How To Elevate Your Next Product Launch to New Heights With Data Analytics

Photo Source: Adobe Stock

Today’s business world is driven by data. Effectively harnessing the power of data analytics can provide insight into market trends, customer behavior, and the competitive field. As Peter Sondergard, Global Head of Research at Gartner, Inc., put it, “Information is the oil of the 21st century, and analytics is the combustion engine.” 

Data analytics can help your company make more strategic decisions and take events such as product launches to the next level. In such a globalized and fast-paced economy, keeping up with the competition is also necessary. Here’s how. 

1. Product Development 

Gathering feedback from beta testers and early users is an important part of product development and should occur at several stages throughout the early lifecycle of your new product. Data analytics can help you gather and analyze this feedback to note trends or red flags before your launch. 

“Developing a strong beta-testing process is essential,” Max Ade, CEO of Pickleheads recommends. “But having a way to assess those responses for takeaways is just as important. That data is meaningless if you can’t pull takeaways from it.” 

Feedback from the early stages of a product’s lifecycle can help you identify necessary refinements or improvements to ensure you meet and exceed customer expectations. Changes driven and supported by data dramatically increase the chances of a successful launch. 

2. Utilize A/B Testing

Hand-in-hand with beta feedback is A/B testing, or comparing two iterations of a marketing campaign to determine which one performs better. Nearly every aspect of a product launch can be tested with A/B testing, from email subject lines to landing page design. 

“A/B testing should be continuous through every part of a product’s lifespan,” says Amanda Howland, Co-Founder of ElleVet Sciences. “It’s crucial for beta testing, of course, but even beyond that, use it to keep tweaking the rollout and maximize demand.” 

By tracking user interactions and conversion rates, data analytics allow you to make strategic decisions about which iterations are most effective in garnering sales. Continuous data-driven changes can lead to incremental improvements. These changes add up over time and have an outsized impact on your sales numbers.

3. Forecasting Demand 

Overstocking or understocking can sink a product launch before it even begins. Accurate demand forecasting is the best way to prevent inventory mismanagement of a new product, yet anticipating changes in the supply chain is more complex than ever. A strong data analytics tool can do the work for you.

“Not being aware of the realistic demand for a product carries a hefty price tag,” warns Rayla Rappaport, CPA of Finaloop’s ecommerce accounting software. “Smart inventory management is an underrated, yet crucial, part of your overall business strategy.” 

Seasonality, market trends, and historical sales data are all pieces of the puzzle when forecasting demand for a new product. Using data analytics to assess these pieces will ensure you have the right amount of inventory on hand to meet customer needs without losing money on carrying costs. 

4. Competitive Analysis

Understanding your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses is vital to standing out in the market. Data analytics can provide a more robust understanding of your competitor’s market share and thereby help you shape your own niche.

Natalia Morozova, Partner at Cohen, Tucker & Ades Immigration Law Firm says, “Every product serves a specific need, and strong product launches require a strong understanding of what the market wants. Competitive analysis can get you there.” 

Analytics allow you to assess your competitors’ pricing strategy and customer reviews to develop a vision of what customers are looking for. This information will support your own pricing strategy, what gaps in the market you’re filling, and how you can differentiate your product. This strategy also allows you to put yourself in your customers’ shoes and consider what elements they’re looking for in a new product.

5. Optimizing Your Price Point

One of the key benefits of competitor analysis is gathering data to optimize the pricing of your new product. Your price point is one of the first things consumers will notice about the new product, and it can make or break your rollout. Overshoot, and you won’t have enough demand. Undershoot, and you risk a slim profit margin. 

“How much are customers willing to pay for this new product? That’s something you should know before the product even launches,” says Nick Bodkins, Founder of Boisson, a company that specializes in non-alcoholic wine, beer, and spirits. “Getting to that number should be a big part of your rollout strategy.” 

Factors like competitor pricing and production costs should be considered when choosing your price point, and analytics can help you determine that optimal number. Analytics can also help you build a dynamic pricing model to better reflect changes in the market or in consumer demand. Supporting your pricing decisions and models with data is the best way to reduce your chances of over or underestimating. 

6. Market Segmentation 

Rather than blanket marketing your product to a large general audience, segment your market into more specific customer niches. You can do this based on social and demographic data as well as interaction and engagement rates across different platforms. From there, you can identify and more effectively advertise to the customers most likely to buy your new product. 

“Customers today almost expect to see hyper-specific marketing,” advises Suze Dowling, Chief Business Officer and Co-Founder of Onsen, a company known for their Waffle Towel and bath robes. “Analytics tools make it easier than ever to identify and target those segments, which, of course, results in much more effective marketing.” 

By using analytics to assess behavior and demographic data, you can create marketing campaigns that highly resonate with your most active customer base. You can also reduce wasted marketing efforts by avoiding less active audiences.

7. Post-Launch Analytics

Photo Source: Adobe Stock

Getting to launch day is only half the battle. Once your product is on the market, it’s important to harness data analytics to continuously monitor your KPIs. Be quick on your feet post-launch to ensure the highest customer satisfaction possible and help ensure a strong rollout.

“Data analytics is about making decisions supported by hard numbers. But being able to quickly pivot and use that data is just as important as gathering the data in the first place,” says Jenny Herbison, VP of Marketing at Craft Docs

Make ongoing improvements by analyzing customer feedback, interactions and engagement on your website, and sales data. This information can guide product updates, post-launch marketing, and future product launches. 

8. Monitor Social Media

Keeping an eye on social media chatter can provide a rich source of customer feedback and feelings towards your new product. Data analytics can track engagement, mentions, shares, and reviews related to the product launch, which can inform your post-launch strategy and future product rollouts. 

“Social media is the name of the game these days,” explains Selom Agbitor, Co-Founder of Mad Rabbit, a company that specializes in tattoo aftercare. “There’s no way to gather the full picture of customer satisfaction and feedback without it. Often, customers won’t even go to Customer Support with their concerns — they’ll just head straight to their newsfeeds.” 

Using analytics to monitor social media can also keep you abreast of potential problems before they snowball. A strong social media presence, in general, can allow you to engage with customers, address issues quickly, and promote a new product.

9. Strategic Partnerships

Social media is also a gateway for strategic brand and influencer partnerships. Data analytics can help you assess the most suitable influencers and businesses to draw in a highly curated, niche audience. 

“Customers buy from people they trust,” says Max Schwartzapfel, CMO and Fighting For You lawyer. “It’s as simple as that. Tap the internet personalities they trust, and they’ll buy from you.” 

Analyze your potential partners’ engagement rates, audience demographics, and prior collaborations to determine whether they align with your product and goals as a company. Partnerships supported by data can lead to more successful engagement and conversion rates. 

10. Customer Journey Mapping 

Use an analytics tool to understand and map the customer experience leading up to a purchase. Data analytics can track customer interactions across multiple touchpoints, allowing you to create a detailed picture of where bottlenecks might occur. 

“As the business owner, it’s easy to lose sight of what the actual customer experience is like,” cautions Asker A Ahmed, Director of iProcess Global Research. “It’s important to give yourself the tools to see that experience and see where it can be improved.” 

The insight provided by journey mapping can allow you to make your customers’ shopping experience as easy and seamless as possible. By mapping and optimizing your customer’s experience, you can increase conversion rates, boost sales, and make your product rollout as friction-free as possible. 

Make Data Analytics Work for You

Setting up the initial infrastructure necessary to maximize your data analytics can be overwhelming. However, the payoff provided by customer insights, demand forecasting, improved conversion rates, and sales boosts is invaluable. Once you’ve created efficient workflows and made it through the troubleshooting stage, your data analytics will start to do the heavy lifting for you. 

As former Yahoo! President and CEO Marissa Mayer said, “With data collection, ‘the sooner the better’ is always the best answer.” Data analytics is the future of business — it’s time to start swimming, or risk getting swept out with the tide

Author Profile

Lee Clarke
Lee Clarke
Business And Features Writer


Leave a Reply