The launch of a new company, brand or product is a news hook in itself. But all the better if you’re introducing something new, ground-breaking or disruptive to the market. It could be what you’re selling, the way you’re selling it or even how you work. Your launch messages for PR should focus on this.
A few questions to ask as you plan your launch communications:
What’s our unique selling point (USP), in a nutshell?
This might be why you started the enterprise in the first place, or it could be something that’s emerged through your research, planning or development stages. It helps if you can distil this into one or two lines. But make sure it really is unique – you can claim to be the only company that does xx but do your research thoroughly because if that’s not actually true, the news won’t be covered.
Who should we launch to?
You probably want to spread the word far and wide (although we’ve also managed niche launches) and this is a great time to engage your network. When thinking about press, start with your key target audience and think about how you can reach them. Explore a range of titles from local to sector to national, and look for stories similar to your own so you know you’re targeting the right places.
Remember, not everyone covers news – some might focus on industry commentary (so need to be targeted differently). Also, although this is the day you’ve been building towards for a long time and you want to reach for the stars, this is your launchpad; it’s not your endgame. So, start sowing the seeds and celebrate and share any coverage you do achieve in all titles, but think of it as the first building blocks towards creating a sustained profile.
When should we launch?
We often have conversations about when a new company should launch and what to get right first. The answer is, launch when you’re fully ready to go; when your website is live and flawless and the company is ready to sell or be contacted. The planning phase before this and working out all the messaging is just as key the launch day itself.
Think about key sales periods and what else is going on in the market and in your own lives. Summer, Christmas and key holidays are times to tread carefully around (but equally, they could be perfect for your product).
Remember, you can’t stage a launch for the press. If you’ve already launched on social media or on your website, you can’t follow with a ‘we’re launching today’ message.
You might want or need to do all of the above yourself. Where a PR consultancy can definitely help is crafting those messages to make them ownable, building your target list and understanding how and when to get in touch with them. They should have contacts to reach out to and be able to find good new ones as and when needed.
Their advice should also help with your wider messaging and marketing push and they can help you to think strategically, to an effective, long-term plan.