Before you reach the product launch stage, there are a lot of activities in a pre-launch phase of your product life cycle.
In the previous episode, I talked about Product Definition. Once you pass the project documentation to a development team, you may have an impression that there's nothing more to do. You can wait for the product delivery date.
There is nothing further from the truth. While the development team is building your product, you have to be available to help them to dispel the doubts which may arise. Also, there are a lot of activities you have to take care of. Otherwise, you will fail the product launch. But before you reach the product launch stage, there are a lot of activities in a pre-launch phase of your product life cycle.
You can think about your product as a Hollywood movie production. When the script is ready, you are getting a lot of buzz that the new movie will appear. Then you'll get news about the cast that will be starring in the film. Then you'll get an update about who will be the movie director. Once they make it through the first shots, they'll create a trailer. What they are doing is that they are building up the excitement. It is exactly what you have to do with your product.
If you don't have it in place already this is the best time to create a landing page for your product. It doesn't have to be perfect, but it would be great if you'd follow some principles. The landing page should allow your users to sign up to a beta version of your product. It is where you're starting to build your list.
The landing page is not the only thing you have to do. You have to create your audience and to do so there are a lot of activities you can follow, like being more active on Facebook or Linkedin groups. You can start creating your group if that will work for you. You can combine lists that you have to navigate these people to your landing page. It all depends on what you already have.
If you're starting from scratch, then I would recommend you to focus the most on building a list of potential clients. Do not worry about the development side of the project, as you have a team working on it already. Your users won't come by themselves, and even the best software is worth nothing without the clients, so build your community and healthy relationship with them, and they will come, buy and even recommend you to others.
You may recall the Market Research topic I've covered previously. It's challenging to convince and ask people to fill the survey in. It should show you how it will be difficult to persuade them to sign up and try your product, especially when they have to do a lot of activities before your product starts giving them a profit.
If within your development process you'll create a proof-of-concept, something that works, and it's something that you can show to your early adopters then it will be great to ask them for feedback. You can use their feedback as social proof on your landing page to amplify the usability of your product.
Another thing I would focus on is SEO. People won't find your landing page on Google if you don't have any content. The landing page copy is not enough. A simple blog with posts that you can write is a great thing to aid your organic search results. It doesn't have to be anything fancy, but it has to match your avatar needs. I would try to make these blog posts to touch not only the topic of how your product can help them. I would try to touch on other topics they're looking for, or they might be interested in on the side. For example, if your avatars are interested in surfing, I think they can also be happy to read some stuff about preparing for trips.
The list of activities in this stage is very long, and while you are working and helping your development team to create a product, you must keep these pre-launch activities as your top priority.
I've created a pre-launch checklist for you. You can download it and check what to focus on.
This is the last entry in this season. Sign up to Founders Kitchen Sink newsletter to stay up-to-date with activities I perform for my SaaS project. I will share some insights about the timeline, budget and challenges I face while making my dream come true.