A new product launch is an exciting time for any business, no matter the size. How can you make sure that you not only get it right but plan a spectacular B2B product launch?
Every year, there are zillions of new products that come to market. Right off the bat, your new product or service will have to compete against a sea of noise. Depending on your industry and time of year, the competition can be fierce.
With so much competition, how can you woo and wow your audience?
We've collected our top 8 secrets to take your product launch strategy from standard to exceptional.
8 Expert Secrets to a Knockout B2B Product Launch
1. Approach It Strategically
The worst thing you can do when launching a new product is to wing it. Don't leave any part of your product launch to chance. Instead, create a strategy that outlines your overall plan, including audience, messaging, and timing.
What exactly does a B2B product launch strategy entail?
An integral part of your strategy is to find your core audience. Who will care about your product or service? What channels do they use? What message speaks to their specific pain points? Take the time to write up buyer personas for this audience. Outline the specifics about your target audience that will take your product launch to the next level.
Another part of an effective strategy is the people that you have at your side. While it's always nice to have admirers, they won't push you to be better. Find people who will ask questions, topple barriers, and poke holes in your strategy. You want to see all of the potential flaws in your strategy so that you can improve it.
2. Create a Gripping Story
Storytelling helps people to relate to you and remember your product. We're not talking about a Lifetime-movie-kind-of-story -- it just has to make a point. You want your audience to say to themselves "Hey, that's just like me" when they hear your story.
Did you create your product to address a specific problem in your industry? Then you could tell the story of how you faced that problem, how frustrated you were -- and how that frustration moved you to create a solution for others in the same boat.
3. Target Major Media Outlets
For all of social media and other new strategies that are available, media placements still carry weight among audiences. The right placement can springboard your launch into a new arena of success.
How can you position your brand and product to get the attention you want? Craft a winning press release that incorporates elements of your story with a gripping hook that will differentiate your release from others.
Once you have perfected your press release, you can start choosing which journalists and bloggers to target. Choose a journalist whose beat matches your product and industry. Do your research, look up their past articles, and engage them with details that show that you picked them for a reason. These little details serve to distinguish your pitch from the crowd.
4. Get Influencers on Board
Influencers are industry experts who have a powerful impact on their audience. Influencer marketing takes that impact and works it in your favor. This can be especially powerful when used to promote your new product launch.
Choose influencers that your audience knows and respects -- with the social following and engagement to amp up the excitement for your product.
Once you've chosen your influencers, there are a number of ways to use them to promote your new product. For instance, you could use an influencer to beta test your product, then use any resulting reviews in your product launch materials.
If you think of this early on, you may persuade an industry influencer to get involved in your creative process. Since the influencer may face similar business problems, he or she may provide key advice on how to improve your product and get it ready to launch. Once launch day arrives, the influencer, because of his or her involvement, may be more inclined to promote your product.
5. Reach People on Social Media
Social media is a powerful place to launch your product -- but only when you use it correctly.
First, don't go on social media with a "spray and pray" mentality. If you blast your message too strongly, you may scare away your target audience. Choose your social media networks strategically. Select networks where your core audience is most active, and where you already have a foothold.
Second, create a consistent message across all of the social networks you choose. That way you're reinforcing the same message. People are creatures of habit, so seeing your message consistently across their social networks will leave a lasting impression.
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6. Attract People with Video
Video in marketing has become a necessity. Countless studies show the importance of video marketing campaigns. It only makes sense that it would also cement the success of product launches.
Before you release your product, use video to warm up your audience. Take popular posts and transform them into video for easy viewing. This engages your audience and can be great for lead generation. This will make it easier to to introduce them to your new product down the road.
Create other videos as part of your product launch strategy. Use video to explain why your product is important, how it will affect your industry, and key features that make it different from your competitors.
Take this example of a product launch video from Resman, a software solution for property management companies. The company address the common problems and frustrations with current solutions. Instead of confronting the viewer with complicated industry jargon, it highlights the top benefits of its software in easy-to-understand language, against a backdrop of engaging animation.
7. Embrace Live Video
This one is so special that we felt it deserved its very own spot on this list. Although this point overlaps with both social media and video, it stands apart in its own right. Many use video without going live, and many others use social media without tapping into its live video features.
Why is live video so important? It takes the very best components of a live event launch and a video launch to give your audience a unique, real-time experience.
Use live video to answer audience questions. Give them direct access to a never-before-seen video. Engage your audience with the sense of being there in person.
Take this example from tech giant Apple when it recently announced updates and new product features. During its WWDC 2018 event, Apple streamed it live, with regular announcements as to the date, time (even broken down into worldwide time zones), and other details about the launch. This must-be-at event was made even more prominent by Apple's use of live video.
Granted, we're not all Apple -- we can't all demand that kind of attention. But the basic importance of live streaming can't be overstated. It gives you the opportunity to expand your audience and generate more excitement for your new product or service.
8. Leverage the Latest Technology
What new forms of media get your audience excited? Can you leverage some of these in your product launch?
For instance, webinars attract a large audience and are fairly easy to integrate into your product launch strategy. With the right software and promotion, a live webinar can engage prospects and get them excited about your product.
Interactive content is another way to get your audience eager for your product. You might launch a new quiz or calculator that focuses on the need for your new product or service. There are so many options when it comes to interactive content that you're bound to find something that will stimulate your audience.
We hope all of these tips will help you to get the response you want and ultimately take your product launch to the next level.
Let us know in the comments below what has helped to make your product launch a success.
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