5 Steps to Perfect Your Online Course Launch Strategy
Launching something new to the market is a big deal for a company. Whether updating a service or a new product, the goal is always to attract the user and the growth of the brand.
However, even if you have a quality product that can make a real difference to your customers, it will likely suffer without the support of a launch strategy well-conceived.
Launch Strategy: How to Launch a Product in 5 Steps
A standard launch strategy focuses on sharing a new product or feature with your entire user base through email campaigns, social media posts and general press.
While this approach introduces the product to a large audience – and results in a short-term growth spike – there are many problems that can happen along the way.
The goal of most companies is to launch something and get as much growth and traction as possible in a short amount of time. However, experts point out that it is essential to design a process that allows the launch of many different product experiences within specific communities so that your product can reach critical mass.
The purpose of the launches is to create a sustainable growth strategy long-term. So, instead of the standard product launch strategy, a more detailed five-part loop based on an enduring growth approach is indicated.
When these elements are combined, you will find the right users to target and improve customer retention.
This is what the product launch process looks like:
- Define your scope
- Access who needs the product
- Filter your list for the best users
- Use a success signal
- Leverage your signals for the next group of users
We’ll look at these steps in the launch strategy in more detail below.
Define Launch Scope
Too often, a product launch strategy shows the same promotional material to the entire audience and expects users to share it. But as new products are released as early versions not meant for everyone, users whose expectations haven’t yet been exceeded provide negative feedback and kill your launch in word-of-mouth marketing.
The people you want to focus on are the segment of users who have already had their expectations met and are likely to tell everyone about your new product or feature.
So, start by defining your target audience. Instead of bombarding a vast audience with advertisements for your new online course, you should create products and resources for specific audiences and focus your launch strategy on them.
This requires narrowing your target audience within your user base as much as possible.
Once you’ve defined the scope of your audience, filter it so that you’re targeting people who’ve had a positive experience with your products.
Access your target audience
Next, make the news reach your target audience. Now that you have a focus, it’s time to use well-known outreach tactics such as email marketing, paid ads, press releases, referrals, blog posts, social media, groups and forums, and more.
Filter your best users
Once you’ve caught the attention of your audience, find the users most likely to enjoy and understand the beta version of your new online course. Who are your first users?
Sharing your launch with your target group is a bit like launching a net. You will find some people who fit the scope you defined and some who don’t exactly. Filtering helps you reach the right audience.
To find your audience, gather information in the following sources:
The Clearbit Connect is a Chrome extension that puts information of millions of businesses and people at your fingertips, displaying data about the people who sent you an email in the Gmail sidebar.
The application has features that allow you to get additional information about the profile of a company or a lead, using the domain or email of a prospect as a basis for searching.
This gives you access to “passive data” so that when users sign up, you can use their email addresses to learn more about your audience.
This refers to information you collect during sales and support conversations. If you have already launched an online course, you certainly have interaction with your customers that can serve as a useful source of data about your target audience.
Now, if this launch strategy is for your first course, focus on outreach and start analyzing the responses you receive. Once you launch the beta version, write down all reviews and feedback, both to know your audience, as to improve your product and support future releases.
Information sent by the user
Information you get through opinion polls, satisfaction surveys, polls made on your social networks, comments on your publications, registration forms, questions sent to support, reviews of your products, etc. This provides solid data to help you find and know your target audience.
Spot a sign of success
Restricting your target audience makes it easier to get signs of success during your launch strategy than if you try to reach them all at once.
The results are qualitative and quantitative signals more accurate and less noisy that provide a strong indication of whether you have reached the right audience.
Such as the Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT), can be corrupted when you receive negative feedback from users who shouldn’t be testing the first version of your product or feature. Avoid “noisy” qualitative feedback that hides the real feedback you need and slows down your validation process by segmenting your audience.
Retention curves show how well you are able to retain users over time and deliver promised value. Without segmenting your audience, this can also result in a slow validation process.
Release to all results in lower retention rates over time.
The result is that it takes much longer to deliver a product that meets the needs of the right segment of your audience.
Leverage for your next launch
The final step in the loop, once the signs of success have been identified, is to figure out how to leverage those signals and launch your course to the next set of defined target users.
Launching a product or feature takes time, so the goal should be to introduce it to a new layer of users as you go, until it’s exposed to your entire user base.
Exposing your product to more people progressively over time as more value is added to it is the idea.
Keep repeating this five-step cycle until you present your release to all users.
The main lesson here is to realize that you can’t pitch to everyone and then narrow down your target list based on who most uses the product. You can’t start big and then work backwards based on who stays.
While this approach may have worked for some, it’s rare and doesn’t work for most brands.
Launch new online courses with Coursify.me
The five-step launch strategy works and is a faster way to validate questions and assumptions.
There is more work needed in the beginning, but it pays off in the end with a higher retention curve.
Take a look at your launch strategy as it stands today and find gaps and opportunities to filter your target audience and find your signs of success.
Developing a custom launching process repeatable takes trial and error because the tactics that work for one company may not necessarily work for yours.
You can hit the next product launch with market research and the right pre-launch planning. Find your combination of tactics, tools and processes that will make you attract the most right users and keep them longer.
Remember that people don’t have a lot of attention to pay to your product. It’s in your best interest to protect their experiences and avoid bombarding them with irrelevant messages that test their patience and ultimately drive them away from your business.
Furthermore, our best advice is: create the best possible course and host it on a complete platform that is easily accessible to your customers. After all, you don’t want to lose students because they had difficulties accessing, paying and taking the course.
Complete eLearning platform, Coursify.me is the ideal solution for those who want to create, sell and promote courses on the internet.
With complete optimization for SEO, allows integration with your social networks and content platforms like Vimeo and Youtube, all to improve the visibility of your page.
Serving businesses and professionals in more than 60 countries, Coursify.me is a dynamic and customizable Learning Management System (LMS).
To learn more, visit our website, take a test and understand why we are the best option for your online course.