Make Your Product Launch the Start for a Multichannel Content Promotion Plan
Companies bring new products and services to market every day. They have invested in R&D, surveyed their customers and researched market trends for needs and opportunities. All of this is significant, extensive work. And when it’s time for you to release your new product to market, it is just as important to invest in planning an effective product launch.
The best way to garner exposure for your product is a calculated mix of strategies and tools. Today, your launch plan is likely to center on unique, high-quality content that will resonate with your target clients, prospects and industry leaders. With compelling content and a multi-channel marketing strategy, you will be able to build awareness, attract customers, drive them through the sales funnel and achieve revenue objectives.
Research that PR Newswire commissioned from CMI, however, found that a content distribution/promotion plan that includes paid methods is often what separates the effective content marketers from the less successful ones (60% to 29%).1 This paper will help you evaluate your content distribution strategy and consider whether you have tapped all the channels that will help you make your product launch a success.
To get started, let’s take a look at a product launch use case.
A technology company was readying a major update to its small business offering, which consolidated customer service applications into one platform. At the same time, the sales team noted that during the last two quarters, new customer signups were slowing—a red flag for both the success of the new product, and the company. It was decided that the launch would coincide with an effort to build a user community of small business owners.
To launch the product and the user community, a newly formed content and community team came up with a content strategy plotted against the buyer’s journey of their target audience of small (under 100 employees) business owners. Then, working with the marketing team, they laid out a tactical roadmap to engage small business owners with a regular cadence of communications.
To accommodate the different channels and the different stages of the buyer and customer experience, the content strategy included many different content types and formats.
Product Content-Demos, user advocacy stories and ROI calculators.
Research-Exclusive survey commissioned and designed to be chopped up for use in various channels.
User Content-Surveys and contests that could be reformatted into other content, e.g., blog posts.
Multimedia-Each category of content included photos, videos and infographics, ready for sharing in multiple channels.
The content and community team then mapped out how the product launch announcement and supporting content would be used in the different channels.
Website-The user community was set up on the company’s website, providing a home for users to communicate with each other and the company’s Subject Matter Experts, and a library with content crafted with the small business owner in mind.
Blog-The team increased the frequency of posts, and focused on best practices for the community.
Application-The product was designed to provide access to the community content, putting this information close at hand.
Social-The new content and community team set up an editorial calendar for its own social channels, and reevaluated how it was participating in social conversations, and built a plan for outreach to influencers.
Press Releases-The corporate communications team avoided a "one and done" product launch announcement, and sketched out a steady rhythm of messages—all including multimedia—about product releases, content, and community milestones.
Media Outreach-As part of the communications plan, the corporate communications team did targeted outreach, crafting a few special “news hooks” for each announcement to drive the earned media coverage that builds awareness. Some of the resulting coverage was licensed and added into the content strategy.
Influencer Outreach-The content and community team also identified a handful of influential members of the community and brought their voices into the program via the blog and community site.
Email-The demand generation group designed an email nurture program, aligned to the complete customer lifecycle. Product launch and update messages were seeded into the program, which was segmented by audience industry.
Digital Advertising-The advertising agency designed its program around both the product and community content. For example, the PPC program bought keywords around product features and on the small business themes and issues that the content covered.
Content Syndication-The agency also put together a plan to share product and community content via a content syndication network.
Webinars-The content and community team organized two streams of events. One series was for all comers and covered issues of general interest to the small business community. The second had a "VIP guest list" only for subscribers, influencers and registered community members, providing insights gleaned from actual usage of the customer service platform.
Sales-The marketing team used the product launch announcement in its outreach to customers and prospects, as well as some content “reserved” just for use in customer conversations and communications.
And don't forget Measurement-Each tactical channel had metrics identified and tracking established so that all the teams could assess what was successful, and refine their programs as the product launch and community building plan moved forward.
This example illustrates that a product launch should not be looked at as a one off event or single communication point. It’s an opportunity to establish a stream of messages to more fully integrate your product into your target client community, and establish your company as a trusted resource and advisor in key markets.
Your next product launch is your chance to strengthen your messaging and communications plan, build relationships with your audiences and put your product on track for success.
With compelling content and a multichannel marketing strategy, you will be able to build awareness, attract customers, drive them through the sales funnel and achieve revenue objectives.
To maximize the different channels and the different stages of your customer’s experience, your content strategy should include a range of content types and formats.
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PR Newswire’s portfolio of services and solutions helps communicators of all stripes achieve their communications goals—from building awareness with new audiences and gaining media pickup, to managing reputation and inspiring investor confidence—by sharing, targeting, tracking and enhancing your unique content to make the most of your content investment. Our offerings include:
Multimedia Distribution—Engage consumers, investors and the media with the rich, compelling content that they are all hungry for: videos, photos, infographics, images.
Media Targeting & Monitoring— Reach influential journalists with our list-building tools and multichannel distribution network, and monitor conversations about your brand across global media, with metrics to uncover actionable media intelligence.
Professional Services— Leverage the expertise of our Professional Services team for your custom media research projects.
Configuration, implementation and roll-out of media monitoring solutions.
Ongoing monitoring and in-depth reporting on your brand and key topics.
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Content Marketing Institute and PR Newswire, "Promoting Your Content Marketing: Time to Orchestrate the Concert of Paid Media,"