Product marketing is one of the most important and often overlooked, aspects of product development. A successful product launch requires a well-executed marketing strategy that starts long before the product is launched.
A product launch is an exciting time for any small business owner. It shows that your company is growing and that your new ideas have come to fruition—plus, when done right, a product launch can help you establish your brand in the market.
However, if you want to ensure a seamless launch and guarantee plenty of sales as a result of the right product marketing, you need to follow a few key strategies.
Marketing your product properly before the product is even launched is one of the most important steps to take. By following the right best practices, you’ll give both new and existing customers time to learn all about your new product or service and decide if it’s something they want to buy.
Here are five expert product marketing tips for small businesses that will help to guarantee success for your next product launch.
1. Provide loyal customers with a sneak peek
It’s typically easier to drum up sales among your existing customers, since they already know your brand and trust your products or services. This is why it’s a good idea to offer loyal customers the chance to preview new products or services before you launch. Current customers will feel honored that they have been provided with a sneak peek, and they can help build the anticipation around the launch to improve your performance even further.
It can pay to offer your loyal customers a sneak preview of your products or even host a virtual sneak peek party for select people to attend. This event can provide early access to your loyal customers, and this can help build hype as you launch a new product.
Here are some ways you can show dedicated customers your new products before anyone else:
- SMS text marketing: Utilize business text messaging services, like the ones offered by Emotive, to send out customized texts to your loyal customers. You can include pre-order discounts and other offers to make your loyal customers feel more excitement about your product launch.
- Email marketing: Send out announcements to the segments of your email list who have purchased from you before. Be sure to include a unique discount code for early-bird purchases and add call to action (CTA) buttons to each email to drive more qualified traffic back to your website or preview page.
- Online launch party: Host a gathering online where you show off your new products and make them available for purchase to participants.
- Share Your Story: One great tip that always helps is to share your story. When telling people about your upcoming product launch, make sure you’re including the human element in it. Also, sharing your dedication to the craft can help instill confidence in potential customers.
You can tap into the trust and relationship you already have with existing customers to help build your launch and ensure it succeeds. All of this can lead to increased engagement and additional sales of your products or services.
2. Provide a limited discount to encourage early sales
The prospect of saving money can be enough to push people towards making a purchase, so consider offering discounts to secure more sales early in your launch campaign. Offering one with a time limit or to a certain number of customers can be particularly effective for motivating people to buy your products right after their launch.
To make your limited discount product marketing campaign more effective, use language that inspires customers to buy as soon as possible, such as “don’t miss out” or “limited-time-only.” You can also include a countdown clock on your homepage or in an email to show that the discount code is only active for a specific amount of time to tap into people’s fear of missing out (FOMO)
Limited-time discounts and exclusive deals can encourage your customers to buy from you now instead of waiting until after your launch campaign has ended. This can lead to more sales and improved engagement early in the campaign, leading to a better conversion rate overall.
Image credit: https://www.dontpayfull.com/
One site that does really well is DontPayFull. Running non-stop coupon codes and deals, the website has helped many people save on their online purchases. With various categories to choose from, shoppers are spoiled in choice and money-saving opportunities.
3. Educate your customers ahead of the launch with helpful content
Sometimes the product or service you’re launching might be an entirely new concept to your target audience. If this is the case, you’ll likely need to provide some education on what you’ll be offering and how it works. It’s a good idea to do this by publishing and promoting relevant content ahead of your product launch.
To ensure you cover everything people need to know about your product, you’ll need to provide the following:
- A description of your new offering to help customers understand the products or services that will be available before they see the new launch campaign.
- An explanation of who the product or service is for, so it piques the interest of the right people.
- Product demonstrations to show customers how your new product or service works, so they understand how to use it if they do decide to make a purchase.
Let’s study an example of a company that has done a great job of educating its customers about the service it offers to give you a better idea of what this can look like.
Image credit: https://www.truthfinder.com
TruthFinder, an online people search tool, has published some excellent content that explains its service to new customers, so there is no question in the mind of their audience about the value of the product.
The company’s People Search page does a great job of explaining what the search engine is, why people use it, and what its capabilities are. This content does a great job of diving into the product and connecting it to their readers’ needs, which can help drive more engagement.
You can use a similar approach by creating educational content for your target audience that explains what your products or services are before you launch. This can help build trust and understanding among your audience and help you drive more sales when it matters most.
4. Run an influencer marketing campaign
Another great way to ensure your product launch is successful is to harness the power of influencers who will share your products or services with their followers. Influencer marketing is the act of employing people in your industry or niche who have a large number of social media followers to help promote your product or service.
You can run these campaigns in a variety of ways. For instance, you can launch an affiliate campaign that will pay influencers a commission based on the sales generated from their unique code or link. Alternatively, you can pay a flat fee for an ad that airs on their social media channels as sponsored content. Whichever approach you choose, it’s well worth considering whether you should run an influencer campaign leading up to your launch to help drum up excitement ahead of your product or service going on sale.
Let’s say that a CBD product wants to run an influencer marketing campaign on Instagram. After identifying which customers provided some great reviews on their products and had a following that would be interested in the product, the company would reach out and send them some products.
Image credit: https://secretnaturecbd.com/
These influencers would then post about the product on their feed and stories, tagging the company in their posts.
Just remember that once you’ve chosen the best influencers to help you reach your ideal audience, be clear about how you’d like your brand messaging to come across. Sit down with the social media stars you’ve picked out and outline your expectations, asking for their input on engaging their followers best. This approach will help you see the best results on launch day as new customers flock to buy your product.
5. Use email marketing to spread the word
Your email list is an excellent resource as you try to spread the word about your new service or product, because you can connect directly with your existing audience. To make the most of your new product launch, here are some ways you can optimize your email marketing campaign:
- Use a simple but informative subject line to ensure people recognize your brand and are enticed to click on the email to learn more.
- Include relevant information at the top of your email to ensure customers get the necessary details without having to read through lots of text.
- Provide a relevant CTA at the end of your email to help drive more qualified traffic to your website, where customers can learn more or make a purchase.
It’s a good idea to offer early access or even an exclusive discount code to your mailing list, too, since people who subscribe are likely current customers who know and trust your brand. This will provide extra value to your audience and improve their shopping experience. You can learn more about this in ActiveCampaign’s guide to optimizing your customer experience.
It’s also good to note that email marketing can be used in any type of business. From ecommerce to B2B, and any industry in between, email should be a key part of your product launch strategy. You can learn more about how to launch a successful email marketing campaign here.
You should also start offering an email newsletter ahead of your product launch. This means that when you do eventually launch your product, you’ll have a list of engaged subscribers who are interested in what you do and will be more likely to buy from you.
Image credit: https://www.doorsplus.com.au/
For example, DoorsPlus offers an email newsletter to their site visitors that delivers ‘a free no fuss living’ guide. This builds trust with their target audience and helps them to better understand what the company has to offer before (and even during) a product launch.
You should always strive to provide an online customer experience customers expect – and exceed it where possible. This will remove any friction that could cause visitors to leave your website without making a purchase.
Product marketing and launching profitable products is not always easy. It can be hard to know what steps to take and when, especially if you’re new to launching products online.
However, with the help of the above five expert marketing tips, you can ensure your next product launch will be a success.
Keep in mind that providing the most value that you can is ultimately the best way to promote your product and ensure its success.