Launch Summary

One Paragraph Summary Regardless of which product or service you are trying to sell on the internet, Jeff Walker’s book Launch will help you to design and execute a perfect email marketing campaign.

Launch Summary

Launch—An Internet Millionaire's Secret Formula to Sell Almost Anything Online, Build a Business You Love, and Live the Life of Your Dreams
A book by Jeff Walker

To successfully market a product, you need to have a step by step guide which you can follow. Just building a great product and offering it on the market is not enough. You need to know how you can communicate with potential customers. You need to have a strategy to convert website visitors into happy customers. The book Launch by Jeff Walker gives you concrete, actionable advice on selling your product to satisfied customers.

Course, book, or app, it does not matter; Launch can help you to sell more of it.

  These are the things I learned by reading the Blinks:

  • Build it and they will come is not working
  • Email marketing works

This post is based on the Blinks I listened to while walking to work. I learn from Blinkist's content each and every day. So if you enjoy this post, you will like their content even more. I highly recommend their service.

Key Ideas

The world has changed, and the only true security is your ability to create value and get paid for that value. — Jeff Walker

The internet brings limitless opportunities to people who want to start a business, as the online world allows you to offer your product or service to billions of potential customers.

To be successful in a competitive arena like the internet, you have to differentiate yourself from other online businesses. The author’s Product Launch Formula can just provide you that: an edge in a highly competitive market

To sell your offer online, you need to have an email list and create scarcity for your product or service.

Many new businesses are unsuccessful because they bank upon hope marketing: create an offer and cross your fingers that somebody will find and buy it.

But hope means that you do not control your success.

You have to leave hope marketing behind by engaging with your potential customers. You can do this by using the most powerful communication tool in the online world: email

Email is effective and does not cost anything.

Launching your product online does not mean all strategies to sell your offer need to be high tech. The truth is, most approaches which work in the real world, will also work in the internet world.

When you make an offer, you need to use mental triggers to influence your customers. Our brains always look for clues to justify the decisions we are about to make.

One such mental trigger is authority. We seek advice from people we believe are authoritative. For example, when we need to find our way in a foreign city, we will ask a police officer.

You can increase your authority by listing the well-known brands you worked for on your website.

Scarcity is yet another useful trigger we can use to sell our product or service. This works, because we all fear to be left behind.

For example, you might advertise your product during the launch at a discounted price. After this period, you will increase the price.

If you want to know more about triggers, you can read the Triggers book summary I have written.

Two tools you can use for your marketing are sequences and stories. We all love enticing stories. You should not bore your customers with technical details; tell a good story instead in the course of a few days.

You need to have an email list to be able to communicate with your prospects. You cannot rely on potential customers coming back to your website. Most people come to your site through a search engine. Once they are on your landing page, make sure to capture their email address. An email list is a tool you can use to bring your customers back to your website.

One possibility to get the email address of your visitors is to give them something in return. The win is two-fold. You will get their address, and you will know that they have a particular interest.

The way you set this up on your website is to create a page where a visitor comes to your site. You offer the visitor a special gift. To receive the present a sign-up to your newsletter is needed.

The page where you make your offer is called a squeeze page. Make sure that your giveaway is relevant to your business. It is important to connect with the people who have a natural interest in your offer.

The Pre-Prelaunch

Do you know what a pre-prelaunch is? Well, I didn’t. It is a way to make your prospects interested in a product you will launch in the future. The author warns us that we need to ensure that it does not sound like a sales pitch.

Here are the recommendations to craft a perfect pre-prelaunch:

  • Keep the email concise; 80 words
  • Subject line: Quick announcement and a favor
  • Inform the reader that a new product is coming very soon
  • Ask them to fill out a short survey
  • Ask them for feedback
  • No promises

The Prelaunch

The prelaunch is the phase where you already have an email list and also spurred the interest of your readers. In this period you want to show your prospects that there is immense value for them in your offer.

Three steps for a effective pre-launch:

  1. Show your prospect the transformation he will get
  2. Show more information about the transformation
  3. Tell the prospect how exactly the transformation works

It is important that there is a pause of two or three days in between each step.

The third phase will also contain how the reader can buy from you and when to expect the actual launch. Also, make sure to fire the scarcity trigger in the prospect’s brain.

Examples of scarcity offers

  • The first 100 buyers will get X% off the regular price
  • The offer ends on …

After the pre-prelaunch and the pre-launch your customers are ready to buy from you. You can launch.

Remember in the actual launch you need to tell your email list that you are about to sell your product. Make sure to offer your product for a limited time to create that scarcity that is necessary for a successful launch.

Using scarcity offers can be a powerful tool to make your launch a success. There is a great example in Chris Guillebeau’s book The $100 Dollar Startup (link to my book summary).

After the announced launch day comes the phase Jeff Walker calls the open cart phase.

Make it as easy as possible to buy from you by having a well-designed sales process.

All nice and dandy, but what if you neither have a list you can market to nor a product to sell?

The answer is what Jeff Walker calls a seed launch. This type of launch is a tool to build your success bit by bit. The idea is simple. You do your first small launch and then build upon it by making every launch after that a bigger success.

For the very first launch, you can start with only the people who follow you on Twitter.

To build your success, it is important to learn from your previous launches. You do this by asking for feedback from your prospects, or by sending surveys to your list.

Joint Venture Launches

Even though you can have success with a small launch, you should maximize the potential of your launches. To do this, you might consider doing a Joint Venture Launch.

A JV Launch is not that hard to conduct. Simply find people who offer a similar product to yours. Then launch your product to their list and agree on a revenue share.

Normally such a joint venture is done through sending the subscribers from one list to a squeeze page for your offer.

Deliver constant value

After the launch, also called the post-launch phase, you should provide additional value to your customers. By that, you will exceed their expectations and make them happy. Adding value, even after the sell, builds trust, and your customers will be more likely to buy from you in the future.

My First Learning: Build it and they will come is not working

  Have you heard the saying Build it and they will come? I’m not sure whether there were times when this approach worked. Apparently it is not working these days. Trust me; I have tested to launch a product without having a marketing plan. I built an app and offered it on the App Store. Almost nobody saw my new, shiny app. I was not able to talk to my customers. Only Apple has the email addresses of buyers. Apple owns and controls the platform. You as an app developer deliver the content. If you do not own a funnel into the App Store, it is hard to get your app in front of your prospects.

Most successful people I know personally have taken a different approach. They all worked on building their audience first, and then they came up with a product for that audience. Look at Nathan Barry (ConvertKit) or Laura Roeder (Edgar).

My Second Learning: Email marketing works

Our product launches use a series of sequences: pre-pre-launch, the pre-launch, the launch, and the post-launch.

While reading the Blinks of Jeff Walker's book, I realized that I have been part of some launches which were planned with Jeff’s launch formula. Many people are using the techniques outlined in the book. I know this because I subscribed to a lot of email newsletters. Subscribing to newsletters is a great way to learn how to conduct your email marketing. Some campaigns were so well done that I was the victim of those launches. Not in a bad way, because I always got immense value from the products I bought. The formula works.


Everybody who is doing business online knows about the importance of building a list of prospects. Email is the best way to stay in touch with your (potential) customers.

Jeff Walker’s book gives clear instructions on which steps are needed to plan a successful email based marketing campaign. Furthermore, you will learn what you need to do in each phase of your product launch.


  • Keep in constant contact with your potential customers
  • Build an email list
  • Deliver value before and after the sell
  • Own your business, by knowing your customers
  • Use scarcity triggers
  • Tell a story
  • Use sequences

Launch Summary—related resources

  Read more about Jeff Walker on his website.

Subscribe to my newsletter and get free access to the Launch Book Summary PDF and all of my other book summary PDFs

If you liked reading the Launch Summary, you should also read the Influence Book Summary.

Posted on CuteMachine in business.

Jo's Profile ImageWritten by Jo who lives and works in Frankfurt building digital doodah. Stalk him on Twitter.

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