I may be a little biased, but when it comes to launching a product or service, I think we live and die by our marketing strategy. There are the occasional products and services that fail because they, themselves, kind of suck—but more often than not, the brands that have the most successful product launches are the ones that (let’s be real) market the sh*t out of them.
Whether you come from a communications background or the farthest thing from it, trying to wrap your head around all the pieces that make up a marketing strategy—and then how to connect them all—can feel a lot like drowning.
So, my life vest this week comes in the form of a marketing survival guide—a high-level overview of the marketing elements you should consider when programming your next launch.
1. Landing (or Splash) Page
When you’re launching a product, you want to make it as easy as possible for people to find information about—and then buy!—whatever it is you’re selling. The trick here is to create one sole page on your website that includes all the product or service information and e-commerce opportunities in one place. Then, lead people there—and only there—in your supporting newsletters, blogs, and social media.
One of the biggest launch fails I see is when companies include links to their homepage in all of their communications, leaving their community to figure out where on that site they can find more info. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
2. Email Marketing
Call it a newsletter, email marketing, email blast, or email promotion, but the intention is the same—you want people to sign up for your email list, so that on a weekly basis, your company name and information end up directly in the inbox of people that are most likely to buy what you’re selling.
Getting people to sign up for your list is an article in and of itself, but here’s the headline: You want to email people really awesome content (e.g., videos, thought-provoking blogs, and news roundups) on a consistent basis. Then, when it comes time to launch your product or service, you have an entire community of people who are used to seeing your email pop up every Tuesday at 11 AM and are already invested in your brand (or they would have kicked you out of their inbox a long time ago).
The key is to not to abuse that power during launch time by slamming your community with lots of overly sales-y emails. Continue to create and regularly distribute all your awesome content, just make sure you make your content relevant to the launch and then tease what you’re launching in the email by including a few sentences about it at the end and linking to your landing page.
For people to get psyched about your launch, you need to appeal to them on a human level—and a blog is a great place to do just that. There, your community is expecting something personal, so it gives you a great opportunity to connect with your audience on a deeper level.
For example, if you’re launching a streaming workout video, your website, email, and other communications may talk a lot about how much more healthy and happy your community will be by getting into shape with your unique system. The blog, then, would then be a great opportunity to talk about why you’re launching—did you struggle with weight as a kid? Were you a workout nut who found a typical gym to be soulless and depressing?
(Whatever your angle, just remember to include the link to your landing page somewhere within.)
4. Social Media
I don’t need to tell you this is important. Here’s what I will say: When creating your social strategy around your launch, first look at the content you’re already creating—your blog, your newsletter, the messaging on your splash page. What can you pull and promote across your social platforms?
Only then, when you’ve culled from what you already have, should you think about creating unique pieces of content just for your social platforms related to the launch, like memes or quote graphics.
To keep yourself organized, make yourself a calendar. On it, include when you’re creating each piece of content, when you want to distribute each piece of content, and how you’d like to distribute—e.g., blog, email blast, social, all three. It may sound like total chaos, but once you’ve got that dry erase board out, it’s all going to come together. And you’ll rock it. Promise.
Photo of rocket ship courtesy of Shutterstock.