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5 essential tips for launching your new product online

John is Brightfire founder and CEO. A graduate of Strathclyde University Business School, he has worked in a variety of senior management roles in digital media since 1997, re-launching Brightfire as an inbound marketing company in 2010, joining forces with HubSpot. Beyond work, John’s passion is skiing, and he has been fortunate to travel the globe on numerous occasions in search of that perfect powder day. These days that includes dragging his family along, too!

Find John on LinkedIn and follow Brightfire on Twitter.

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If you don’t have a gazillion £s to launch your next product, then you are fortunate that you are running your business in the digital era. No longer is it about having massive budgets to buy media space on TV or in the press. The internet has levelled the playing field and democratised the advertising space.

With a small budget, you can, with the right product and online strategy, rapidly build a following for your new product and be on the road to success. So what do you need to consider in getting ready to take your product online?

I have recently been involved in the launch of a video product - the campaign ran on a small budget and took place purely online. So here are five essential tips for firing up your product launch online, inspired by our client’s product success…

1. Influencers. Research the market well ahead of the launch and identify key influencers and bloggers around the globe that you think would engage with the product and post online reviews. In the era of social business, opinion matters (especially when coming from an authoritative source).

2. Competitor and keyword research. Analyse how you should position your product online, carefully research the keywords and phrases that you need to get found and compete for. Organic search takes time to develop so you can plug the gap with Adwords but don’t become a PPC junkie!

3. Content. Quality content lies at the heart of promoting your product online. Most definitely launch your product online with some high quality videos posted in YouTube. Market research data indicates a much higher rate of engagement and action from video (+37%). With the cost of creating video falling, it’s now a very cost-effective way to build content that is really going to get the audience excited about your latest product.

4. Go social. The power of social channels is quite astounding. It can launch a product to starry heights or kill it dead. The power is in the hands of the consumer. You need to embrace social media, use it intelligently to engage with your audience, gain valuable feedback about your product and be prepared to move very quickly to address issues and negative feedback – whether you think it is justified or not.

5. Sell online. Increasingly traditional retailers find themselves competing with the manufacturer of a product for sales. It’s an unavoidable consequence of the web as a channel that allows small retailers to compete with the big boys. In our experience we have seen minimal channel conflict provided there is a good line of communication between the parties.

Of course, it’s all about results.

We spoke to traditional distributors who wanted the shirt off our back and told us it would take many months of hard pitching to get retailers to take the product. That proved to be nonsense! Within two weeks of launching the product, we had a direct enquiry from an Amazon Japan distributor who had found our video content online and wanted to put our client’s product on the Amazon site. The product has now also been adopted by the largest photo video retailer in the US. And we have never had to make a cold sales call!

Through the power of content marketing these brands have found our client online, engaged with the content, and got in touch. And with an integrated pre-launch plan we created a huge buzz around the product and a spike in interest online around the launch leading to an excellent start to sales.

You can check out the product at www.mobislyder.com

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John Hornell

John is founder and CEO at Brightfire a content marketing agency specialising in working with funded tech companies and ambitious start ups in UK, Europe and U.S. He also advises companies on go to market strategies, inbound marketing, content marketing, revenue acceleration and business change.

A graduate of Strathclyde University Business School, he has worked in a variety of senior management roles in digital media since 1997, re-launching Brightfire as an inbound marketing company in 2010 and joining forces with HubSpot. Beyond work, John’s passion is skiing, and he has been fortunate to travel the globe on numerous occasions in search of that perfect powder day.

All by John