A great and memorable launch can help and take your brand to the next level and can significantly reduce your marketing budget. But the big question is-how do you make sure your startup launch is successful and generate the kind of buzz you expect. Every founder starts a business with the hope of seeing it becoming the next big thing in the industry, but it takes more than hope. Despite your best hopes, the reality may be different and you can fail. If you realize you are failing, fail fast and move on. The Steps to success may not guarantee a successful launch, and it differs from industry to industry.
Dharmesh Shah of onStartups said in his post- Startups: The Elevator To Success Is Out Of Order : “Behind every major success story, there is usually a major effort. It’s not enough to be just smart and passionate.” Most successful entrepreneurs put lots of time, money and resources into their major product or service. Success needs more than just your best efforts and sometimes your best effort does not even pay. You can still fail even when you think you are doing everything right.
If you already have a prototype, it’s a good start. It’s just the beginning. You want to talk to lots of people in your target market. Talk through the idea, talk through the app. Listen. Listen to both positive and critical comments because you need them for improvements to your product if you need real change and growth. Encourage reviews and comments to your idea, prototype or even an almost complete product.
A few months to your official startup launch, you need to start making good noise. Your coming soon page should be more than just a single page for collecting emails. If you have something to say,and you should have something to say: you may also want to start a blog to educate your prospective customers about what to expect, write about your journey if you can, share resources etc. Write things that your target customer will want to read because it’s relevant to the problem that you solve. Include media to display the human side of your new business – photos of your team, office if you have, videos of fun events, etc.
Get started on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, influential forums– know the influencers in your industry and connect with them. Post content related to your field and build reputation as soon as possible. Get active on Quora and comment on topics related to your product. Answer questions and be good at it, share information and knowledge freely.
By this time you should be closer to releasing the first version of your app or product. To talk to potential users who may want to test your product and give you the crucial feedback you need. Spend some time at major conferences and events where you can talk to a lot more people about your product. On launch day, do not forget a press release, invitation to bloggers and keep blogging about how your customers can better use your product.
If you do it right, you can still fail-there is no guarantee. Be willing to kill your initial plan. If you don’t find the solution that works right away, be open to change focus, idea or even your team if you have to. The distance between starting up and a great company can be longer than you expect. Be prepared for it.