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Launching Your Marketplace

Pre-Launch Strategies to Kickstart Your Marketplace

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You’re almost there! Months of hard works and endless cups of coffee are about to pay off when you launch your marketplace. So how do you launch effectively? Using the right strategies and well-planned activities, you can maximise your launching phase. Here’s six steps that you can consider as you prepare to launch your marketplace:

Reach out to influencers

Influencers can create buzz for your product pre-launch and also increase the credibility of your marketplace. Connect with bloggers, social media marketers, or any prominent figure in the industry that has a lot of online presence. You can offer them incentives such as free trials or exclusive access to the beta version of your online website or app if you don’t have budget to pay them.

Offer surprises to prospective users

Pull a stunt that everybody remembers. It can be anything from sending personalised postcards to leaving scented candles at your subscribers’ door. Surprises will draw a lot of attention and excitement for your marketplace. It’s one of the easiest ways for people to remember who you are and what you’re willing to do to satisfy customers. It also shows that you’re making an effort to introduce your marketplace to the public creatively, and most people will appreciate that.

Social media teasers

It’s the easiest way to reach out to prospective users and generate interest as you prepare to launch. Depending on your type of marketplace, utilising the right social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram can help you reach a wider range of audience.

You can create visuals, short clips, or catchy post statuses that revolve around your marketplace, and that will surely get people’s attention. You can also boost the reach of your content with paid or pay-per-click ads. It’s also very beneficial if you create a blog and post relevant articles that are SEO (search engine optimisation) friendly to draw in more traffic.

Photo credit: Elle & Co. Design.

Perks and free trials

Everybody loves free stuff. It’s hard to imagine you not being able to get anybody interested in your marketplace if you’re offering them store credits, free trials, free shipping or physical samples. Even if they’re not interested in using your marketplace, perks and free trials can create word of mouth, thus increasing your marketplace visibility when launching. Another advantage is you get to hear feedback and helpful suggestions, which is important in the early stages of your marketplace development.

Be realistic

It’s the most exciting time for your entrepreneurial journey: launching. But as you prepare to do so, get ready for the worst case scenario and don’t set the bar too high. Oftentimes what we expect to happen doesn’t turn out quite as we imagined. That’s okay, and if you see little interest for your marketplace, that doesn’t mean that it’ll fail. You can always change your tactics and try different growth hacking strategies. Be hopeful but also realistic, and have a plan B when things don’t work out.

Focus on what’s important

Having a clear focus and a set of goals before launching will help you set the right expectations. Focus on what you can do that is beneficial for your marketplace, not what you want to happen or think is cool. It’s easy to get too excited when coming up with events or programs that are fun but unnecessary and costly at the moment. Always prioritise actions that can generate a lot of traffic and interest. Don’t sway from the vision and stick to your plan.

After reading our article, these are the questions that should pique your interest:
Does anyone in your community have a huge social media following? Who can be great ambassadors for your brand? What can you offer them in exchange for a shoutout on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram?
Think about the shareability factor of your launch campaign. How can you generate more shares and word of mouth? How do you plan to make the launch of your marketplace memorable?
If your launch campaign doesn’t go according to plan, what would be your contingency plan?

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