Getting ready to launch a new product or business?  This valuable check list comes from Mark Hayward , in a guest post for ProBlogger.  Although he was talking specifically about launching a blog, many of the steps in his check list are equally appropriate for any new businesses.

  1. Define your customer – This needs no additional comment.  If you don’t know who you are trying to reach you can’t begin to build a plan to reach them
  2. Location – Ok, so he said : “Determine if you’re going to create a blog within your business website or on its own.” But the point is still the same, where you choose to locate your business is important, and it will have an impact on the rest of your business operations.
  3. Keyword research for domain name.   – For me the dominant theme here is the research.  Don’t guess or assume you know, let the facts guide your plans
  4. Choose a blogging platform and select a design or theme. – For a non web business this translates to finding the right tools, designing a logo and branding
  5. Register your social media accounts. – This is true for every business, from Facebook and Twitter to YouTube and Google local search, you have to be finable on the net.
  6. Measure ROI – As you make investments in marketing and infrastructure, be sure you know how you will measure the contribution of each investment
  7. Draft at least 10 posts in advance – Don’t rush to launch.  Take the extra time on the front end so you are prepare for what you are getting into.
  8. Spend time in forums – Spend time networking with peers and competitors to uncover best practices – If you are here in Indy – the new Rainmakers: StartingPoint group may be a great place to start.
  9. Reach out to Key Influencers – Find mentors, advisers and coaches.  Just because you own your own business does not mean you need to do it on your own.
  10. Draft a web optimized press release – Again, this is something every business should do.  Not sure what the release should look like?  Check out our samples

Is this all you need to do to be ready to launch your new business?  No, but it is a start.   To pull the elements together, you might want to write a business plan