How Gist AI got 1,500+ installs for their Chrome extension from Product Hunt launch

This week, we interviewed Kshitiz, co-founder of Gist AI on their launch strategies that helped them get 900+ upvotes and #2 Product of the day badge.

A quick intro about Gist AI

Gist AI is a Chrome extension to summarize websites, pdf & youtube videos for free. It allows you Instantly extracts key points from long articles or jump directly to the key parts of an youtube video in one click.

Kshitiz launched Gist AI on Oct 1 2023 on Product Hunt and here is how their launch performed:

  1. Upvotes: 977
  2. Comments: 365
  3. Rank of the Day: 2
  4. Rank of the Week: 9

Maker Interview

Hey Kshitiz, Could you tell us a bit about your journey building Gist?

My co-founder Sayoni and I are Software Engineers at Google with a passion for building side projects that address real-world needs and enhance lives. Gist AI was initially a product of Sayoni’s, and it was built to overcome the limitations we encountered with existing summarizer tools that lacked context & depth.

After seeing the positive feedback from initial users, I teamed up with Sayoni to take Gist AI to the next level. We worked on the extension and improved it based on the feedback we got from our users.

What were your goals for the Product Hunt launch?

Our primary goal for the Product Hunt launch was to boost Gist AI’s visibility and get more downloads. We were looking for a diverse user base to use Gist AI and share their invaluable feedback. This helps us to to refine and enhance the product to meet the users’ needs effectively.

At what phase did you decide to launch on Product Hunt?

We learnt that it’s best to launch on Product Hunt with a few hundred users already engaged with your product. So we initially introduced an alpha version of Gist AI on the Chrome Store, listened to our early user’s feedback and refined GIST AI. We made sure GIST AI that was well-rounded and user-centric before the PH launch.

What was the reason behind choosing Thursday as your launch day?

Choosing Thursday for the Gist AI launch on Product Hunt was a strategic decision to balance visibility and competition. We aimed to attract a significant number of users while also securing a favourable rank. Tuesday and Wednesday presented intense competition, and given that Gist AI was a fresh product, we were cautious. Monday, Friday, and the weekends typically witness reduced traffic. So, we found Thursday as the ideal day, offering us a competitive edge and ample traffic.

Any reason you decided to not get a hunter for your launch?

We chose to launch Gist AI on our own after our research indicated that a successful launch, although requiring more effort, is attainable without a hunter.

How did you grow your following for your coming soon page?

The ‘Coming Soon’ page played a crucial role in building buzz and excitement for the launch. It not only captured the audience’s attention but also provided us with a platform to gather a following for the launch in advance. We grew followers for our coming soon page by establishing connections and initiating conversations with the Product Hunt community. As the launch date neared, we started actively sharing about the ‘Coming Soon’ page within the PH communities to lay a strong foundation for the launch.

How did you pick the people to reach out for support for your launch? Can you share your reach-out strategy and your reach-out message content?

We strategically selected individuals from within the Product Hunt community. And our focus on those with the highest streaks on PH. We also utilised the Upvote-bell dashboard to identify high-value PH users to tailor our reach.

Sample messages we used:
Hi Nithin
I noticed that you’re an active member on Product Hunt.
Your support would be invaluable for our upcoming launch of Gist AI – Free Website, YouTube and PDF summarizer.
Please hit “Notify me” to stay updated about the launch.

Hi Nithin
Gist AI just launched on Product Hunt today! 🎉
I’d really appreciate it if you could spare a moment to check us out and support us on PH! 💚
Product link:
Your support would mean the world to me!
Thanks a lot!!

How long did it take you to plan for the launch? Can you share all the tasks you did to prepare for your launch? (step-by-step)

Our journey towards launching Gist AI on Product Hunt began a month prior. Aware of our intention to launch Gist AI on PH, we started building connections within the PH community early on. Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of our launch preparation:

  1. Community Engagement: One month prior to the launch, we began fostering relationships with the PH community, initiating conversations and building rapport.
  2. Launch Planning: Dedicated a full day for comprehensive planning, followed by a couple of days to put those plans into action.
  3. Research and Learning: Read a plethora of blogs and guides on successful PH launches. The insights from LaunchPedia were particularly instrumental in honing our strategy.
  4. Product Hunt Page Preparation: Crafted compelling maker comments, engaging visual assets, and finalized the Gist AI product page on PH to ensure a striking first impression.
  5. Social Media and Community Outreach: Compiled a list of targeted communities and social media platforms to announce our launch. And prepared engaging posts to share before the launch, to increase excitement and anticipation for the launch.
  6. Product Robustness: Optimized Gist AI to ensure it will be able to handle a surge in traffic, guaranteeing a seamless user experience during the launch.

You & your co-founder were very active on social media (linkedin) on the launch day. Could you share your social media strategy & how did it work?

LinkedIn was our primary focus for social media engagement on the launch day of Gist AI. Our strategy was simple:

  1. Both of us decided to share around 4 updates each throughout the launch day, to maintain the buzz and engagement levels.
  2. We also made sure to post updates in all the social media groups we were part of, not just on LinkedIn but also on platforms like Facebook and Telegram etc.

While it’s challenging to quantify the direct impact of our social media efforts due to the inability to track every support we received, we found that personal outreach yielded the most significant response.

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What are the things you did in the first 4 hours of the launch day? And how did you continue the momentum you gained after the first 4 hours?

In the initial 4 hours of Gist AI’s launch, we adhered to a minute-wise plan to maximize outreach and engagement. Here are the tasks we did:

  1. Announcing the launch across all our social media platforms to generate immediate awareness.
  2. Reaching out all connections who had previously expressed their support, reminding them of the launch and encouraging their engagement.
  3. Initiating discussions on Product Hunt to announce that Gist AI was live and to invite feedback and support.
  4. Posting in PH-related groups across social media platforms to broaden our reach and draw attention to the launch.

By the end of the first 4 hours, Gist AI had secured the #2 spot with over 200 upvotes, indicating a strong positive reception. But the competition was very close. To sustain this momentum, we remained highly responsive to comments and questions on the Product Hunt page for Gist AI, ensuring real-time engagement. Our outreach on LinkedIn and Twitter continued, as did our posts on social media, ensuring a constant buzz around Gist AI throughout the day. This sustained effort ensured Gist AI retained its #2 position consistently.

What are the groups and communities where you shared your launch on launch day to ask for support?

There were several communities across platforms like linkedin, fb, slack etc where we shared our launch. These are some of the main communities:

  1. Linkedin: Product Hunt | Products | Discussions | Stories, Product Hunt South Florida, Product Hunt NYC, Product Hunt Innovators, Product Hunt Armenia, The GrowthPreneur | Growth Hacks | SEO | Content Marketing | Product Hunt Launch
  2. Slack: Product-School, Product Marketing Alliance, PigeonHack, Growmance, Founderopedia
  3. Telegram: Product Hunt Heroes, Product Hunt Chat, Cofounder: PH Upvotes 😻, PU Startup Consulting Group, Product Hackers
  4. YC: Show HN
  5. Reddit: Indiehackers, SideProject, Product Hunters

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Could you share some numbers from the Product Hunt launch? (Website visits you got, new signups, and revenue)

These are the numbers we got from our PH launch:
Website visits: 2,000
Chrome extension installs: 1,500

What are 3 advice you will give to a maker who is launching on Product Hunt?

  1. Begin the launch preparation at least a month in advance, with a focus on generating anticipation for your ‘Coming Soon’ page. Enhance this early engagement by personally connecting with individuals, prioritizing those within the Product Hunt community, to build a supportive network ahead of the launch.
  2. Prioritize the creation of high-quality launch assets, including a compelling demo video. Ensure that every piece of text is articulate and concise, providing clear insights into your product’s value proposition, to eliminate any potential confusion and effectively convey the product’s offerings.
  3. Recognize the importance of the first 4 hours post-launch. Being highly proactive in this window is key, strive to secure a position above the fold to boost your product’s visibility, inviting increased organic votes and broadened engagement.


You can checkout Gist AI here

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