CT Top 5: Five Steps to a Successful Product Launch
It’s been a long time coming, but your product is finally ready for launch.
Deadlines were met, challenges were conquered, and now it’s done: your company has a new product to roll out, and it’s pretty darn amazing.
You’re ready to bring it to the world. But how do you best showcase its impressive functionality? How do you get it in front of the right audience? How, after all your hard work, do you ensure a successful product launch?
Here are our top five considerations for making your new product a success:
1) Define the “Why“
Before you can market a product, you must be able to articulate your reason for developing it in the first place. Does it support a new and compelling feature? Is it enhancing an established product? Align closely with your product teams so you understand just what it is you’re promoting and the specific need it meets. Find out why it’s a “must have” for your target audience, and market accordingly.
2) Figure Out the Story
Every successful product has a narrative to support and position it. But don’t think of it as a fact sheet or a white paper that simply describes its purpose and function. Great products demand great storylines that engage and excite the consumer and assure your launch generates some buzz and heat. Show – don’t tell.
3) Engage the Media
Once you plot out the story, determine who gets the pitch. This is central to your “soft” – i.e., early – launch. A placement in an independent media outlet that emphasizes the value of your product is the best possible way to generate customer engagement prior to general availability.
4) Cultivate Your Toughest Audience
Marketers typically don’t reach their customers directly: they go through their sales teams. And convincing sales can be – well, a hard sell. To win over customers, salespeople need straightforward data on the product, its position in the company’s general sales portfolio, and cases studies that highlight the product’s usefulness and confirm consumer enthusiasm.
5) Go on the Road
During your general availability launch, participate in established events (think Dreamforce) or stage your own. People like to meet people who share professions and areas of interest, and they love to meet them at fun, exciting events. Trade shows and other industry galas allow you to showcase your product to a large (indeed, captive) audience who is anxious to see it, test it, and use it. Don’t let them down!