Launch Jacking: How It Works and Is It Profitable?

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You want more freedom and independence in your life, and you're not alone. I know the feeling too. You want more time to do things you love and be with the people you care about. And you're curious if launching jacking is a profitable way to do it. 

In this article, I will explain what launch jacking is, how it works, and the benefits and drawbacks of making money this way. 

The topics I'm going to cover are:

  • What is Launch Jacking?
  • Is Launch Jacking Profitable?
  • How Does Launch Jacking Work?
  • Launch Jacking with Email Marketing
  • Launching Your Own Products
  • Part-Time Launch Jacking
  • Launch Jacking Benefits and Drawbacks
  • How To Find Products To Launch Jack
  • Is Launch Jacking Legal?
  • Summary of Pros and Cons

What is Launch Jacking?


Launch jacking is when you review digital products before they are launched or soon after. It takes advantage of the early search traffic and buzz for those products and can be very lucrative. 

In most cases, you earn affiliate commissions when you review and promote other people's products. But you can also launch your own products. 

Instead of being the “reviewer,” you can release your own product to other affiliate marketers who will review it (and launch jack) for you.

Most successful launch jackers do both. 

Launch jacking is not always to make money. Sometimes it's used as a marketing tool for brands, film studios, and even politicians to get ahead of their competition. For the purpose of this article, though, and making money online, launch jacking refers to the early release of digital products such as software and online courses.

A launch jacker's primary tools are a website, YouTube, email autoresponder, and sales funnel software.

Is Launch Jacking Profitable?


With all of the ways you can make money online, not to mention all of the scams and schemes, you may wonder if launch jacking works.

Yes, it works, and there is no doubt that launch jacking can be profitable.

However, it depends on how well your content ranks and how much competition there is. In some cases, your content may not rank because there is too much competition. However, you shouldn't be discouraged by competition.

No website ranks for everything. There are always new opportunities, and it's a numbers game. Launch jacking can still be very profitable if only one article or review out of every ten ranks well.

The keys to success with launch jacking are:

  • Knowing where the right products to launch jack are.
  • How to create reviews that convert viewers into buyers.
  • Outranking your competition in the search engines (primarily Google and YouTube).
  • Persistence and patience.

It's important to understand that although you can make a lot of money launch jacking, it is competitive in its own way and requires a fair amount of work. With effort and determination, though, you can make a good living at it.

How Does Launch Jacking Work?


As stated above, Launch jacking is a process by which someone else's product launch is “hijacked” to capitalize on the traffic and attention that the original product receives. 

As an online marketing strategy, these “hijacked” launches are done with the approval of the product owner. 

There are three critical components, or steps, to how launch jacking works:

1. Find Digital Products to Review


Before we talk about finding digital products to review, let's go over what a digital product is.

Unlike the physical products in your house, digital products are stored on your computer, your phone, a portable hard drive, the cloud, etc.

They include:

  • eBooks
  • Online courses, coaching, tutorials and guides
  • Games
  • Apps
  • Software
  • Photography
  • Videos and Music
  • Memberships and Subscriptions
  • Templates
  • Graphics, sound effects
Examples of Digital Products for Launch Jacking
Examples of digital products

Your goal as a launch jacker is to find yet-to-be-released digital products, preferably before anyone else does. This can be done by subscribing to email lists, or RSS feeds of new product launches. You can also use Google Alerts to notify you of new product releases in your industry or niche.

The most common networks used by online marketers are Muncheye, JVZoo, Clickbank, and in some cases, PeerFly. These are platforms that specialize in digital products and digital product launches. Online marketing forums like Warrior Plus are also an excellent place to find new products to launch jack.

2. Be The First (Or One of The First) To Review Them


You want to get your review up as soon as possible after the product launch to capitalize on the early adopters and buyers, as well as the lack of competitive reviews. This can be challenging because the most effective way to launch jack is to review products not yet on the market.

Therefore, you'll need early access and approval. This makes it difficult for beginners.

Programs like Ministry of Freedom (that teach launch jacking) are a way to shortcut the process. Many introduce you to the product creators and provide “backstage” access to the world of launch jacking. But it comes at a price. Many launch jacking programs cost thousands of dollars to join with few guarantees that they'll work or do what they promise.

3. Convert Your Audience Into Buyers


Most launch jackers are relentless reviewers. They write product reviews almost daily for their website or record product review videos on YouTube. Many do both.

The product creator usually supplies marketing materials and sales copy when giving access to early releases. These are for the official product release and can inspire your review. However, you'll be tempted to copy and paste it onto your website, hit the publish button, and hope it'll rank.

The copy-and-paste method is less common today because search algorithms are more intelligent. It was an effective strategy years ago for those who knew how to game search engines, but it doesn't work today.

Launch jacking in the current era of artificial intelligence requires your reviews to be original, whether written or recorded. And they must be thorough and connect with your audience. To convert your readers (or viewers) into buyers, you can offer additional value such as bonuses, discounts, etc.

Those are the three steps to launching jacking. To summarize again quickly…

  1. Find products to review
  2. Review them before your competitors
  3. Convert eyeballs into buyers

Of course, there are many more micro-steps along the way and additional ways of making money, including launch jacking with email marketing and launching your own products.

Launch Jacking with Email Marketing


Email marketing is an effective complement to launch jacking.

You probably have a good idea of how email marketing works, but here's a quick explanation if not. It's a form of digital marketing that uses email messages to promote a product or service.

Email marketing can be segmented into two categories: permission-based and non-permission-based.

  • Permission-based email marketing (and the only one we recommend) is when a contact has given their consent to receive emails from you.
  • Non-permission-based email marketing (which we don't recommend) is when you send an email to someone who has not given their consent. Email spam would fall under this category.

The reason it's so effective for launch jacking is because you promote products to your subscriber list before they launch. You can tease the product a few weeks in advance and as it gets closer, give them a sneak peek. This increases the buzz and build-up, so they are ready to buy when it's finally launched.

Of course, this strategy depends on a couple things.

  • You must have an email list.
  • You must build trust with your subscribers.

Building trust with your subscribers should be easy, but the temptation of money is often too strong.

For example, some reputable launch jackers only recommend a handful of products yearly. They test the product and respect their subscribers enough not to sell garbage. In most cases, they wouldn't even consider themselves “launch jackers” because they only do it periodically when they get early access to a product.

And then there are launch jackers who enthusiastically recommend a new product every day, which is odd when you think about it… 

Online marketers typically use a dozen products (give or take) at any given time. Those are the ones they recommend. They may review new products every day, some positively, but they won't recommend every one of them.

At least not enthusiastically.

So when someone is hard-selling every new product they review, and they are reviewing a new product every day… they are likely promoting a lot of junk. 

You can make a lot of money that way, but it's ethically questionable and will quickly burn your list of subscribers by destroying their trust.

Launching Your Own Products


A significant drawback of launch jacking as a primary marketing strategy is that it's difficult to sustain, and here's why…

The benefit of reviewing products before anyone else is to capitalize on the initial boost of sales and grab traffic before other reviewers arrive. Then one of two things happen.

  1. If the product is good, a stampede of review sites and YouTubers take over the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) and capture a lot (if not all) of your traffic.
  2. If the product is bad, its enthusiasm dies off, and there are no buyers. Again, you lose most (if not all) of your traffic.

In either situation, your opportunity to make money is short-lived. Therefore, launch jacking relies on a steady stream of new products being released in your niche every few days. And it also depends on getting up every morning and being the first person (or at least one of the first) to review them.

That makes launch jacking challenging to sustain.

Therefore, seasoned launch jackers usually “graduate” from being product promoters to becoming product creators. You have a handful of options.

  1. You can create your own product (a course, software, membership program, etc.)
  2. You can hire a developer to create a product for you.
  3. You can license someone else's product and brand it as your own (these are known as private label or white label products).
  4. You can collaborate with someone else to create or private label a product.
  5. You can do a combination of the above.

Options one and two are the most difficult and time-consuming. Therefore, most who “graduate” from being product promoters to product creators and launchers start with licensing someone else's product. Two common places to find digital products you can license are Code Canyon and Promote Labs.

If you have the time, resources, and skills to create your own product, you'll have far more control over the quality and content of your product.

Either way, once you have your own product to promote, you can share it with other affiliate marketers and launch jackers, and have them promote it for you. Of course, you'll do your own promotion as well.

If your product is good and kept up to date, you'll have years of sales and a sustainable income. Launch jacking alone can't do that.

Part-Time Launch Jacking


Launch jacking works best when done as opportunities arise, not every day or every few days. You don't want to depend on it.

If you have a niche website, social media following, or a YouTube channel, you should monetize it in sustainable ways through affiliate marketing, display ads, sponsorships, etc. Then, if you get the early scoop on a new product, you can review it and leverage the benefits of launch jacking.

You can also combine launch jacking with other side hustles like freelance writing or driving for Uber.

What Are The Benefits of Launch Jacking?


  • Early access to new products.
  • Although competitive, it's far easier to rank for product reviews on Google and YouTube because well-established high-authority sites generally don't bother with launch jacking content.
  • Launch jacking can be cost-effective to promote a product and build a list of buyers if you are a digital product creator. There are no advertising costs because affiliates who earn their income this way are motivated to sell your product for you. And when new buyers make a purchase, they get added to your email list.
  • Launch jacking can be lucrative. It's possible to earn six and even seven figures per year.

What Are The Drawbacks of Launch Jacking?


  • It can be risky if you're concerned about your reputation because these are new and unproven products. If a product doesn't work or its owner bails and no longer supports it, your audience will remember you recommended it.
  • You need a lot of traffic to your product reviews because conversion rates are generally low. Even when people do buy, there are no guarantees they'll use your affiliate link. Therefore, you need copywriting skills and offer many incentives such as bonuses and discounts.
  • The products most often promoted with launch jacking strategies are cheap fly-by-night products. They get some initial buzz, usually through promotion, but die off quickly, sometimes within weeks or even days. This makes launch jacking challenging to sustain.
  • So passive income is difficult to establish because you always have to review and promote the next product. Because of this, higher authority sites that can rank for the best and most popular products on the market (many with recurring commissions) don't bother with launch jacking.
  • High rate of product returns.
  • Not all products you review will be popular enough to generate traffic. Because it's a new product, it has no history or track record. Therefore, you may find that you rank in the top spot for dozens and eventually hundreds of reviews, but they do not generate traffic (or revenue).
  • Launch jacking is a dark alley in the online marketing world, full of garbage products and scams. It's because “good” products in any niche are not created daily. So you may find yourself ethically challenged to promote and recommend every new product that is being launched.

How To Find Products To Launch Jack


Knowing your niche is the best way to find opportunities to launch jack. By understanding the types of searches and topics people are interested in, you can better identify potential opportunities. You can also use keyword research tools, competitor analysis, and Google Trends to find opportunities.

Another way to find products to launch jack is to join Facebook groups in your niche. Groups, communities and forums like Reddit and WarriorPlus keep you updated on industry and product trends. So you'll know what's popular and what people are excited about when product releases happen.

Look for niche-related hashtags on Twitter and Instagram to see what's happening in your niche. Pay attention to the ones that get the most views, shares, likes, comments, etc.

If your niche has a lot of popular brands, you can follow them on social media, YouTube, etc., for product release information. 

Sign up to affiliate networks as mentioned earlier, like Muncheye, JVZoo, and Clickbank, where product creators provide dates for product releases. These platforms utilize launch calendars, email notifications, and forums like JV Notify to inform you of new product launches.


Launch jacking is a completely legal and ethical way to promote products or services when done honestly

In many cases, you will have the support and approval of the product creators, who are happy you are spreading the word about their products and generating buzz.

There is, however, an illegal form of launch jacking. Illegal launch jacking is a spin on phishing scams. Scammers create duplicate websites that mimic the look and feel of legitimate sites from real brands and companies.

These are similar to the phishing emails from scammers claiming your Amazon account has been compromised or your Netflix account is suspended.

When you click on the links inside the emails, they take you to a fake website that looks like the real thing. And if you try to log into your account, you're not actually logging into it. Instead, you're giving the scammers your login credentials, which they then use to access your real account.

Launch jacking scams like this don't send emails. They instead leverage the traffic surge and buzz generated by new and legitimate product launches.

For example, Apple may launch a new product that leads to a sharp increase in Google searches for that particular product. The scammers then buy Google ads for keywords associated to the new product.

When searchers click on the ads (often not realizing they are ads), they end up on the fake website. If they try to purchase the product, they unknowingly give the scammers their credentials and credit card information or end up with a virus on their computer.

They can also scare you with a fake virus.

The fake virus appears as a warning screen that directs you to call a Microsoft or Apple support number that's actually a direct line to the scammers. Then, to fix your computer, they request remote access, and that's when it gets dangerous.

The scammers can steal information and lock you out of your computer at this point, holding your data for ransom.

However, that's not the kind of launch jacking we're talking about here. We're talking about the kind where you legitimately review new products, and that is legal.

Summary of Launch Jacking Pros and Cons


You'll know that launch jacking has several benefits and drawbacks if you've read this far. Here's a quick summary to help you decide if it's for you.

Pros


  • High-income potential
  • Inside scoop on new products
  • Easier to rank on Google and YouTube
  • Takes advantage of a boost in sales during launch

Cons


  • Difficult to sustain
  • Recommending new and untested products is risky
  • High rate of product returns
  • Well known strategy for promoting garbage products and scams
  • Hard to find new products to review (before anyone else does)

Final Thoughts


You want to make money online, and launch jacking can be an effective way to do it. In fact, it can be pretty lucrative. 

However, because it's challenging to sustain, I don't necessarily recommend it as your primary strategy. Instead, it's better to use it as a complement to more sustainable online marketing strategies and side hustles

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