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How to Launch on Product Hunt Like a Pro, Lessons from 17.2 Million Twitter Impressions, 4 Key Facebook Trends for 2019, and More!

Oct 22, 2018 13 min readThe Science of Social Media

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Looking to catch up on the latest social media news, but short on time? We have you covered! This week (episode #117) we’re chatting about all of this and more.

  • For those launching a new product or tool or even project, Product Hunt can be a serious game-changer in terms of awareness, traffic, feedback, and so much more.
  • Twitter is a great place to repurpose content. If you’re creating content of any form: videos, blog posts, podcasts, etc., repurposing it across multiple channels is a great way to get the most bang for your buck.
  • The most important 2019 Facebook trends that businesses should keep their eye on to make the most out of their social media marketing, including augmented reality, Instagram Stories ads, and more.

Join 19,000+ weekly listeners for the Buffer podcast, The Science of Social Media, where we bring you the latest and greatest in social media marketing news, updates, stories, insights, and actionable takeaways.

Let’s dive in!

How to subscribe: iTunes | Google Play | SoundCloud | Stitcher | RSS

What follows is a lightly edited transcript of the conversation between Hailley Griffis and Brian Peters.

Brian: Hi everyone! I’m Brian Peters and this is The Science of Social Media, a podcast by Buffer. Your weekly sandbox for social media stories, insights, experimentation, and learning.

Hailley: Welcome to episode #117, I’m Hailley Griffis and this week we’re coming to you live from Nashville, Tennessee and we’ll be covering a ton of great updates and strategies in the social media world, including a channel that we haven’t talked about in the past here on the show, Product Hunt.

Brian: It’s awesome to be here with you in person, Hailley. We also have some fun insights from a Twitter Thread that was viewed over 17.2 million times and what it can teach us about the art of Tweeting, four Facebook trends businesses should know for 2019, new marketing campaigns, and more.

Hailley: Let’s kick off the show!

Part I: How to launch your product on Product Hunt like a pro

One channel that we haven’t talked about before here on the show, but one that can certainly be considered a social media channel among other things, is Product Hunt.

For those that have never used Product Hunt before, it’s a great community of creators, founders, developers, marketers, CEOs that curate the latest new products on the market, every day.

For those launching a new product or tool or even project, Product Hunt can be a serious game-changer in terms of awareness, traffic, feedback, and so much more.

Product Hunt Launch Buffer Podcast

Brian: Which is exactly why we figured we’d share some tips on how to launch your upcoming product, tools, or projects on Product Hunt with the best of them.

We really do believe that Product Hunt should be a central part of any marketing strategy moving forward. If nothing else, it’s a great platform to connect with other folks in your industry or niche.

I’ve heard of countless stories of collaborations and even acquisitions resulting from relationships formed on Product Hunt.

Hailley: We pulled a lot of these tips from a great article written by JotURL.

Getting into it, there are lots of things to think about with Product Hunt launches before, during and after the launch. Without going through every single one, we’ll focus on the most important here.

First is that Product Hunt is a community and it’s based on an algorithm.

Brian: In other words, if the reviews, the upvotes, and the comments you receive are by very active users and followed on the platform, their specific weight will be greater .

So before you ever launch your product, it’s important to build relationships, participate in the discussions, comment on the products you find most interesting and make friends with the founder and/or Maker of the products that are published daily.

And of course, be honest and always available, both on Product Hunt and in the different groups.

Hailley: The next thing to prepare before your launch is all of the images, logos, and messaging that you’ll be publishing on social media, email, etc.

Like we mentioned before, it’s super important to respond to all comments on your product, and so worrying about other things like messaging during launch day will be a distraction.

There’s a big list in the article on our blog of everything you’ll need, but the essentials to launch your product include a really good tagline, the names of the Makers.

Quick note on Makers: Every follower of every Maker on the day of the launch will receive a notification, so definitely take advantage of this feature.

Brian: Including Makers and Hunters that have a solid following is really key in launching your project with a bang.

Media wise, including a project video is highly recommended as well as photos, screenshots, and a thumbnail GIF. That’ll help your project to really pop.

Which leads us perfectly to the next part which is what to do with all of the traffic that you will (hopefully) receive on launch day.

Hailley: On the day of the launch you will receive a lot of traffic from a good amount of targeted and interested visitors….

So why not make the most out of this opportunity?

Installing a few website tracking pixels will be more than enough to make sure you don’t miss out. First, we use Google Tag Manager to install Google Analytics on our website and landing page.

And then, of course, we have Facebook Pixels installed so that we can gently retarget users in the future.

Brian: Those are both must-haves in my opinion when it comes to tracking, but if you wanted to take it a step further, a tool like Hotjar or CrazyEgg will allow you to understand what works and what does not on your site and where folks are clicking.

Now you’ve got your tracking installed it’s time to think about what you want people to do from a marketing perspective once they’ve signed up. This includes things like thinking through your website and product messaging as well as your email onboarding flows.

Hailley: Super important part of the launch, for sure.

You’ll also want to loop in your support team (if you have one). Prepare them with some questions they might get on the day of the launch so that they’re ready to go.

And then finally, you’re ready to launch!

On launch day, it’s all about generating good publicity and management.

Personally message everyone you know. Ask specifically for upvotes on Product Hunt, make sure to personalize them, and get ready to answer a lot of questions and support tickets.

Brian: Love it yeah we can’t stress how important it is to take time to answer everyone’s questions and continue to build relationships even on the day of the launch.

Doing each of the things we talked about today will ensure a smooth and successful Product Hunt launch.

Part II: Lessons from 17.2 million Twitter impressions

Hailley: We recently published an article on our blog titled: “Do Twitter Ads Really Work? A Surprising Experiment: 17.2 Million Views From a Single Twitter Thread.”

Based on the reactions from our audience we thought we’d chat about a few important points from the article on Twitter ads and what makes for a really good Tweet.

Quick background on the experiment, JotForm founder, Aytekin ‏Tank, wanted to know if telling a brand’s authentic story would be successful across social media and other channels.

Brian: Tank had found success telling Stories on Medium in the past, but he wondered if a platform like Twitter could product the same results.

He explained, “Apart from its character limit, Twitter isn’t any different when it comes to sharing your authentic voice, It’s blogging in 280 characters.”

Which I think is a great way to think about Twitter. It’s not just sharing articles to links. It’s telling the story behind that link or behind your brand.

Hailley: The plan was simple:

Repurpose a successful Medium post into a Twitter thread and boost it with Twitter ads to test the limits of Twitter as a platform to spread Aytekin and JotForm’s message.

Looking at the Medium data, he was able to see which articles had resonated most with his audience and tell a story that he was sure would connect with people on Twitter:

Medium Data

He chose to create a Twitter thread based on his post titled: “Don’t listen to those productivity gurus: why waking up at 6am won’t make you successful.”

Brian: And the results?

The tweet generated 17,177,432 impressions on Twitter. Which is incredible!

Twitter Impressions

Now the part we haven’t mentioned yet is that he spent $24,000 on promoting this Tweet.

Which is a lot, don’t get me wrong. However, the Tweet generated more than 4,000,000 impressions organically, which is about 27% percent of the total reach. So still super impressive in its own right.

Hailley: There are a couple of lessons here from this experiment.

One is that Twitter is a great place to repurpose content.

If you’re creating content of any form: videos, blog posts, podcasts, etc, repurposing it across multiple channels is a great way to get the most bang for your buck.

But repurposing doesn’t just mean copying and pasting a link over to Twitter.

If you want to be successful, you need to think about how you can tell each story natively to the platform you’re publishing on.

Brian: Absolutely.

Two is that a Twitter thread can help you to achieve multiple goals at the same time.

Impressions and engagement are awesome — especially when you’re quite new to the content marketing game.

But when you use a Twitter thread, you’re able to feature multiple types of content within your tweets and achieve various goals.

For example, Tank’s tweet received more than 1.1 million impressions and over 35,000 clicks, helping to drive traffic back to the original post on Medium.

Hailley: And finally, number three, Twitter is a great place to start a conversation.

With any highly shared tweet, you’ll always get a few trolls pop up here and there, but if you look past this, you’ll realize that Twitter is still an incredible place to start a conversation and build relationships.

Following Aytekin’s thread, he received plenty of questions about JotForm and how the business operates. This enabled him to build new relationships with people he previously wouldn’t have reached.

Brian: We’re getting towards the end of 2018 which means you’re either one, ramping up to end Q4 off with a bang, or two looking forward to a big 2019. Or both. Either way, it’s a good place to be in.

And in that spirit, we thought we’d share some of the most important Facebook trends for 2019 that you should be keeping your eye on to make the most of your social media marketing strategy and results.

Starting with Augmented Reality Ads.

Augmented Reality Facebook Ads

Hailley: In 2019, we’re going to see a shift to brands looking to build an even deeper connection with users by helping them interact with, and visualize, different products and experiences within the Facebook and Instagram platforms.

And Brian, this is particularly relevant as our marketing team has been experimenting with the Facebook Oculus VR headset over the last week or so.

I can absolutely see shopping in augmented and virtual reality becoming a huge success for brands that sell their products on social media.

Brian: I couldn’t agree more, Hailley.

I was a little hesitant before we started using the Oculus, but I have to say that I’m all in. I now understand why VR gets so much hype. I can’t wait for the future.

And another trend to keep an eye on for 2019, and we’ve talked about this one here on the show a bunch, are Instagram Stories ads. We’ve seen a ton of success, meaning high interaction rates and low cost per clicks.

Hailley: Facebook Stories Ads will really start to enable brands to create new experiences for via the platform’s Stories option.

And remember, Facebook Stories hasn’t taken off the way Instagram Stories has, but this type of full-screen creative is very popular right now, and Facebook Stories ads will provide more options to reach people across both platforms.

So definitely keep an eye on Facebook Stories moving forward.

Brian: Yeah I’m a big believer that Facebook Stories will be one of the hottest advertising channels in 2019 for brands.

Alrighty, another trend to know for 2019 are the Facebook Page Reviews being updated to Recommendations.

Facebook Business Reviews

We talked about Facebook creating more features in-app for small businesses, similar to companies like Yelp and Google, and it’s important to take advantage of all of these.

Hailley: Exactly, so if you haven’t updated your Facebook page in a while, we highly recommend going into your settings and just making sure you have all of your information filled out and the bells and whistles enabled.

And another great trend, or more of an update from Facebook, is that they’re moving into helping businesses with their creatives more.

For example, Facebook recently launched a new Video Creation Kit which enables you to turn your existing photo assets into mobile-optimized videos. These easy-to-use templates include text options also.

Brian: T

Facebook Video Creative Kit

hat’s a good one.

Yeah I was creating an ad the other day and I saw that option in Ads Manager. It was super easy to use and I must admit, it worked pretty well.

So basically what we’re saying here as well is that video ads are absolutely still trending through 2019.

And that’s it. If you keep those four trends in mind you will be well ahead of the game as a business on Facebook and Instagram in the coming year.

Part IV: Buffer SocialChat and exciting new campaigns

Hailley: Totally.

Alright to end the show, we have a few fun updates for everyone on the Buffer front.

First, really excited to introduce a brand new free tool from us here at Buffer called SocialChat.

Buffer SocialChat lets your customers start conversations with you on your website, and continue them privately, right where they feel comfortable, via Messenger and Twitter DMs. It can be enabled with just a couple of lines of code. No software or other tools needed!

Brian: Super excited about that one. Lots of chat tools these days are so complicated and so we wanted to make it easy for businesses to get up and running without too much hassle.

We also have tons of fun campaigns coming your way in the near future. We’re celebrating Small Business Saturday with Mailchimp, Square, and WooCommerce, we have State of Remote Work and State of Social in early 2019 and, well, we might have one more surprise for you in just a few weeks.

Hailley: We won’t say too much now, but we will say that we’re excited about the Stories format.

Very excited.

Brian: Yes. I can’t wait to announce that Stories surprise here on the show. Stay tuned!

Hailley: Thank you so much for tuning in to the Science of Social Media today. The show notes for this episode are now available on the Buffer Blog at with a complete transcript.

If you ever want to get in touch with me or Hailley, we’re always here for your on social media using the hashtag #bufferpodcast. You can also say hi to us anytime and

Brian: Yup, we’d love to hear from you!

Wishing everyone a wonderful and prosperous holiday season in the next few weeks and months. It’s my favorite time of year and I know it’s a big one for businesses. We’ll keep bringing your shows that help you rock it on social media.

Until next Monday, everyone!

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About The Science of Social Media podcast

The Science of Social Media is your weekly sandbox for social media stories, insights, experimentation, and inspiration. Every Monday (and sometimes more) we share the most cutting-edge social media marketing tactics from brands and influencers in every industry. If you’re a social media team of one, business owner, marketer, or someone simply interested in social media marketing, you’re sure to find something useful in each and every episode.  It’s our hope that you’ll join our 19,000+ weekly iTunes listeners and rock your social media channels as a result!

The Science of Social Media is proudly made by the Buffer team. Feel free to get in touch with us for any thoughts, ideas, or feedback.

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