CookieDev
Advice to startup owners on what to do while your project is being crafted
7 min to read
So you got through a complex road and finally have started your product development. You've gone through the most intense phase with prototyping and designing, now all the small things are lined up, MVP is defined, the scope is clear, and UX is intuitive. It's estimated to 3-6-8 months of development ahead until the project will be launched, so what should you do next? Sit back and watch it happen? Definitely, no! There are plenty of things that you can do while development takes its time to ensure you're fully prepared for the release date!
I've gathered a couple advice on what else you can do while development takes place to promote your product:

1) Make a landing page yourself!

In fact, you should have had a landing even before you've started development. You may think it's hard or time-consuming, but it is not. Use some friendly and easy engines like https://wix.com ($8.5/mo with a free domain registration) to build professionally looking, responsive (with a friendly-looking mobile version) and attractive landing pages (and blogs!) within minutes. It's so intuitive and drag-n-drop that anyone can do that today. This way you will allow others to discover you, you don't need to be very specific or detailed about your future project, yet don't be afraid to share main ideas to make the landing work for you in various ways described below.

Here is also a couple of WIX.com alternatives for you to consider, though my personal advice would be still to start with WIX:

- a) https://www.squarespace.com/ (starting from $14/mo with the yearly plan)

- b) https://craftcms.com/ (has a free plan to start from)

- c) https://www.weebly.com (has a free plan, but you'll need something else for a blog)

2) Create content! Create a blog!

Content is a long-term strategy, so the earlier you start - the sooner there will be a result. I'm sure that the fact you've selected this particular industry is connected to you knowing more about it than an average person. Spread your knowledge, create small or large articles on a subject and post them to your blog on the landing site (important!) and on social networks (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc). If you don't have it - search for a copyrighter for $6-$8-$10 per 1K symbols (3-5K articles is enough), send the content plan (ideas for posts), and they will do that for you while you will do the editing to make it truly valuable.

Why content is king?

- a) You form an audience of your future users around you with minimum input. Not just random users, but the very exact users interested in what your project is about

- b) These users, will be the first to on-board to your project and will be willing to give you feedback, as you've already done something good for them with your content

- c) Articles in your blog will be bringing to you new users for very-very long time. Once getting into search results, they will stay there for a lifetime. The better the article - the more users will find it, and find your product from it.

3) Build an email list!

You should have started to build your e-mail list way before the landing (your friends, just anyone who's potentially interested), yet landing will help you to do it more effectively:

- a) Add a form to your landing "be notified about the release" to collect emails from the ones interested in your project.

- b) Add that form to your blog as well. Link blog and landing site together, to make sure you're converting your blog visitors into future loyal users. These will be the most grateful, the most reliable, and trusted users you will ever get.

- c) Remember to build your email list whenever you go: LinkedIn, conferences or events, social connections. It's really easy to ask for the email. "Do you mind sharing your email so I can notify you once the product is launched?"

Here is a must-listen podcast about building your email list (along with other suggestions to do while the product is being developed): https://podcasts.apple.com/ua/podcast/business-made-simple-with-donald-miller/id1092751338?i=1000559312149

Once your email list is ready to be sent out (and you can send out some communications to it once in a while with product updates and release dates), you can use an industry-standard drag-n-drop emails builder from https://sendgrid.com to create nice looking and adapted to all the popular client's emails within minutes, send them out to a large audience and measure results.

4) Start playing with marketing!

You don't have to spend thousands right now, but you already have a landing page with an email form, so start getting familiar with different marketing instruments and accelerate your email list growth! Set up a conversion at your landing page and blog for each new subscriber, that will be real-life training for the future registration/purchase conversions you will be tracking after release.

There is also a certain learning curve ahead of you, so you can start with small budgets (let's say $5/day) and experiment:

- a) Different channels to explore where your exact and unique audience converts the best. Some products convert better on Facebook or Google Ads, while others on LinkedIn or Twitter. What is the ideal marketing channel for you?

- b) What are the selling points of your product that convert better than the others? Try different product benefits, try different visuals and slogans to find the best selling points

- c) Try different audiences to find which audience is interested in your product more. Each marketing channel has a different set of tools for the audience to give plenty of ideas for experiments and a better understanding of your user base as a result.

In case you think to work with a marketing agency to help you with all the marketing channels, it's still a good time to start, as they also have a learning curve to go through. Starting on smaller budgets will get better results on a higher scale as well.

FYI, as of date, WIX gives a $75 ad voucher (for $25 spent) on Google Ads which is also a nice bonus, and you should definitely use it.
valuable product ideas on a regular basis
Here are also a couple of podcasts I personally listen to. They will give you valuable product ideas on a regular basis on how you can grow your business before, during, or after development. I'm listing only Apple Podcasts links, as I use them, but you will also be able to find them on other platforms:

Good luck with your journey! It's going to be an exciting one!
Stepan Radiboh
CEO at CookieDev
Made on
Tilda