Launching a new product can be an exciting time for any company. Whether it is the first product or an addition to an already existing line, the enthusiasm and buzz in the air is contagious as hope of instant success abound. Before presenting your product to the masses, however, there are a few things that every company needs to do to prepare for the big reveal.
1. Be Prepared.
When a company begins to prepare for launching a new product, there can be a tendency to sensationalise the product. Marketing personnel, ambitious sales staff and even company executives can set their stakes on the wonderful new product they have. Taking a realistic evaluation of the product before releasing it to the public is vital to the launch success. Has the product been thoroughly tested? Does it deliver consistent results?
Asking hard questions internally will not only help improve the product, but will help to ensure that the product is ready to be launched. Once you have done an internal evaluation of the product, study the answers – even the ones that aren’t what you want to hear. It may be tempting to overlook the negative responses, but doing so may be putting your product and your company in peril.
2. Understand your Target Audience
A winning product launch starts with matching the capabilities of your product (or service) to the needs of your target market. If you are delivering a new product into the market, you would be well served by getting out and talking to the potential buyers that your product addresses. Finding the specifics of your target market will help you to tailor the launch strategy to the people most likely to purchase your product. By personalising the target market, you can gear your marketing material to your customer and have greater success in making sure that your intended buyers are receiving the message.
3. Know your Competition
Investigate what businesses supply products are comparable to the one you plan to launch. Even if you think that your new product is entirely unique and without existing contest, it’s important to put yourself in your prospective customers’ shoes and imagine what they might purchase in lieu of what you plan to provide. Once you decide whom your opposition will be, review their marketing material, including their adverts, catalogues and websites. Evaluate how your new product will stand up against what is already being presented, in what ways you’ll shine, and which companies or their items pose the greatest threats to your success.
4. Utilise a PR Firm
Public relations often plays a vital role in the launch of a product. You can use media relations tactics to place articles and win interviews, gain coverage by allowing key press to review your product, hold a launch event, or use grass roots and guerilla marketing to build buzz. But no matter what publicity route you choose, first make sure your product or service is completely ready and available for purchase in order to maximise returns from the coverage you receive. And your other marketing efforts should follow closely on the heels of your press roll out. Monitor the results from all media, and in the first weeks and months, be prepared to adjust your campaign to take advantage of what’s working best.
5. Time your Product Launch
Timing is everything. This can be especially true if you launch your products on a global scale. The timing of your launch event may be predetermined by a key industry trade show or other major event. Whatever the case, as you go through your launch planning process, identify the times and locations that afford maximum leverage. If your product isn’t ready at the time of your Launch Event, it can take a lot of courage to pull the plug. Early customers may say that your product stinks and post negative messages on social media. Your competitors will be all over it. Conversely, waiting too long and your market segment may lose interest. The perfect storm is to have your product ready, your partners screaming at you to ship, your buyers foaming at the mouth in anticipation, and the media wanting all they can get. That’s a good day.
6. Know your Products’ Lifecycle
The campaign you use during the introduction and education phase of your product or service launch will need to be updated as your product matures. If you’re monitoring your marketing results carefully, you’ll begin to see diminishing returns that will indicate when it’s time to revise the product itself, alter your media message, or even phase out this particular offering and lay the groundwork for the launch of your next great idea.
Expand a Sign is excited to be launching our new product, the Flexi-Disc. This innovative, functional, compact and flexible item is a revolution in 360’ branding. The clever design allows the double-sided print to show off logos and design from any direction, and we’re keen to be revealing the Flexi-Disc any day now (see what we’re doing? We’re being a tease). The Flexi-Disc clamp is adaptable, attaching to any size pole and multiple surface areas, both magnetically and using cable ties. The Flexi-Disc can also be staked to the ground and used as a Tee-Disc at golf events or used horizontally as a shopping aisle runner, and more.
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