The Road to Recovery After a Failed Product Launch
Sometimes you take risks and you lose big – failed product launches are a part and parcel of being an entrepreneur. Launching a new product into the market can be a high-pressure situation, and it is easy to lose hope if the launch fails. But a failed product launch doesn’t mean you can’t bounce back from the situation. So many pioneers and industry leaders have bounced back from failed product launches – just think of Coke and Apple! Even Samsung is ready to come up with a Galaxy S8 after the exploding phone fiasco. We just have to brush ourselves off and move on.
But we have to do so carefully – while a failed product launch can mean a lot of things, it can also mean an opportunity to re-evaluate your business decisions and start with a clean slate. Here are some tips to help you recover from a failed product launch.
How to Bounce Back from a Failed Product Launch
1. Don’t Lose Hope
All’s not lost. History shows us that businesses often go through rough patches. It is important to keep your bearings right during these points in time. It is also important to admit that there might have been some mistakes in the way. Being in denial about your shortcomings is only going to make them worse. A good entrepreneur is one who learns from their past mistakes. Also, it is important to realize that a failed product launch doesn’t necessarily reflect the quality of the product at all. It can also be a result of certain external factors such as market conditions or bad timing.
2. Analyse the Situation
Aftermath of a failure is the best time to introspect. Luckily, you will have a lot of data to analyse and find out what went wrong. One of the simplest ways of gathering data around your product launch is Google Analytics. Using this you will be able to gather data from the website traffic such as bounce rate, entry pages and exit pages to analyse which parts of your website are strong and which ones are weak. By using more advanced analytics tools like kissmetrics, you will be able to track customer behaviour on your website to try and investigate what exactly went wrong with the launch.
There are some key questions that you have to ask while thinking about a failed product launch:
– Is there Something Wrong with my Product?
Sometimes if the product is brought into the market without sufficient testing for wear and tear in terms of time and terrain, and as a result, it behaves unpredictably. If it is a service based product like an app, it may be a fundamental design flaw that you may have to investigate.
– Is there Something Wrong with my Launch?
The second place you need to check for flaws is your launch strategy. This includes branding, marketing, social media presence, timing of the launch and all other executive decisions that you took on the way. Surveys are a great way to gather more information about the way the campaign was received. Websites like SurveyMonkey help you devise and formulate surveys that you can circulate among your customer base and test subjects. The data revealed through surveys like these can be valuable in locating the true cause of product launch failure.
– Is there Something Wrong with the Market?
Finally, there may be a situation where you have a good product and your launch strategy is foolproof. The third major area you need to look into for problems is your market. Sometimes products fail because they are not connected to a market that would value them. This is especially true for niche products that have a limited customer base. Therefore, it is good to re-evaluate whether the product is introduced in the right segment of the right market.
3. Try Better, Fail Better
Failure is inescapable in life. All we can do is learn from our mistakes and move on. Once you have analyzed your past mistakes, it is time to make a roadmap for the future. While recovering from a failed product launch, you might have to deal with some of the following:
- Loss of Customer Base
- Loss of Brand Equity
- Loss of inventory and resources
By identifying the causes of your failure, you can focus on those areas to try and get them up to speed. It is important to keep a close watch on the current market scenario and ups and downs while planning second attempts. Second attempts generally have smaller windows of opportunity. You may also have to overhaul the look and feel of your product so that it is not associated with past failures. Finally, you might try new methods of engagement with social media to create a buzz around your product launch. With enough patience and rigour, you can overcome your past failures and have a successful product launch.
To know more about launching products on the online market among other things, get in touch with Browntape. We are India’s leading e-commerce experts and we are always happy to help!