By Andrés Uribe, Expedition PR
Before you launch your product there are two important questions you have to ask yourself: 1) If everyone I’m alerting about my product’s launch decided to check out what I have to offer, am I prepared to offer them all a great customer experience? 2) If they all told three of their friends who ended up also checking out my product in the near future, will I be able to provide these new customers with the same great customer experience?
Customer experience and scalability are the two essential factors to knowing you’re ready to launch your product. According to the 2013 Harris Interactive Customer Experience Report, 86% of consumers report to having quit doing business with a company due to a single negative customer experience. If you answered no to either of the previous two questions, then you are not ready to launch. If you answered ‘I think so’ or ‘maybe’ to either or both of these questions, don’t worry, there is a solution for you too.
When launching a product that your not 100% certain to provide an awesome customer experience to all customers while being scalable to your eventually increasing customer base, it’s wise to consider a beta launch. A beta launch allows you the ability to open your doors to a small group of people and have them test out your product for you and give you feedback. Generally early beta adopters are more forgiving for a less than perfect customer experience, as long as customer support us top notch and they feel they are really helping shape the future of your company through their feedback.
While acting as a bridge between the ‘I think I’m ready’ phase and your polished and scalable product, beta launches also serve another huge purpose: testimonials. There is no more effective form of advertising than word of mouth advertising, and online reviews serve to act as a digital form of this concept. According to a Dimensional Research survey, 90% of respondents claimed that reading positive online reviews influenced their buying decision. In order to give your product launch the best shot at succeeding, during your beta phase ask your beta participants not only for feedback, but for product reviews as well. This way you can have user reviews from the moment you launch your product, which will go a long way in encouraging potential new users to try your product.
Now if you’re thinking this seems like it will take a lot of time and investment and you want to launch now and see a return today, well think about this for a minuet. According to a White House Office of Consumer Affairs report, it is 6-7 times more costly to attract a new customer than it is to retain an existing customer. Launching prematurely runs the risk of scaring off potential customers with an unpolished product and a possibly bad customer experience. Once these customers are gone, they are generally not coming back, and it’s going to cost you to find new ones. Additionally, before they leave you, they might also leave you with bad reviews, which make it even more difficult to find new customers. For these reasons it is strongly advised that you do your best to ensure that your product is 100% ready to provide your customers with an awesome user experience and that this experience is scalable. Once these two criteria are met, along with a few positive reviews as an added bonus, you are now ready to begin thinking about a launch date.
This is a preview of chapter 1 of our upcoming eBook that will take you through the steps of preparing for a successful product launch. If you would like to receive updates on the launch of our eBook, please sign up below.