Product founders dream of launch day from the start and how once they finish the product, the floodgates will open and customers will come right in. The reality is this does not happen unless as a product founder you start planning for your product launch from the very start of your product planning process. Founders need to build a brand and then attract visibility and interest in this brand which can take a lot of time especially in a crowded market. Many times, product teams wait until the product is ready for product launch to plan out the event. The reality is you need to be taking actions all along the way to ensure when you are ready for everyone to know you exist, you have some awareness to make it matter.
If you are ready to do a product startup, as part of our product launch playbook – here are tips and tricks to making your product launch successful:
- Define your brand. Spend the time to define the details like your logo, color palette of your brand, your messaging, brand voice and other ways that make your product and business unique as a brand.
- Launch your marketing site. Put out a marketing site from the start which explains what it is you are working on at a high level and have the ability to be notified when it is launched by sharing their email.
- Define your marketing plan. If you are planning on using digital marketing, start adding content to your site, getting back links and other SEO tactics to drive traffic to your site right away. It takes a long time to organically get traffic so begin the work as early as possible.
- Get social. If you plan on using social media as a sales channel, again begin right away building a presence. Make yourself and your product team real and share about who you are, what you are building and bring leads along your journey.
- Build lists of prospects. If you are planning on doing direct sales, constantly build on to your list of contacts the names, emails and addresses you plan to hit day 1. Don’t wait till you are launched as it takes time to build lists for prospecting and leads for your sales.
- Launch email marketing. Start sending out a monthly email (or more often if you can) to any contact you get to keep them warm about your product progress and share information relevant to your space to keep it interesting.
- Get networked in. Start to attend all local network meetings and group meetings around your topics while you are still working on your product startup. Shake hands, get names, hand out business cards, collect cards. Get to know as many people in your space as possible.
- Guest blog, podcast and speak at conferences. Build your brand by getting in front of existing traffic that someone else has earned. Try to share your expertise in the space you are building your product in and establish yourself and your brand as you go.
- Set your release date. Give yourself a window once you set that date to amp up all of your marketing efforts to align everything to that date. Keep posting more and more often on all fronts with increased frequency as you get closer to the date to make it an event.
- Pay for ads. Nothing gets awareness quicker than paid advertisement. Not all ads are equal but if you have a budget, setup a PPC campaign with Google to try and drive traffic and leads to your site which you can launch the same time as your product launch. Find popular blogs or sites for your product market and try to pay for an ad to show on their site or a banner in their email marketing of the site itself.
- Throw a launch party. When all is said and done, success doesn’t happen overnight but after a while of working hard on your product. When you get to your product launch, stop and smell the roses.
The actual building of a product for a startup is only half of the challenge in trying to launch a new company. The other half, and depending on whom you ask, the most important half, is building the business itself based on the product. To do this, you need to start planning your product launch early and throughout the entire process. Get your name out there as much as you can and build awareness as it takes a really long time to become found so start making a name for yourself as soon as you established what your name is.
Check back to read up on our tips and guide now that you have launched your product, how you can keep your product growing and never looking back.