Episode 215: Why I Scrapped my Retreat Launch

June 4, 2024

Chasing Simple Marketing

learn the best marketing strategies for your business

You'll also love

tell me more

I'm  Amanda — simplicity-focused content marketing strategist.  I'm here to help you fit your marketing into your business.

Meet Amanda

diy your marketing strategy

I thought I’d pull back the curtain and share the two reasons I ultimately scrapped my retreat launch halfway through.

Why I Scrapped My Retreat Launch

I scrapped my retreat launch last month. In fact, I scrapped the entire retreat (for 2024 at least).

This is something I always always advise clients to never do, and yet here I am breaking my own rules. So, I thought I’d pull back the curtain and share the two reasons I ultimately scrapped the retreat halfway through the launch.

Links and Resources Mentioned in This Episode:

  • Want even more help simplifying your marketing and business? Love the Chasing Simple podcast? If so, I want to invite you to join me on Monday evenings at 4:00 pm Pacific time/7:00 pm Eastern time for my weekly YouTube Lives. Each week I’ll have a topic for the week, but after my short 5-minute teaching, you’ll have the chance to ask me questions about your marketing and get an answer from me in real time. Until now, the only way to get this kind of access to me was through my membership, courses, or 1:1 services. But now, all you have to do is show up live with me on Mondays! You can find my channel by searching for my handle on YT – @mrsamandawarfield or by heading to amandawarfield.com/youtube/ – I hope to see you Monday!
  • Retreat Waitlist
  • This week’s action step: Evaluate what’s on your plate – especially what is self-induced – and see where you can cut back in order to simplify for what matters.
  • This week’s book recommendation: Bride by Ali Hazelwood
  • Find me on Instagram and tell me you completed this week’s action step: @mrsamandawarfield

Did you love this episode?

Don’t forget to subscribe so that you never miss an episode! Also, if you would be willing to leave a review on Apple Podcasts, it would mean the world to me. It’s such a small thing that can make a big difference in helping me spread this message of simplicity to other overwhelmed women.

Have a comment about today’s episode, or a topic you’d like to suggest for a future episode? Shoot me an email over at hello@amandawarfield.com!

Rather Read? – Here’s the Transcript!

*Just a heads up – the provided transcript is likely to not be 100% accurate

I scrapped my retreat launch last month. In fact, I scrapped the entire retreat for 2024 at least. This is something that I always advise clients to never do. I feel like that’s not correct grammar, but you know what I’m saying. And yet, here I am, breaking my own rules, so I thought I’d pull back the curtain and share the two reasons that I ultimately scrapped the retreat halfway through the launch.

You’re listening to episode 215 of the Chasing Simple podcast, and I’m your host, Amanda Warfield. This episode was brought to you by my book, Chasing Simple Marketing, and you can grab your own at amandawarfield. com / book.

How do I find time to create content without overwhelming myself? Where should I even be showing up in my marketing? How do I come up with fresh content ideas? Where should I be focusing my marketing efforts? What is lead generation anyways and how do I do it? Are launches still a thing? And most importantly, How do I put it all together to market my business strategically?

Can I really grow my business without spending all of my time marketing? These are some of the questions that float around in your head. When you think of marketing welcome friend, this is chasing simple or practical marketing strategy meets simplicity. I’m your host, Amanda Warfield, simplicity focused content, marketing and launch strategist, speaker, educator, and author of chasing simple marketing.

I traded in my classroom lesson plans for helping creative entrepreneurs sustainably fit marketing into their business without it taking over their business, so that they have time to grow their business, take time off, and live the life they dreamed about when they first decided to go out on their own.

When I’m working, you can find me working with one on one clients, such as The Contract Shop and Rebecca Rice Photography on their marketing strategy and copywriting, or helping my students simplify their marketing and launches. And when I’m not, you can find me spending time outside with my husband, Russell, reading in our hammock, watching Gamecock Sports, traveling, or forcing our cats to snuggle me.

If you feel overwhelmed by marketing, you aren’t alone. Many entrepreneurs find marketing frustrating, overwhelming, and simply an obligation. They know they need it, but they don’t enjoy how easily it can suck up their time when what they really want to be doing is the thing that they started their business to do.

Which is why I’m here to help make marketing simple and less time consuming so that you can spend less time on your marketing and more time growing your business and doing what you love each week, offer you transparent conversations, actionable steps, and judgment free community to encourage and equip you.

So grab yourself a cup of coffee or whatever your drink of choices and meet me here each week for love, support. Practical tips and advice on uncomplicating your marketing and business. Let’s do this entrepreneurship thing together. Shall we want even more help? Simplifying your marketing and business love the chasing simple podcasts.

If so, I want to invite you to join me on Monday evenings at 4 p. m. Pacific time, 7 p. m. Eastern time for my weekly YouTube lives. Each week I’ll have a topic for the week, but after my short five minute teaching, you’ll have the chance to ask me questions about your marketing and get an answer from me in real time.

Until now, the only way to get this kind of access to me was through my membership, courses, or one on one services. But now, All you have to do is show up live with me on Mondays. You can find my channel by searching for my handle on YouTube at Mrs. Amanda Warfield, or by heading to amandawarfield. com / YouTube.

I hope to see you Monday. I am a huge proponent of seeing a launch through. I. I always, always, always recommend to my clients that even when things are feeling like it’s not going as well as you’d hoped, which often happens at the midway point of a launch, that you keep pushing through. You continue consistently showing up, talking about the thing you’re launching, talking about your offer, talking about the doors open, doors closed, or end of bonus, or whatever it is that your, your scarcity piece is, right?

Never let clients stop a launch halfway through. And yet that’s exactly what I did with my own retreat launch this last month. So, it essentially came down to two things. two reasons that I decided about halfway through the launch that I was just gonna cut my losses and be done. The first of those was lack of interest.

Now, this honestly is usually never an excuse, and it’s one I don’t let my clients take, but here we are. So I had a waitlist for the retreat, and I had people I had talked to who had said they were going to purchase, who were going to come, and What ended up happening is I opened the doors to the waitlist, they got early access, so they got to save their spot first, which in this case there were only, I think, seven spots, and so that, that’s a big deal for this kind of launch.

They only, they were able to grab their seat first, and then they also got a bigger discount on that first day. And doors opened to the waitlist, doors closed to the waitlist, nobody from the waitlist purchased. Then I opened it to the rest of my list, and honestly, I had a ton of clicks. So when I say lack of interest, there truly was interest.

And do 100 percent plan to do a retreat at some point, I really do. But there was Lots of clicks, but no conversations were being started with me. No one was asking questions. No one was, no one was purchasing their ticket or putting down a deposit. And this lack of interest, quote unquote, really showed me that I had.

not prepared my audience well for this launch. And this lack of prep led to no tickets being sold, and no conversations being started, and questions not being asked. That, to me, made me realize that I really had done both my audience and myself a disservice. And I had done that lack of prep, A, because I personally have been stuck on the content creation hamster wheel myself.

As I’ve taken on more clients and as we’ve gone through this whole move and major life change, I have really struggled to find the balance between working in my business and working on my business. And so I have spent since October. Gosh, honestly, probably since last August, it feels like I have been working in my business.

I’ve been working for clients and that’s it. I haven’t been doing what I need to do for my own business. That has been a big struggle. And due to that, I, I have not been as consistent, the podcast has been consistent thankfully, but I haven’t been as consistent as I’d like on social media. I haven’t been consistent as I’d like through my emails and due to that it, I wasn’t able to truly prepare my audience well for this upcoming launch.

I also have been trying to talk about too many things at once, and that’s been an issue too. I really should have solely talked about this retreat for about three months ahead of time, and I just didn’t. So I didn’t prepare my audience well for this launch, and that was very, very, very clear with The the lack of quote unquote again interest that was happening and once we got a few days into the launch and No one had bought a ticket.

Even those that had said I’m definitely coming. I thought you know what I need to reevaluate and because this type of launch isn’t as simple as a you know a course launch or something like that where If one person buys the course, that’s all you need, right? That’s not really the case with retreats because I had already put down the deposit for our house.

Once I have someone’s money, it’s like, okay, well, then I have to do a refund if we end up cancelling. And so I started thinking about all of these things, and I started thinking about what would it look like to cancel this retreat. And, the more I thought about it, the more that felt like the right move.

Because of the lack of interest, which, let’s be clear, that is only part A of this, again, I normally would not let a client pull out of a launch like this, especially because with retreats, the initial launch period isn’t the end all be all. You still have up until the retreat to sell those tickets, right?

I started thinking about what that would look like for the next few months the retreat this launch happened in May The retreat was happening in September, which I honestly probably should have launched tickets sooner And I had waited because I told myself I was gonna do a good job of prepping that runway and then I didn’t so The other thing that I was thinking about as I’m thinking about, okay, well, I’m gonna have to really push for these tickets over the next few months and do all the prep work to prepare for it and all these other things that I have going on and I really just went, you know what?

I’m feeling so overwhelmed and this is the second reason that I ultimately truly decided to scrap the launch combined with the lack of interest of I am in May, feeling like I’m finally coming out of a hole that I have felt like I’ve been in since the beginning. August. Since July 26th when I came down with COVID and my grandfather died a few days later and the whole move process started.

Like, our life has been chaos since my birthday last year, the day I launched the book. And I was like, I feel like I’m finally coming up for air. I’m not spending Every spare second working on client work. I’m ahead on client work and the last couple of weeks. I’ve actually been able to take a step back and I’ve been able to do my client work and then have free space and I want to get to a place where I’m not feeling so overwhelmed and I’m able to, okay, I’m doing my client work and I’m also doing my other work, which as I’m recording this, it’s a Monday and this week is going to be that week.

I’m super pumped, but I’m just finally getting here. And at the time of Scrappy the launch, I wasn’t here yet. And I was like, man, like, I don’t want to go back into a state of overwhelm. And the idea of adding this major project to my plate and continuing to have to really push and not be able to push any of my other offers.

Which, I guess that’s a third reason, but I didn’t want to be stuck in that overwhelm, and I didn’t want to put myself back in that place, and frankly, the reason that I ended up deciding to go for the, there were a couple reasons I decided to go for the retreat this year, and none of them were truly smart business moves.

First, my friend Haley Gavin is hosting her retreat this year in June, and by the time this comes out. I think her retreat will like be happening, but she really inspired me to do it. I was like, man, you’re doing it. I can finally do it. I’ve been saying I wanted to do this in 2019 I said, I’m gonna host a retreat in 2020 and then we all know what happened, right?

So I’ve been wanting to do this for years. I’m so excited interested in doing a small retreat with just a small group of people and working on our content and having like a get it done weekend together. And Haley really inspired me. I was like, man, I really want to do this. Another reason was that frankly, I really wanted to have a good reason to go back to South Carolina.

We aren’t going to be able to make it back until Christmas this year. And I was like, man, it’d be so cool if we could do the retreat and I could make it back. Um, not a great business move, right? Just not smart. And because we were going to do it so far from where we are now. We wouldn’t really have profits from the retreat, which was reason number three, I guess, we can add in here, because paying for our airfare out there and all of the things needed for the retreat, we, we might’ve made a little bit of money, but really we wouldn’t have made much money for the business as far as profit goes.

Revenue, yes, but not profit. And so it would be like, I’m putting all this work in and hosting this retreat to break even essentially. Which is fine, and at some point, I will do it because, again, I want that community aspect. But, realistically, if I’m spending the next 5 6 months only focused on this event that’s gonna break even, I’m not bringing in the revenue I need to bring in.

I’m not able to talk about my other offers. And so, ultimately, the lack of interest. The lack of interest in putting myself back in overwhelm and the realization that I was going to be holding my own business back by hosting the retreat made me realize, okay, I need to go ahead and scrap this before anyone signs up because I’m ultimately probably going to end up cancelling.

And, uh, Because of that, I ended up scrapping the retreat launch, which didn’t feel great. I’m really sad about it, but I know that ultimately it’s the best thing to do. So, I just wanted to share those insights with you because I am such a proponent, like I’ve said over and over again, of not scrapping a launch, but There’s an exception for every rule.

So I wanted to talk through that with you and just really open the the curtains and pull ’em back and kind of show you what’s going on in the back end of my business. So your action step for this week is to evaluate what’s on your own plate, especially what is self-induced, and see where you can cut back in order to simplify for what matters.

Where are you working on things that aren’t actually moving your business forward? That are taking up a lot of time and essentially keeping your business in place. Now your book recommendation for this week is Pride by Allie Hazelwood. If you’ve read any of Allie’s books, you have probably heard people say she writes the same book in different fonts over and over again, which I love.

I’m here for it. I love the format of her books, but Pride is very, very, very different than anything she has ever written. I really hope she does more of this. It’s like fantasy, Sci fi fantasy, kind of, but still the romance that she’s known for and I highly enjoyed it. So, if you have read one or two of her books, if you put her stuff down because you’re like, eh, it’s always the same, this one is different and I highly recommend that you check that out.

I will link to it in the show notes below and you can also find it wherever you find your books. All right, my friends, until next time, I hope you’ll go out and uncomplicate your marketing and business.

Thank you so much for joining me here today, friend. You can find this episode show notes, as well as all the resources you need to simplify your marketing over at amandawarfield. com. If you liked what you heard here today, be sure to subscribe to the podcast so that you never miss an episode. And if you could take a moment to leave a rating and review, it would truly mean the world to me.

Ratings and reviews are the number one way that you can support a podcast And ensure that it sticks around for many more episodes to come. I’ll see you next time. Now go out and uncomplicate your marketing and business.

Hey friend! Just a head’s up — this post may contain affiliate links!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

I accept the Privacy Policy

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.