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Enhance and Operate

How to guarantee your product succeeds with post-launch support

By Slalom Build

Launching a new product is an exhilarating milestone. Yet, the true test of a product’s value and its potential for lasting success unfolds in the post-launch phase—a period ripe with new challenges, and opportunities to navigate the unexpected.

Clayton Christensen, a Harvard Business School professor, presents a stark reality with his finding that, out of over 30,000 new products introduced each year, 95% fail to make a significant impact. This statistic is not merely a caution; it’s a crucial insight into the importance of robust post-release support. Such support acts as a lifeline, transforming potential market flops into triumphs by addressing the obstacles contributing to that high failure rate.

A robust strategy for post-implementation support isn’t just beneficial—it’s essential to avoid costly downtime, prevent long-term issues, save time and money, optimize product performance, and adeptly manage ongoing data needs and system changes.

Avoid Common Mistakes

Common post-launch mistakes to avoid

Navigating the after-launch phase of your product’s lifecycle can be tricky. Let’s explore some common mistakes that could derail your post-MVP success.

  • Inadequate planning for what follows: Products often lose their initial momentum, fading into obscurity in a crowded market without a clear strategy for what comes next. This absence of foresight can result in reactive rather than proactive management, leading to wasted resources and missed opportunities for growth. It’s about moving forward with purpose, ensuring that every step following your product’s debut is as intentional and well-planned as the launch itself.
  • Subpar infrastructure planning: Failing to anticipate the infrastructure needed to support your product can cause technical glitches like slow load times and crashes, as well as customer frustration and dissatisfaction. These issues not only tarnish your brand’s perception but also inflate costs due to unplanned emergency fixes and a potential loss of revenue as customers turn away. Proactive scalability planning is crucial for a smooth, uninterrupted experience.
  • Neglecting continuous improvement: Products that stand still, ignoring the need for evolution, quickly become relics of the past. Continuous improvement is not just a strategy; it’s a mainstay that keeps your innovation competitive and compelling, ensuring it grows with your customers and the market.
  • Disregarding customer feedback: Overlooking customer insights and experiences is a critical error that can lead to decreased user satisfaction and engagement. Each piece of feedback is valuable and offers direct insights into how your product can better serve its audience. Listening to and acting on this feedback strengthens brand loyalty.
  • Overlooking security and compliance: Constant vigilance is required to protect against emerging threats and adapt to new regulations. Failure to maintain and update security protocols risks data breaches and legal ramifications as well as erodes customer trust. Ensuring your solution is secure and compliant is an ongoing commitment worth the investment.

By acknowledging and addressing these common post-launch mistakes, you can steer your product toward sustained success and growth, fortifying its position in the market and securing its relevance and value for the long term.

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Taking a strategic approach to post-launch activities

Effectively managing your product launch is pivotal in navigating the dynamic technology landscape and ever-evolving customer expectations. Engaging in ongoing enhancement and improvement is crucial to maintain your solution’s relevance and ensure lasting success. Here’s how you can keep your product not only functional but also thriving, competitive, and ahead of the curve:

  • Engage in continuous support and updates: Ongoing maintenance and the introduction of new features and updates are not just about keeping your offering functional; they’re about ensuring it remains a relevant and preferred choice for customers. This commitment to improvement signals that their satisfaction and evolving needs are your top priorities.
  • Embrace proactive maintenance: Don’t wait for issues to arise before addressing them. Regularly updating your product and proactively fixing bugs are fundamental practices that deliver ongoing reliability and user satisfaction. Think of maintenance not as a chore but as a commitment to excellence, keeping your solution at its best at all times.
  • Implement scalable infrastructure solutions: Anticipating future growth and scaling your infrastructure accordingly means you're always ready to welcome more customers and data volumes without compromising on performance. Scalability is the backbone of a thriving product, enabling it to grow seamlessly alongside your customer base.
  • Embrace technological advances and integrations: To advance despite the rapid pace of change, consider incorporating new technologies into your offering or integrating your product with other systems and services. This agility allows you to seize new opportunities and make sure your innovation continues to lead in a market that waits for no one.
  • Adapt to market trends and competitor movements: Staying relevant means being nimble. Regularly refine your product strategy with a keen eye on market dynamics and competitor actions. It’s about evolving as fast as the world around you, ensuring that your innovation remains the preferred choice in a competitive landscape.
  • Leverage data-driven enhancements: Let analytics be your compass. Use data to inform your decisions, ensuring that every update and enhancement directly addresses your customers’ needs and aligns with your strategic goals. It’s about turning insights into action, evolving your product into one that’s always a step ahead. By letting data guide your path, you establish that every step you take is informed and impactful.
  • Cultivate a user feedback loop: Encourage and act on customer feedback to inform product enhancements and fixes. Having an ongoing dialogue is a conversation that shapes success, making your solution even more user-friendly and effective.
  • Prioritize security and compliance: In a world where new vulnerabilities and threats loom large, continually updating your product for security and compliance is non-negotiable. Protecting user data and meeting ever-evolving regulatory standards is fundamental to maintaining trust and reliability and ensuring market longevity.
  • Cultivate a culture of continuous learning: Success and setbacks both offer valuable lessons. Establish a culture where learning from every outcome and integrating these insights into your product’s evolution is a standard practice. This commitment to learning turns experiences into stepping stones toward future innovation and excellence.

Each of these activities is a crucial step in a journey of continuous improvement and strategic adaptation. By embracing these practices, you gain certainty that your product will remain at the forefront, delivering value and excellence to your customers day after day.

How Slalom Build’s Enhance and Operate solution supports your efforts

Having a partner who aligns with your vision and supports your product throughout its lifecycle can be a game-changer. We understand the intricacies of navigating the post-launch landscape and can provide your team with the comprehensive support they require.

Slalom Build’s Enhance and Operate solution is designed to elevate your product from good to exceptional.

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  • Benefit from a unified “We Build It, We Run It” approach: Experience seamless transition and continuity with a delivery team that stays by your side from build to launch and beyond. This model eliminates the common pain point of disjointed teams and strategies, ensuring that those who know your solution best continue to develop and refine it, aligning new features perfectly with your evolving needs.
  • Gain an extension of your team: Our dedicated product engineering teams become a natural extension of your organization, embedding deep within your operations to ensure product-centric decisions and actions. This collaboration solves the challenge of scaling your internal capabilities, providing expert support exactly where and when you need it.
  • Maximize value with comprehensive lifecycle management: From the initial concept to the eventual decommissioning, we maintain an unwavering engineering focus on your innovation’s entire lifecycle. This approach addresses the challenge of long-term relevance and competitiveness, ensuring your product adapts and grows with market demands and technological advancements.
  • Experience the excellence of engineering-led incident response: Benefit from a disciplined, engineering-led incident response process that not only swiftly addresses issues but also incorporates learning from what went right and what went wrong. This method tackles the pain point of recurring problems, enhancing your product’s reliability and trustworthiness with each iteration.
  • Leverage data-driven optimization for a positive ROI: Take advantage of data-driven insights to continually refine and enhance your solution, ensuring a positive return on investment. This strategy overcomes the hurdle of market misalignment, keeping your product in tune with user needs and preferences for sustained success.
  • Embrace the flexibility of our engagement: Our support offering adapts to your product’s journey. Slalom Build’s Enhance and Operate is designed to be as dynamic as your needs, ending when you decide to wrap up active and at-scale feature development. This flexibility addresses the concern of overcommitment, allowing you to scale support up or down based on your product's lifecycle and your organizational priorities.

The importance of post-implementation support cannot be overstated—it’s the linchpin of long-term success. Ensuring that your innovation remains relevant, competitive, and aligned with customer needs requires a strategic, informed approach and a partner committed to your vision.

Forge Ahead

Forge ahead with confidence

The phase following your product’s debut is critical to its enduring success. Beyond the initial excitement of launch lies the real work of evolving your solution to meet changing market expectations and customer preferences.

By partnering with Slalom Build, you secure more than just a service provider; you gain a partner wholly invested in your innovation’s success. Slalom Build’s Enhance and Operate is crafted to alleviate common difficulties, ensuring that your solution not only meets the market’s current demands but also leads the way into the future.

Are you interested in boosting your product’s impact in its post-implementation stage? Contact us for a free workshop to explore how we can support your product, ensuring its continued success and relevance in the market. Let’s create a future where your product doesn’t just launch but soars.

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