Launching a Digital Product – Finding & Leveraging Influential Audiences

Last week, I had a Clarity.fm call with a digital agency CEO who needed help launching a digital course. We discussed everything – influencer marketing, email scraping, viral product flows and affiliate strategies. From our discussion, here are the tactics he found most valuable in forming his final strategy…

Finding Audiences & Traffic

I’m going to skip over building a funnel, split or A/B testing, and CRO because it’s late, and that would take me all night. For now, let’s focus on traffic to your new digital product. And not just any traffic. What we want/need is a lot of unassociated influencers mentioning your digital product to people who trust them and the source (platform, group, subReddit, channel…).

Pinterest Link Building

The value ranges per industry, following, and engagement. Just like buying media or emails, engagement is what you’re after. I’ve paid anywhere from $200/mo for 2 pins/day on a board with 700K followers, to $500/mo for 1 pin a day on a board with 250K followers. It all depends. The initial value for click-throughs is great, but what you also gain with Pinterest is SEO – pin links are do-follow, meaning they are a part of your backlink profile and will help you increase rankings of pages they are linked to (so long as those links are from pins/boards in your industry). Here’s an article all about the SEO value of Pinterest.

  1. Find some of the largest and most active tech boards and reach out to the owners with a request to collaborate: http://pingroupie.com/?cat=technology&order=0&sort=desc&tq=&dq=
  2. Go to each board, look for a link to the admins’ site, and find the admins’ contact info on their site.
  3. If there is no contact on the site, use the contact form and go to LinkedIn – use Snov.io to grab their email from LinkedIn.
  4. The message you want to send them is something along the lines of – “I love your Pinterest boards, and I’d like to contribute. I assume this comes at a cost, but let me know what we can do together. I have great content…”
  5. If they do not publish their website, name, or any contact methods from their Pinterest board, you will have to get tricky and actually comment on one of the pins, tagging the admin in that comment with your contact info.
  6. When you have a willing participant, negotiate a rate per pin or per week.

CRM Retargeting > LinkedIn Messaging >> Cold Emailing

It’s important to note when you have emails, you not only have the capability to email, you have what you need to retarget across the web. 3,000 contacts required to retarget via LinkedIn, 500 via Facebook, 1,000 on Adwords… Again, the article above mentions this approach in sequence.

  1. Start a scrape of relevant audiences – Linkedin, Facebook Groups, Quora… If you need expert scrapers to grab and verify emails based on specific criteria, contact me. Otherwise, my tool of choice working now is Snov.io.
  2. Depending on your audience and budget, you can combine cold emailing with CRM retargeting (retargeting exact users on social/display networks using their email). And in the case of retargeting, you will use Linkedin, Facebook or Search/Display (Adwords/Adroll). I explain more about this process in this strategy.
  3. The important step to consider before cold emailing (let alone cold calling) is to serve at least two brand impressions on your prospects. This will increase open rates, and reduce unsubs/spam reports for your first emails. You can achieve this in Linkedin alone using a request to connect, and an automated follow-up message sequence using https://www.linkedhub.io/
  4. Now, upload your fresh list to your CRM/marketing automation tool, and start setting up your cold email sequence. Test your email and SPF records in mail-tester.com before sending. Limit these blasts to 200/day to reduce your risk of being blacklisted. If you do not have a CRM with email sequence capabilities, I strongly recommend AgileCRM.com

Quora Traffic & Influencers

  1. Start gathering all of the top Quora and Reddit threads on app development for beginners into a .csv (I have a VA that does this for me now). Use the Quora Chrome extension to help speed this up.
  2. If you are short on time, hire a virtual assistant. Have him/her build out a spreadsheet with all relevant question inks (sorted by most traffic to fewest), including who answered them, and links to their profiles on Quora.
  3. Start answering Quora Q’s – find a good tech writer and pay them $30 an answer (minimum 400 characters, one image and one link) – add to a google doc,
  4. When you launch, go back to each of those Quora answers and add the CTA and link to your course.
  5. Now, reach out to others who have answered those questions with your affiliate offer – to incorporate your product link into their answers as well for a fee per link.

SubReddit Marketing

Reddit is a great place to drive targeted traffic – specifically, subReddit threads.

  1. Search (or have your VA search) and copy/paste the subReddit’s your potential users seem to be most active in.
  2. Create an article for those subReddit’s that showcases your new product in a native sort of way.
  3. If you do not have anyone in-house with any Reddit credibility/history, go to Fiverr.com and search the term “Reddit.”
  4. Contact everyone who comes up with an offer to post/share your link to one of the subReddit’s.

Podcast Marketing

Podcast interviews can be a gold mine. So, if you are an owner of a notable company in your space, leverage Podcasts’ need for content to meet your needs for exposure. Reach out to every Podcast related to your audience, and ask for an interview in return for a mention of your digital product in the interview and in the show notes.

Facebook / Linkedin Groups & Private Slack Channels

Closed groups, if active, can be your fastest way to gain early adopters of your new digital product. But, you either have to be a member and active now… or… you have to buy those members.

  1. Start trying to join. And if accepted, start publishing valuable content immediately to gain clout.
  2. Reach out to everyone in your network who has access to a group/channel in your niche with an affiliate offer and fee per mention (if they post your link in a group or on their social sites, they get $__ per link post that has 20+ interactions – must send a screenshot).
  3. Use the tools below to scrape Facebook group member emails.
  4. Use Linked Helper and this strategy to auto-connect and reach out to LI group members with an offer.

For the coders, here’s a tutorial on how to extract Facebook group members’ emails: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1u-3KLw_I0e8ilbtJXHmWRrId3bwAW4BVfacG1d9zci4/edit

For the non-coder, here is a tool to grab those email addresses (less effective, but works at times): https://grouply.io/get-email-addresses-from-facebook-groups/

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When you confirm your traffic strategy, you should consider the virality of your product. The value of the product is the most important viral component. But, incentives to share/promote should be included in your funnel, at the top.

Choose a Viral Approach & Funnel

Now it’s time to decide on an approach to gain the most traction the fastest. As in, how are you going to:

  1. Convert this traffic to the final sale?
  2. Give them enough incentive to promote your product to their network?

And, at which stage in the funnel do you do each one of these steps – it may be in your best interest to present an affiliate/referral offer before the sale as opposed to afterward. This can be the case with expensive products the audiences know they need, but can only afford if/when they are given a huge discount (typically offered by you only if they refer someone else).

Instead of Google’ing every type of viral incentive campaign out there, check out these templates from Viral Loops:

https://viral-loops.com/ > Templates

If you are a small team with a short timeline, I’d suggest skipping the heavy development and A/B testing of you funnel, and try out one of their out-of-box products, like the example above ^

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Now that you have a good strategy, let’s go to work!

If you need assistance, I’m available at: https://clarity.fm/alexglenn