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In Focus

Stop Messing up Your Product Launches with These 3 Lessons

Dec 17, 2018 3:36:20 PM


Are you doing all you can to support your upcoming product launch? Have previous launches fallen flat?

According to Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen, about 30,000 new products are launched every year—and 95% of those fail. 

Although the number varies slightly across industries, it’s enough to keep even the bravest marketer up at night. But there’s good news: with a strong omnichannel strategy, you can avoid becoming one of the 95%. We’ve gathered a few examples of businesses doing this whole omnichannel thing right, to give you a few ideas for your own pre- and mid-launch activities.

Download The Guide to Smarter, More Successful B2B Product Launches


Red Bull is everywhere

Red Bull may be a consumer brand, but its through-channel marketing strategy is a great lesson for any business.

The energy drink company has put its name everywhere—social media, sponsorships for sports teams (and individual athletes), and an interactive website that keeps visitors coming back. Red Bull even hosts its own event, the Flugtag, in which everyday people pilot homemade flying machines off a 30-foot tall deck.

The results speak for themselves: more than 6.3 billion cans of Red Bull sold in 2017.

Applying the lesson:

The lesson for any marketer in Red Bull’s story is that developing a wide range of online and offline channels gives you more opportunities to fit your product launch messaging into the mix. And the key is to develop those channels before, during, and after your launch. Using one-off tactics for each launch (and starting from scratch each time) means you’ll miss a lot of the customer engagement that Red Bull enjoys.

Salesforce harnesses social media

One of the most well-known B2B companies, Salesforce, takes a traditionally B2C channel—social media—and turns it into an effective B2B marketing tool. They’ve done this by proactively engaging with customers and prospects about every product they launch. For example, to promote their Developers Spring ’17 event, the company invited Facebook fans to attend a webinar and ask questions.

Applying the lesson:

The takeaway from Salesforce’s story is that social media doesn’t have to be solely the realm of B2C marketing. With almost everyone on Facebook or Twitter, your customers are likely spending time there too—maybe even with their own marketing efforts. Develop your social channels and find ways to engage your customers and prospects there to enjoy the same success as Salesforce.

Oracle focuses on audience

A champion at audience building, Oracle gathers plenty of data—even using third-party data to get the clearest picture of its target business customers. Using these deep insights to figure out how customers make their buying decisions allows Oracle to target and customize its launch campaigns. This high level of targeting makes each campaign feel custom-tailored to customers.

Applying the lesson:

You don’t have to be a corporate giant with deep pockets to follow Oracle’s lead. Gathering information on your customers can begin with simple steps like customer surveys and specific questions for your sales team to ask in face-to-face interactions. Feel like you need a little more intel? Look for an independent market research consultant or small firm that can do some extra sleuthing for you.

These are just a few examples of companies using omnichannel marketing to its full advantage. Following their lead can help turn your lackluster one-off product launch campaigns into a strong marketing machine.

Not sure how to get started? We’ve developed a white paper to help you out!


Angie Mansfield

Written by Angie Mansfield

Angie loves making her clients look brilliant through their written materials. Specializing in case studies and white papers, she helps B2B businesses turn prospects into customers.

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