Launching my first product on ProductHunt

Veggsocial on Producthunt

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This is my story, progress and result of launching my first product on ProductHunt.

After months of hard work and sleepless nights, I finally ready to launch my very first product on ProductHunt, a site where most product makers aim to launch their product on.

If you are reading this, you might have known that. But for those of you who are not familiar with ProductHunt, it is a platform where developers, entrepreneurs, journalists, investors, and members of the tech world spend time discovering and discussing fresh products. Thus, it will be a great accomplishment if you can get your product highlighted on this site in front of all these people.

Anyways, I understand that ProductHunt is just a tool. One of the many many tools that can help you get early tractions for your product. Thus, the result of posting on ProductHunt alone, will not in any way at all, justify the success or failure of your product. But, it will be stupid of me if I didn’t give ProductHunt a try!

I have been on ProductHunt for about 4 years now, and the reason I haven’t yet shipped a single product is simply because I haven’t really completed any products that I built. They were often left unfinished because I was either too busy with other things or I suddenly thought the product is bad half way through.

So last year, right after I got my UK Technation Exceptional Talent Visa , I was determined to build a product from start to finish! After all, I got all the time I need and with the visa that I just got, I literally have nothing to worry about and can just focus on building my product and my journey as an indiemaker. To cut the story short, when I was looking for a new product idea, I decided that I was gonna build a social platform called Veggsocial. It’s the social platform where you can easily find best places and cities for vegans and vegetarians to visit, while meeting new people and friends.

Veggsocial

Fast forward 1 year later, here I am writing this article while waiting to launch my product on ProductHunt! 

It is important to note that I have 3 main goals for launching my product:
– First is to have it ranked as high as possible on product hunt. If I could get it ranked first, then that would be wonderful! But if I could at least get it into the Top 5 products of the day, I’ll be already grateful, as the top 5 products will get featured on ProductHunt’s newsletter the next day.
– Second is to have as many feedbacks or suggestions so that I could improve my product
– Third is to have as many back linked to my product itself and get them converted as registered members

As my goals is now clear, I am ready to launch on ProductHunt!


1) Prelaunch

The first thing I did for the ProductHunt launch was to subscribe to the Ship Pro membership. The price was quite expensive especially for a solo indiemaker like me who just starting out. But luckily I got some discount from the YC Startup School  I was accepted into the program in August earlier this year.

Done with that, I setup and launched the upcoming page for Veggsocial:

I use emoji for the logo, and I made a GIF picture for the product photo. I then announced it on Twitter to get people to subscribed:

I have scheduled Veggsocial to be launched by the end of the year and I am not sure if it is a good or a bad idea. So, I asked ProductHunt team and fellow makers on ProductHunt’s Maker Chat. These are the respond:

Kesara Wimal respond to my question

Jake’s from ProductHunt respond

I also asked Jake whether or not that I can reschedule my post after I have created it, and he said I could, as long as it is still within the 7 days following the initial date that the post was created.

2 weeks after I launched the upcoming page, I managed to get around 50+ subscribers to subscribed:

2) Soft launch

Before actually launching on ProductHunt, I would like to get some people to give Veggsocial a try first. This is important for me in order to:
– Spread the word around and get early traction
– Find and fix bugs
– Get feedbacks and suggestions

My hope with this soft launch is that it will help me get few early upvotes and give my post on ProductHunt a boost when I actually launched on ProductHunt soon.

I was thinking about making the soft launch private and only make Veggsocial accessible to few beta users, but decided to change my mind as I thought that it will just added an extra layer and barriers for my product.

I announced my soft launch both on my personal and Veggsocial twitter page:

3) Launching

Now that I have done all of that, time to get ready for the actual launch! I created a new post on ProductHunt and schedule it to be launched on 30th of December 2018.

When created a new post on ProductHunt, you do not have to worry if you do not have everything ready yet, because you can always edit everything before you launch. ProductHun will create a link/draft page for you post where you can see how everything looks like:

Now I have to fill in all of the details like Descriptions, Gallery, Tags, First Comment, A product video and around the web article links:

Edit page for the post

So now that I have done all of that, all I need to do is completing my product video and spread the word around!

I’m still not sure about one thing though. It’s whether or not I should launch before the New Year (where most people are still in holidays) or after the New Year? Let me know what do you think about this! 

Also, please let me know if you have any feedback or suggestions! And please share your experience/tips/links on launching your product on ProductHunt in the comment section below 

And finally, thank you for reading this! I will continue to update this article from time to time and share every results related to my very first launch. And if you are also about to launch your product on ProductHunt, here are the few links that you can get more info from and might help you out:
https://medium.com/swlh/launch-and-rank-here-is-how-we-ranked-3rd-on-product-hunt-d1cb7c0c840f
https://www.producthunt.com/time-travel
https://www.deekit.com/product-hunt-debunked/

Update:

So I’ve finally launched Veggsocial on ProductHunt! Unfortunately though, I didn’t get to launched it properly as ProductHunt accidently launched Veggsocial without me knowing it 

So this is the short story of how it went down.

If you subscribed to ProductHunt’s Pro Ship Account, you have the ability to schedule your product launch up to 1 week in advanced. I really need to do this as Veggsocial was already LIVE and I didn’t want anybody else hunt Veggsocial for me, especially when I was not ready for it. But as I mentioned just now, ProductHunt only allow you to schedule your product up to 1 week in advanced.

And for me back then 1 week was not enough for me to get everything ready for the launch. So I ask ProductHunt team, whether or not I re-schedule the launch after I already setup the date. And they confirmed with me that this can be done. So great news for me! And I went ahead and put the launch date on 28 December and one week later, I reschedule it to 4 January. And this is where I messed up.

I was planning to reschedule the launch date one more time and would like to setup the real launch date on 11 January 2019. So, my plan was to wait until 3rd January and reschedule it then. Little that I know, I was so busy with other stuffs and totally forgot about this! When I woke up on the 4th January and checked my email, I noticed that there were several emails of new sign up users. I thought to myself, well that’s weird but I just assuming people finally stumbled upon Veggsocial from Google or something.

Few hours later, I went to the coffee house in town to do some work as usual and right then only I’ve realised that Veggsocial has been launched on ProductHunt! I really didn’t expect that as ProductHunt didn’t send me any emails at all to remind me about the launch date! I was so stressful at the time, because I really don’t know what do I suppose to do first. What should I tweet. What emails should I send to all my subscribers and so on. I’m the kind of person that do really terrible in stressful and unexpected situation and when that happened I really have no clue how to handle that.

But I did try my best. I tweeted about Veggsocial launch, send emails to all my subscribers and answering questions on ProductHunt as best as I could. At the end of the day, Veggsocial ends up with 126 upvotes and was on the 8th place for that day.

Was I dissapointed? Yes. Especially when I’ve spent lots of money paying for ProductHunt Ship subscription and have spent 1 year developing Veggsocial and looking forward for ProductHunt launch. But it’s alright. Not everything that you’ve planned turn out exactly as what you wanted it to be. And this is a lesson for me and I ‘ve learnt a lot from it. Afterall, this is just a first among many more launches on ProductHunt that I will be doing in the future. I will keep grinding, making products and solving problems, making a world a better place 🙂

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