6 Examples To Help You Set Up An Effective Pre-Order Marketing Strategy

The moment you mention pre order marketing strategy, there are a couple of brands that marketers would definitely talk about – Playstation, Apple, and Tesla to name a few of the known brands.

But what do these brands get right in their pre order marketing strategies? In this blog, we’ll take you through how you can create an effective pre-order marketing campaign for your Shopify store. We’ll understand this by looking at a few examples of successful pre order marketing campaigns and why they turned out to be so effective.

6 pre-order marketing campaign examples 


1. Glowforge – 3D printer

Glowforge is a 3D laser printer company. For one of their products, the company decided to run a pre-order campaign before creating the product. To help them through the pre-order strategy, the brand partnered with an agency.

They were faced with two challenges: they had limited time to launch the pre-order plan and limited customer data to work with. Here’s how they went about their pre-order strategy.

  • To define their target audience, they put together data from their existing pre-order customers, market research from related products, and internal experience of working with other clients.
  • Then, they identified the channels for their pre-order marketing – Facebook advertising and Google ads.
  • On Facebook, they started by targeting an audience similar to Glowforge’s previous pre-order customers. 
  • On Google ads, they targeted people who specifically searched for Glowforge.
  • With the help of press coverage and paid advertising, they were able to get traffic to their website. From there, they created a remarketing strategy to target visitors who hadn’t converted. 
  • To gain the highest returns, they narrowed down remarketing to only the most relevant and highest-quality site traffic.

The result: $28 M pre orders in the first 30 days

Why it worked: The brand kept their focus on finding the right kind of audience and then remarketing to them. Glowforge knew they would need external help and partnered with an agency to help them launch and execute a successful pre-order marketing strategy. 

2. Knoxlabs – VR headset

Knoxlabs is a company that makes and sells virtual reality products. It wanted to test the market for a new product that wasn’t created yet. For that, they decided to open pre orders. Here’s what the company did:

The company created a simple website with a splash page that focused on driving pre-order sign ups. Splash pages can be a welcome screen, a video, a teaser that gives information about a product. Here’s what they did for the splash page:

– Wrote a compelling product description

– Explained the benefits or the value the product will bring to the buyers

– A clear call to action

– Designed the creative

– Used a tool to bring all this to life

– Created a landing page

– The splash page helped generate hype and interest in the product.

– The page helped capture user attention and get users to click to a landing page.

The result: Within a week, the company received over 500 per orders for a product that wasn’t even made yet.

Why it worked: Instead of spending hundreds of dollars in creating the product, Knoxlabs first tested the waters to assess the interest in the product. By using a splash page on their website, the company validated the product — one of the most important factors of any pre order marketing strategy.

3. Mellow – kitchen gadget

The smart kitchen appliance company, Mellow, created a new appliance – a robot that syncs with smartphones and makes cooking more convenient. The company founders had found a gap in the market and wanted to fulfill it with this product. Let’s see how they went about their pre-order strategy.

  • The company decided to go heavy on PR and reached out to hundreds of reporters directly.
  • As publications started publishing about the product, a lot of people became familiar with the product.
  • Meanwhile, the company found a good pre-order platform to get the pre orders started.

The result: pre orders worth $200,000+ in less than a month

Why it worked: Mellow found the right kind of pre order platform to launch their pre-order plan, put together a team to work on the pre order strategy, and presented the right product to the right market. Besides, they directly reached out to reporters for PR.

4. Smart Armor – Smart Cube

Smart Armor wanted to launch their new product, Smart Cube, a solution that locks and unlocks cabinets, drawers, cupboards, etc., and sends alerts if someone tries to break in. The company chose to put in place a pre order marketing strategy on the crowdsourcing platform Indiegogo.

To get their campaign to feature on top, they followed these three steps:

  1. Validate – the brand looked to Facebook advertising to assess whether the product has a large serviceable market
  2. Engage – through social media, the brand created a buzz for the product so that they could have a successful day 1
  3. Launch – now the project was live, their targeted audience was sent to the Indiegogo campaign, generating sales at over 3x

The result: $ 500,296 raised, funded in 45 days, 40,000 email subscribers.

Why it worked: Launching a pre order crowdfunding campaign was the perfect solution to test the viability of the new product, marketing message and to find their targeted audience. 

pre order marketing strategy


5. Kettle & Fire – bone broth

The founder of Kettle & Fire had a new product idea. He wanted to sell bone broth. But he didn’t know whether there would be people who’d buy this product. So this is how the brand went about with their pre-order campaign.

  • First, they researched if online shoppers are looking for bone broth on the internet. They looked up ‘bone broth’ in Google Trends.
  • Then, they looked up online forums to figure what kind of questions were people asking about bone broth. From there, they figured people were actually looking for places to buy the product.
  • The next step was to find out how much people were willing to pay for such a product and if it would be viable for business.
  • Then, they created a landing page for the product where they started accepting orders. Shoppers started placing pre-orders. The product was validated.

The result: 6-figure revenue in 5 months.

Why it worked: A proper validation strategy, a well-designed check-out process and a full-fledged user acquisition strategy worked wonders for Kettle & Fire’s pre order marketing strategy.

6. Sony PlayStation – PS5

To launch the PS5 in the USA, Sony took a different route this time around. Instead of involving retail partners, as it always does, this time, the brand decided to pursue direct-sales. Shoppers would have to place pre orders directly on Sony’s site. Let’s see how Sony went about the launch of PS 5 through pre orders:

  • The company set up pre-orders on their official website, where buyers had to express their interest in buying PS5
  • From the data collected, Sony would determine which buyers would get a shot at purchasing the PS5. They would determine this based on their previous interests and PlayStation activities
  • Those selected would be notified via email. They’ll be told the exact time window to place the order

The result: 10 M PS5 consoles sold to date

Why it worked: Sony almost brought gamification to the pre-order campaign. By not disclosing too many details such as the price of the product, how it was going to select which buyers would get priority, and by not including third-party retailers, the brand was able to create exclusivity, FOMO, urgency and surprise.

When should you offer pre-orders?

When you want to launch a new product. Many eCommerce stores launch new products that don’t have a market. It’s a big risk as it can cost money, time, and effort. Moreover, it can kill your motivation if you don’t see the desired results from your new product sales. This is when setting up a pre order marketing strategy can help. It can help you assess the market for the new product and help you save costs.

When an existing product goes out of stock. Fast-selling items might go out of stock on your site if you don’t manage the inventory well or if there’s a supply issue for the product. But if you are sure you’ll be restocking the product at a future date, you can add a pre-order button next to the out of stock button and start accepting orders.

When you want to generate hype and buzz for a product. There are certain items, such as electronics, gadgets, mobile phones, luxury lifestyle items, video games, etc., that are strongly connected to the idea of exclusivity, and hence, urgency. Customers want to have these items before anyone else. This is where a pre-order campaign can help you generate that hype and buzz for a product. 

Key takeaways from the above examples

  • Put together a good team to handle the pre-order campaign where all team members are on the same page
  • Create a pre order plan that leads up to weeks and months before the launch day
  • Emphasize scarcity and value of the product. These tactics help lure people in
  • Create a marketing plan to build awareness. Think PR, content marketing, paid ads, SEO content, etc.
  • Be prepared to handle increased traffic to your website – have enough inventory, customer service staff, etc.

Need help setting up your Shopify pre order marketing strategy? 

If your Shopify store is launching a new product or wants to generate sales from out-of-stock products, a pre-order strategy can help you easily do so. And to plan your strategy and campaign, you can use a tool such as Appikon Pre-Order Today.

Appikon Pre-Order Today app helps Shopify stores just like yours, set up pre-order campaigns. It automatically swaps the ‘Buy’ or ‘Add to Cart’ buttons with a ‘Pre Order’ button when a product goes out of stock. With its other features such as badges, emails, tagging, mixed cart alerts, pre-order discounts, etc., the app proves to be your best partner to run pre-order campaigns on your Shopify store.

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