How to Engineer Successful Product/Brand LaunchesSep 07, 2022
HOW TO ENGINEER A SUCCESSFUL PRODUCT LAUNCH FOR YOUR SUBSCRIPTION-FIRST BUSINESS OR NEW LAUNCH
Below are some tips that will work especially well for you subscription-first entrepreneurs. These are techniques we use on all new launches and these sequences have generated multiple 6-figure launches for a number of our businesses.
When preparing your subscription first product/line, the question should inevitably come… how do you engineer a really successful launch for your new product/club/box with impact and momentum, particularly if/when you have ZERO followers or email subscribers? We all know that launches have the potential to create momentum and make or break the scaling of a business, but where do you even start with this process?
Well, the framework is the key and below is a brief summary of the sequence we use and have refined over launches. It works. I'm laying this out for you as a baseline system, that you can tweak and adapt for your own needs.
THE LAUNCH PATTERN
STEP 1 / DAY 1 - Announce
Announce your concept/box & create a super-VAGUE landing page with email optin (e.g. “register for first/early beta access”). Add a social profile here or there. We used Facebook and Insta, but you can use others like Pinterest, Twitter, Youtube, depending on the type of content you plan to post.
From this landing page subscription, redirect subscribers into a questionnaire where you ask about what THEY want to see from a product/box/club like yours - This shows them you care and are wanting to listen to improve even at the outset (and everyone loves feeling they have the answer and are important 🙂). They likely won't have seen this out of a new startup/launch before so it also creates instant rapport, trust and brownie points for your brand.
Note, one extra step we took in our startup surveys was to ask the contributor “how likely” they would be to subscribe upon our launch. This allowed us to segment the users into hot leads/warm/cold and market to them via email comms, in different ways.
STEP 2 / WEEK 1 - Share
Share the landing page within your niche (I suggest to use Facebook Groups if you’re stuck for inspiration on where to do this; this works especially well if you are already engrained in these and active as people will know you and trust you). Also have others (e.g. connections, friends) share in other groups with links back to your landing page and leak your website link. When we originally did this, we asked our friends to be vague, again – get the click through to the site and allow the visitor to decide. A simple “Have you guys seen this? Looks intriguing! www.thekeeperbox.com” suffices.
STEP 3 / WEEK 1-2 - Parameters For Launch & Scarcity
Define your launch date and parameters (e.g. limited numbers available, specific tiers of subscription) and allow 8-12 weeks avg until your launch, after announcing. Class the initial launch as "Beta" (or Alpha) and let people know this is a new, exciting concept in the niche that is strictly limited in time/number of intakes. You can frame this as "We need your help, community" as that helps individuals feel valued and that they will receive a value-driven experience from you. This creates excitement, exclusivity and a feeling of being a part of something at inception, which can be powerful psychological principles.
STEP 4 / WEEKS 2-6 - Communication & Brand Voice
CONSISTENTLY write/create articles, posts, reels to leak visuals of your new website, boxes/products, new features, plans for future, over the coming weeks and continue to direct people to the website to pre-register their interest and complete the launch survey. Feel free to continue to include people in further follow up surveys/polls if you need to.
STEP 5 / WEEKS 7-8 - Launch Email Sequence
Create an email launch sequence for the week of your launch. This shouldn’t be the only email sequence you send (see above) but you can automate this to build anticipation during the week of your launch. I would recommend 6-7 emails in the 10 day period preceding and overlapping your launch. So start 6-7 days before, and continue 3-4 days after launch opens. The early emails will be to build momentum and anticipation, the later emails will be to build urgency (e.g. closing down launch, only x number of spots left)
STEP 6 / LAUNCH
As promised, open the doors to your business (virtually) and continue your launch sequence. Launch social posts discussing the excitement around the launch, the number of spots filled, what the plans are, and answering any questions your community may have.
> Don’t “box” yourself in (see what I did there?)
Remember that a subscription box is great for recurring revenue but you can further maximize your revenue with ideas like checkout or dashboard upsells/cross-sells, special offers, new plans, VIP Programs, new launches, funnels and so on – it’s an exciting opportunity.
| Communicate Regularly
Email, social, feature leaks, competitions, celebrations, surveys.
Fact - most people overcomplicate their offer and their website - doing both is catastrophic. Do not offer 12 different payment plans/frequencies, or have 30 pages in your website menu system. Strip back to the essentials of what people need, married with what you offer (via products and product messaging). Use surveys/polls and research to discover the frequencies and price points that work for your audience ahead of launch, instead of after. BTW I’ve made ALL of the above mistakes. It’s ok, just learn from my catastrophes! 😆
| Get Creative
The week to week outline above is just your baseline. You can play around with the sequence or frequency based on your individual business, and your own timeline. However, I would urge you to set that "launch" deadline and stick with it - we've done this within 8 weeks without having anything more than a concept to start (e.g. in those 8 weeks created the Brand, website, product line, messaging, email sequences, competitions, surveys). There are two reasons for this. First, and importantly, it gives you the date in your mind and as Musk says, if you decide to take 3 weeks or 3 months to do something, that's exactly how long it will take.
Second, and equally importantly, when you define that launch date for your audience, you do not want to let it slip, as that shows disorganization. Stick with it. The ONLY caveat to that, which we did on our Timepiece Monthly.com business launch, was that we squeezed in a bonus early launch (we called it "Alpha" one month before our beta, as a surprise). That launch sold out 125 spots and generated $35k in revenue, so it worked pretty well.
By following the framework laid out above, it will keep you on track for creating the right platforms, sequences, communications and launch patterns that will ultimately end in success as great as you can make it. I hope this was of help! Let me know in the comments if you have any questions 🤜
Subbly - I recommend this platform for all product-based subscription first businesses and even transactional e-Comm businesses. The reason is they have a uniquely created system and easy-to-use interface which really gives you everything you need, with no fluff (e.g. funnels, automations, upsells/cross-sells, a solid website builder) for a fantastic price. Note, I am a Subbly affiliate (I use this for two of my businesses and multiple client websites so will 100% stand behind it) so would receive a small commission if you use the system. You can watch my comparison video between Subbly & Shopify here
Kajabi - If you are selling your knowledge/expertise via mastermind programs, e-learning courses, Kajabi is the only solution you need. Like Subbly, this platform offers everything you need in one place (website builder, funnels, email automations etc.) and so is both affordable and simply a fantastic system. I've been using Kajabi for the last 12 YEARS for my own businesses and those of clients, and vouch for it over and over again; once again that's why I stand behind it as an affiliate of their program.
Mailchimp - There are a plethora of email platforms out there. I don't really "love" any of them, but Mailchimp tends to be the easiest to use, if this is what you need.