poundwhite.com You’ll find all the work with me pages there. Come chat to me on Instagram at Ruth Poundwhite And above all else, just keep going, keep learning, keep making mistakes, keep failing and keep celebrating everything along the way.

Ruth Poundwhite 20:07
Thank you so much for listening to another episode of quietly ambitious. If you have a moment to rate and review know that it really does make a difference. And if you’d like to carry on the conversation, then you can connect with me on Instagram at Ruth Poundwhite Join me in the Facebook group or my personal favourite, sign up to my newsletter letters to quietly ambitious humans. Just go to Ruth poundwhite.com forward slash newsletter to subscribe and keep doing what you’re doing because your work really does matter.


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“failure is really normal in business. One, two, three failed launches do not mean you or your business is a failure”

Show Notes

I don’t believe that launching has to be hard, but it does bring up all the feelings, especially when you’re disappointed with the results. Off the back of a “bad” launch of my own, I’m sharing what to do next, and some important mindset shifts to consider as you keep working towards your bigger vision in business.

“the goal is happening, it just might not happen in the timescale your ego would like” 

Some of the things I talked about:

  • What makes it a bad launch?
  • The importance of self-compassion
  • A bad launch doesn’t change your overall vision
  • Checking your alignment & strategy post-launch
  • Checking your scarcity mindset & the importance of celebration
  • The importance of keeping on going

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Thanks so much for listening!

When you subscribe to updates you get access to 3 bonus episodes of the podcast – exclusively for email subscribers – that dive behind the scenes of my business (I talk about failures, money, community & more!)