Every single week, I see the same mistake on Instagram: a creative entrepreneur is launching a new website, and as a brand strategist, I love seeing how other business owners tackle their pre-launch strategy. But instead of seeing any type of build-up to their launch announcement, I see no mention — nada, zip, zero — of their website before that post.
Honestly, it surprises me! Because not promoting your website launch on Instagram weeks (yes, not even days, but weeks) before it launches is such a missed opportunity to gain more leads and growth for your brand.
I want to help you avoid making the same mistakes too many entrepreneurs make so you can optimize your business’s growth. So in today’s blog, I’m going to go over step-by-step how you can market your website launch on Instagram in a way that creates visibility, growth, and can lead to new inquiries. This is a technique I use with my clients here at Carrylove Designs, so this is a tried-and-true-and-fully tested strategy.
Got your notebook? Let’s dive in.
Let me explain with an example. Imagine if you had a brick-and-mortar store. If you had a date planned for your grand opening, you wouldn’t simply open your doors with no announcements, right? It would be a poor strategy to open your store without making at least a few community announcements about a week before it opens. Your friends and family might have even known you were planning on opening your store months in advance!
In fact, there’s a new Planet Fitness opening in our neighborhood next month, and I’ve been receiving promotions from them for two months. Two months.
Your website isn’t any different. It’s a digital storefront, and we want to get people excited about your grand opening.
As I mentioned, our Signature Experience includes a pre-launch strategy to get our clients’ audience hyped up and excited about their new website and brand. We believe it’s crucial to their success to plan a minimum of two weeks of pre-launch graphics and captions to build that anticipation.
When we plan a pre-launch plan for our clients, we have three goals in mind: create awareness, to build the brand, and to grow their audience.
Bringing awareness to your website launch doesn’t mean only announcing that you have a new website. It also means explaining…
This is why we need at least two weeks — this is a lot of information to convey, and we want to ensure we’re being diligent about bringing awareness to everything that makes your brand, your brand.
During the pre-launch period, you also want to be building your brand message so your audience understands what makes you the go-to person in your niche. And if you’re not sure what your brand message is or how to go about creating one, I got you! Check out my video all about How to Make Your Brand Stand Out From the Crowd. In this video, I walk through the steps to craft your brand message and offer a few real-life examples of our past clients.
Growing your audience is another goal, and you do this by sharing content that can earn you new leads. This mainly means creating posts that are shareable and content that people want to bookmark for future use — more about that in this blog post. But you don’t have to just rely on the organic route. You can also use paid ads to get more eyes on your brand.
Side note: I often get asked, “Can I start posting about my rebrand before it’s ready to launch?” And the answer is yes! The point of a pre-launch game plan is to give people a reason to care about your website launch. If they feel involved and invested, they’ll likely be excited and primed to buy when it’s time for your launch.
Carrylove Designs is going through a rebrand right now and our goal is to launch by Q1 in 2022. And we love being transparent about it on social media! We’re a digital marketing agency and it’s what we do, so it’s partially because of that. But we also want to bring people along the journey and get them involved so they have a reason to care. If they feel invested right from the beginning, they’ll want to stay to see the result.
Now that you understand why we like to start our pre-launch website strategy early and what our goals are, let’s talk about the phases we go through to plan the content.
The first stage, or the build-up stage, is all about hinting to your audience that something is coming. If you have a date you want to announce your website launch by, let people know that date! This part is so much fun because you create mystery and anticipation.
On Instagram stories and in your caption, you can ask people to guess what it could be. We love to suggest to our clients a creative way to get their audience involved by hosting a giveaway, scavenger hunt, or mini-challenge. Remember, we want to get people invested in this stage, and gamifying your launch is a great way to do that!
The intermediate phase
Next comes the intermediate phase, and this is when you can announce that your new website is coming soon. This stage is all about keeping your audience interested, and how we usually do that is including a few sneak peeks.
Pro-tip: If you’re also growing your email list during this launch, you can promote on your stories or in your feed that email insiders get exclusive sneak peeks. Prompt people to join in by asking for their email!
At the middle-to-end of this stage, it may feel like you’re endlessly talking about your website launch, and it can get understandably a little bit uncomfortable. You even might feel like you’re being annoying, but keep in mind that no one sees every single one of your posts. This is another reason we like to have a minimum of a two-week strategy because of the Instagram algorithm — if you post about your launch ten times, an audience member may only have seen it twice.
We are finally at the last stage! During this time, we like to use countdowns for our clients because it creates a sense of urgency. It’s also a visual reminder to your audience that something is coming.
You’ve probably seen your favorite bands do this if they have a single coming out! To get people hyped up, they’ll share small clips of the song, share lyrics in an Instagram post or story, and begin a countdown three to five days before their song comes out. We’re essentially incorporating these tactics for your website launch.
Note: If you’re also aiming to increase your reach on Instagram before launching, I suggest checking out one of my most popular videos on how to grow your business on Instagram by clicking here.
You are all set to creating a website launch plan for Instagram that will help create visibility, growth, and new leads for your brand! I’d love to hear from you what you found the most helpful and if you feel ready to tackle your website launch. Leave a comment below, screenshot this blog post, and tag me on Instagram stories! I’d love to cheer you on in your launch.