One of the most important events in the life of any company is the day a new product launches. With proper planning and hitting all the right beats, releasing your creation into the world will result in success.
The pandemic shifted consumer buying behavior and much of the change remains today. In a recent Nielsen report, researchers found an 88% growth in online purchases and only 15% in brick-and-mortar establishments. Part of the shift is due to the unavailability of products. Consumers want things now and they don’t like the limited selections or lack of inventory on store shelves.
People are also looking for deals as they seek to spend money more on essentials and less on frivolous items. When they do purchase something for fun or convenience, they want the best deal possible.
With the current sales landscape in mind, here are some do’s and don’ts to help you have the most successful product launch imaginable.
Do: Study your competition
Your competitors may have insight into the target audience you don’t fully have at your disposal. Pay attention to the campaigns they use leading up to their launch date. What unique value proposition (UVP) do they present to consumers?
Take notes on what you think works well for them. You’ll want to repeat their successes while putting your own unique spin on them. What is your UVP? How is it different from theirs?
Don’t: Forget email marketing
You already have a powerful tool at your disposal—your email marketing list. See significant improvements in results simply by tweaking your product announcements. For example, know what your customers have purchased in the past, segment your audience and inform them how the new product expands or improves on the experience.
Your mailing list is already filled with highly targeted leads. You simply have to understand what drives them to make a purchase and offer the insight that moves them to the second stage of the sales funnel.
Do: Put the focus on your customer
Your clients don’t care about what you want. They only care about how your product might make their lives better or fix a problem they have. Dig into the pain points your target audience deals with. What are the problems driving them to seek a solution such as yours in the first place?
Once you understand the challenges your buyers face, it’s much easier to sell them on the solution. Share case studies of how someone with a similar problem found the answer with this new item. Explain the benefits as it pertains to their unique situations. Look for ways to explain the benefits to the consumer and you’ll have much higher success than focusing on what makes your brand great.
A customer-centric brand emphasizes the needs of the consumer. Create a company culture that puts the client first. When people buy from you, they should feel like they are more than just another number in your revenue goals. How can you show them your appreciation with follow-up?
Don’t: Start strong and fizzle out
You likely put a lot of planning into your product launch, taking out ads and creating specials leading up to the big day. Unfortunately, many companies lose momentum the day after launch. They forget they need to continue reaching those who haven’t heard of their brand.
Once you launch, it’s time to start utilizing the help of online influencers to spread the buzz. Develop a street team of loyal fans who love your products and ask them to share their thoughts with others. Continue advertising until you’ve sold to practically everyone on your buyer persona list.
Do: Create videos
Wyzowl’s State of Video Marketing report surveyed 813 marketing pros and online consumers. They found approximately 93% of marketers who use video feel it is a vital part of their overall strategy.
Videos offer a powerful way to reach people on a visual level. You can show how a product works, add in testimonials and share the benefits of buying the new item.
Videos are a must-have feature of any product launch promotional strategy. You can share them on social media, your website and even send them out in your emails. Put your videos on social media sharing sites such as Vimeo and YouTube.
Don’t: Put out amateur videos
While it’s fine to create your own videos if you’re on a budget, you want them to look professional. Spend time learning the ins and outs of video equipment, sound, and how to present things in the best light.
Don’t let your cousin Eddie shoot the video unless he has a little experience doing commercial shoots. You might be better served investing in a videographer for the footage. You can always save money by doing your own editing.
You’ll also find online sources where you can plug in photos and text and create a video for your business for a fraction of the cost. Keep in mind, the video is only as good as the images you add, so here too you must offer professional shots.
Would you want to buy a product from someone who looked as though they made a video in their basement on a whim? Present the face you want the world to remember and you’ll have much more success setting the tone for a professional reputation.
Do: Seek influencers
Hootsuite’s annual Social Trends Report surveyed 11,189 marketers. Researchers found there are approximately 4.2 billion active users on social media or 53.6% of the global population. With so many on social media, there is a ton of competition for attention.
One way to reach your exact target audience about your new launch is via influencers. Get the product in their hands ahead of time. As they test it out, they report back to their followers what they love about the item.
You may even want to take pre-orders based on their recommendation, so your launch hits with some orders already under your belt.
Don’t: Run into other events
Schedule your product launch away from other big events. Don’t plan a launch on a major holiday or when a competitor releases their product. Ideally, you’d get out ahead of their launch date, but it’s better to launch after they do than to launch at the same time.
You may even use the momentum to try out their product and explain why yours is a better option for your audience. If you sell something locally, avoid big events such as festivals or vacation times when people won’t be present to buy from you.
Do: Establish your expertise
Set yourself up as an authority in your field. Not only will it help with this product launch but anytime people need a solution you provide, they’ll be more likely to turn to you.
Offer content solving people’s pain points. Share the story of how you got into the industry. Talk up any awards or accolades.
Make sure that your potential customers understand why your product is better and why. Let them know how you’re innovating in the field.
After the launch
If you launch and find your messaging isn’t resonating with your audience, go ahead and mix things up. Sometimes you can do all the research imaginable and still fall a bit flat. Take a step back, think about the language most likely to reach your target, and revamp your strategy.
With the right planning and a creative team, you’ll see a successful product launch. Not only will you sell the item at hand, but you may develop loyal, lifelong customers that buy future releases from you as well.