LaunchRock is a startup that helps other companies launch — it’s best-known for landing pages where beta users can sign up. Now, co-founder and CEO Jameson Detweiler said he’s “doubling down” on helping companies launch.
That might seem like an obvious step given the startup’s name, but Detweiler said LaunchRock’s previous expansion efforts have been around “post-launch stuff,” focusing particularly on customer acquisition throughout a startup’s lifecycle. That approach turned out to be more challenging than expected, Detweiler said, and meanwhile, there are many unaddressed needs when it comes to just getting a company off the ground. The ultimate aim is to provide access to the full range of products and services that a company might need during that early period.
“Getting a product out there and getting people to use it is where most companies die,” he said. “We want to help bridge that gap.”
So today, LaunchRock has added two big sections to its website. The first is the LaunchRock App Store — it’s a curated list of discounts and free trials on products that could be useful for a new company. It covers areas like developer tools, branding and design, and legal and financial services. For example, you could sign up for professional web hosting from BlueHost for $3.95 a month or get 25 percent off the silver and gold plans from A/B testing service Optimizely.
Naturally, Detweiler plans to expand the store over time. There’s a link where other service providers can ask to participate, and eventually, he said the App Store could also turn into a beta testing channel, where new businesses can try out cool new tools while they’re still in the beta phase.
The other new section is LaunchRock Build. Conceptually, it’s similar to the App Store — it’s offering services that a new company might need. However, instead of offering general deals for products, LaunchRock Build tries to help customers find the specific people who can help address a specific need. That includes areas like advertising, crowdfunding, and mobile app design and development.
These services will be provided from folks in the company’s “network of talent” — though LaunchRock is tackling at least one of the services, explainer video production, itself. Detweiler didn’t want to get into too many details about how LaunchRock plans to expand the network, but he did say it has a “fairly non-traditional business structure” and that it’s “looking at some things behind-the-scenes” that should help it scale more efficiently.