First off, let me remind that you that our Monster Hunter Gunner’s Guide, which I have been covering the progress of for the past many weeks, is officially on sale.
I thought I might take some time and write about the steps we took between finishing the guide and actually launching it in our store. Working on the actual guide itself felt right: hours spent carefully reviewing drafts, making lists, making changes, pulling the Cintiq forward to draw, pushing it back to design; counting your work hours spent in episodes of Buffy you chain-watch as you go (I’m currently in the middle of the seventh season.)
But once the guides were done, well, they weren’t entirely done. There are so many little things and decisions to make. Here is a list I made to the best of my recollection, although I’m sure I’m forgetting a few things:
- Update “coming soon” graphics with “now on sale” graphics to be updated on the guide’s landing page, Culty’s Facebook, My Fair Hunter banner, Culty’s home page slideshow, Kotowari and Culty’s YouTube banners
- Adding side bar graphics to My Fair Hunter that link to the guides
- Updating MP3 tags and cover images for Niric’s excellent audiobook versions of our guides
- Record an episode of My Fair Hunter
- Creating different sized wallpapers using the guide cover image
- Creating an email graphic with a promotional discount code (only newsletter subscribers will be sent discount codes)
- Organizing the guide files in a way that makes sense when unzipped
- Creating a press kit which included a PDF explaining about Culty, promotional images from the book for reviewers to use on their site, and PDF previews of the book
- Uploading and testing Dropbox links that were going to be sent to reviewers
- Freaking out because Shopify has a nonsensical way of adding variants with different pricing to a product (Tip: create a variant and then save the product. Only then will you be able to set different prices for the variants)
- Linking the SKUs for the guides to Fetchapp, which is the program we use to deliver digital files. This was annoying because you have to import products from Shopify, and Fetchapp will import anything with a SKU (digital or not). So I ended up deleting the SKUs for all physical items in Shopify so that I wouldn’t have to manually delete them in Fetchapp.
- Making test orders to make sure the files are delivered correctly after a purchase
This is all after making the guide itself. And it doesn’t account for stuff that Roy had to do, which is a lot of copy writing (emails, blog posts, and product descriptions) and corresponding to people. It also doesn’t account for the promoting we did leading up to the guide’s launch: more graphics, recording, copy writing and…basically, just keeping people aware. But (hopefully) without being obnoxious*.
We still have a lot more to do, but we are officially over the bulk of the work. We even have another potential guide planned – not Monster Hunter related, and not strictly a guide, either. Should be interesting. In the mean time, we are open to interviews or any chance to talk about the guides for anyone who will have us: you can email us if you think we’d be a good fit for your site.
Anyway, we’re still learning as we go, but hopefully this post gives you a small glimpse into the events leading up to a product launch!
*Even though Culty is a small business, we’re still just “Roy and Sarah”, so we hesitate a lot when it comes to self-promotion. I’m trying to be better about this, as I personally don’t find it annoying when I see online people I like plugging their work, and of course I love to see them succeed.