Editor’s Note: the following content has been validated by the Head of Product at YouTube.
Whether you’re looking to start a new career as a Product Manager or you’re an experienced veteran of a thousand launches, these templates will help you take the next step forward.
A launch has the potential to be one of the most embarrassing moments for a company if things start to fall apart, as more of the public eye is turned to your product. That is why we’ll help you be prepared to do things the right way.
Why do You Need to Prepare for a Launch?
As a Product Manager, you are the conductor of an orchestra at this stage, and checklists are similar to making sure the instruments are all going to play in the same key.
There is no guaranteed success method for the perfect product launch because every product is unique and has a different target audience of its own. However, having a well-crafted plan to follow for launching a product can help avoid failure.
Preparing for Launch: Step-by-Step
Step 1 – Market Research and Positioning
The fundamental and maybe most important step to start with. Because positioning in the market will be the decision-making factor of the entire marketing strategy: Defining the target audience and where to reach them, the copy of the website, onboarding materials, messaging…
Step 2 – Defining Buyer Personas
Research your target audience and find their pain points. Then, divide them into segments with relevant data based on demographics, what they want to achieve with such a product, etc.
Step 3 – Get in Synch With Other Teams
Once your launch is live, your sales team is your front-line troop. Make sure they have been trained to use the product, give demonstrations, answer questions, and make the sale with your various buyer personas. On the other hand, to deliver a great customer experience, run over the FAQs to ensure these are accurate, go over protocol for problematic cases, and test product tutorials with the customer service team.
Step 4 – Beta Stage
Find people that will be really interested in the product you’ve built, and ask if they’d like to join the beta testing. Analyze their behavior and keep talking to them. They might be your most loyal customers, and you’ll get tons of valuable feedback.
Step 5 -Prepare a Press Kit
On the launch day, you should announce your product on various product listing websites (such as Product Hunt, Indie Hackers, BetaList, Capterra, etc.), and they should all send the same message. That’s why it’s essential to have your copy and visuals ready before the launch.
Step 6 – Build The Infrastructure To Gain Insights
Get your tools ready before launch so that you have everything recorded for later analysis. Use FullStory to watch how your first users are using your product, Amplitude to track and analyze user actions, and Google Analytics to observe the traffic source and track goals.
Step 7 – Prepare a Follow-up Plan
The product is ready to launch, but your work is not done yet. Remember to prepare a market strategy to follow after you have launched the product, saying how the product will be updated going forwards. Making these plans beforehand will help you in times of crisis.
Step 8 – Create a Launch Tracker
Now that you have all of your product’s launch information detailed, it’s time to organize everything into a shared planner with our following templates.
On Google Sheets
This one is for the Product Managers who want something straightforward and easy to use. Track your launch, assign owners, point out issues, and set up a status with this Google Sheet template.
Coda is a cloud-based document editor like no other that will help teams organize, delegate, measure, and document everything in one place.
With this template, you’ll be able to do so much more than just keep track of tasks. You’ll be able to write and save your press release, align stakeholders, build your launch plan, and create a visual dashboard.
Collaborative online whiteboards are all the rave right now. Use MURAL’s template to help product teams start with a baseline of core activities applicable to most products, and build their way up to a product launch visual masterpiece.
Check our other templates!
Still, looking for some great templates? Check out our collection: