Launching a new product or service is not easy. It involves everything from market research and product development to brand marketing, which should never be taken lightly. In fact, even if you manage to pinpoint a gap in the market and develop an amazing product to avail that opportunity, half the battle i.e. launching the product in the right way, will still be pending. In other words, an awesome product launch can make or break your new product.
This premise has been proven by a number of studies in the world. For instance, this study conducted by the Independent Professional Pricing Society in collaboration with Simon-Kutcher & Partners found that more than 70 percent of new products fail to meet their revenue goals. Now, for many of these products, the reasons for this failure would be insufficient product development or overestimation of the market gap but for the vast majority, the reason would be a poor launch.
How successful a new product is off the assembly line depends on how well it is launched. It is possible for sales to improve over time through organic growth but in the initial period everything depends on the launch. With an awesome product launch, even the most poorly devised products sell in the early phases. It doesn’t matter if, over time, their sales drop because early sales will allow the business recoup their investment on the new product.
Remember, a big part of running a business is how it is presented to the audience. So if you’re looking to introduce a new product, then you need to ensure that you have an awesome product launch. Here is a step by step procedure that you can follow.
Awesome Product Launch Step 1: Set the Stage Well In Advance
Every awesome product launch has this quality. The entire launch is pre-planned to the tee. The most obvious planning for a product launch is associated with product development wherein the business does research into the kind of audience it can target with its product. However, just knowing who to target isn’t always enough.
Every demographic, market segment or specific psychographic group has its own, unique behavioural tendencies and tics. What’s more is that these unique tendencies often end up defining their buying or even utilising process. Knowing these tendencies, thus, can help a business ensure greater product adoption.
Pre-planning is crucial to having an awesome product launch because it prevents clashes with other major events. After all, you don’t want your product launch to be held at the same time as the next Cold Play concert, especially if it is being held in the same locality – no one would show up.
Similarly, if an online event with the potential to be viral such as the next great film is due, you will want to avoid your digital launch. Such considerations are important to consider if you want to have an awesome product launch.
Awesome Product Launch Step 2: Define Your Content Strategy and Have Marketing Material Ready
Do you think a product launch without brochures, catalogues, spec sheets, blog posts, videos, PDFs, technical documents, PRs and other such marketing material can ever be considered awesome? Of course, you don’t. Marketing material or marketing collateral as many businesses call it is an incredibly important component of an awesome product launch.
In fact, all of it needs to be tailored to an overall vision in mind because all of it needs to be pulling in one single direction with an overarching marketing message. Furthermore, the entire marketing team needs to be on-board with the marketing message so that even informal statements collude with the formal messages.
Having a content strategy and marketing materials ready allows for an awesome product launch simply because everything is synergistic and cohesive.
Awesome Product Launch Step 3: Pinpoint and Leverage Advocates and Influencers
There are various communication and marketing theories that revolve around the importance of influencers and advocates. According to most of them, dissemination of new information and opinion occurs through individuals and organisations that are dubbed advocates and influencers.
These advocates and influencers, typically, come across new information first or adopt a product first before promoting the same to others. Since the others see these individuals as knowledgeable, informed, and ahead of their times, they simply adopt their views and decisions.
By their definition, you can see the importance of advocates and influencers in marketing. Getting through to these advocates and influencers before the actual release date is critical if you want to have an awesome product launch. By leveraging their reach and influence, you can give your product adoption a major boost in the short, medium, and long term.
Ideally, you want to give these people a taste of your product so that they can form their opinions. Then, you need to ensure that the release of information from these influencers and advocates coincides with the date you’ve set aside for your formal launch.
Awesome Product Launch Step 4: Bring Associates and Partners into the Fold
How do you define an awesome product launch? You define it on the basis of adoption numbers i.e. whether the revenue targets have been met or not. In other words, the core purpose of a product launch is to reach as many people as possible with the information and get as many of them as possible to partake in your product.
For this reason, if your product was developed in collaboration with another business or you have business partners and associates, then you need to publicise the product amongst their audience base too. If your partners and associates are retailers, then you get another Launchpad for your product and if they’re other types of business, you at least gain the chance to get more customers.
Awesome Product Launch Step 5: Utilise Your Existing Audience for Increased Visibility and Interactivity
One mistake that many businesses make with new products is that they only view them with respect to the new customers they can bring. These businesses don’t realise that their new product may have solid demand in their existing audience base too.
More than that, however, existing customer bases can increase the visibility of the new product and possibly even the interaction with the campaign. Since the byword of today’s marketing world is engagement, utilising existing audience bases can result in a mediocre product having an awesome product launch while simultaneously having boosted sales.
Awesome Product Launch Step 6: Create a Follow-up Engagement Strategy
An awesome product launch is different from a tepid one also because the news about the product stays alive for a longer period. However, in most cases, this doesn’t happen automatically. Instead, news, information, and engagement are kept alive by the business in question very deliberately through their follow up strategy.
The follow-up strategy becomes active after the initial phase of the product launch. It is designed to keep the product and the business in the limelight indirectly. The operational term here is ‘indirectly’. For example, while the initial phase of the product launch put the limelight on the product, this phase puts the limelight on the business, its executives, and customer service.