I love this question because it widens the aperture from product launch to go-to-market plan. The product launch is an important part of the go-to-market plan, but the launch only represents one (really important) point in time. I like to think of the product launch as the rocket booster that you need to get your message to the marketplace.
Before I share my blueprint, I have an important PSA for product marketers: product availability is not the same thing as product launch. Product availability is when the product is functional (as defined by the product requirements doc) and can be used by customers; product launch, on the other hand, is when you’ve executed your marketing launch plan to meet your business and marketing objective. Product managers and product markets confuse the two at their own peril as it can lead to extraordinary stress and, more importantly, missed opportunities to tell a big, compelling story to the market.
The blueprint I use for go-to-market planning is straightforward:
1- Audience - Identify the target audience(s) and included all of the insights you have about them,
2- Problems & Job to be Done - Articulate the problems that the product solves,
3- Positioning & Messaging - Craft a positioning and messaging strategy that will resonate with the target audience based on the problem statement above, and
4- Creative & Channel - Show the creative concepts and channels you will leverage to break through the noise in the marketplace so that the target audience is inspired and acts on your message.
5- Execution - The last part of the blueprint is vital: as the product marketer, your job is to ensure that all of your customer-facing teams -- from marketing to sales to communications to EVERYONE -- are rowing in the same direction.
You are the conductor of this orchestrated set of events, so make sure that you’ve articulated how, operationally, this will be done in the go-to-market plan.
It sounds simple, but the details of each of these elements is what separates a meh Go-to-Market plan from a great Go-to-Market plan.