Launching a new product is a tough and rewarding process that requires taking care of many tasks simultaneously.
The launch process can sometimes be overwhelming, so it’s perfectly fine to use tools to help you make the whole process more manageable.
Such tools can be templates, software programs, and even product launch checklists which we’ll cover extensively in the following guide.
To be precise, we’re going to talk about:
Plus, we’ll give you the chance to download our own free checklist to make your new product launch a little easier.
Let’s get started.
A product launch checklist is a way to keep track of all the tasks you need to get done for a successful product launch.
As we said, this is a multi-dimensional process and requires the input of many key stakeholders - such as product teams, marketing teams, and sales teams - each of whom has their own actions to execute.
What’s more, a product launch has three different phases:
Each has different tasks that fall under it.
This is where the checklist comes into play; it’ll help you stay on top of your workload and monitor the whole process.
If your business fits one of these launch categories:
Or any other case that requires a go-to-market strategy for an upcoming product launch, then our checklist will be of great help.
Let’s see exactly why that is.
In this part of our guide, we’re going to explain why a checklist is such an important part of a product launch strategy.
While the one we’ll share with you isn’t one-size-fits-all, since you can make iterations based on your needs, its benefits remain the same.
Let’s have a look at the reasons why you need a checklist for your upcoming launch.
Perhaps the most valuable reason why checklists are so important is that they help you stay organized.
As we noted earlier, the product launch process involves a wide variety of tasks and responsibilities, so organization is key.
Checklists act as a visual reminder for every step of the process you need to complete so you can check off tasks as you do them to see progress, as well as potentially spot items you’ve missed.
They’re a simple yet effective tool to make sure that you keep track of everything and that all your team members are on the same page.
Let’s move on.
The next reason why checklists should be part of your product launch plan is that they help keep you motivated.
According to Gallup, 63% of employees lack motivation at work; with the right help and efficient processes in place, your team should be better motivated.
That kind of assistance can come in the form of many tools, including checklists, which will make you and your team members feel more motivated to take action and finish tasks one after the other.
After all, it’s no secret that positive results increase motivation.
Checking off tasks from a to-do list offers a feeling of satisfaction that also increases productivity; which is the third reason why checklists are important.
Let’s dive deeper into this.
Checking off tasks helps you experience a small amount of success, thus making your brain release dopamine.
The pleasure effect of dopamine makes you repeat the actions that were successful in the first place because you get a sense of reward with every task completed.
It’s a pretty interesting process that you can use to your advantage.
You’re incentivized to check off more and more responsibilities, thus increasing productivity in areas like product development, market research, project management, and any other aspect that’ll contribute to a successful product release.
All in all, checklists allow you and your team members to feel more productive every step of the way.
Another reason why checklists are so useful is that they prevent key tasks from falling through the cracks.
Having a list of all your tasks in one place ensures that you’ll complete every single one of them without forgetting to complete any action.
What’s more, you can prioritize your responsibilities according to their importance and make sure that no mistakes are made along the process.
Checklists and to-do lists in general are a simple but efficient way of keeping track of your progress so you don’t forget important elements that need to be done.
Moving on to the fifth reason.
When planning a product launch - or any other project in general - it’s essential to keep track of your progress.
Checklists help you do that; you have a clear overview of what's been done so far and how close you are to achieving your objectives on the launch date.
You can think of checklists as a way of breaking down your goals into smaller ones that are more manageable and attainable.
You can also monitor each team member’s input by setting measurable metrics along the way.
Monitoring progress to make sure that objectives are met is an essential part of any product launch strategy, so we strongly recommend using a checklist to assist you with that.
The results can really be outstanding.
Checklists are indeed simple, however, they require certain steps that need to be included.
Let’s have a look at them.
Whether you’re a marketer or product manager, launching a new product will give you plenty of work to get through.
There are many things you need to take into consideration in order to attract new customers, improve your messaging, add new features, improve product design, and anything else that’ll make your launch successful.
The checklist we’ll share with you in the next part of our guide will help you keep track of every task needed, so let’s have a look at the basic steps it includes.
It makes sense for our checklist’s first step to be the pre-launch stage of your product.
Pre-launches can be anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, but at the end of it, you should have many things in place such as:
Plus, many more things - which you’ll find in our checklist later on - that’ll make your pre-launch campaign successful.
Only 40% of developed products make it to market and of that 40%, only 60% will generate any revenue at all.
Image Source: Marketing Research
An important factor that’ll influence a new product’s success is how well the pre-launch stage tasks are executed.
Think of them as the foundation on which your product launch will be created and set out to enter the market.
Whether you’re a large corporation or a small startup, we strongly recommend taking your pre-launch strategy seriously in order to attract new customers from day one - these will be your early adopters.
Let’s move on to the next step of our checklist.
A complete product launch checklist like ours couldn’t possibly miss the launch stage.
This refers to actually launching your product as well as many other things that need to be taken into account such as implementing all the plans you’ve created and doing an internal and soft product launch.
An internal product launch refers to the event of showcasing your product internally, usually through a beta version, a minimum viable product (MVP), or simply a tutorial.
This is helpful because, by seeing how your support team members use and react to the product, you’ll have valuable data and feedback in order to make any potential changes before your prospective customers use it.
A soft product launch is when the product is released to a limited number of people from your target market before being available to the public.
This is also useful for gathering valuable feedback and making potential iterations before officially launching it to the market.
All of the above are things that need to be done and you can find them in our checklist.
Moving forward to the next step.
If you want to have a successful product launch, you need to plan for what comes after the launch date.
During the post-launch stage, you need to keep performing tasks such as:
Plus more, that’ll ensure that your launch goes exactly the way you want it to.
We’ve talked about our product launch checklist a lot, so it’s now time to show you how to use it and give you the chance to download it yourself.
Let’s get started.
Now you know what a product launch checklist is all about, we’re going to briefly show you how to use the one we’ve created for you.
It consists of 44 essential product launch tasks divided into three phases; every time you complete one, you can change its status on the right between not started, in progress, and completed.
Starting with the pre-launch phase, there are 29 tasks:
These include conducting market research both for your target audience and your competitors, creating a marketing plan, developing a product launch strategy, as well as setting goals and objectives to make sure you’re heading in the right direction.
Moving on to the launch phase, we have six tasks.
These are all about actually launching the product and implementing your marketing, sales, and customer support plans.
Next up, we have the post-launch stage which consists of nine tasks:
With them, you’ll be sure to gather customer feedback, set up a referral program, promote your product, and finally measure the launch results.
Overall, the product launch checklist helps you set a clear roadmap ahead and ensures that you stick to it by knowing the necessary steps to be taken.
Let’s wrap things up with some final words.
There you have it.
That was our full guide to why checklists are important for product launches, as well as how to use them.
We also shared with you our own product launch checklist, so don’t forget to download it to make sure that your new product release will be as optimized as possible.
We hope that you’ll use it for your next launch; we strongly believe it can act as a very helpful tool.
Thanks for reading!