As a downturn has made its way into our economy and is top of mind for all, moving forward with a B2B product launch might not be at the top of the list for many companies. This isn’t to say, however, that organizations should be at a standstill and new offerings shouldn’t be unveiled, but many companies that have planned to release new products or services might be questioning their next move. We’re here to tell you it is okay to feel uncertain and have questions about a product launch in this economy. This blog will put your mind at ease and give you the answers to best approach your B2B product launch in an economic downturn.
1. Is the product needed in the market right now?
Before strategizing or rethinking your B2B product launch, you should answer the question, “What does the market look like?” and assess the demand or need for the offering. This does not have to be a time-consuming process, but rather a few steps that help you gather the most information possible. Market research provides you with important data and can begin with primary and secondary tactics. Primary research can be going directly to your prospects, others who operate in a different niche within the same market and current customers. This gives you direct knowledge of what people in your target audience are saying. When reaching out to these individuals, have a standard set of questions that will objectively gauge their interest in the offering and how the current climate is impacting it. Keep questions simple and direct and avoid mixing open-ended questions that will provide qualitative context. Secondary data comes from information services companies or self-compiled research from an array of available sources. While not directly from prospects or customers, this gives a wide overview of what the market is saying.
2. Do you need to make any product adjustments to meet evolving buyer needs and expectations?
Effective research will help show where your buyer expectations or needs may have shifted from previously established buyer personas. As economic changes impact buyers, this insight on changing buyer needs tells where the launch will need to pivot as well. With budgets top of mind for many B2B organizations, one of the key pain points that is important to consider is the pricing of your new product or service. As organizations look to cut back on unnecessary spending, a new product might not be at the top of their list to pursue. If pricing is an evident issue with your target audience, evaluate how your product could be adjusted to meet prospect budget requirements. Companies that may be more hesitant to adopt a new product or service may need to see how your offering can potentially cut down or alleviate spending concerns. Emphasize any ways in which your product or service may reduce spending, whether it is giving organizations more time to focus on higher priority tasks or adding a particular value that will only make their company stronger and more profitable.
3. Can the product launch be effective with digital marketing efforts?
Thinking outside of the digital box should apply to a B2B product launch strategy. Create buzz and share essential information about the launch in the digital space that most are occupying right now. Teams may have planned to host an in-person launch event or exhibit at trade shows. As budgets remain tight, it might not be plausible for teams to send employees to these events with the cost of travel being high. Offering a hybrid approach, or even fully virtual, can save organizations money, while also allowing you to reach more people than you would have at the event. While both approaches are effective, focusing on the marketing materials is what really matters. Marketing assets that support the launch should be versatile in how they can be distributed. If an event or tradeshow is part of the launch, ensure you have materials such as banners, flyers and brochures. These print marketing materials should be supported with digital marketing materials such as emails, social media posts, blogs and downloadable content like brochures or a product specs sheet. When producing these assets, be sure to keep the tone thoughtful and compassionate. All organizations are dealing with different issues in this economic downturn, and it is important to be sensitive to the current needs and pain points of audiences.
Adjusting to the Market While Staying Consistent
While these questions can open discussion amongst your team around factors to consider for your B2B product or service launch, it is important to lean on your company’s principles and core values. These are the founding elements of your company and ensuring they are met and presented even in times of uncertainty is essential. Like all other aspects of your marketing, sales and business strategies during this time, adjust your launch with a critical and thoughtful perspective, grounded in research, so that your business can shift in the new direction that’s taking shape.
As market conditions impact organizations, it is important to keep steady on sales and marketing efforts to continue reaching prospects and converting leads. Looking for support in generating leads when you need them most? Contact us today or request a free marketing consultation. We’ve got plenty of strategies and tactics to help your team.