Product Launch Campaigns – The Lifeblood Of The Business

Few company events are more critical than launching new products and services. Many firms just go through the motions during product launches, repeating the same worn-out formulas they’ve always used-but every product launch is an opportunity to turn a new page in your company’s history, and it can make the difference between rags and riches.

Any new product can be directed towards an existing market (a set of known prospects and customers) or it can tackle new markets. But when introducing a new product or service, you need to innovate, going beyond what has been done in the past. You have a choice-let your product get lost in the noise or launch it differently.

The introduction of a new product requires a major launch effort if your company is marketing a new family of products (or services) towards a new target market-a different class of user or a different application emphasis than you have worked with before. You might also be trying to revitalize sales of an existing product or service, which requires a launch to sustain revenues, attract new customers, and ward off competitors.

In either scenario, avoid limiting the product launch campaign to a single, big-bang event with no plan for follow-up. You are positioning the product for its life cycle. Successful product introductions are company-wide events. They must be the focus of your entire organization.

Setting the Stage for a Product Launch

Long before product launch happens, you need to spend time on pre-launch activities that build the opportunity base. This pre-launch research will provide insights on the validity of the product, the features it needs, pricing and packaging considerations, and so on. Think in terms of projected revenue (at 12 to 18 months after launch, for starters), the profits you will need to break even, and the potential return on your investment.

Front-end research and analysis is the process of gaining insight and collecting data that will shape the product launch campaign. You are not simply collecting information, but interpreting it. Avoid focusing simply on the launch – consider the product life-cycle in your planning. Chances are, the data you gather to support your launch campaign may be a year or more old by the time the actual product hits the market. In the words of the Great One – Hockey Legend Wayne Gretzky, make sure you are going where the puck will be, not where it is. Otherwise, your launch campaign may miss the mark.

Elements to research during data collection

Market-based

- Competition for your product or service
- Potential customers’ buying influences and attitudes
- Market readiness and demand for your product

Product-based

- Key applications, features and advantages (from the customer’s viewpoint)
- Service and support components your product will include
- Packaging considerations

External-based

- State of the economy – by Industry Sector, Area or Region
- Regulatory changes in your Industry
- Technological considerations (current and future)

Developing the Right Concept for Your Product

Creativity is essential to a product launch-but balance it with the sobering thought that the concept you choose will be critical to launching a product that must generate revenue. Avoid the temptation to be clever in your campaign-it could lose the audience, diminish your credibility or worse, be a source of entertainment.

A good theme for a product launch campaign focuses on the problem solved, not merely the product’s use. Just as important as choosing the right concept is selecting the right launch vehicles for your campaign. Consider media and PR, direct-response pieces, catalogs, e-mail communiqu├ęs, Web site promotions, industry guides, e-casts, and telemarketing. The vehicles you choose will depend on what works in your specific business and what your appetite and budget can tolerate.

Choosing Your Message

The essence of your whole campaign will be its message. The right message captures your audience’s attention, explains your new product or service, distinguishes it from its competition, creates action, and has the ability to perpetuate the theme of the campaign (for the product’s intended life). Themed campaigns tend to do better than product-focused ones. They can also be perpetuated for a longer life.

Your message must be expressed in the attitude, tone, and language of your intended customer. It must also speak to your product, and your product alone. Put your message through the logo test. If you can replace your company’s logo with your competitor’s logo, and the campaign message still makes sense, go back to the drawing board. Work at it until you get it right.

While You Are Waiting

While campaign materials are being produced, you can be readying your company for the formal launch. Use this time to talk to media sources, investors, and other interested parties. Create a written campaign action plan that describes key tasks you must complete, target dates for their completion, the resources you require, and how you will measure your progress.

Promote and publish early-stage successes for your new product frequently. Whenever you can demonstrate customer acceptance for the new product, it will breed confidence with your Target Audience including your internal company employees.

After the Launch

Done correctly, the work you put into developing a successful product launch will stay with your product for its entire sales life. But when the product reaches maturity, you may need to revisit this process, innovating new uses for the product, repackaging it, adding value, finding a different distribution mechanism, introducing new incentives, and so on to ensure that it continues to generate revenue.

Once you have mastered the process of a successful product launch, you can extend the marketability of any product and give it new life.

Your launch methodology can make or break you in the competitive business jungle.
Is your launch method keeping pace?

Are you confident that your upcoming launch is positioned for success?

Copyright 2007

Performance Marketing Group

The Most Important Element of Any Presentation You Give

Whenever you are making a presentation to a group, your top priority is to determine what you want the attendees to do. I call this the “Most Wanted Response” or the “Most Wanted Action”. Either way, you’ve got to know what you want people to do before you start planning what you’ll say.

Why is this so important? Ultimately, the point of the presentation is to encourage people to do something, right? You want them to sign up for your newsletter or ask for your free irresistible offer, or decide to hire you. Whatever response you desire influences what you will say in the talk.

How do you actually make this request for what you want? Just tell them what you want them to do. Of course you’ll say it in a manner that makes it advantageous for them. In other words, it’s not a direct request even though you actually are telling them exactly what to do.

You can be explicit in a casual way. Sometimes I’m being interviewed and I will causally mention that there’s a free CD on my website on how to attract all the clients you need. I talk about the CD as part of the marketing plan, but I’m also planting a seed that listeners can get the free CD.

Whatever your most wanted response is, make sure you do something so they remember you rather than just seeing you as a nice resource. You don’t want that, right?

For example, if your most wanted response is for people to subscribe to your newsletter, you can say, “If you want some additional tips sent to your inbox each week, just write your name, the name of your company, your address, phone and email address on the signup sheet going around the room.”

Once you know the outcome you desire, you can go ahead and create your speech. Focus on the problem you solve and why it can be so difficult. Then tell them what they can do about it, but not the specifics of how to do it. Be sure to include some client case studies.

When you present to a group, you give people a taste of what it’s like to work with you and help them get to know you at the same time. Keeping the response or action you want people to take in mind and asking them to take this step builds your business as your share your expertise and knowledge.

Your Client Attraction Assignment

Think about your signature talk. Do you know what your most wanted response or action is for this presentation? If you haven’t worked this into your speech, it’s time to do so. In fact, think of a couple different responses and plan for each of them. This way you are prepared for more than one scenario when the opportunity pops up to speak in front of a group.

Kids’ Driving Experiences – The Perfect Present For Kids

For most kids, the opportunity to start driving has to wait until they reach an age where they can apply for their first license. Not any more, with a junior or kids driving experience children as young as twelve can get behind the wheel of a range of cars. With a kid’s driving experience your children can choose from a first drive in a Mini Cooper S to a dream drive in a supercar, a gift that will last in their memories for years to come.

Listed below are six kids driving experiences available in the UK:

Junior First Drive

Designed specifically for 12 – 16 year old kids, the junior first drive lets children get behind the wheel of a Mini Cooper S under the watchful eye of a qualified ADI instructor. On a private course, your child will get to learn the rudiments of driving in a fun yet safe environment.

Junior Second Drive

Having completed the junior first drive, your kids can now move on to the second drive, again in a Mini Cooper S, they will further hone their driving skills and at the end of the experience there is an optional theory test with questions taken from the current DVLA theory test.

Junior Third Drive

If your kids have completed the first and second drives they can now move on to the junior third drive. After a quick refresher it’s time for the Racing School practical test, the instructor will mark you on the same points included in a real driving test and to finish off the day it’s time to take to the track and do a lap of a real racing circuit.

Junior Fourth Drive

With the first three experiences now completed, your kids can move from the Mini Cooper S up to a BMW 3 Series mounted in a Scandinavian Cradle. Here they will learn how to control a skidding car and other valuable lessons that they will take with them when they take to the roads for real.

Kids Ferrari Experience

Let your children become the envy of their friends with a Junior Ferrari experience. With no prior experience necessary, your youngster will first learn the lines of the circuit in a Mini Cooper S, before taking the wheel of a Ferrari 360 Modena for seven miles of adrenaline filled fun, all under the watchful eye of a qualified instructor.

Kids Porsche Experience

As with the Junior Ferrari, your kids don’t need any previous experience to drive the awesome Porsche 911 Turbo. After learning the lines with your instructor in a Mini Cooper S, it’s on to the race track behind the wheel of this 189 mph supercar for seven miles of pure entertainment.

With gift vouchers available for all occasions a kid’s driving experience really is an unforgettable present that will linger in their memories for many years to come and will make them the envy of all their friends.

All kids driving experiences are conducted in a safe environment with a qualified ADI instructor present at all times.