NASA isn’t the only place that should have a launch plan! After all of your time and money spent polishing your product the launch is a crucial step between your investment and your profits- NOT something you want to wing. It may feel like the end of a development process but it’s also the beginning of your next phase of business. At the Peterman Firm we support you through this stage, because creating a product launch plan can make or break a product in the market. We’ve seen many products flop because they didn’t have a plan at all. These are things you’ll need to be thinking of whether we help you or you launch on your own.
Run the numbers
When you have a final design that has been prototyped and you are looking to manufacture, you should be getting quotes from manufacturers for full production. Look at every cost you might have and give yourself an idea of what it is going to take to buy the first 100, 1,000, or even 10,000 units of your product. Knowing your numbers will help if you need to get financial help with the launching of your product.
Have backup suppliers
As any good developer or sourcing agent should tell you, you need backup suppliers. I’ve see production lines go down because a company didn’t get a backup supplier for a single bolt. Without the bolt, the product wasn’t made. Having primary, secondary, and even tertiary suppliers is important to make sure your products are made in time and you are able to deliver. We work with our clients to ensure multiple sources are provided for projects. Sourcing is a very important part of developing your product.
Decide your launch platform
This doesn’t just mean crowdfunding. Is your product going into large box stores, online marketplace, your own website, or some type of crowdfunding/launching platform? This can help decide what quantities you will be ordering in, and your marketing strategy. Are you going to use Amazon or another ecommerce site not run by you? If you are using a crowdfunding platform, there are definite differences and you need to research similar products and which is best for your industry and market.
Set realistic goals
It’s a good rule in general, but make sure that your goals are measurable and achievable. Especially while you are going through the process of launching an entire new product, keeping focus and having success happen is important.
Have a marketing strategy
You need to know the who, where, and how of your marketing. There are lots of templates and website dedicated to discussing marketing. Who are you marketing to? It may be someone other than the user (such as baby toys). Where are you marketing? Online, radio, TV, billboards, etc. How are you marketing? Paying someone else, friends, or doing it all yourself? It doesn’t matter, just know what you are doing.
BONUS: Keep your product launch plan flexible
Don’t forget to create the actual plan! Just kidding, I’m sure you remember that. A quick note on plans, though. They never survive contact with the real world, so keep it flexible. Especially if you are a bootstrapping startup.
Keep these things in mind as you create your product launch plan. This part of your project is something you want to start on as early as possible. As a last tip, make sure you have the right partnerships. They can bring you down or raise you up, and are largely outside of your direct control. As a full development firm instead of just a freelancer, we link our clients with the best possible partners for every stage of the process.