Once you’ve built your incredible new digital product, you NEED a marketing budget! Not having one is akin to buying a house and not having a dollar left over for a single piece of furniture or being handed the keys to a hot new ride and finding that it has zero fuel or, heaven forbid, standing at the altar sans partner.
At Spire, we use an agile development model to get your minimum viable product (MVP) out to market quickly and efficiently. Your product, your baby, has been racked around in your brain, put to paper (perhaps even on a napkin!), and funding was acquired. Then the MVP was elegantly architected, designed, developed, and tested. Now, the day is here: Launch.
You've accomplished a major feat! Now you stare at the app store charts just waiting for your app to rise to the top. Or you repeatedly click refresh on your Google Analytics dashboard like you have a nervous tick. You've certainly already sent the link around to all of your employees, family members, friends, and neighbors. The users are flooding in and your load balancers are on overdrive, right?
Well, not necessarily….
This is why marketers, public relations professionals, and advertisers are in business: they drive users/purchasers/decision-makers/influencers to your product. There are very few breakout exceptions (think Snapchat or Vine), but don't think they didn't have strategic marketing and sales plans incorporated from the the get-go.
We often counsel clients to reserve at least one quarter of their total project budget for post-launch marketing efforts. If you are a startup or growth stage organization, this percentage could (or should) be significantly higher. Everyone determines how to allocate marketing budget slightly differently and you’ll undoubtedly figure out what works best for you. Or, ask us, and we’ll steer you in the direction of one of our awesome partners.
You don't have to be a digital marketing expert or know what the 4Ps of marketing stand for to understand this simple truism: You can lead a horse to water but you can't force it to drink. Same is true for your product: it may be the most flawless, beautifully designed application that employs the smoothest front-end transitions and ingenious back-end processes and database structures, but unless your marketing strategy complements your product strategy, you’re living in an empty mansion.
Katy Zasada has been an Account Director at Spire Digital for 3 years and has her master’s degree in journalism and public relations from Kent State University.
This is the first in a series of posts focused on post-launch efforts.