Last week, I shared my personal case study of how I launched a beta for my new online program, The Message Lab.
The one question that kept coming back from you was how much do I charge for my beta?
Should I charge for my beta? Or let people in for free?
If you have no clue how to price your beta program, you’ll want to listen today as I focus on three options to consider.
Spoiler alert: you’re still going to have to make the final call and pick the final price, but I’m hoping my advice gets you closer to your decision!
Pricing is not an easy topic.
No matter if you’re launching a new product at full price or you’re testing out an idea for one by doing a beta program.
But these are a few options and here’s what I go into depth on in this episode.
Beta Pricing Option #1:
If you don’t charge, make sure to give people plenty of hoops to jump through. Still give them a deadline or the idea that you’re only going to accept a certain number of people into the program.
Make sure there’s a clear – “here’s what you have to do and commit to”. Since you won’t have money as the value exchange, you’ll need to make sure that people have given you information you can put to use for the product or the marketing of that product.
The Message Lab first-round beta was application, video, and a clear deadline. I reviewed all the applications that came in – around 100 and chose 17 people to join the first inner circle.
Time to complete this was a LOT MORE than I anticipated…watching even 100 videos was not easy, so I made notes as I went through.
Beta Pricing Option #2:
If you charge even a small amount, this allows you to see if people are willing to pay for the solution. You get to test the marketing, send to everyone on your list and need to do a lot more public promotion
Beta Pricing Option #3
If you charge a fee and make people apply, you get to see who will be the best fit and give you the most exchange of value possible. This is how I’m doing the second round of the “beta”.
Because I have a hunch this program may end up having a group coaching/mastermind element to it, I want to keep the application process even though it will take me a bit longer.
Click here if you want to learn more about The Message Lab and find out how to apply for the upcoming session.
**You don’t have to make people apply with video or an application, but I think that’s literally been the biggest reason there were a high % of people who got results. I hand picked the absolute best candidates I could for the program!
One More Thing – It’s Not About The Money
Remember that doing a beta test, promoting a product as a test implies that you are developing it, making it better, want to test it before you launch it for real.
So – instead of asking what to charge for your beta, ask how you and your beta members can get the most out of the experience.
Here’s what I suggest:
- Use some application process – even if it’s just a google form that automatically redirects to the payment invoice or order form. The application gives you the before – the what they are struggling with and what they want to solve. You’ll need this information down the road when you launch the product publicly and to share results.
- If you charge people to participate in your beta, charge MUCH LESS than what the real product will be and let them know what the public pricing will likely be!
- Make sure to let people know they will be part of your team, you need their help, and in return you’re going to give the best experience, you want them to reach their goals.
- Keep your participant number small the first time. Less people means more time digging into each person and understanding their in depth stories.
- Get on Skype with the people who join and give them time with you to address their most pressing concerns. This really cements their reason why your product spoke to them, why they HAD to be involved.
And finally, look for ways to gather feedback feedback feedback throughout the entire process. I’ll talk about the feedback surveys and how to pull it all together in an upcoming episode.
Now It's Your Turn
IN THE MEANTIME… I want to hear from you….what are you creating? What’s the thing you can’t shut up about to your biz besties or to anyone who will listen.
If you are ready to take that passion and really put it into a clear message that drives all your communication (whether you’re creating a beta program or not), here’s what you should do:
Curious about The Message Lab?
All you have to do is get on the notification list to find out when we open again!
Mark Douglas says
Really timely information! I just finished my first online course and I have no clue how to promote it, as I literally have zero subscribers (shiny new blogger).
Aside from social media posts seeking beta testers, are there some other effective ways to publicize the course?
I read an article that mentioned hosting a meetup to gauge interest and gather emails..thinking of trying this.
This is super helpful! Thank you! I was just about to launch a totally free course to test run it (as I’ve never done such a course before) and a colleague pointed me to your page. Thank you again!