The New Goto - Launching a Product on Product Hunt

By now, just about everyone in the world knows the power of social news aggregators - a must for launching a product is making an attempt to frontpage on HackerNews and/or Reddit. In some user acquisition/business models, the strategy sometimes revolves around doing solely that.

However, while HackerNews and Reddit are indeed amazing ways to get the word out about a product - they’re not explicitly designed for the purpose, and there’s a new player in the field that’s showing, in record time, the potential to rapidly overtake HN and Reddit as the goto for product launches.

I’ll have to admit - I was a little skeptical the first time I heard about Product Hunt. Ryan Hoover, the cofounder, had been a good friend of mine for quite a while before he launched PH - we used to blog together when he was back at PlayHaven - and when he first described it to me, it seemed like a stretch that PH would be able to enter into what seemed like a heavily saturated market with dominant players like HN and Reddit.

Skepticism can do nothing but take a backseat to empirical evidence though, and empirical evidence I got when Sprayable Energy was unexpectedly featured on Product Hunt last week. I woke up to see a mass of traffic on our website, and order notifications cramming up my inbox. It was a thoroughly mystifying morning until one of our team members noticed that we had been featured on Product Hunt - and then it all made sense.

We hit third place for July 8th on Product Hunt and ended up with a neat 111 up votes - and what did that net us in visits and sales? We ended up with about 2,400 tracked visits directly from Product Hunt, and 70+ orders for over $2,500 in revenue. In other words, for every visitor Product Hunt drove to our site, we earned about a dollar - and PH drove a lot of visitors.

That was certainly nice, but we had gotten traffic before, and in the grand scheme of things, 2,400 visitors wouldn’t be life changing in of itself. What would prove to be game-changing was the sheer number of partnership, distribution, and funding requests we received in tandem with the traffic.

When we had officially launched with our crowdfunding campaign last year, we garnered a lot of mainstream media attention - The New York Times, The Atlantic, NPR, ABC, Fox, TIME, etc. And while those media sources, as might be expected, drove hordes of visitors and consequently revenue to our campaign, astoundingly, they came nowhere close to driving as many perfectly targeted, highly relevant and highly valuable potential partners and distributors to us as a single post on a single day on Product Hunt did.

In fact, despite the unexpected post, Product Hunt ended up working out perfectly for us. We had just begun looking for partners who were intimately familiar with retail and direct response channels and could help us navigate those relationships, but it had been a difficult process with no existing experience in the space. Just a week later, and we have a slew of companies we’re delighted to be interfacing with, and have our pick of who we’d like to work with.

All told - I think it’s pretty clear that Product Hunt is here to stay, and this is just the tip of the iceberg. Whether you’re just launching a product or are like us and have already launched elsewhere - be sure to give Product Hunt a shot. It’ll drive customers and revenue, sure, and that will be nice - but the potential partnerships and investment opportunities will be what just might change the fate of your product forever.


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