Wednesday, March 30, 2011

7 Product Launch Essentials for Start-Ups

If your a start-up, small business, or a one-man show, you may not have an enormous budget to launch a product like say Microsoft or Apple. Never spend more than what you can afford to lose or gain a new customer. Below are 7 essentials for a successful product launch with limited budget.

  1. Social Media. Set up a refresh of your Facebook page, send out product launch tweets (schedule tweets 24 hours a day), create a LinkedIn group, create a webinar (webinars are huge right now, and they are the easiest way to connect with your audience). If your in retail, use Groupon. If you have a physical location your customers frequent, utilize geolocation tools like Foursquare or Gowalla.
  2. Website refresh. Create new product-specific landing pages, feature photos (.png's), blog content, online collateral. Adjust and enhance your website meta tags/keywords to reflect new product information.
  3. Review copies. Reach out to influential bloggers +online publications. Send them copies 1-2 weeks before launch with an embargo date. Make sure you have some type of "blogger relations" program at least 6 months before launch. Relationship building with bloggers is key. Get to know them, comment on their blogs, reach out to them and introduce yourself.
  4. PPC campaign. Stick to one advertising platform like Google Ads, Amazon, or Facebook ads.
  5. E-mail marketing. Consider offering a pre-order for your new product, exclusive only to e-mail recipients. Or, offer a sneak peek at the new product before it’s released to the public.
  6. Press Release. If you have some budget, use Business Wire. A cheaper alternative is PR Newswire. These PR distribution companies now are fully automated and support Social Media + mobile (iPad, smartphone) tools.
  7. Work your ass off. Rather then using a ton of money, you use time, energy and creativity.
After launch its crucial to measure your results. Go back and re-double efforts on which of the above techniques are working and abandon the ones that are not working.

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