Launch a product or service using social media
You won’t believe how many questions I’ve had over the last few weeks about launching a product, service or App using social media! (There’s usually some inspiration from the last few weeks when I sit down to write these articles). On reflection, there are a few essential ingredients for an optimal launch, whatever it is we’re launching on social media and so I figured I’d note these things down for you!
Remember, however, this is general information, and as much as this is essential for all launches, in my opinion, you really need to think about how to make it relevant for you, your business, and most importantly your ideal clients and customers.
Before your launch, build an audience
If you’re going to stand in a room and shout, announcing that your new thing is here… you need to make sure there are a few people in it to listen first!
If your thing is top secret, you need a reason to attract those people. This isn’t a chicken and egg scenario, so don’t fool yourself into thinking that’s the case. In the run-up to your launch you can post around the pain your product, service or app is addressing. People feeling that pain will want to engage in finding out about the solution. As people engage with that content you can then signpost them to a Facebook group, a resource that builds your email list, or perhaps your Facebook or LinkedIn page. (Maybe even your Instagram account if you’re using automated messaging tools.)
If you have an existing audience this is a little easier, but continue to build posts into your messaging that plant a seed of interest in the minds of your audience. Get them to start thinking your way! FYI, when you look at the engagement on these posts, it can be quite a good indicator as to how well received your new thing will be. I’d suggest doing this in the early stages of development just to test the waters. You don’t want to spend time working on something for months that nobody wants!
If you’re starting from zero, be prepared to have to spend some money on social ads to create a bit of awareness. You can do it organically but it will take time, time you might not have!
Plan a prelaunch campaign
One mistake we’ve seen is people starting here. Spending lots of time agonising over a prelaunch plan without doing step one first, and without doing any of the follow-up steps! Your prelaunch campaign is simply a series of posts that act as teasers, giving more a hint of what’s to come to start off with, then more information as the launch continues.
In the early stages, you might post images or videos revealing colours, or parts of the product at a weird angle that doesn’t give anything away. Then you start to release the logo, perhaps the name and talk about the pain. If you have a strapline this is a good time to release this. We now know what it’s called, why it’s here but still not WHAT it is. Remember, throughout this, it’s all about teasers – don’t reveal too much until the last week of. campaign or perhaps even the last few days
FInal stages tell us all, gives us the what, and if you have testimonials from those who have tested the product or service, then use those.
I know what you’re thinking… How long should my prelaunch campaign be? I’d suggest a prelaunch campaign lasting anything from one week up to six weeks. The higher value of your product, the longer the launch. Many launches work really well when they are one to two weeks in length. Tip: Remember you can launch more than once!!!
Launch with an irresistible offer
Option 1: You – “Ta-dah! Here’s my thing, buy it.”
Option 2: You – “Ta-dah! Here’s my thing, and if you buy it now you’ll also get….”
Option 3: Them – “Is it open yet? How do I get to the front of the queue?”
We have to ensure that the perception of value is at the highest possible level when we launch your product or service. With an effective launch, you will have created a world where people are waiting and hounding you so they can buy! For something of high value, it might be that you need to build a package for early adopters to sweeten the deal. This is about over-delivering on expectation.
Don’t lose momentum
Hurrah! You’ve launched. Do not take your foot off the gas now – keep your social media content going.
Continue to add value, talk about the pain or problem you’re addressing. Keep giving people the what in terms of resolving things and pointing out that the how lies in your offering. Don’t oversell, though, and don’t be too blatant or aggressive with this either.
There are a bunch of other tips I can give you – and many of these relate to things I’ve written about previously. Have a look at the list below and let me know if you’d like me to go into more depth on any of these in a future article!
- Be really clear on who you should be targeting, and choose your social media channels based on this
- Be really clear what you want from the launch – set some clear objectives
- Use Hashtags – just research them first and look at them to ensure they don’t spell out anything they shouldn’t!
- Think about offline tactics that could help increase success of the overall campaign
- Create relationships with influencers within the community you’ll be serving. Get them on board as part of your launch to extend your message.
- Run competititons and challenges ahead of your launch – these can offer a fantastic taster of what you have to offer. Only do these in the final stages of launch, and launch during the very last phases of your challenge or competition
- Measure results – and start to plan your next launch! I’d suggest having some sort of launch campaign (or relaunch) at least once a year for most businesses.
So that’s it… that’s all you need to know! #Joking. Obviously, as I said above this is all general stuff. Use what’s in this blog and think about how you can apply it to whatever it is you’re launching. If you have questions… there’s a live chat button here so you can talk to us, or, of course, hop on to any of our social media channels and drop us a message there!