How to plan your launch with a startup roadmap?

Previously we were compering analytical tools to use in your startup. Today, we would like to highlight how to build a startup roadmap and will check some of the samples. So, a successful launch can help gather publicity for your start-up company’s product or service, as well as ensure you gain vital revenue and investment opportunities.

You need to consider a lot of different things when organizing your launch, one of which is a strategic roadmap.

In this article, we will look at how a roadmap will help you to succeed and how to plan your startup project roadmap.

How to plan your start-up launch with a strategic roadmap?. Map with pins

What is a strategic startup roadmap planning?

A roadmap is a crucial part of project management methodology and can be used at any time throughout the timespan of your business. 

However, when used as part of your start-up’s launch plan, it can help you successfully launch your product or service, make key decisions and help keep your team on track. 

According to Cooper & Edgett, 38% of high-performing businesses use roadmaps compared to 19% of poorly performing businesses. Motorola pioneered the use of roadmaps as far back as the 1970s, and they have been utilized ever since!

A strategic roadmap will help you determine:

  • How your product or service aligns with your company strategy
  • The essential tasks you need to carry out before launch, and what you will do if any issues arise
  • The teams that need to be involved in the launch phase, and in what capacity
  • The unique selling points and features that will make your product or service stand out

Think of your roadmap as the stepping stones that will carry your business over the river to your destination. It will summarise what you need to do to get your product, service, or mobile app in from of your customers.

One of our favorite books that looks at the start-up roadmap in detail is ‘The Start-up Roadmap’ by Ed McLaughlin.

Product roadmap board. how to create a startup project roadmap

How to create a startup project roadmap?

“Be stubborn on vision but flexible on details.” – Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon

The great thing about a start-up roadmap is that it is very high-level – it’s about focusing on the big picture rather than looking at the details. 

We’d recommend planning your launch at least six months in advance. This will give you plenty of time to prepare and time for your team to fully digest the document and understand what they need to do in time for the launch.

The start-up roadmap is something that your product manager can put together and manage, or alternatively, you can put it together yourself.

Chess play, startup roadmap planning

Create your timeline

Before you start your roadmap, you need to know what timescales you need to work to. 

You need to create a timeline for your launch, determining what you need to do for the launch to happen successfully. For example, finalizing your pricing, agreeing on your branding, and organizing training for your sales team. The best way to do this is to decide on a date you would like to launch and work backward.

You can visualize your timeline is by creating a Gantt chart. This is a project chart that you can use to track the time running up to your launch as well as which tasks are dependent on one another. That way, if there is a delay with one of your tasks, you can see how much of an impact it will have on the rest of the launch.

Once you have your timeline in place, you can use it as a basis for your startup roadmap example.

If you use Jira, you can use the Advanced Roadmaps app to create agile, easy changeable roadmaps and timelines.

Roadmap in Startup launching. Analytics data

Do your research

It’s essential to do as much research as possible before you put together your startup project roadmap. 

Not only should you have your timeline in place, but you should have also carried out thorough market research.

  • What are your start-up’s goals?
  • Who is your target market?
  • What problems does your product or service solve?
  • What business model will you utilize?
  • Who are your competitors?
  • What resources do you have?
  • What is your price point?
  • Do you have a proof of concept or minimum viable product in place?

The more information you have, the more comprehensive your roadmap will be. Think back to the stepping stone analogy we mentioned earlier… you want each stone to be thoroughly in place!

Explain your reasoning

A strategic roadmap should explain the choices that you have made in the runup to your launch and any changes that need to be made. 

This will not only give your employees insight into your reasoning but also help sell your product or service to any prospective investors.

Kanban board with people. startup project roadmap. startup roadmap planning

Everyone in your start-up needs to be able to read and understand your strategic roadmap. This means you need to not only make it easy to comprehend but attractive to look at too. According to HubSpot, visuals are 60,000 times easier to understand than plain text!

If a prospective investor asks to look at your roadmap, you want to make it as compelling as possible. After all, the more effort you have put into it, the more likely they are to invest!

Here are some great examples of roadmaps that you can utilize for your start-up.

Don’t forget to update your startup project roadmap regularly

Remember that your startup project roadmap is not a static document; it is a dynamic one. Your strategic roadmap will grow and evolve over time as your knowledge of the market grows, and your start-up’s circumstances change. 

Be sure to update your roadmap regularly in advance of your launch and make everyone aware of the changes. You want to make sure that everyone is prepared for your big launch and has the must recent information at their fingertips.

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Need more help getting ready to launch?

If you are looking for support to launch your business, You Are Launched has been helping start-ups since 2014. 

Contact us today to find out more about how we can help you get started and help you create the perfect strategic roadmap.

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