Pre-launch products for greater online sales

Internet business owners often wait until they have produced their finished product before they start selling it. But creating expectation for your product can lead to significant sales once you do launch.

The latest example of this is the Apple iPhone. Steve Jobs announced the iPhone on 9th January 2007, but the product was not actually made available until 29th June 2007. The company enjoyed almost six full months of worlwide publicity for the product resulting in up to 270,000 products being sold in the first 30 hours.

The problem for Apple is that now the phone is being used by a significant number of people, the backlash is beginning. Indeed, a new study of business users of the iPhone suggests that Apple should have done more market research before it developed its stylish product. The research shows that people are taking twice as long to type email messages on an iPhone as on similar mobile devices. For busy business people this is a serious shortcoming. Another problem was the fact that most users did not like the touch screen, preferring instead real keys.

So what does the Apple iPhone experience tell us? Well, creating expectation for your product certainly works. You can expect significant interest by prelaunching; the Internet Marketer, Jonathan Leger, got 2,000 people to sign up for his Article Builder product before it was available. (See more information in his article below).

The other thing we can learn from Apple, is that if you are going to prelaunch a product don’t do it without making sure your market research has been done first; know your target audience! It looks like Apple focused on the style and forgot the usablity. And that means, rather like the Apple Mac, it will become a minority product in the market, albeit with a loyal and enthusiastic following.

Why You Need to Pre-launch Your Next Product

By Jon Leger

Have you noticed that most of the big product launches lately have first gone through a “pre-launch” phase? Have you ever wondered why?

I decided to give pre-launch a try on my latest product release, Article Builder, to see if a pre-launch really does sell more product. The numbers are in, and let me tell you, the pre-launch made a huge difference in my bottom line.

Pre-Launching Creates Buzz
Pre-launching a product means letting people know about the product 30 to 60 days ahead of the actual date that they can purchase the product. There is nothing new about doing this. Movie studios for years have heavily advertised their films many months before you can go see them. Recording artists often advertise their upcoming albums well before they can be purchased.

Letting people know ahead of time about your product creates buzz. It gets people talking about the product in the forums and to their friends and family. This causes more people to go to your pre-launch site to read about it, and builds anticipation for the actual release date.

Pre-Launching Allows For User Input
In the case of software products, pre-launching gives you a chance to show people how the product works and get feedback on it. For Article Builder, I collected as many opinions and comments as I could on the software during the 30 day pre-launch phase. I applied many of the suggestions prior to launching, so that by the time it actually launched, it was three times as good as what I had first created!

There is no better way to sell a product than to find out exactly what your customer base wants, and then sell it to them! Making the product the absolute best it can be before the actual sales date ensures a much higher conversion rate and a lot more sales.

Pre-Launching Helps You Build A List
If you supply a “subscribe for more information” box on your pre-launch page, then people who want to get more information or be notified when the product actually launches are added to your email list. This is great for keeping them up to date about coming changes and improvements in your product up to launch date.

To make sure you get the most number of subscribers, be sure and give them a reward for giving out their email address. With Article Builder I sent people the URL to a video where they could watch the software in action, if they were willing to get on the pre-launch list.

The benefits of having the person on that list doesn’t stop after the product launches, however. Even if the person chose not to buy, you can still send other offers their way that they may take you up on. It’s a great way to continue to earn from people who may have not even purchased your pre-launch product!

For Article Builder I was able to get over 2,000 people on the email list! You can imagine how that has helped me in selling additional back-end products. So you certainly will want to offer an opt-in box on the pre-launch page.

Summing It All Up
These are great reasons to pre-launch your next product: it creates buzz, it allows you to get feedback and improve the product, and it builds an email list of people interested in the subject area. All three are key points that boost your bottom line.

For me personally, I will not be launching any new products without a pre-launch first!

Jonathan Leger has a blog on Internet Marketing where you can find other informative articles like this one.

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