Hello! We are launching a new product and want to start in one city / market to get traction and then rinse and repeat in subsequent markets. This is new territory for me, so need to learn best practices for framing this up. Thanks in advance!
- Physical or digital product?
- Target user (B2B, B2C, etc.)
- Customer acquisition plan?
- Revenue model?
- A bunch more of things
- Customer acquisition plan = B:B:C
- TBC…don’t get me started
- Let me know what else!
Not sure exactly what the question is, but here’s my attempt at understanding:
I have been advising a company that is tackling the housing market and they are expanding slowly by adding a new city. I’m not sure what exactly your product is, that it would need city-based expansion. However, what works best for them is to document every single thing about how you launch in one city and experiment a lot within the first one to learn about your user base.
While you are in the first city you would need a strong marketing push demonstrating the success it’s having there and leverage this to get people to signup in future cities. Some best practices I’ve seen are:
- Make a mailing signup list for people in other cities saying “Sign up to be notified when available in NYC”
- Have a signup to request which cities they want the product in
Overall, I would use the launch city’s learnings and apply it to the next one and making sure I am experimenting and learning in the one city. I hope this helps and I didn’t misunderstand the question
The answers will depend on how much resource you can allocate to each city. For our experience, we have been working in a single city for over 3+ years before we think about the other cities. Simply, due to the competitive disadvantages between a startup and existing established companies, it is hard to make a significant dent into an industry but you could focus all of resources hitting one city harder and harder with various ways. This is the best experiment for some models. You could waste some of your resources on a single city but not on multiples. Your company can become well-known in one city but not multiples in the beginning, in particular, you do not have enough resource to allocate. When you know what’s working in one city, the success depends on if you could raise money to spread to others. Good luck anyway!
Hi Heather - We launched a consumer product recently www.an-other.com and thought the same way that you are thinking. We even took it one step further and insisted on local manufacturing, paying double to have the packaging made in Miami and not in China, bottle in South Florida and not NJ, employ local service providers, photographers…
The truth is that we have better success in London, where we are the only US brand that made the final cut to showcase in the new ART-FIRST concept store by COS, fine boutiques in Germany, Bahrain and more…
It gets better - While we were celebrated and applauded in publications in Munich, NY, LA, London, and as far as Malaysia… Miami completely ignores our brand.
Case in point - it really depends on your brand and product. In our case we feel that being local and accessible “cheapens” our brand, taints it as as an “aspiring” brand. On the other hand, being featured abroad, and having global references from the most discerning locations gave us the credibility that the brand deserves. Only now, after having global presence, Miami is willing to adopt us based on the credibility of validation of London, Paris, Munich…
thank you so much! Very good point to think about the brand positioning in relation to the launch strategy…really appreciate your feedback (and congrats on your success!)
Thank you! Part of our product strategy is to partner with local fitness clubs to drive awareness of our product, so that’s why we are wanting to go to one city at a time. Thank you so much for your feedback!