How to promote your business before launching it
So you are just about to launch your brand new business with products and services that you can’t wait to show the world. It’s highly likely that you already have a good idea of how you are planning to market your products and business once everything is ready for the big launch. But do you have to wait for everything to be ready before starting to create a buzz around your products or should you be out there telling everyone about what’s coming?
A pre-launch campaign gives you time to build your follower base before you have a finished product. It’s also a nice way to build up excitement around your business, give people an idea of what’s coming and also give you an idea what your potential customers like to see. Here are a few pre-launch marketing campaign ideas you could consider:
1. Create a high-quality website
You need a great, SEO friendly website to market your business. It doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive, but it has to make it clear what your business does and reflect the look and feel of your business. Depending on your budget, you can hire a web designer or agency, or alternatively you can create your website via some of the great website builders such as WordPress, Wix or Squarespace. Create a buzz around your services and products even before they become available – showcase your work in progress, start a launch countdown or offer a discount on pre-orders. This all will create awareness and interest even before you are ready and will make the launch of your business much more interesting.
2. Start building your marketing database
Once your business is up and running, who are you going to tell about it? It’s worth starting to build up your CRM database early on via newsletter subscriptions, website forms or event registrations. With the GDPR legislation in place it’s not as easy as it used to be, but the quality of contacts is much higher and you will be wasting less time pursuing non-existent business opportunities. Use the database to contact your subscribers with early offers, keep them updated about what’s coming and create bespoke competitions for your first subscribers.
3. Set up your social media profiles
Before you get busy setting up and posting updates everywhere, take the time to analyse which social networks are right for your business and prepare a plan – think about what content would be the best fit, what sort of interactions should you be focusing on and how frequently. Also, set your follower growth and interaction objectives so you can track progress. You can use your profiles to showcase your work in progress, ask for feedback and share any content that will show your followers who you are as a business and an individual. Consider running social media competitions to build up your follower base. People love competitions and free giveaways. Asking people to tag a friend for a chance to be one of the first ones to receive your complimentary new product when you launch will give your brand the extra exposure and help to create a buzz with your existing followers.
4. Draft a press release
Draft your press release and build up your media contact list before launching your business. A press release will help you to get in front of a large number of potential clients, but you need to make it relevant and interesting to the journalist and reader. If you haven’t done a press release before, it’s worth talking to a PR professional or agency who will not only be able to help with the content but also put you in touch with relevant media.
5. Prepare your business cards and marketing materials
Don’t try to save money and time on designing and producing your cards and materials – they reflect the quality of your products and services so make sure they are looking just as good as the rest of your business. Carry your business cards with you all the time so you can leave them with relevant contacts.
6. Run a survey
It’s all about what your potential customers like, want and need so having them involved straight from the start will ensure that you are building your business and products around their preferences. Ask for their feedback via simple questions combined with visuals of products that you are asking about or if you’d like to get more detailed feedback consider setting up a short survey via SurveyMonkey.com. You can link your survey to a competition and offer a giveaway in return.
7. Consider local advertising
If this is right for the nature of your business, you could leave leaflets and business cards in your local cafe or pub or advertise your business in your local newspaper – if budget allows, you can consider running a series of different ads as you near the launch of your business.
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