Here are a few simple facts you probably already know:
- A new product launch deserves media attention.
- A well planned, developed and executed product launch will generate positive, buzzworthy press within your industry.
- A proactive PR campaign can generate 25% more sales leads for a new product launch.
What you might not realize is that PR is likely the glue that holds together your entire multichannel product launch campaign. Here’s what you need to know before embarking on your next new product launch campaign.
“Clients consistently tell us that the sales leads they generate from PR are of a higher caliber than those that come in from other channels,” says Lisa Robbins, a 25-year PR veteran and vice president of client services, Responsory. “Editorial placements about new products or services create much more credibility in the minds’ of the readers, versus ads or brochures.”
A professionally-developed product launch will build-up a company’s reputation and create new business opportunities for its sales force. But a concerted PR effort is much more involved than simply writing a press release and posting it on your website or on a newswire.
Here are three strategies you should implement to exponentially improve the results of your upcoming new product launch campaign.
1. The Media List – Priority #1
To prepare for the B2B PR channel, you must spend a lot of time ensuring your media lists of traditional, association, blogs and other online outlets are segmented by market, comprehensive and 100% accurate. Getting your news directly into the hands of the editors, reporters, bloggers and publishers is far more effective than simply posting the release on a newswire. A pitch note and captioned photography/graphics should accompany your releases to boost the media’s interest and make it all the more easy for them to publish your news.
Today, your media lists must also include your contacts’ social media handles as well. Your industry’s journalists probably do a lot more news scouting and communicating via social media than you think. Social platforms like Twitter and LinkedIn provide excellent forums for sniffing out fresh story ideas. This is the premise behind ePR (electronic public relations).
2. Campaign Landing Page (or Microsite)
Not only must you write your news to meet the needs of your targeted media outlets, but you should also create a new product launch landing page that features your downloadable release(s), photography, graphics and video. The benefits are two-fold:
1) you’re creating a place where editors and bloggers can easily access, study and download information and assets related to your new product. You’re making their job a whole lot easier which means their more likely to publish your news and in a timely manner.
2) you’re creating a separate, distinct online entity that is search engine optimized. This URL will offer links to your corporate site which benefits that site’s SEO as well. Your campaign-dedicated landing page needs to be written and coded for search, incorporating keyword rich copy, title tags, header text and alt tags. Set-up the landing page with Google Analytics to guarantee you can measure the impact of your campaign efforts.
“The new product landing page should be the hub of an entire launch campaign,” explains Robbins. “Feature the memorable URL in all launch promotions including trade show graphics, direct mailers, collateral, print and banner ads and emails. Driving traffic to this campaign-dedicated page or microsite is assurance that you’ll have all the traffic data you need to report on the program’s performance.”
3. Diversified Distribution
With the landing page live, you’re now ready to distribute your release – prominently featuring the URL. Your organization may opt to pay for newswire distribution which assures your news release will appear on at least one 3rd party website. And, some reporters serving your market may pick up the release from the wire. But relying solely on wire distribution is a mistake. To gain the best placement coverage, you’ll need to distribute your release to each and every contact on your media list (see tip #1) with a personalized pitch note.
Another must-do distribution tactic is to create a schedule of thoughtfully crafted posts for your social media networks and blog. All the research, message crafting and proof points that you devised during the campaign’s PR development will help you create relevant, intriguing posts that drive more qualified traffic to your landing page. Don’t forget to use your media list of social platform handles to personally share your posts with key editors and reporters.
Your investment of time and resources into planning, developing, manufacturing and distributing a new product is monumental. Shouldn’t the effort you – and your marketing partner – put into it be just as intense?
Seeking PR Support? Contact Responsory to put to work the 60+ years of our PR team’s expertise on your new product launch.