In fact – it can be a total nightmare.
If you hire people to help you and there's no way to track what's going on, what's done, and what's not done – you can literally lose your mind.
When you lose track of your big beautiful launch master plan – it's hard to bounce back.
You start off really good – plot out dates on your google calendar, maybe make a spreadsheet or list of what needs to get done…
But then something throws you off track, the tools start to get in the way – and suddenly you're a day away from your launch.
But don't fret – because behind the scenes I'm gathering intel from my friends who manage launches too – to find out what is working – what's not working… and am always on the look out for new tools.
And I found one that could change the way you run your next launch…
In fact – in a recent dish session with my friend and Launch Manager Karen Sergeant … she was so excited about how she used Evernote on the launch of a product … and were getting into it on what she liked, what she didn't (not much btw) and basically – she was kinda telling me – you HAVE to use it for your next launch.
You would think we were talking about chocolate or shopping.
And – I was sold.
So sold that I asked her to “pretty please” write this guide for you (hehe and me!) on how to use Evernote to manage your next launch.
Dig in, read it, then hand off this guide to your team, your assistant, or the person helping you manage all the pieces on your launch.
–>> Karen will be answering questions in the comments – so don't forget to visit her down there! She's waiting!
How To Manage Your Next Launch With Evernote
As a small business owner, and as a project manager for clients, I’m always chasing down loose ends and making sure those metaphorical trains run on time. It’s an understatement to say that things can get busy during a launch (can I get an Amen?)!
But I have a secret weapon: Evernote is my essential app for managing a product launch.
I started using Evernote a few years ago when I was researching and building curriculum for my major Government client. I was saving content from websites, articles from journals, scribbled notes, photos of whiteboards after group brainstorming sessions – and of course, my own content that I was generating from it all: outlines and lesson plans and PowerPoint presentations. It was a breeze to keep everything organized.
In the last couple months, I used Evernote to manage all the moving parts for the launch of MailCHAMPMastery.com, a training series that teaches the ins and out of the MailChimp software, created by Zenplicity’s Jamie DuBose.
We kept everything product- and launch- related in Evernote:
– initial research that shaped the product (conversations from FaceBook that people had about using MailChimp)
– product content (lesson plans, talking-points, ideas for handouts)
– promotional content (newsletters, blog posts)
– logos, graphics
– draft social media content
– Master Schedule, and other deep-dive schedules (production, promotion, the free teleclass)
Here are the ways we used Evernote to keep ourselves sane and the project on-track:
1. We kept everything in one single notebook, and shared that notebook with team members. Keeping it to one single container simplified the sharing process, especially for those on the team who don’t use Evernote very much: everything they needed was in that one notebook.
2. To keep things organized, we used the Reminders feature to pin our most-used notes to the top of the notebook. Even as our notebook collected many notes (83 notes by launch day!) we never had to hunt for those key documents. They were right up top.
One Note to Rule Them All..
3. Because I’m hyper-organized (when it comes to projects and info, only…please don’t go look at my closet!) and because this launch had many moving parts, I also created Master Docs of the major phases of the launch, which served as our go-to document.
See those green links? They are hyperlinks to other notes. So not only does this serve as a schedule and to-do list, it serves as a table of contents for all the other detailed notes that support this phase.
Don’t Keep it Secret..
4. The shared notebook allowed us to collaborate on everything. From cumbersome code that would be a nightmare to email to each other — to the talking points for the free teleclass that Jamie was marking up in real time as she ticked off the questions.
Here’s a story of how a shared note saved our bacon: towards the end of the teleclass, Jamie handed the microphone off to me (3 timezones away) for a quick two-minute review of the early (smokin’ hot) testimonials we had received — and as Mercury would have it, I was CUT OFF mid-sentence as my phone dropped the call!
But Jamie knew exactly where I was in the talking-points and picked it up without missing a beat. Would I have bothered to email her what I was going to say? Likely not..didn’t seem important. But I had drafted them in our shared note.
..But Keep It Safe!
5. And when it’s all done, Evernote is the ultimate archive for all your content (including the spontaneous notes we leave for each other!) – done without lifting a finger. It’s just all there (and searchable) for post-launch analysis, and (who are we kidding) swiping for next time!
And – special bonus – Evernote integrates directly with Skitch, the application I used to quickly clip and annotate these screen shots. How can it get any better?!
How do you use Evernote? I love hearing how people put Evernote into their workflow – please comment and tell us how you do it.
Want some extra help to get started with Evernote? Check out Evernote Essentials – recently updated and definitely will put you on the path to be a power user!
Holy mother Karen – I'm all ready jumping on that bandwagon. This is the second Karen I've featured as a guest contributor on this site…and here's just a little bit about her: