A PR product or service launching is a perfect way to build momentum slowly. It handles the first and most important hurdle to overcome in building a brand -- credibility.
Step 1: Be a leak-er. The media adores describing events that are "going" to occur. Use it and use it to its longest capacity. Don't jump out too soon.
Step 2: The Slow Buildup. Like a rose, slow gets more beautiful to people the more it unfolds. It is the way people expect and are comfortable with, respect it.
Step 3: Recruit natural allies to support your launch and buildup. Especially, the enemy of your competitors.
Step 4: Bottom-up rollout. You don't want to jump up to the roof and yell, people just think you're crazy. Begin at the lowest rung on the ladder first. Consider each rung a media outlet. Each media creates its own momentum, its own attraction.
Step 5: Listen and Adjust. Be very aware of credible comments and adjust accordingly. Don't react but do respond.
Step 6: Make message modifications. What attributes are working and build on them. Observe media feedback and watch for media nosebleeds.
Step 7: Patience. Launch occurs after PR has run its course, not before. Have a big D-day planned with a massive approach.
After PR comes advertising and not before. The advertising handles the conventional hurdle -- being popular enough so people buy. Conventional, people buying because other people are buying, never comes before credibility. Credibility is why the most effective brand launching starts with PR.
(c) 2004, Catherine Franz.