Last Wednesday we launched Search, the first of our new Navigator features on Product Hunt, the leading site to launch tech products. This was a core element of one of our OKRs for the quarter (signing up 500 new users), so it was a bit nerve-wracking in the lead-up. Was it going to work? How many people could we reasonably expect to sign up? What would our reception be? Would we make it to the front page and stay there as our current core audience in the UK went to sleep and the West Coast woke up?
Midnight on Mare Street
Adding to the pressure, one week before our launch we decided to rebrand the product as Navigator (formerly Launchpad) as well as release our new Track visual investor CRM feature to preview. It was all a bit last minute and led to some late nights. On one of those nights, CTO Tom and I got ourselves locked in our office at midnight and had to call upon the kindness of a stranger passing our Mare St office, throwing our keys down from the second-floor window so he could open the roller shutters at the entrance for us.*
How it went
Despite the pressure, we had a good strategy to build momentum. We sent out emails to our community staggered throughout the day using the Mixmax sequence tool. We called on our network to share the launch with founders. We were active on social media and got involved in the discussion on Product Hunt. We used the Product Hunt widget in Intercom and got people voting.
Most importantly, we saw a tonne of people upvote, review and sign up that we didn’t know before. In fact, we gained more momentum as the UK went to sleep and the West Coast came online, rising from number twelve out of the 80+ hunted on the leaderboard for the day up to number seven by the time we woke up the next morning. We received over 300 upvotes, 30 reviews (all positive), and ten comments.
The most significant measure of our success is that within 48 hours of launch we had 200 signups for Navigator. That represents 40% of our targets for the quarter and more than doubles our new user count for the year to date.
6 things we learned (plus a bonus)
- We have an awesome community and network 🤗
- Getting traction on Product Hunt leads to sign-ups and exposure well beyond PH itself. There are lots of people who auto-tweet top trending products, for example, so we picked up some followers there.
- The Product Hunt community has provided great feedback and suggestions.
- Getting to be Product of the Day or even top 5 is hard work – there are lots of great makers out there so our ranking feels like a significant accomplishment.
- Don’t rush things right at the end if you can avoid – we got a bit lucky that everything went relatively smoothly given we released some chunky new features, built new websites, and updated our Intercom onboarding. We are glad we had set ourselves a deadline, but in the future, we might not be quite so ambitious. A major bug might have spoiled things.
- We have built something people want – but we still have a long way to go. Having a big new base of users to get feedback from is a huge advantage.
Bonus learning: If someone throws keys to you from the second floor don’t try to catch them on the fly – let them drop and then pick them up.
We are going to make the most of our new userbase to get feedback and build some really cool features for Navigator. It’s really exciting to be able to engage through surveys follow up calls and interviews to explore how we can improve the product.
Additionally, we’ve targeted June to launch our next feature on Product Hunt. Our goal is to make top 3 products of the day and to double our sign up totals.
A tonne of our users, friends and family shared our launch, gave us reviews, asked questions and supported us along the way – thank you for that! We also got good advice on how to launch on Product Hunt, including Noelle from SeedLegals, which was super handy. Thanks to Data Mettle for all their hard work with us on building the investor matching model – we are super excited to have out in the world. And a huge high five to the Capital Pilot team Last week was one of the most fun weeks at work I’ve ever had.
Finally, thank you to the random stranger on Mare St. You could have easily run off with our keys, but I’m glad you didn’t 🙂
*It later turned out we didn’t lock ourselves in, we just didn’t know how to raise the roller shutter from the inside ¯\_(ツ)_/¯