A few months after our first launch, we decided that it would be relevant to launch for the second time on Product Hunt.
If you are not familiar with Product Hunt, it’s a platform where you can launch your (tech) product and reach a (tech) community that looks for innovative products and new opportunities. Each day, dozens of startups and freelancers launch their own products. From the AI assistant to a funny avatar app, there is something for everyone and every taste!
If you are curious about our first product launch results and feedback, I suggest you first read our first Product Hunt journey.
Our objective for this second launch was obviously to do better than the first launch and hopefully, to rank our platform in the top 5 products of the day. The goal was to gain more visibility and to give an overall update on our journey as a startup.
We are proud of what we achieved in the last 6 months and couldn’t wait for the Product Hunt community to hear about it.
This article will explain why we decided to launch again at such short notice, our goals, and give you general feedback on Product Hunt.
A new platform and new features
Keypup grew rapidly. After our first launch, we gained more beta users and got precious feedback from them about what they wanted to see in Keypup, and what actions they would perform. It allowed us to sharpen our product roadmap, and get the product even closer to our users.
So, a few months back we updated both our website and platform User Interface to provide a better user experience of Keypup along with new major features.
The most important feature release was the Agile Board. We understood that in some cases Agile in companies was not suited for better collaboration of developers teams. Agile processes are more like a burden that developers have to carry on top of their development tasks. So we created a board that combines development tools and project management tools to provide developers with much better clarity on their projects and actionable items shared back in all their tools in one click. Pretty useful, especially if development teams handle multiple projects at the same time.
All in all, Keypup transitioned to a whole new version. From Keypup beta, we shifted to Keypup 2.0. And that felt awesome!
I won’t go all over the recent updates, but all our feature releases are stored in our Changelog if you are interested.
Check your eligibility and prepare the campaign
We had to request authorization from Product Hunt to re-launch as we learned that you were allowed to re-launch your product only if 6 months had passed since your previous launch and we were a couple of weeks “early”.
Unfortunately, Product Hunt did not get back to us on our request to launch before the 6-months mark, so we just waited a few more weeks. This was not a bad thing though, because it gave us more time to prepare the launch and make sure we’d make the most out of this second launch.
We applied the lessons we learned from our first launch. Our main area of improvement was building an audience. Back then, we had no followers and no “karma points” on Product Hunt. So we implemented a “Social Love” challenge among our team. This Social love was simply to engage with the SaaS communities, not only Product Hunt but also on Indie Hackers, Reddit, Dev.to and Slack groups.
It had great effects. First, we created our e-reputation, second, we communicated with developers all around the world, sharing tips and best practices. We built our audience as well as we learned from them. A great win-win! (And we were super happy to see that quite a lot of them ended up being Keypup users! That’s a triple win!).
We realized that we were not alone in this re-listing campaign journey. It’s actually common for a company scaling up to refresh its offer on Product Hunt. After a little research, we found The ultimate guide to getting re-listed on Product Hunt.
This article gives really good tips with real-life examples from other companies. We used some to prepare our launch and it was very useful. Let’s take this opportunity to give a big Kudos to the author, we don’t know her in person (or at all for that matter), but this article is a jewel!
How to promote your second launch
We took our first launch results and feedback and rolled up our sleeves! Last time we focused the launch success on the landing page design. We personalized it with an interactive tour inspired by Star Wars (but with Bunnies as heroes - was so cute). We had a lot of fun doing it! But it was time-consuming and we decided to make it more simple. So we just added a personalized banner with the Product badge on our homepage and a dedicated message to Product Hunters.
This time, as we had acquired a significant user base compared to the first launch, it was all about seeking validation and feedback. Having a user base was a good start. For this second launch, we made a brand new Upcoming page and reached over 600 subscribers. These past months, our community was stronger and became a great resource for any new announcements.
We took the time to reach out to all the people who upvoted the first version of Keypup via Twitter and email.
It’s not new, people love to see who’s behind the scene; it humanizes the project and makes it more real. Speaking about Keypup is great, being filmed talking about it is better!
So this time, our CTO Arnaud gladly accepted to open up about Keypup and show a product tour. It was the first time we filmed a demo video and it was quite fun to do. The goal was to transcript the true nature of Keypup and show all the platform’s main features. If you want to see what it looks like, you can watch the video here.
It was important to start with an impactful message and align our campaign to it. So nailing the launch post with sleek headlines, descriptions, and appealing illustrations was essential. Matching with the new website design, we created new content for the launch. Blog posts, videos, social media posts… A consistent posting was the key to raise awareness to our target users and engage with them.
We also reached out to Hunters of PH, bloggers, and Twitter influencers. We did not ask them to actually hunt Keypup, but they have shown their support by visiting our platform.
Launch day and final thoughts
We chose to launch on a Friday because we knew that it was not a big day and that it would give us good visibility. Usually, Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the busiest days and for the last launch, we thought that the more people on Product Hunt the better. However, you get to compete with big cats on busy days and the challenge on launch day is to stay on top of the page.
On launch day, things went by very quickly. The team was all over social media to cover the launch. In the early hours of our launch we had great support from our community, a couple of comments, and 40 ish upvotes, we even peeked to the 4th place for a couple of minutes!
But then it slowed down. We competed with interesting products that day, and one must admit that a tool for software developers is not necessarily the main appeal of all PH visitors and hunters. But that we knew, so we were OK.
Here’s the latest report we got from Product Hunt
Given that we finished our day with 50 upvotes on our first launch, this result was a clear improvement. However, we expected more. We noticed that Product Hunt held some upvotes because we could see 99 upvotes on the counter, but on our launch page we could only see 73 - go figure!
The great news and very successful outcome of our launch was the number of new users we got on the platform. We had an excellent run on this metric at our first launch, but this time was just awesome, with twice as many sign ups on the day compared to the first launch.
It’s a shame that not all new users went back to PH to upvote, but in the end, what matters is to get the product out there and keep growing our user base.
All in all, PH works for us in terms of acquiring new users. We now have thousands of users on our platform, and there is no question that getting it visible once in a while on PH participates to this growth.
It’s also clear that we are not a shiny, consumer-based product, and that as such our votes are never too fantastic. But in the end, we did end up in the first 8 products of the day, had good comments on our product page, and plenty more users.
So we felt pretty good about ourselves!
We won’t stop here of course! Keypup is still growing and soon we’ll be back with Keypup 3.0!