Product Launch Question 1: Where Are We Today?

Any well-planned product launch doesn’t happen overnight. From roadmapping to A/B testing, there are plenty of steps to take before the next big thing becomes a reality. Most importantly, it’s vital for product teams to ask the right questions when proceeding from one phase to the next. This approach ensures that you’re not leaving anything to chance. Furthermore, the order in which you ask these vital questions will keep you on the right path and not skip any steps along the way.

With this, I will share three questions that you need to ask before your next product launch. Now, it’s important to keep in mind that you should be asking these questions six to nine months before your launch. If these questions are being addressed 48 hours before launch, then you’re in trouble! To get things started, let’s start with a question of “where.”

Where are we competing today?

This first question is all about mapping. Said differently, you need to evaluate where your product fits into its marketplace. Furthermore, you need to understand the maturity of your product category. When thinking through this question, product teams must avoid thinking in broad terms. For example, if you are planning your product launch to compete in “the cloud” or “VR,” you need to narrow your scope and target audience.

One way to think about where your product fits in is the tech market model. This is an adoption curve that maps the entire product lifecycle. In earlier days, this curve only focused on a product’s initial acceleration and deceleration for adoption. Today, the model extends further out to include a product’s journey from early market adoption to Main Street adoption. In looking at the big picture, this model shows how a product’s features/messaging/pricing/etc. must change from its initial product launch to its mature form.

The most critical aspect of using this model to understand where your product fits is to avoid looking inward. Said differently, this exercise should not involve your product team or CEO determining your product position. Instead, the correct approach is to let the market tell you where your product fits in. Ultimately, teams who plan a product launch by assuming where they fit in will not succeed. In the end, you can leverage market factors and your perceived place within it to guide your decisionmaking in producing an effective product launch.

Click here for Part 2

Click here for Part 3

About the speaker
Michael Eckhardt Chasm Insitute, Managing Director & Sr. Workshop Leader Member

Michael Eckhardt is a Managing Director at Chasm Institute - providing tech companies with tools and resources to advance their business goals. For over 15 years, Michael has worked with hundreds of tech companies to accelerate target market results and scale profitable revenue growth. In addition, Michael leads workshops for tech executives and their teams to develop product/market strategy - including Adobe, Spotify, Autodesk and Nest.

About the host
Jessica Chen Riolfi

Jessica Chen Riolfi has spent her career taking companies international, and currently accelerates TransferWise’s mission around the world. At TransferWise, she started off by globalizing TransferWise’s product and now leads the Asia region, managing 13 countries and a significant chunk of the £800 million transferred on a monthly basis by TransferWise customers. Previously, she drove international growth at eBay and Amazon. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Dartmouth College.

Provide your rating for this post
If you liked this post, please use the buttons to the left to share it with a friend or post it on social media. Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Read more

Product Launch Question 2: Which Opportunity Do You Attack?

Win your market with a successful product launch. Build momentum from early adopters to create long-term value with new customer segments

Product Launch Question 3: How Do We Move Forward?

Building your GTM plan is the final step in creating a product launch, from finding your target audience to determining where to go next.

Asana Product Lead on Executing Masterful Product Launches

Asana Product Lead, Jennifer Nan, explains why small, iterative launches are widely considered best practice for product development.

Product Launch: A Day One Guide

A product launch is highly anticipated, the moment of truth, but also just the beginning of the marathon. Learn more in this Day One guide.

Betterment Product Lead on Best Practices For Product Launches (Part 1)

Betterment Product Lead Katherine Kornas shares best practices for successful product launches, beginning with understanding your customer

Amazon Sr. Product Leader on Mastering the Art of Product Launches

Amazon Sr. Product Leader Sarika Tyagi shares a framework for improving the prospect of successful product launches.

/ Register for Free

Don’t be left behind in your career. Join a growing community of over 500K Product professionals committed to building great products. Register for FREE today and get access to :

  • All eBooks
  • All Infographics
  • Product Award resources
  • Search for other members

Coming soon for members only: personalized content, engagement, and networking.