Try to guess the day physical Elon Musk will land on physical Mars. Buy any day in the future for a dollar - if you pick the right day, you get the pot!

Musk on Mars

Portrait of the maker

Whit Anderson

Maker

Maker

We learned that building and launching is the easy part. The hardest part is distribution. Finding predictable ways to get eyeballs on our products. We tried all social platforms and learned a great deal on how to post on each platform. Reddit was the most tricky - they are gruesome for any self-promotion. You have to be calculated with where you post. Find the subreddits that are aligned with you product and try to sprinkle in value before you drop your link.

Mid level
14
hours to build

How to nail distribution for your product

What is it:

Try to guess the day physical Elon Musk will land on physical Mars. Buy any day in the future for a dollar - if you pick the right day, you get the pot!

Maker Insight:

We learned that building and launching is the easy part. The hardest part is distribution. Finding predictable ways to get eyeballs on our products. We tried all social platforms and learned a great deal on how to post on each platform. Reddit was the most tricky - they are gruesome for any self-promotion. You have to be calculated with where you post. Find the subreddits that are aligned with you product and try to sprinkle in value before you drop your link.

What did I learn:

1. Distribution - how to post on Reddit. Posting on Reddit is intimidating. Whit and Ash shed light on what they learned:

"Reddit was the most tricky - they are gruesome for any self-promotion. You have to be calculated with where you post. Find the subreddits that are aligned with you product and try to sprinkle in value before you drop your link."

In my experience the strategy of how to post on Reddit is not difficult. The hard part is executing on this strategy. What's even harder is timing this up with a launch. In the guide for The Lean Side Project, I write about how if you're launching a side project using Reddit is best once you've established what your product is and you've already launched. I would recommend using it as a longer term acquisition strategy. As Whit said, self promotion on Reddit is brutal. To read more about when and how successful Makers use social platforms for bringing awareness to their product I detail about each platform.

2. Calendly product feature - Calendly is wonderful product that helps you schedule time and natively charge money using Stripe integration. Whit and Ash use Calendly by setting up a workflow for just this project. Meaning in Calendly you can set up each day of the year to be reserved by just one person. They do this by setting only one time for each day. This is a brilliant hack to use Calendly as a way to leverage their product use case.

I use Calendly in one of my products and it has a very accessible API that you can use to connect to with Zapier or Integromat. For instance any of the information that you use like date and time can be retrieved and stored in an Airtable base. You can then trigger other actions off of this to automate other actions for your use case. Check out the stack notes for "Book a Call with an Expert" by Myself. I detail how I created a fully automated product using Calendly to create my own custom workflow for my particular use case. That is a real advantage of no-code tools is there is great flexibility in how you use each tool by accessing the data seamlessly.

3. Click-to-tweet product feature - What is it? The easiest way to promote, share & track your content on Twitter (and it's free).

How does this work?
1. Write the message that you want others to share in the box.
2. Click the "Generate New Link" button to create a custom link.
3. Share the link and track the activity of each link over time.

Why use this? When you first launch a product or when a user first purchases it, they are the most excited about using it or talking about it. As a Maker it your most important tactic for spreading word of mouth distribution of your product is when other users talk about it. This product makes it easy to allow that to happen. Instead of having someone create their own tweet, you can save them time by providing a link that is pre-written by you about your product. All they have to do is click the link, their Twitter browser opens and they can retweet your product with a link back to your products landing page.

This is an excellent way to get more awareness about your product. When you launch your product, your goal is to own the day. You want everyone to be talking about your product on launch day.

Another tactic that I've had a lot of success with is just linking to the original tweet you wrote about your product for launch. I find this works really well because it shows more validation around a tweet if you are planning on pinning it and having it be evergreen. I have used this tactic and prefer it because when anyone who crosses your profile in the future, sees this tweet, because you have directed all your purchases or users back to this tweet it has more likes and retweets on it signaling to the new profile visitor that it is something valuable that they should check out, increasing the likelihood that they click through.

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