When it comes to launching a new product for your brand, there are three waves of planning: pre-launch, launch, and post-launch. Social media can play a key role in each of these waves, as we experienced with our Women’s Beauty Brand client in 2014 when they launched their new hair care product. This post will give your brand ideas on how to support each phase of rolling out a new product, accompanied by content examples from our clients campaign.
Pre-launch is all about getting your target audience excited for what is to come. The two components of this is pushing out teaser content and involving your advocates, and potentially influencers, from the beginning.
Teaser content can come in a variety of shapes and forms. For larger, much anticipated products, teaser content could start months in advance. But for the most part, starting up to two weeks prior should be sufficient. Video content is ideal, just given that social channels are prioritizing this format. Teaser content could be: showing and sharing product features, giving a sneak peak at parts of the product or even a countdown to the launch date/event.
Involve Your Advocates & Influencers
Getting your best fans and advocates involved is a great way to build early momentum. If you can give them first access to products before they are available, it is a good way to reward them for their dedication to the brand. Involving influencers is another way to get buzz going. Giving them products to review and share their experiences with their audience pre-launch can drum up anticipation.
The big day is finally here. If your product launch has an event, then coverage on social media is a no brainer. If not, sourcing 3rd party content is a good alternative.
At a launch event, social media should play a major role in the coverage. Step 1 is to create a plan in advance to work out the key messaging details, hashtags, and social cross promotion. Real-time coverage in the form of tweets, or video is a great way to expand the event to those who couldn’t attend in person. It is ideal to have a dedicated a social team to capture and post event content.
Share 3rd Party Content
If you don’t have a large launch activation, there are other places you can source relevant content. Sharing and syndicating third party articles is a good way to share unbiased reviews about your product. Third party content could come from news sources, influencers, or your fans. Sharing this content could start at launch and then continue through post-launch.
Post-Launch is all about keeping the momentum going. This means engaging with customers through service, content and programs.
Keep the Momentum
Keeping the momentum going means finding ways to continuously engage your target audience with your product. This could come in the form of social content, programs, sweepstakes, contests, and influencer activations. This piece is about finding creative ways to deepen engagement with your fans, which will hopefully raise brand preference and purchase intent with your audience.
Customer service is a high priority for many brands on social these days. It is even more important when you have recently launched a product. There might be a learning curve and customers are likely going to have questions that you need to be ready to address. Providing them with helpful answers in a relatively quick turnaround is important to build trust and loyalty to your brand.