How to launch your Product on ProductHunt - Checklist & Guide

September 16, 2022
8 mins read
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You’ve given your heart and soul into building a product. You added all the bells and whistles, listened to your users, and worked on the early feedback. Your product is ready for the market.

So, what now?

Time to launch it on ProductHunt!

ProductHunt launches are definitely not the moment of truth for your product, but it can feel that way for most builders. I get that.

At Zeda.io, we have launched a few info products on ProductHunt with the hope of engaging with the community and giving back in whatever way we can. We’ve had launches that did really well. But there were also days where we were scratching our heads wondering what went wrong.

Our launches have gathered hundreds of upvotes on launch day and helped us get over 3000 sign ups on our waitlist. Some of our products even made it to the #1 product of the day and #3 product of the week. We were also featured in the ProductHunt newsletter.

Check out our launches below:

Ebook - A to Z of Product-led Growth

Product Toolkit - 200+ PM tools

Product library - 1200+ resources for PMs

A to Z of Product-led Growth Ebook by Zeda.io on Producthunt
Product Toolkit by Zeda.io on Producthunt

So in all this, we have learned a thing or two about launching on ProductHunt, and some best practices, which I’m about to share with you in this blog. Let’s go.

Before launch:

ProductHunt launch checklist

Before you think about launching on ProductHunt, you would want to have your essentials ready, right? This handy checklist covers what you will need:

1. A product that’s ready for the market

Make sure there are no major bugs or usability issues in your product before you launch it. You should also have your story and product positioning nailed. You don’t want to ruin your first impression.

2. Launch plan document

A launch plan document makes it easy for you to plan and track your launch from start to finish. This document should have your creatives, product title, tagline, maker’s comment, social media captions and so on. Let’s look at each of these below:

Here’s an example launch plan made on Trello:

Plan to launch your Product on ProductHunt
Source

3. Nailing your creatives

These are the most important creative elements of a ProductHunt launch page.

  • Name of the product (max 60 characters, make this count)
  • The landing page URL of the product you want to launch
  • Tagline (max 60 characters, be crisp and to the point)
  • Creatives — about 5 and 10 images showcasing different parts of your product. Don’t shy away from using gifs and emojis! The ProductHunt brand is built around gifs and emojis (especially those with cats). If you also have a product video, definitely include this as well. (More guidelines here)
  • Have a special offer exclusively for the PH community. It could be a discount on your product or something extra just for them. The community will appreciate it.
  • Maker’s comment - Once your hunter posts the product, you will need a few lines of text talking about the company, your how and why, the problem being solved and the vision for future.

4. Preparing an audience

Having a list of people you can immediately reach out for feedback after the launch can be super helpful. This could be your co-workers, community members, or even friends. Make sure you reach out to them in advance, as a heads up for the launch. However, do not explicitly ask for upvotes as this is against the ProductHunt community guidelines.

5. Finding a Hunter

A hunter is someone who is actively launching products on ProductHunt. Top hunters on ProductHunt have a following that ranges in thousands. There are some benefits to getting a popular hunter for your launch. You get attention from their followers and your launch is much more likely to land in the top 3 positions. Just make sure you find a hunter who is actually interested in products like yours for best results.

In our case, our founder Prashant Mahajan has been doing the hunts since these were info products and the only goal was to help the community.

6. Promotion strategy

When you are putting so much effort into the ProductHunt launch, you want to do everything you can to make it successful. For this, you need to have a promotion strategy. List out all the social media channels where you will be posting about the launch. This can include your regular channels like Linkedin, Twitter along with relevant communities on Slack, Linkedin, Facebook and so on. Trick is to have as many eyeballs as you can on your launch.

During launch:

Some best practices for a successful launch

1. Get your story straight

Not just for ProductHunt, but if you wanna take a new product to the market and acquire reasonable market share, you must have a powerful story. With a compelling story, you are likely to get engagement, feedback and even customers for your product, just from a ProductHunt launch. Make sure you have this ready before thinking about a PH launch.

2. Let your creatives tell the story

They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but we all do it anyway. Think about your creatives like title, tagline, and screenshots as the cover of a book. When a ProductHunt user is browsing through the new launches, you probably have less than 3 seconds to capture their attention and make them click on your post. This why it’s important to optimise your creatives. For inspiration, I recommend that you check out some of the featured products on ProductHunt that did well.

3. Time your launch for your target audience

The recommended best time to launch on Product Hunt is 12:01 am on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. However, this depends a lot on who you are targeting with your launch.

Timing your launch for your specific target audience is very important. Let’s say you are targeting Shopify users in Finland. You would want to do some research ahead to understand when Finnish users are most active on ProductHunt and time your launch around this.

After launch:

You launched your product, what now?

1. Spread the word

If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

That might be a deep philosophical question for some other day, but there is no doubt that you should make some noise right after your PH launch.

You already have people waiting eagerly for your launch on your social channels, communities, and so on. Once your product goes live, share the good news with them. The initial engagement that you get after a launch is crucial for success. Make sure you also you embed the ProductHunt badge on your website, this helps you notify your website visitors about the launch.

Notify your website visitors about the product launch

2. Thank your supporters

As the upvotes and feedback starts pouring in, don’t forget to thank each of them individually for taking their time out to care about your product. It’s also a good idea to share a thank you post on social media the very next day after your launch. This will also help you get more eyeballs on the product on the second day.

3. Collect and analyze feedback

ProductHunt gives you a launch dashboard where you can see real time metrics of your launch. Here you can see the reviews, comments, upvotes, and the ranking position of your product, among others. The feedback is a goldmine of insights that you can use for improving your product. Here are some launch dashboard screenshots from our ebook launch.

ProductHunt Launch Dashboard

4. Share your learnings

So now that you are done with the launch, it’s time to share your learnings with your community. This helps other builders to get inspired and learn from your experience. You can write a blog post, do a twitter thread or Linkedin post - whichever makes sense for your audience. And that's exactly what we're doing with this blog here.

Why it’s okay if you didn’t make it to #1 product of the day

As with anything, there are many things in a ProductHunt launch that can escape your meticulous planning. Sometimes you won’t make it to the top 3 products, or the PH newsletter. That’s okay!

  • You get free visibility from people who are eager to try out new stuff
  • Get honest early feedback
  • Acquire new customers
  • Free press coverage and social mentions if your launch is good
  • Sign ups and email subscribers

Early feedback, brand recognition, leads or customers - Whatever your goals might be, ProductHunt is a great place to get all these and more for your brand new product. Hope these tips help you plan your launch better, and make it a success.

Jacob Koshy
Product Marketer at Zeda.io
A marketer in love with SaaS products. When away from work, I'm either spending time with my cats or adding miles on my motorcycle.
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