If you are launching a new project there are a few things you should do to ensure you can launch with a bang. The first thing I do is register the domain name and get a simple holding page up which collects email addresses – I use Aweber to collect my emails as this allows you to set follow-up emails at set intervals and doesnt charge you per mailing, but rather by how many email addresses you store with them, I spoke in length about building a mailing list before. Once you have your holding page up, you can do things like creating a twitter account for the new site and start adding people relevent to your site, this should drive some traffic and get you some signups. You might be able to get a bit of pre-launch publicity which will also drive some signups.
A theme that aims to help you make this process easier is called Launch Effect, they have just released a premium version of their theme:
Launch Effect is a free WordPress theme that lets you create a viral campaign in minutes. The theme allows the user to customize a landing page that introduces a business, product, or event and prompts visitors to sign up with their email to earn some sort of incentive (beta invite, discount coupon, a gift, etc.). The visitor is then encouraged to share a unique referral link that tracks their friends’ sign ups. Conversions are tallied on WordPress, and the user can determine who should receive the incentives.
Sounds good, lets take a look at it …
These are the sort of results you can get with LaunchEffect – you can include mailing list signups, count down timers, as many pages of info as you like, competition entry forms etc :
The Admin Panel
Once you install the theme, you get a new menu added called “Launch Effect” and it is from here that you can manage all the aspects of your holding site. You have 3 sub-menus: Designer, Integrations and Stats so lets take a look at them.
The “Designer” menu is where you controll the look of your site – you have a global styles tab where you can set the colors, favicon, site thumbnail, background color and background image and footer codes and text :
The signup page tabs contains a huge amount of options for you to set, you can set colors, text, embed videos, choose countdown / progress bars here :
The final tab is “Theme” where you can set more color options and styles for the theme itself :
The “Integrations” page is where you configure the other services you want to use with LaunchEffect, at the moment they only have MailChimp and Google Analytics. Im sure more services will be added shortly once they figure out the demand for each. ( Edit: They have since added Aweber! )
The final menu item is “Stats” which keeps a record of your email addresses with times, how many visits they made, IP address and conversion rate along with the ability to download this as a .CSV file
This theme contains a huge amount of customization options, maybe too many for the beginner who would prefer a simpler admin area, but for someone who wants to get a unique look for their holding page it is perfect. The theme is really well made and was easy to install with some good features so check it out if you need a pre-launch holding site.
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