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Guide to Dominating Product Hunt
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Launch

What you need to know before the launch day.
Tasks
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1
Build list of mentors / advisors
Over time, build up a network of friends and mentors who might be willing to support you on launch day.
2
Build up a pre-launch mailing list
You might do this by publishing an early teaser site with a sign up form. You could also use Product Hunt Ship for this. You can promote your page on social media and with friends / family. Even if you could get a couple hundred email addresses, it will make a difference to your Product Hunt launch.
3
Get contributor access or find someone in your network who does
The process takes a few days so be sure to plan for it. If you go the route of finding a "hunter", look for folks who lend some credibility to your launch and who have larg Product Hunt follower counts.
4
Post your product
Since we've already created everything needed for the page, now it is just a matter of posting it.
5
Add a maker comment
From PH: "Briefly introduce yourself, the team, and the problem that you’re solving. In a total of 3–4 sentences explain what the value prop is, what’s the use case, who its for, and why you are building it. If this is the second time you’re launching on PH (i.e. a big product update or huge feature announcement), explain what’s changed. Tip: Make it as easy as possible for people to care. For example, if you’re a 16 year-old launching your first product and answering questions in the middle of math class… THAT is what you should lead with. If you have a business background and taught yourself to code — tell people. Create a narrative that makes people relate and want to help you."
I would add that it is always good to ask for feedback (and feel free to specify what kind) to get the conversation going and show you care.
6
Optional: give a deal
From PH: "PH users love a good deal. Feel free to include a special promotion or offer in your opening comment. These special launch day offers can increase engagement, help capture people’s attention, and encourage people to try what you’re working on (e.g. 20% off for 6 months). P.S. Giving community members early access by distributing promo codes via the comments can work wonders."
7
Promote Product Hunt page across all channels
Hopefully by now you have a list of influential advisors and a small list of people who expressed early interest in your product. This is the time to tell them about your Product Hunt page.
DON'T ASK FOR UPVOTES. You will get punished in the ranking algorithm. Telling people you are on Product Hunt is fine. Asking for votes is not.
Potential channels:
Your list of mentors / advisors
Your pre-launch mailing list / newsletter
Your blog
Your landing page
Social media (personal / product)
Friends / family
8
Get featured on the "Popular" page
If you get enough upvotes, you'll end up on the coveted Product Hunt homepage. If you have a ton of votes and are still not showing up on the "popular" page, it is possible that Product Hunt is holding your page until the next day so you get maximum exposure (for example, maybe you posted your product later in the day).
Make sure your servers are ready because getting featured on this page can send boatloads of traffic.
9
Get featured on the Product Hunt newsletter
If you are one of the top products of the day, you will show up in the Product Hunt newsletter the next day. This can also send enourmous amounts of traffic.
10
Get ready for next time
Thanks for taking the time to get all the way to the end! I hope this has helped you have a ridiculously successful Product Hunt launch. One thing to remember is that Product Hunt is not just a powerful way to launch your initial product, it is a great way to launch other majro milestones (mobile app, 2.0, or even major new product features). My hope is that after going through this guide you will be well equipped to own the Product Hunt charts every time. Good luck!
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FYI, Product Hunt's list of things NOT to do
From this excellent article on , by... Product Hunt.
Do not ask for upvotes anywhere. Feel free to ask for feedback, but asking for upvotes is a big no-no. People should upvote the product because they like it, not because they’re peer pressured into doing so.
Don’t spam people. Mass-tweeting/emailing people unsolicited, asking for feedback or upvotes, even if they’ve upvoted similar products in the past isn’t effective. If your timeline is filled with dozens of identical messages, that is not the way to go about it. Be authentic. 😊
Thunderclap. On a similar note, tools like Thunderclap that shout about your launch are notoriously ineffective — it comes across as spammy, and the super secret algorithm doesn’t like spammy.
Finding a “Hunter”. Feel free to hunt your own product. Having someone else posting is fine, but spending lots of time “finding a hunter” is a distraction. You know your product better than anyone else, and it makes very little difference who hunts the product and how well it performs overall. Follow to get contributor access.
Linking to “producthunt.com”. Link directly to your product page.Linking to “producthunt.com” only makes it harder for people to find you and doesn’t have any effect on the algorithm at all. It seems to be “common knowledge” that you’re punished for linking directly to your product page — it’s simply not true. Focus on communicating what your product does. P.S. Linking to producthunt.com is one of the clearest indications you may be “over-optimizing” your launch (gaming the system).
A note on this section: To be clear, it’s important to share your product and get the word out. The core metric we’re working toward as a company is directly related to people discovering your product. Our interests are aligned.
What we’re trying to avoid is behavior that hurts the community, like unsolicited mass outreach (spamming people) or trying to game the system to get more upvotes (what the community finds “popular”). P.S. This kind of behavior is very easy to spot (and often corroborated by screenshots that people send us). Also, please keep in mind that upvotes that are considered by the system as spammy can end up damaging to the overall ranking.

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