Marketing

Product Hunt: Is It Worth the Time and Effort To Launch There?

Are you an indie hacker? Let's explore the potential of a Product Hunt launch—weighing its benefits and drawbacks to determine its true worth.

By:

Jessica Hamilton

The Product Hunt mascot cat

"Your customers are almost certainly not on PH. Why would you waste time on it?"

Product Hunt has its cynics, and it's these cynics that have prompted us to share our thoughts on launching on Product Hunt.

"My take on PH is that startups launch there to get 'the badge', which they just use to try and raise their round."

But as cynical as some folks are, that won't stop founders trying their luck on the platform.

Naturally, individuals pursuing their own ventures seek inventive methods to promote their business endeavours. Product Hunt can offer that.

You only have to look at social media to determine just how popular Product Hunt is. X (Formally, Twitter) is often alight with solopreneurs and indie hackers marketing their work on shoestring budgets.

Many consider Product Hunt a go-to marketing strategy, if they don't have the cash to throw at other marketing methods.

As a team of one, it's tough starting something completely fresh, nurturing it and marketing it at the same time. If the average startup employee is required to wear many hats, then indie hackers are required to wear many crowns, juggling roles from CEO to developer, marketer to customer support.

It's a one-person kingdom of entrepreneurial hustle until they can afford to scale.

Naturally, individuals pursuing their own ventures seek inventive methods to promote their business endeavours. Product Hunt can offer that.

So, Is it worth the time and effort? Will your product feature top of the pile? Well, it depends, and here's why...

Exposure Galore?

In an ideal world, launching on Product Hunt would be like stepping into the spotlight. Your product gets immediate exposure to a community of early adopters, influencers, and tech enthusiasts.

If they like what they see, the word can spread like wildfire. This can be the catalyst to greater success, putting your work in front of the right people, who in turn will continue to promote everything you do because they're effectively "super fans".

The buzz around your launch might not sustain unless you have a strategy to keep the momentum going post-launch.

Not every product will find immediate, or even eventual, success on Product Hunt.

Why?

Well, without any hard figures, let's just say several products are launched each week. Their own website says, "Product Hunt is a curation of the best new products, every day."

So the competition is fierce, and it's not a guaranteed trip to success town.

Fundamentally: The Product Hunt spotlight can be bright but fleeting. The buzz around your launch might not sustain unless you have a strategy to keep the momentum going post-launch.

How does your product stack up against the competition? Have you carried out any research to ensure you're solving a problem for people, rather than just creating another tech product?

Hopefully these are things you've considered before going anywhere near Product Hunt, otherwise you might be in for a rude awakening.

Validation Central

If you do find even some success on Product Hunt, you might be in the position to garner some feedback from early adaptors.

Validation is critical to the success of any product, especially in the early stages when founders need to move quickly.

This is the elephant in the room. Product Hunt's audience is tech-savvy and early adopter-focused.

This comes with a huge caveat, however, and it's a question you should be asking yourself at ALL times: "Are these people my users?"

This is the elephant in the room.

Product Hunt's audience is tech-savvy and early adopter-focused. If your product is something that caters to a different demographic, you might not see the conversion rates you're hoping for.

How To Make the Most of Feedback on Product Hunt
  1. Engage Actively in Discussions: Participate in the comments section of your Product Hunt launch. Respond to feedback, express gratitude for positive comments, and ask follow-up questions. This not only shows your responsiveness but also encourages users to share more insights.
  2. Utilise Follow-up Surveys: After the initial launch excitement has settled, consider creating and sharing surveys to gather more structured feedback. Use platforms like Typeform or Google Forms to craft surveys that touch on specific aspects of your product or the launch experience.
  3. Encourage Direct Messages: Invite users to reach out to you directly with their thoughts and suggestions. Personalised messages can often elicit more detailed feedback. Make it clear that you value their opinions and that their insights will contribute to the ongoing improvement of your product.

Networking Gold

We Are Founders is a project that lives and breathes on the generosity of the community sharing stories and insights with us. As a result of this, we've built up a considerable network of makers, doers and dreamers.

If this wasn't the case, the case for We Are Founders existing would be minimal at best. It's our network that ultimately provides the value to readers.

Product Hunt is a hub for founders, investors, and industry experts.

However, it's worth noting that knowing the right people has put us in front of other people we can only dream of.

That is the power of a good network, and it's the power of that network that can propel your project in a direction you'd never even dreamed of.

Product Hunt is a hub for founders, investors, and industry experts. Your launch can lead to valuable connections and collaborations that go beyond just that potential single day of fame.

Remember the adage, "If You’re Not Networking, You’re Not Working!"

Conclusion

So, is launching your product on Product Hunt worth it? Probably.

We say probably because it really depends on what you're hoping to get out of it. If you're hoping it will propel you to overnight success, then you should probably temper those expectations.

The cynicism will continue, but don't let that put you off at least giving it a shot.

If you launch your product there with a modest attitude, hoping to potentially find someone else to network with, then you'll likely open doors to unexpected opportunities and meaningful connections within the vibrant community.

Consistency is key, and part of that consistency should be focused on networking with people on Product Hunt and similar platforms.

The cynicism will continue. "Irrelevant unless your audience are other startups." But don't let that put your off giving it a shot.

Bottom line: Go for it! But remember that your customers are probably elsewhere!

About The Author

The Product Hunt mascot cat
Jessica Hamilton
https://wearefounders.uk

Jessica is a seasoned writer with a startup flair, crafting stories that ignite innovation and inspire the entrepreneurial spirit.

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