Hi, everyone. This is Morgan, the founder of Gemoo.
Last Thursday, I launched my screenshot tool called Gemoo Snap 2.0 on Product Hunt. Although I have launched 3 times on Product Hunt before, this was my 1st self-launch instead of going through a hunter.
Additionally, the way Product Hunt works has changed a lot, so I made some mistakes that resulted in disappointing results in terms of upvotes. If any of you are planning to self-launch your product in the future, it might be helpful to read this article and avoid making the same mistakes as me, which could greatly reduce the exposure of your product.
Here are some of the key takeaways for people who wanna launch by themselves.
The main difference between launching your product yourself and getting help from a hunter is that you can create a teaser for your launch. Since hunters are usually very busy and may not be able to help you with this task. My suggestion is that if you have sufficient preparation time (at least 2 weeks), be sure to do it.
Scheduling your launch in advance with a teaser, you can showcase a sneak peek of your product on your main page, and this will give you more visibility and support throughout your launch journey. If you would like your launch to be listed and have people notified about it, you can add it to the Coming Soon feed. Anyone on the site can click “Notify me” and be the first to find out when your launch goes live.
The best part is creating a teaser is free, why not take advantage of it?
Click here to check how to create a teaser for your launch.
Before launching your product, researching the recent launch achievements of top products can be very helpful in determining the best launch date for your product.
Choose a day with relatively low competition to launch if you want to get a social badge from Product Hunt. But it’s better to avoid weekends, even if they make it easier to obtain badges. Fewer active users on weekends make it harder to get valuable feedback and ideal exposure. As shown in the image below, I have chosen Thursday to launch Gemoo Snap 2.0.
It’s important to note that even if you’ve already launched a teaser, you can still reschedule the launch day. If you find that other product launches or major news events may overshadow yours, reschedule the launch. Don’t take risks, since you can only launch the same product again six months later (unless there are significant updates and it has been approved by the Product Hunt team).
This was my first time launching a product by myself. I didn’t have any experience with scheduling a launch, so I didn’t know that even after setting a launch time, I still needed to manually change the launch status. Otherwise, the product would remain in pre-launch status and wouldn’t be featured. This caused Gemoo Snap 2.0 to miss out on the best exposure opportunity.
Since Product Hunt recently changed the display rules for product launches (the upvote count is not displayed for the first two hours after launch, making product exposure more random), I thought that my product was not initially featured on is due to the updated feed algorithm. Plus, we received several supports from communities making this problem not apparent in the first two hours, and our upvote count was still considered leading at the time.
Obviously, I was wrong, and I only discovered this issue 6 hours after launch. Although I made changes and remedied the situation, it was too late, and I completely missed the opportunity to gain organic traffic from the PH community.
You can see from the above and below screenshots that we did not receive any extra upvotes during the next four hours until I found and fixed the issue.
Product Hunt is a community-driven platform, and having the support of the community can make or break your launch. I talked with people in many online communities like Indiehackers, Facebook groups, Reddit forums, WhatsApp groups, Twitter communities, and others. Of course, don’t forget that Product Hunt itself is a perfect startup community.
Without the support from these communities, Gemoo Snap 2.0 would not have achieved its current result of 112 upvotes and 55 comments. Given that, it had almost no organic traffic due to my mistake.
In addtion, I truly learned a lot from these communities. The feedback and advice helped me make Gemoo better in many ways, like making better features, improving the website, building a community, and finding my users.
The key to gaining community support is to be consistent and provide valuable feedback, rather than just treating them as channels to get upvotes. Nobody likes to be treated as a tool, and people aren’t foolish.
Investing in community building can be highly beneficial, as demonstrated by Dora AI’s launch success even though it has made same mistake as me. On May 17th, it was named the #1 product of the day despite having few organic traffic from Product Hunt platform itself.
This achievement is a best testament to the effectiveness of its community building efforts. I heared about it in a community that we are both part of, and after checking it out, I upvoted it. I also saw many people with a large amount of followers promoting it on Twitter. And the product’s appeal undoubtedly led to it being retweeted later on.
I hope that my experience and the lessons I’ve learned can help you avoid some of the mistakes I made in my latest Product Hunt launch.
Remember that launching a product is just the beginning of its journey. Keep in touch with the community, express gratitude for their support, and stay engaged as you refine and enhance your product.
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Thank you for reading!