Your startup needs a pre-launch signup landing page

[After last week's post on A prelaunch page for your startup, Josh Ledgard of KickoffLabs reached out to point out his alternative. Here's more info from Josh.]

by Josh Ledgard
Co-founder, KickoffLabs

You need to start marketing your next great idea today.  Technology is easy, but marketing is hard. You need a head start and hard work because…

1. You aren’t famous

Yup, if you were the co-founder of Facebook buzz will build itself. (See Quora) But you didn’t invent Facebook and no one cares what your building.

2. Your idea sucks

No one has the heart to tell you that in person. You have to prove otherwise.  If you put up a landing page and can’t get anyone but your mom to ‘pay’ you with their email address… you need to go back to the drawing board. If you can quickly test and build an audience you may be onto something. Prove it.

3. You don’t know how to sell your idea
You don’t know what that pitch is yet.  The pitch needs to be ready for the tech launch. You use code to test your software and a landing page helps you test your pitch. Improving signup conversion rates will improve paid customer conversion rates at launch.

 

4. Your idea has already been ‘stolen’

A lot of people worry that sharing their idea early will lead to theft.  Sorry. It’s already been stolen.  Good ideas are not unique. Secrecy is irrelevant. Pitch, execution, and customer experience are the things you can claim uniqueness on. Transparency helps refine those things.

5. You can’t do it yourself

Creating a signup landing page before you launch isn’t just about getting customers. It’s about finding partners.  Engage signups to find testers, partners, & complimentary ideas you never would have received if you held onto everything.

6. You aren’t rich… yet :)

Do you have $20k to blow on generated traffic? Probably not. You need a head start. You need customers to find other customers for you.  You need your idea to get passed around for free… relatively speaking.

7. Your SEO won’t build itself

Slimy consultants have tarnished the term.  But it’s proven true that if you bring your URL up with the product launch you are starting with 0 SEO. It takes 2-3 months for search engines to start really sending you traffic.  Get a placeholder up so you don’t start at zero.  You don’t want to generate all the traffic yourself. You can’t. See #1.

8. You have no motivation

If your idea doesn’t suck and actual people start signing up and talking about what your building…it’s extremely motivating.  Way more motivating than sitting in that dimly lit cubicle.  A little social pressure can go a long way towards making your dream a reality.

9. You don’t know anything about your customers

They aren’t who you think they are.  When they start signing up on your landing page you can start learning, quizzing, asking, and engaging with them. What you end up building will be different than you envisioned… but it will sell better.

10. Buzz doesn’t happen… you build it.

You can’t just expect customers to start talking about your idea and signing up. You have to encourage them. Customers respond better to direct requests if you want them to share something cool. You can make a gimmick that’s not sleazy.

If you liked this post check out KickoffLabs. We’ll help you find customers with a viral landing page in less than 60 seconds! Are you more of a do it yourself person? Build your own site and use our viral API.  Our simple goal is to help every business find at least 5 more paying customers every month.

Like any good idea there are alternatives to the KickoffLabs service. Some are even cheaper. We differentiate ourselves by being simpler, supporting you better, and creating a customer referral platform that goes well beyond the landing page to include analytics, auto-responders, newsletters, and an API you can use well after you launch.

Comments

  1. This was my downfall early on. I had a landing page, but didn’t have great SEO (at that point I didn’t even know what it meant!).