Guides and Templates

Product launch playbook

Make your product launch a success using the RACE Planning Framework to structure your marketing activities

How will this playbook help me and my business?

This playbook will guide you through the process of how to successfully launch a new product online, mapping each of the activities you need to complete against our RACE Planning Framework. We'll give you a roadmap for success as you carry out preliminary research and define your success factors before utilizing earned, owned, and paid media to make your product a success.

What is a marketing playbook?

A marketing playbook defines the types of communications, best practices and optimization techniques that should be used to maximize return-on-investment for different marketing objectives.

The concept is based on the idea of playbooks in sports like American football and baseball. The coach compiles a selection of different offensive and defensive techniques their team can be deploy in different situations to help beat the opposition.

How is the playbook structured?

We already have many templates and guides on campaign planning in our planning toolkit, but these resources focus on communications, not an end-to-end new product development (NPD) and launch. This guide focuses on the messaging and communications needed to launch a new product successfully (rather than the research and development related to NPD).

To provide a comprehensive coverage of all the marketing activities shown in the visual needed to reach and nurture the audience for your product, this guide is based on our RACE Planning Framework. You may know this as five parts explaining how to Plan for, Reach, Act with, Convert, and Engage an audience. For this playbook, the framework is broken down into 25 activities for you to review in a checklist format. For each of these 25 activities we recommend specific actions to take and resources and tools to help you through each part.

Who is this guide for?

This guide is aimed at marketers responsible for defining product messaging and anyone involved with managing and implementing the communications activities around the product launch. It may also be useful for others in the business who are closely involved in product development, but are less familiar with the communications around the launch. These include:

  • Product marketers and managers
  • Brand managers
  • Business owners and CEOs (in a smaller business)

Resource Details

  • Authors: Jonathan Gabay, Dr. Dave Chaffey and Pat Pruchnickyj
  • Editor: Amelia Cooper
  • Format: Downloadable PDF

About the authors

Jonathan Gabay 

Jonathan Gabay

Jonathan Gabay is a digital marketing polymath. Author of 15 books, he advises some of the world’s most formidable brands on creative brand strategy, crisis management and business psychology. His involvement in travel includes having worked with British Airways, Colony Holidays, P&0 cruises and other respected brands.

Dr. Dave Chaffey

Dave ChaffeyDave is co-founder of Smart Insights and creator of the Smart Insights RACE planning framework. For his full profile, or to connect on LinkedIn or other social networks, see the About Dave Chaffey profile page on Smart Insights. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognized by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

Pat Pruchnickyj

Pat PruchnickyjPat Pruchnickyj has worked as a sales & marketing leader for over 25 years’ helping to deliver diverse technology based solutions to global organisations across a wide range of industries. He has extensive experience of marketing digital products for tech start-ups and established vendors, successfully launching many new products to the market. He is skilled at creating compelling product messaging for engaging sales and marketing campaigns. Connect to Pat on LinkedIn.

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