Can I Do a Product Launch With Little or No Budget? Five Powerful, Proven Strategies

1. Offer a product that is wanted and that solves a problem. Most internet marketers teach this. The most simple and organic way to do this is to turn to your own life experience. Do you, or have you in the past had a problem that you really needed to resolve? If so, did you find a solution, or create a solution yourself? This is the best way to get to this nugget. The reason why is simple. First of all, if you have had this problem, it is likely that many others have had it, too. You can do some quick googling and find out if that’s the case. Second, it is most likely subject matter that have some expertise which you can share. Third, it is always the path of least resistance to start an online business when you have affinity for the subject matter. If you think about it, why would you market, say, tax preparation products if you had no interest or affinity whatsoever in the subject matter? This would be especially true if you hired an accountant every year and had no idea what that person did for you. But, let’s say that you have loved and grown orchids for the past 10 years, and you had done abundant research and testing, and had found out how to keep them alive and thriving? You would definitely want to get into the orchid arena rather than the tax arena. Start out with a little self inventory, and you’ll soon find yourself on the right path.

Cost: time output for research.

2. Create an online presence. It’s not nearly as difficult as you might think. Starting an online business does require online presence though, and these days it’s practically pain-free to throw up a blog using WordPress. It’s free, easy to install and there are plenty of design templates available at no cost. Taking the example of orchids, put up a blog and start writing articles. To get your subject matter, you may want to utilize the Google Keyword Tool, which again is free. Find high interest keywords and make them the subject lines of your posts. Your main goal at this point is to fill the blog with content. Think 20 posts, which sounds like a lot, but these days the standard for posts is 200 – 500 words. Not much at all. If you put up a post every few days, it would take a little more than a month. Once you have done this, you will automatically draw in search engine traffic.

Cost: $10 for domain name, $10 per month for web hosting service. Time output for setting up blog and writing posts.

3. Build a list. Now that you have generated traffic to your blog, put up a form on it in order to collect email contacts. There are some great ways to do that. You could offer a monthly or weekly news blast. You could write a one page report or create/find a video that is focused on a particular problem of your market and offer it to them for free in order to get the email address. There are programs out there that assist you in capturing email addresses by putting a lightbox form on the page, or popping up as people try to leave the page. These are easier to implement than you may think.

Another secret is this. If you open a gmail account, Google will give you $100 free of AdWords advertising. AdWords advertising will really pull people to your site. You could make your free offer through the ad you create.

Cost: Time output, unless you decide to spend more money on AdWords after your initial $100.

4. Build a relationship with the people on the list. Put together 5 really good email communications that have relevant information about your subject matter. You really want to send them 10 or 15, but you can get a good start with five. There is a specific way to communicate with people online, so it would help to either search for information about this, or to find a good book about it. But in any event, put five emails together that are really good and send them out, one every few days. Build up to the 10 or 15 over the course of a month or so. This is how you build your relationship. Whatever you do, do not underestimate this process. It’s your relationship with your list that is the backbone of everything else you do with your online business.

Cost: Time output for writing and generating emails plus cost of email writing book if you decide to buy one.

5. Interact with the list. It’s not you, a cold and emotionless virtual entity, out there building your empire and preying on the unsuspecting. Quite the opposite. You really want to be warm, genuine and interested in the people on your list, and you do want to interact. You want to find out what subjects they want more or new information about. You also want to find out where their pain and frustrations are. You want to find these things out because these are the source for your upcoming products. It’s good to keep in mind when you ask a question that a very small percentage that will actually respond so that you don’t have too high an expectation.

But you can get higher response if you hit some mental triggers. One of them is reciprocity, where if you give something to someone they will feel some sense of obligation to give something back to you. When you ask someone their opinion such as, “What do you think about this” or “What do you want to know about this,” or “I’m creating a product and I need your input so I can make the best product.” I think there is a little bit of reciprocity. You are giving someone your attention. Everything you do at this stage is building up to figuring out what specific items these people want information on. When you approach the list in this way, there will be certain things that will be repeated over and over again that are frustrating for the people in your market, and that is your cue for product creation.

Cost: Time output

So there you have it. These are five simple but powerful steps that anybody interested in being an internet marketing consultant can accomplish with $100 up front and $20 a month to spend. Many internet marketers are using these methods, but a lot of them don’t know that they originated with Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula. I’ve left plenty for you to discover when you are inside the Product Launch Formula training, because after all, it would not be cool to be revealing all of Jeff’s groundbreaking secrets.

Export Marketing – How to Develop Products for Export

Before you think of developing a product for export or even adapting an existing one, it is important to make a distinction between a product and a product type. A motor vehicle is product type, but a “Toyota”, a very popular Japanese car, is a product.

New product types are rarely created. An exporter who can come up with a better version of an existing product will succeed as a market for such a product already exists. The manufacturers of Toyota have worked very hard to make their cars so popular although the vehicles are not much different from any others you find on our roads. But think of how much harder they would have to work to come up with a completely new mode of land transportation.

There is business in the re-modeling or re-packaging of existing products, that is, creating new products out of the existing ones. Sometimes only very minor adjustments are required, for example, using a colorless clear bottle for a whiskey that is traditionally sold in an opaque bottle.

If you decide to copy products of another manufacturer you will be running the risk of patent or copyright infringement. But you can avoid the risk and still exploit the success of a new product by making slight modifications in the design of the product you want to copy as long as you do not try to confuse the public into thinking that they are buying the original product.

The Product:

Any new product ideas should take into account the following factors:-

An understanding of how buyers conceive a product. This will include physical and non-physical elements such as the product itself, packaging, after sales service, brand name, the image it portrays and the benefits they expect out of using the product.
The product must be made to meet the standards and styling of the customer and not the manufacturer. This is the importance of a good market research.
Expected Life Cycle of the product. “Product Types” may go on for ever but “Products”, like all living things, progress in definite stages from birth to maturity, then death.
Possible patent or copyright infringement which may lead to legal action.
The Product Life Cycle:

Introduction: The product is launched and, if it finds buyers, sales rise slowly,
Growth: The product is becoming accepted and if it catches on, there is a period of rapid growth in sales. If it fails to catch on it should be withdrawn at this stage for possible modification or to try a different market.
Maturity: Sales growth reaches the apex and starts to slow down,
Stagnation: Sales level off and further expenditure on sales promotion become uneconomical.
Decline: Sales start to decline as demand for the product goes down
When stagnation starts, research should reveal the cause and corrective measures taken before the decline commences. A product may be given a new lease of life by being changed in some way, either substantially or just the way it is presented.

It is important to note here that although it is true that the life cycles of most products follow almost the same pattern, the length of the cycle itself varies greatly. For example, the life cycle of fashion dresses is relatively short compared to that of capital goods which, in some cases, may be as long as 20 years. Life cycles of particular products or product types may vary from country to country.

Once the product life cycle is understood, the planning of when to introduce a new product or make changes on the existing product can be done more accurately.

Festus Muga

Hello Fellow Small Scale Entrepreneur,

I am a freelance writer and have a wealth of experience in the Banking Industry. I have worked as a member of the management team of an international bank and am well versed in Business Development and Financing, Financing of Foreign Trade, Import/Export Processing and Documentation.

I have successfully managed an Export/Import Agency of my own which has given me quite an experience in the pros and cons of international business.

Below-The-Line Advertising – The Power of Promotional Products

Below-the-line advertising is a style of marketing where rather than using mass media, you connect with your target audience at a more one-to-one type of level. It can be exceptionally powerful because not only can it have a stronger impact and be directed at a carefully planned audience, but its effectiveness can be very easily quantified. Below-the-line advertising is also popular because you can execute these strategies yourself, without having to use an advertising agency and any media outlets, so it can cost significantly less than the “above-the-line” alternatives.One excellent device that can be used as a below-the-line advertising aid, is to get some promotional products made up. These can be almost anything, so you can come up with some really creative and novel promotional merchandise. Whether these promotional products are given away free as corporate gifts or whether they come with a purchase, branded bespoke products can be one of the most effective ways to get your brand seen and remembered.The key to using promotional products well is to do something that will really appeal to your target market. You can choose merchandise that is silly or funny to stick in people’s memories, or something really useful that is relevant to what you do – every time they use it they will see your logo, reaffirming the positive attachment to your brand in their minds. You can even have your gifts personalised if you are planning to send them to distinct people you really want to impress.Of course, one of the main reasons why promotional products work so well is that everybody likes to feel like they are getting something for free and somebody is more likely to like something they have been given as a gift than something they have paid for. It makes your customers feel like you as a business like and value them, and want to reward their loyalty. This can be used as a pure marketing gimmick, or as a way of temporarily driving up sales by offering the promotional items as free gifts with purchases. Giveaways can really help to launch a new product.Plenty of companies offer bespoke promotional products you can order, and this can often be done very cheaply. If you are short on ideas for what sort of items would compliment your brand as gifts then looking through some of their websites may inspire you towards the perfect choice of promotional gift.