20 Steps To Success — The Ultimate Product Launch Checklist
Every product launch is different. There’s no point in looking for one universal solution that works for every business and product.
Still, there are some things every product launch needs for success. By sticking to the 20 points outlined in the checklist below, you’ll be on your way to boosting your sales and getting the word about your product out there before revealing it to the world.
1. Define your Unique Selling Proposition (USP). You need to communicate how your product is different from the others available on the market and why customers should choose yours. Here’s an article where I explain how to identify a unique selling proposition before releasing your product.
2. Develop a media plan. Launching a product without a media plan in place is a considerable risk. You’re only going to launch your product once, so you need to make the most of that occasion. If you’re not sure where to start, check out this post about creating a media plan for digital products.
3. Identify your primary target audience. Your PR strategy should aim to attract and engage this group of people.
4. Assign roles to your team for the launch. A product launch is a busy time. Ensure that each member of your team knows what they should be doing and for which areas they’re responsible.
5. Write a press release. Journalists receive hundreds of press releases each month so make sure that yours catches their attention and engages them to reach out to you. Have a look here to learn how to write a press release that does its job.
6. Invest in media monitoring. By having someone help you learn who writes about your product and how you’ll gain heaps of valuable insights for later implementation.
7. Choose the right day and time for your product launch. Use the tips I shared in this post about picking the time for sending out your press release; they’re both important.
8. Get in touch with key journalists and confirm your launch date to help them develop their content.
9. Inform all stakeholders about your launch date beforehand. Each member of the team will need to reserve their time to work on the launch and create a buzz.
10. Offer bonuses to early adopters. Nothing helps to attract people more than exciting freebies or promotions that come as part of the launch.
11. Create promotional and sales materials. Develop your offer and content you will share online. Always make sure that someone else reviews your materials.
13. Test to check that everything works. Conduct testing at least a few days before your launch. If you test your product too late, you risk disappointing users who are waiting for it. Also, if you change any variable, remember to check it again.
14. Check your support. You need to know whether your support team can handle a sudden influx of requests from users. Make sure that there are enough people on board who can answer users’ questions and help them take advantage of the product from day one.
15. Establish the goal of your market launch. You need to have an objective in mind when launching your product — for example, the number of users you want to engage or specific sales metrics you want to reach. By measuring your success, you will learn more about what works and what doesn’t for your audience.
16. Launch your product internally first. It’s smart to test everything internally on the day of the launch. If you spot a technical glitch, you’ll have just enough time to eliminate it before the official start.
17. Spread the word. Make sure to ask everyone you know — from partners and employees to family and friends — to send out and let everyone know about your new product. Use social media channels smartly, and you’ll engage your target audience even before the launch.
18. Send your press release to the media. Once you write a fantastic press release, it’s time to distribute it across your network. If you’re using a database, don’t forget to place these addresses in Bcc.
19. Offer support to the first clients personally. By delivering that type of customer service, you’ll not only gain insight about the first reactions and opinions of customers about your product but also make a great impression on them as someone who cares about their users.
20. Plan future communications. It’s smart to create a broader PR plan where you include communications to be delivered after the launch. For example, if you plan to open a newsletter box, you need to know what type of content you’ll be sharing with your audience before someone subscribes.
Stick to this checklist, and you’re guaranteed to make your market launch a great success.
Want to learn more? I wrote an ebook Launch Your Startup with a Bang where I share everything I’ve learned about PR for startups.
Download it here, it’s free. :)
Still not sure how to help your product make a big splash all over the media? Have a look at our series of posts that explore the most important aspects of PR for startup founders:
- How to plan a successful product market launch
- How to create a media plan for a digital product
- DIY Public Relations: How to create PR materials without hiring an agency
- Build a Personal Brand to Kickstart Your Sales Proces
- What is the Best Day and Time to Launch a Product
- 5 Mistakes Startup Founders Make During the Market Launch
- How to Create an Effective Press Release For Your Product