On 8th February 2023, Scalenut became the #1 product of the day on Product Hunt. The success of this Product Hunt launch has been a big booster for every aspect of our business.
Launching your product on Product Hunt can be the best thing that’s ever happened to your business. It can launch your product into the stratosphere and give your product the final push it needs to become a success.
However, launching your product on Product Hunt isn’t easy - the community is very picky about the products they upvote, and the competition is tough.
But with the right preparation and launch strategy, you can get a huge early adopter audience for your product. And that’s why we’ve created this comprehensive guide.
We have distilled learnings from our own Product Hunt launch experience. It’s an extensive knowledge resource covering every step of the launch process, from preparing for launch day to acing your Product Hunt launch.
So if you're launching a new product or app and are looking to grow an early adopter audience through Product Hunt, this blog is for you.
But first -
What is Product Hunt, and why should you care?
Let’s start with what Product Hunt is.
Product Hunt is an online community-driven website that allows product-based businesses to present themselves in front of a tech-loving audience.
Users of the website can upvote products, leave reviews, and provide genuine feedback and praise alike. This helps companies get valuable feedback on their products and increase their chances of success.
It’s also beneficial for those looking to peer review their product or increase website traffic. That said, Product Hunt is visited by more than 4 million people per month. It is a popular source for finding the best offerings in SaaS for professionals across industries.
Now for the ‘why should you care’ part.
A successful Product Hunt launch can benefit a company or entrepreneur in several ways, including:
- Exposure: Product Hunt has a large and active community of tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, and investors always looking for new and innovative products. Launching a product on the platform can give it significant exposure to this audience, leading to increased visibility and potential customers.
- Feedback: Product Hunt has a highly engaged community that is often willing to provide feedback on new products. Launching a product on the platform can help entrepreneurs and companies get valuable insights and feedback from potential customers, which can be used to improve the product and make it more marketable.
- Validation: Product Hunt has become a trusted source for product recommendations, and a product launch on the platform can help to validate the idea and build credibility for the company or entrepreneur behind it.
- Networking: Launching a product on Product Hunt can also help entrepreneurs and companies connect with other like-minded individuals in the tech community, including investors, mentors, and potential partners.
A Product Hunt launch can help to create buzz and generate momentum for a new product, making it an effective marketing and business development tool for startups and entrepreneurs.
The entire Product Hunt launch process can be divided into four main categories: pre-launch, 24 hours before the launch, launch day, and post-launch.
A successful Product Hunt launch is like a slow-cooked meal. You have to prepare well in advance and use every ingredient at the right time.
Pre-launch preparations for a successful Product Hunt launch
If you are planning a Product Hunt launch, there are several important pre-launch preparations that you should consider to ensure a successful launch. These preparation steps include team activation on Product Hunt, several outreach campaigns, a ton of networking, and creating a comprehensive launch plan.
Speaking from personal experience, it is crucial that you start well in advance. In our case, we started planning for our PH launch as many as four months before the launch. Although we spent the initial few weeks conceptualizing the entire action plan, you need to start at least three months before the launch date.
The first step you should take is team activation. The best way to become the #1 product of the day is to have an army of genuine Product Hunt profiles ready to upvote and comment on your launch.
- Your karma matters
Product Hunt has a unique algorithm for differentiating spam from genuine users. The platform has many factors that decide the credibility of PH user profiles, such as activity streaks and Karma Points. The more active you are in engaging with the PH community, the higher your Karma Points will be, which will ultimately increase the value of your upvotes and comments.
For example, a PH user profile that has been actively engaging with the community for three months will be more valuable than somebody who has just joined.
Ask every employee of your company to create a Product Hunt profile using their personal email address and start interacting with the PH community members.
We asked every Scalenut member of the 40+ team to become a Product Hunter and start engaging with the platform. Once you have your team on Product Hunt, ask them to spend 15/20 minutes every day on the following activities.
Ask them to find a few products they like and upvote them. It could be anything they like; the goal is to find a new product and upvote it. Doing this increases their Karma Points and makes their PH profile more credible.
They should also comment and congratulate the makers of their favorite products. It could be a simple “Congratulations on the launch! 🚀“ or a heartfelt appreciation or even critical feedback about the product. The goal is to increase their visibility and get more Karma Points through comment upvotes.
Pro tip: Giving detailed feedback on products increases your profile’s credibility and helps you expand your Product Hunt network easily.
Another aspect of preparing for your launch is hyper-networking. You need to go above and beyond to establish a vast network of Product Hunt users. Here are a few ways you and your team members can do this.
- Build relationships on discussion threads
Discussion threads are another way of interacting with the PH community. Users create, comment, and upvote on discussion threads to share their opinions on popular topics.
Ask your team to participate in discussion threads they like and share their honest opinions on things. The more upvotes their comments and discussion threads get, the higher the value of their upvotes and comments.
Pro tip: Post your discussion threads on Mondays between 12:00 AM PST and 1:00 AM PST to get maximum engagement on your discussion threads.
While creating your own discussion threads and commenting on others, scroll through the comments and make it a point to upvote a few you agree with. If you come across a name very often, start following that person and engaging with more of their discussions.
- Networking with the makers of top 10 PH products
Product Hunt is essentially an ever-evolving list of top SaaS products. Regularly visit the Product Hunt homepage and browse “the next 🦄” list and interact with the makers of the top-ranking products. Connect with the makers of these products through the social links on their PH profile and interact with them.
You can use this template as a conversation starter:
Congratulations on the launch! Our team supported your product. We will be launching with Scalenut super soon. Check out our page, and do give us your feedback. 👉https://www.producthunt.com/upcoming/scalenut
Reach out to the top active people list
Product Hunt has a list of people with the longest activity streaks. These are the most active user profiles on the platform. Start following these people and interacting with them on their discussion threads and comments. Visit their profile and connect with them outside the PH platform if they have shared a social media URL on their profile.
Here is a Product Hunt reach-out message template that you can use:
I am [Name of co-founder/founder], Co-founder, [Company]. I noticed that you are an active member of the Product Hunt community, and your discussions are very insightful. I’d love to connect.
Thorough pre-launch preparations help you maximize your chances of success on the platform and generate buzz and momentum for your product. Whether you are a startup or an established company, investing time and effort in pre-launch preparations can pay off in a big way when it comes to launching your product on Product Hunt.
Three important questions to answer for Product Hunt launch
Timing is the most important aspect of a successful Product Hunt launch. While creating an action plan for your PH launch, ask yourself these three important questions:
1. Which month should you choose for a Product Hunt launch?
Do not launch your products in a month with a lot of holidays. For example, we did not launch Scalenut during December and January as these two months largely make up the holiday season. Choose a month with the least amount of holidays to launch your product.
2. Which week should you choose for a Product Hunt launch?
Selecting the right week is also crucial. If you launch in the first week of a month, you can use the remaining three weeks to build on your initial launch success and become the product of the month.
3. Which day of the week should you choose for Product Hunt launch?
Of the five common working days, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday are the best days to launch a new product.
Choosing a hunter
Hunters are users of the Product Hunt community who look for new and interesting products to share with their followers. Every time they hunt a product, there is a swarm of followers that get a notification about their latest hunt. They are like influencers or product experts with large followings on Product Hunt.
Choosing an established and well-known Product Hunter can help you maximize visibility and engagement on the platform and drive more traffic, upvotes, and comments to your product.
Here are a few factors to consider when choosing a Product Hunter for your Product Hunt launch:
- Expertise and experience: Look for Product Hunters with a track record of successful hunts in your product niche or industry. They should have experience launching similar products and have a deep understanding of the market and audience.
- Network and reach: Consider Product Hunters who have a large following and network on Product Hunt and other social media channels. This can help increase the visibility of your product and attract more upvotes, comments, and engagement.
- Engagement and communication: Choose a Product Hunter who is communicative, responsive, and engaged with the community. They should be willing to answer questions, provide feedback, and help promote your product on the platform.
- Reputation and credibility: Look for Product Hunters with a strong reputation and credibility within the Product Hunt community. Check out their past launches and reviews to see how they performed and how their launches were received.
- Availability: Finally, consider the availability of the Product Hunter. Some established Product Hunters may have limited availability, so make sure you have a timeline in mind when choosing a Product Hunter for your launch.
Selecting the right Product Hunter for your launch requires careful research, evaluation, and consideration of multiple factors. By taking the time to find the right fit for your product and goals, you can maximize your chances of success on the platform and drive more traffic and sales to your product.
Here is a resource list of top hunters you can consider for your Product Hunt launch - Hunter leaderboard.
Creating an upcoming page
Once you have the above-mentioned factors in place, the next step is to create an upcoming page on Product Hunt.
The "Upcoming Page" on Product Hunt is a page where you generate interest from the community before launching. This page is a great way to build buzz for your product and get sign-ups from potential customers and users.
To make sure that your "Upcoming Page" on Product Hunt is the best it can be, here are a few tips:
- Create a compelling landing page copy: Your "Upcoming Page" should include a clear and compelling description of your product, a catchy tagline, as well as high-quality images or videos that showcase its features and benefits. Make sure your page is visually appealing, easy to navigate, and provides a clear call-to-action for users to sign up or learn more.
- Engage with the community: Participate in discussions, answer questions, and engage with users who express interest in topics related to your product. This can help build your reputation and credibility on the platform, as well as generate valuable traction from the Product Hunt community.
- Leverage social media and other channels: Promote your "Upcoming Page" on social media, email newsletters, and other channels to generate more traffic and interest. Consider partnering with influencers, bloggers, or other brands in your industry to reach a wider audience.
Creating a strong and engaging "Upcoming Page" on Product Hunt can help you build momentum and excitement for your launch, as well as gather valuable feedback and insights from potential customers and users. By following these tips, you can maximize your chances of success on the platform and drive more traffic and sales to your product.
Here is an Upcoming Page outreach message template that you can use for your launch:
How's it going?
I just wanted to reach out and give you the inside scoop on our upcoming Product Hunt launch.
I think you'll love it.
Check it out & sign up for launch notifications:
Looking forward to your honest feedback once we launch on [Launch date]
Thank you 🙏.
Pre-launch community activation
Reaching out to people on LinkedIn, Twitter, Slack, Facebook, Reddit, Quora, and other social media platforms can be an effective way to generate buzz and interest for your Product Hunt launch. To get the maximum number of people interested in your Product Hunt launch, here are some pre-launch community outreach strategies that you can implement:
- Reach out to relevant influencers: Identify influencers or thought leaders in your product niche or industry who have a large following on social media and Product Hunt. Reach out to them and offer a sneak peek of your product, or ask for feedback and insights to help improve your launch strategy.
- Join relevant communities: Join online communities and groups related to your product or industry, such as Slack groups, subreddits, or LinkedIn groups. Engage with the community by sharing insights, answering questions, and building relationships with potential customers and users.
- Participate in Twitter chats: Participate in relevant Twitter chats related to your product or industry to build relationships with potential customers and users and generate buzz for your launch.
- Leverage your email list: If you have an email list, use it to promote your Product Hunt launch and generate early sign-ups or feedback from your subscribers.
Pre-launch community outreach can be a powerful way to generate interest and momentum for your Product Hunt launch. By leveraging different social media platforms and engaging with potential upvoters, you can build a community of supporters and generate early adopters for your product.
Pro tip: Save your pre-launch community activation for the last week before your product launch. This way, you can effectively leverage the community traction and funnel people to your Product Hunt launch.
Creating your Product Hunt launch kit
A Product Hunt launch kit is a collection of resources and assets that you can use to promote your product on Product Hunt. It typically includes a product description, images, videos, screenshots, and other promotional materials that you can use to create a compelling launch page on Product Hunt.
Here are two important points to keep in mind while creating a Product Hunt launch kit for a particular product:
- Maker Comment: Write a clear and concise maker's comment on your product that highlights its unique features and benefits. Use simple language and avoid jargon.
- Images and Videos: Design eye-catching images that showcase your product and its features. You should include a logo, product screenshots, and other images that demonstrate your product's functionality. The recommended image sizes for Product Hunt are 1200 x 628 pixels for the main image and 400 x 400 pixels for the logo. Create a short video that provides an overview of your product and its key features. This can be a great way to engage users and generate interest in your product.
Other points to keep in mind:
- Include a clear call-to-action that encourages users to try your product or sign up for early access.
- Create a landing page for your product that provides additional information and resources for users who want to learn more about your product.
- Include testimonials, customer reviews, or other forms of social proof to build credibility and trust with potential customers.
- Showcase metrics or other data that demonstrate the value of your product, such as user growth, engagement rates, or revenue in your maker’s comments, images, screenshots, or videos.
These can be a great way to capture leads and generate interest in your product. A well-designed Product Hunt launch kit can be a powerful tool for generating interest and driving traffic to your Product Hunt launch page. By including a clear product description, eye-catching images and videos, social proof, and a clear call-to-action, you can create a compelling and engaging launch page that attracts users and generates interest in your product.
You may want to refer to the official PH launch guide for more information.
Designing marketing collaterals for PH launch
Aside from the materials that will be used on Product Hunt, there are several additional marketing collaterals that you can prepare to promote your product launch. Here are some examples and where you can use them:
- Press Release: A press release is an official announcement that can be sent to relevant media outlets to generate press coverage for your product launch. You can use it to introduce your product to journalists and influencers and to share key information such as product features, benefits, and availability.
- Email Campaign: An email campaign can be an effective way to reach out to your existing subscribers and promote your product launch. You can create a series of emails that provide sneak peeks of your product hunt launch, share exclusive content, and offer early access or other incentives to encourage users to upvote and comment.
- Social Media Posts: Social media can be a powerful tool for generating buzz and building excitement around your product launch. You can create engaging posts to share pre-launch, 24 hours before the launch, and on the launch day to invite people from your social channels to upvote and comment on your PH launch page.
- Community outreach messages: Crafting effective outreach messages for social media and communities can also help generate interest in your Product Hunt launch. Personalize your messages for each platform and audience and include a clear call-to-action to upvote your product on Product Hunt.
- Influencer outreach collateral: If you are expected to provide the creatives for an influencer outreach engagement, be sure that you are designing these collaterals well in advance and sharing them.
By creating a variety of marketing collaterals and using multiple channels to promote your product launch, you can increase your reach and generate more interest and engagement from your target audience.
Making changes to your website
Making changes to your website can be an effective way to promote your Product Hunt launch and encourage more upvotes. By optimizing your website for speed and mobile devices and adding social sharing buttons, you can create a seamless user experience for visitors and generate more interest in your product launch.
There are several changes you can make to your website to prepare for a successful Product Hunt launch. Here are some ideas:
- Optimize your website for speed and mobile devices: It's important to ensure that your website is optimized for speed and mobile devices to provide a seamless user experience for visitors. This can help to improve your website's performance and increase engagement from visitors.
- Include social sharing buttons: You can include social sharing buttons on your website to encourage visitors to share your product with their community on social media. This can help to increase your reach and generate more interest in your product launch.
By making these changes to your website and incorporating the live upvote counter widget, you can increase engagement and generate more upvotes for your Product Hunt launch.
24 hours before PH launch
The last 24 hours before your Product Hunt launch are crucial for ensuring a successful launch. During this time, you should focus on final preparations and make sure everything is in place to maximize your chances of success. By focusing on the key elements of your launch in the final hours, you can make sure that your product stands out and gets the attention it deserves.
Here is a checklist of some important things you should do 24 hours before your Product Hunt launch:
Make sure that everything is set up and working as intended. Test all links, images, and widgets, and make sure your landing page is optimized for conversions.
Share the launch kit with your Product Hunter
Share all of the launch kit collaterals with your Product Hunter at least 24 hours before the launch time. This will give the Hunter enough time to prepare for the launch.
Reach out to your network
Contact your network and let them know about your upcoming launch. Encourage them to upvote your product, leave comments, and share your Product Hunt page with their own networks.
Schedule social media posts
Schedule social media posts to go out on the day of your launch, including tweets, LinkedIn posts, and Facebook updates. Use relevant hashtags to help people discover your product and include a clear call-to-action to upvote your Product Hunt page.
Prepare responses to comments
Anticipate and prepare responses to comments on your Product Hunt page. Thank people for their feedback, and answer any questions they may have.
Reach out to media outlets
Reach out to relevant media outlets and let them know about your upcoming launch. Offer exclusive access to your product and encourage them to write about your launch and share it with their readers.
Free up the Product Hunt maker's time
Ensure that the maker or a designated spokesperson is available to respond to comments, answer questions, and engage with the community on the day of the launch.
Create an activity tracker sheet
Create a shared spreadsheet or document to track all outreach activities, including who has upvoted, who has commented, and any responses or feedback received. This will help you keep track of your progress and adjust your strategy as needed.
Dedicate one person to handle operations
Designate one person to handle the operations of the launch, including coordinating with the team, monitoring social media and other channels, and troubleshooting any technical issues that may arise.
Keep resources on standby
Have your design, copywriting, and technical resources on standby and available to address any last-minute issues that may arise, such as bugs on your website or issues with the Product Hunt launch page.
These steps will help you increase the visibility of your Product Hunt launch and maximize your chances of becoming the #1 product of the day.
Launch Day Mayhem
Finally, the big moment has arrived! It's the launch day, and you want everything to go smoothly. The first step in achieving that is to activate your entire in-house army on Product Hunt. Ask all of your team members to be active on the platform. Allocate time slots to every team member for community outreach and social media messaging to ensure a regular flow of upvotes and comments throughout the day.
Here is a message template for reaching out to networks:
Name, it’s me again ☺️
Today is an important day for us. Not only have we shipped out some big product updates, but we also launched on PH.
I’d be very grateful if you could support us. It would go a long way in helping us reach a wider audience!
Product link: https://www.producthunt.com/posts/scalenut
Thank you so much. Have a great day.
Next, make sure that your launch social media posts are scheduled and get posted as soon as you are live on Product Hunt. Another important thing to keep in mind is the availability of at least one maker throughout the day to reply to the comments on your launch page.
Once your product is launched, and you have a few hundred upvotes, it's time to make the Product Hunt Upvote count widget live on your website landing page. Here is what you need to do:
- Add a Product Hunt badge: You can add a Product Hunt badge to your website to promote your launch and encourage visitors to upvote your product on Product Hunt. This badge can be added to your homepage, product pages, and other relevant sections of your website.
- Highlight your Product Hunt launch: You can create a banner or pop-up message on your website or an entire landing page to highlight your upcoming Product Hunt launch and encourage visitors to upvote your product. This can be a great way to generate buzz and excitement around your launch.
- Embed the live upvote counter widget: Product Hunt provides a live upvote counter widget that you can embed on your website to showcase the number of upvotes your product has received. This can be a powerful way to demonstrate social proof and encourage more upvotes from visitors.
Keep a close eye on all the email outreach campaigns scheduled in advance and keep checking that they are sent timely. Launch day is all about making sure everything is going as per plan. Here is an activity tracker that you can use during your launch day.
A note of caution
The pressure of becoming the #1 product gets to the best of us. You may get that itch of trying a few shortcuts on the day of launch but do not give in to the urge. The Product Hunt algorithm is very smart and can catch malpractices very easily. Taking a shortcut, such as buying a few upvotes or sponsoring a few comments, is never a good idea.
Stick to the right way of doing things, and you will be rewarded.
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