How to Use Content Marketing for a Successful Product Launch
Worried that your new product will not take off as expected? That’s a perfectly reasonable fear and one that just about everyone faces before launching a new product.
As a content marketer, you have control over the promotion of the launch through content. And the success or failure of your product launch depends, (for the most part), on how well you’re able to use content marketing.
In fact, MDG Advertising found that 70% of consumers would rather learn about products through content rather than traditional advertising. So here are a few tips to help you understand how you can use content marketing for a successful product launch:
1. Use Visual Content to Tease Your Social Media Audience
Social media offers a cost-effective platform for promoting your launch. But to truly entice your audience on social media, you need visual content.
Most people use social media for entertainment, so you’re going to need something that will catch their eye, and keep them entertained. Visual content can help you do just this.
You can come up with visual teasers to stir the curiosity of your social media followers. Maybe you could upload an image that only has a close-up view of the product and a date for the launch. Or you could use an image with a launch date and a one-liner that highlights one of the product’s benefits.
Samsung teased their social media audience with the following Instagram photo. The image stirred the curiosity of their audience by showing a mysterious black box with a bluish glow against a black background.
The picture was supposed to entice the audience to attend the Galaxy 8 unpacking event virtually on the brand’s official website. So it has the event name, date, and venue along with the product and brand name.
In addition to this, Samsung promoted the product’s launch date with the following image. This image also maintains a high level of mysteriousness by showing only the figure 8 in a bluish glow against a black background. The only other details are the brand name and the hashtag #TheNextGalaxy.
2. Create and Distribute Intriguing Infographics
Your visual teasers on social media can build excitement for your launch. But for your new product to be a success, you need people to actually buy the product.
The problem is, it’s not so easy to get people to spend money on something that they haven’t even heard of, or aren’t sure will be a good investment. So you’ll need content that will inform and educate your audience while intriguing them.
In order to do this, you can use infographics, or gifographics (animated infographics). These types of visual content can educate, and intrigue your audience at the same time.
Maybe you can create an infographics on the different parts involved in the creation process, or how the features can benefit users. Or maybe you can even create an infographic about something related to your product. Then you can distribute it to leading online publications with a description promoting the launch.
Example: Die Hard
For instance, 20th Century Fox promoted the 2013 Die Hard movie through infographics. They prepared a unique infographic for each of the Die Hard movies highlighting some stats and facts related to them.
They teamed up with Collider to promote these infographics, and also provided fans with a chance to win high-quality, limited-edition posters of these infographics.
3. Build Hype through User-Generated Content
You don’t have to create all the content yourself; get help from your fans. For effective content marketing to promote your launch, engage your audience, and encourage them to create their own content with your branded hashtag. They can help you spread the word about your launch within their respective circles, and help generate buzz.
To encourage fans to create content for your brand, you can host a contest or a giveaway, where they could win samples of the new product or some brand merchandise.
Otherwise, you could promote a chance to be featured in your brand social media page. All fans will have to do is create a piece of content featuring or related to the product and include a branded hashtag in the caption.
In order to generate high-quality user-generated content, and compel more people to talk about your launch, make sure you:
- Offer a reward for participation. As mentioned earlier, you can combine these efforts with a giveaway campaign or you can offer a chance to be featured in your content.
- Come up with an exclusive hashtag to easily track conversations. The hashtag should ideally contain your brand name and product name. Or you could promote a couple of hashtags with your brand and product name as well as your campaign name.
An excellent example is how BBC promotes the Sherlock episodes on social media. Before each of the episodes aired, they encouraged fans to share their reactions to the episode using the hashtag #SherlockReacts.
The prize was a feature in their weekly YouTube reactions show. Although this isn’t a physical prize, it works excellently for shows with a massive following such as Sherlock.
Thousands of fans submitted their reactions, many of which received more than a thousand likes and retweets.
This helped BBC accomplish their goal of getting fans to talk about the new episodes and generating buzz for the show in general.
4. Distribute Content through Relevant Channels
You may have written some interesting articles or created fascinating infographics about your new product. But what’s the point of it all if the right audience isn’t there to see it?
In some cases, it may be enough to share the content on your blog or social media if you already have an established audience. But for some brands or businesses, it would be wiser to distribute the content through relevant and reputable websites.
You can connect with reputable industry publications, and high-authority websites in a relevant niche for guest posting and/or product features.
There are two main ways to distribute content for promoting your new product:
- Guest Posts – Write several articles that aren’t too promotional but provide readers with some tips in the relevant niche. Submit these articles as guest posts to some of the most reputable websites in your industry and gain linkbacks to your product launch page through your author profile
- Press Releases – Many online publications aren’t interested in doing promotions for products. But they may be able to feature your press release promoting the launch. Connect with them and see what kind of content they’d be willing to accept.
Example: Green Flag Digital
Joe Robison of Green Flag Digital, for instance, wrote a guest post on Moz about technical SEO problems and how to fix them. He provided readers with useful tips about detecting some harmful SEO issues that could damage their sites, showcasing his expertise in the topic.
As you can see, the content isn’t exactly about the product but is somehow related to it.
5. Create a Captivating Explainer Video
What if your product is a little more complicated to be explained in an infographic or an article? You can’t create a lengthy text post explaining the product and how it works because you’ll easily lose the audience’s interest.
Instead, you can captivate, engage, and educate your audience by creating an interesting and informative explainer video. Here are a few tips to help you out:
- For people to invest their hard-earned money in your product, they need to have a complete understanding about it and how it works. And your explainer video is supposed to help in achieving that goal of passing on high-quality information to an engaged audience.
- In addition to explaining how the product works, you should also try to focus on delivering the message in such a way that people understand how they can benefit from the product.
- For less technical products that don’t require much explaining, you can still create promotional videos that highlight the value of the product for the customer.
- Or you also have the option of appealing to the audience’s emotions by telling an engaging and heart-warming story.
- You can then distribute the video through your social media and YouTube channels, your blog/website, your product pages, etc.
QuickShoeLace created a fun and interesting explainer video for their Kickstarter page. The video talks about how the new one-hand-tying shoelaces will make people’s lives easier.
It also shows how people from different age groups are using the product. The project managed to exceed their initial funding goal by several thousand dollars.
6. Invest in Influencer-Created Content
Celebrity endorsements are losing their touch with consumers leaning towards influential figures for product recommendations and advice.
Influencers are often seen as people who are experts in their respective categories and would give an honest opinion about a product or service. Even for your product launch, you can work with trusted authority figures to win the trust of your target audience.
You can get influencers to create content that helps in promoting your product launch. In addition to helping you reach a relevant audience, this tactic will also help you win the trust of a new customer base.
Some of the best ways to leverage your content marketing and product launch promotion efforts with influencers are:
- Provide influencers with exclusive access to your product before it launches and then have them write an honest review about the product.
- Feature the influencer’s reviews and/or opinions about the product in your product website or social media as a form of testimonial.
- Feature influencers in your explainer video by having them talk about their experience using the product. Or you could even have them explain how the product works.
- Get influencers to create sponsored content that showcases your product in use so as to inspire their fans to try the product.
Besides helping you create promotional content, influencers can also help in promoting the previously-mentioned giveaways and contests. They can encourage their massive fan base to participate in the contest and spread the word about your product launch.
Plus, influencers have a knack for entertaining their audience. They already know what their fans like or dislike. So they should be able to help you spread your message in a way that the audience appreciates.
An excellent example is how the Dysh app partnered with four influential YouTubers – Grace Helbig, Hannah Hart, Ingrid Nilsen, and Mamrie Hart. The startup wanted to drive as many downloads for the app as possible. But instead of just getting the influencers to promote the app, they made them part owners.
As part owners of the app, these influencers took to their blogs, YouTube channels, and social media to extensively promote Dysh and generate buzz. For example, you can see Grace Helbig reposting pictures from the app in the following screenshot.
She also regularly creates blog posts talking about the app, how it works, and why she loves it. She infuses some of her humor and puns into the articles to make it fun and interesting, such as in the post, “Dysh My Sh*t.”
These are some of the best ways in which you can promote your product launch using content marketing. If you had noticed, most of the tips talk about visual content, as it’s highly effective for entertaining an audience – whether it’s with social media teaser images, infographics, or explainer videos.
Additionally, you can engage your audience by getting them involved in the promotion process and encouraging them to create content for you. You also have the option of getting influencers to create content for you and helping you get the word out.
As you can see, I’ve provided you with real-life examples for each of these tips so you can better understand how to apply it for your own campaign.
But if you still have some doubts about them, feel free to ask your questions in the comments below. Or you can just reach out to me for a more in-depth understanding of how to successfully launch your product.
This article originally appeared on ShaneBarker.com