I run two types of paid live experiences as a launch trigger for enrolling into my premium BEACH program: a 3-hour live workshop, and a multiple day challenge-style experience.
Both types of live experiences are fun, successful, converting between 5-20% from low ticket paid experience to high ticket program.
In this 2-part post, I tell you all about my process, tool choices and how I deployed them for maximum effect and minimum fiddly work for me.
That way, I got bring my A-game to the live sessions every day and help participants get the results they signed for, while my tools “ran” the backend for me.
This post contains affiliate links. This means if you click on them, and proceed to sign/up purchase, I may receive a commission. I have personally used all tools mentioned in this post.
Here’s the thing: I love tools. New tools, old tools, now tools, and let’s not get into my AppSumo obsession.
Read on about my rationale for why I use what I use, and specifically, what I actually used in my last enrollment events for my premium program BEACH for max automation.
Since BEACH is a high touch group program / mastermind, it is an absolute MUST that prospective members and I get to know each other, and make sure we’re a good fit, before they are presented with an invitation to enroll.
I mean, we’re going to be in each other’s faces a LOT (about 20 calls a month plus private community!)
The high touch component and individual feedback are cornerstones of how I work, and I wanted to include some version of it in the run up to the invitation to join BEACH.
Here are options for getting to know each other to decide if it’s a mutual fit:
- disco call: yup, the good ol’ discovery call. These are ok, but I don’t really love them. They’re time consuming for everyone all around, plus everyone is on their best behaviour.
- application process: this works well for year round enrollment, and I have used it in conjunction with great conversations over DM — like a multiple day, chilled, mutual interview process.
- 2-3 hour live workshop: I love doing these paid live workshops, because in an afternoon, we can quickly get to know each other. I get a glimpse into their business, they get a taste of my vibe, and we both figure out if it could work longer term.
- 5+ day live workshops: hands down the best. Yes, yes, yes, people call these challenges, but I don’t really like that word, as it implies there may be a struggle and it will be a bunch of hard work. Not.
I went with the two live options.
The process starts with the invite.
Invitation to the live workshop
I knew I only wanted warm-to-me peeps in the workshop.
I wanted to make sure they had already been exposed to my content and courses.
Although I’ve previously sold through ads to cold traffic, looking at past data has shown best results (for me) to come from an audience who is already in my ecosystem.
Therefore, the invitation to my workshop was a set of emails to my list.
I use Active Campaign, and it’s the tool I go back to, even after experimenting with everything from Convertkit and Mailerlite, to SendInBlue and Constant Contact.
Why Active Campaign:
Lists AND tags: unlike Convertkit and Mailerlite, which use only tags (or groups as they’re called in Mailerlite), Active Campaign lets maintain lists (e.g., Students, Customers, Main Newsletter), as well as tag individuals within the lists (Course: Legendary Lead Magnets, Interest: Blogger).
Why this is cool: it simplifies the process of creating segments a LOT, meaning someone can unsubscribe from your rambling newsletter, but still stay subscribed to your Student list, so they get important notifications.
Automations can be imported: all other email service providers offer some sort of automation. The AC automations are uber flexible and powerful, and there’s already a big library of pre-built automations for you to import from day one.
Why this is cool: importing the Engagement Tagging 2-part automation means that within minutes, you have a self-cleaning list.
The automation tags are based on activity, and anyone who stops engaging within a time period you decide — say 60 days — is marked as Dormant. You then have the option to automatically add them to a re-engagement sequence, or simply unsubscribing them, so your list is filled with engaged peeps and high open rates.
Other cool pre-built automation recipes include:
- Opt-in Incentive Delivery Email
- Webinar Reminder Email Series
- Abandoned Cart Reminder
- Welcome Series Automation
… and lots more. You can even filter by industry, experience level and use case.
Warning — it’s addictive! And it also means you can truly leverage your list and the power of automation quickly, without YOU having to figure out all the steps.
Website tracking: this one is pretty unique to Active Campaign. Remember I mentioned engagement tracking? One of the ways Active Campaign knows someone is engaged, beyond opening an email, or clicking a link in an email, is the sites they visit.
Much like a Google Analytics tag or a Facebook Pixel, Active Campaign gives you a snippet of code to add to your website(s), so that when someone visits one of the pages, it is recorded as an event in the contact’s profile.
More importantly, this event can trigger an automation.
Why this is cool: you can have an automation be triggered when they visit a specific page, e.g., they have visited your Book A Call page several times, but haven’t actually booked. You could send them an FAQ email or a How I Work email, since they have behaviourally demonstrated they’re interested.
There are other cool features in Active Campaign like:
- “wait until it’s 8:00 am in the contact’s time zone” automation condition feature
- goals, which act like a magnet in an automation, fast forwarding someone to a specific point in the automation
- labels for broadcast emails and automations, so you can keep everything organized and colour coded.
The Email Series
I sent a 3-part email series to my list, and included an option to opt-out of the series.
When they click the link to opt out of the series, a click action feature tags them so they can be excluded from the rest of the series, but still stay on my list.
The differentiated call to action
In each of the emails in the series, I had a call to action to sign up for the live workshop / 5-day workshop.
Once someone purchased, they were tagged as such.
Then, in the subsequent emails, I used a conditional block, meaning I only showed the purchase CTA to those who had not yet purchased.
This allowed everyone to enjoy the content in the email series, but not continue to see an invitation to purchase after they already bought.
The Sales Page
My website runs on WordPress with the Divi theme, by far my favourite page builder in WordPress.
Now, I come from an app development background, and can quite happily code and mess around in CSS with the best of them.
But why would I want to do that, when I can create pages with the ease of creating a slide deck presentation …?
My sales page design for the multiple day Pages That Sell live run was actually my Funnel Gorgeous Society’s certification capstone project.
I’m rather proud of it 😁.
Because Divi lets you export and share a design, my BEACH members now have access to that same design to use as a base.
Then, they can easily AND quickly customize it to their brand using these Divi features:
- global colours: change it once, and it changes it everywhere
- copy and paste formatting from one module to another
- create and apply pre-sets for each type of module (eg, text, blurb, full width header, email optin, testimonials etc)
- find and replace colours, fonts (yup, just like in a Word document)
- extend a certain design setting to all elements in a row, section or entire page
And this, in the end, is why I prefer Divi, because while other builders may have the same layout features, I have yet to see any with the above productivity features.
(and don’t get me started on the design features …. multiple point gradients, crazy good animation and more)
And talking of design …
The OTHER Sales Page
While I used Divi on my website for the Pages That Sell related enrollment, I used FG Funnels account for my 3-hour Magic 1-Pager workshop.
Well – a couple of different reasons.
Reason 1: I was in Launch Gorgeous Lite, in which we created and launched a live workshop in 4 weeks. It was epic.
(BTW Launch Gorgeous is running again with the last day to sign up being Friday April 8th)
Reason 2: the live workshop sales page was pre-built, pre-designed, pre-everything. It’s one of the perks of joining Launch Gorgeous, as you get everything pre-built, including the fully designed and built funnel, automations and the follow up too.
There are several reasons FG Funnels is different (in a good way) from other all-in-one systems.
One of the most fun ones is that you can get any Funnel Gorgeous design loaded into your account with a single click. For free.
And boy do they make pretty gorgeous funnel pages, pre-optimized and with prompts, just in case you’re stuck on what to write where.
So instead of re-building the Magic 1-Pager sales page in Divi, I kept it in FG Funnels, which I invested in as a founding member.
The Checkout Experience
Since I’m a long time Thrivecart user, I use it for 98% for my checkouts (sometimes I use Teachable — more later).
Well — it’s silky smooth, for starters (plus it’s currently still a one-time pay for lifetime access, that even comes with a course platform).
I can have order bumps, upsells, downsells etc.
But the most important part (other than it being uber reliable and fast), is that it integrates with literally everything I care about —- without Zapier (or Integromat/Make or Integrately or Automate.io etc)
When someone purchases:
- they are automatically enrolled in the right Teachable container depending on the price option — Teachable is my course platform.
- they are tagged automatically in Active Campaign, which then triggers an automation in Active Campaign. You can even trigger the automation directly from Thrivecart — it’s cleaner to use tags to trigger automations for my business
- If someone is on a payment plan, and a payment fails, it works to automatically retry at specific intervals and sends them emails throughout (dunning feature)
- you can also tag them if they refund, or it’s the 3rd failed payment or pretty much any other event associated with checkout and subsequent payments
Which means you can sit back and relax after you’ve set everything up, and let your “team” (aka systems) take care of business while you sleep.
Or eat doughnuts.
Coming up in Part 2
In the second part of this post, I talk about running the actual live experience, and:
- why Teachable is my course platform of choice
- and it is also the perfect container for running a pop community instead of Facebook
- how a private podcast changed the game — for the better!