A launch event is an excellent way to showcase your latest product, build hype around it, and even acquire some sales right at the event. The more you can get people talking about the product, both at the event and via social media, the better it’s going to do.
Here are a few tips to bring your new product launch event ideas to reality:
1. Choose venue that’s interesting but doesn’t outshine your product.
Obviously, you want the emphasis to be on the product — not the venue. Nevertheless, an awesome venue for your corporate event certainly helps with marketing an attendee experience.
If possible, try to associate the product with the venue. For instance, if you’re releasing new software, then choose a venue that’s been used for tech and IT shows.
Also, if you cater to a local demographic, the venue should also be fairly close to your business. Don’t make your guests commute way out to get to the location.
Ready to find a venue for your product launch? Here are our 8 favorite venue search tools.
2. Choose a memorable, relevant theme
The theme, of course, should be related to the product, or at least to your industry. (Here are a few ideas, in case you’re stuck!)
This event is your opportunity to put your product on display and give your attendees real, hands-on play-time with it. This helps them get excited and become an advocate for it as you launch into your market.
Here’s just one example: If you’re releasing a digital marketing software, then online marketing could be the theme. The event can include activities like SEO workshops, social media marketing lectures, and so on.
Those workshops and seminars should contain informative and useful content but also show guests how the new product can benefit them. The activities you offer should serve as a lead-in for the product.
The event swag can also reflect the theme. In this case, the promotional products could be mouse pads, pens, and other office products that attendees might use even after the event.
3. Plan engaging entertainment
Your new product launch event should be informative first and foremost. But you should also incorporate an entertainment element to it to make it more fun and memorable.
You have multiple choices in the way of entertainment:
- You could take advantage of some of the venue’s amenities. If there’s a dance floor, for example, then cap off the event with a dance.
- You can hire a standup comedian who can incorporate the product or the industry in some way or another into his routine.
- You can engage attendees with contests while promoting your product or brand. Maybe it’s a raffle based on attendees’ tweets — or maybe it’s a race to see who can use your new software the fastest.
These are just a few ideas. The goal is to deliver a win-win for you and your attendees: Your attendees have a good time (and maybe even win a prize). At the same time, they’re starting to serve as evangelists for your product.
4. Be intentional with your event timing
When should you hold the event? Product launches can be held on the day the product is released or as a teaser several days before the release.
If the latter, don’t hold it too early; you want the anticipation to be at its peak when the product is released. While there’s no set rule, try to hold the event no more than two weeks before the release date.
Product launches as a whole should also be timed according to the time of year. Perhaps the product makes for an excellent Christmas gift.
If so, then make the product launch event planning conference a holiday event. You can also explore industry-specific holidays or explore times of the year when the industry sees a peak in activity. These are the optimal times for hosting your event.
5. Drum up extra social media activity before the event
At the product launch event, your goal is to market the product. But you also have to market the event itself.
In the weeks leading up to the big day, put together an online marketing strategy to attract attendees. It might involve a combination of social media posts, email newsletters, press releases and perhaps even offline methods.
In your event marketing, don’t overtly promote the product. Remember, you want to promote the event — so you might want to only mention the product in passing.
You can even hold a social media contest with the winner winning a free event ticket, or even the product itself, which will be presented to the winner at the event.
There are hundreds of ways to market a launch event. For more detailed ideas, check out these free resources:
6. Have a plan for post-event follow-up
After a few days, the hype will die down. The day after the event, though, presents a small window of opportunity to keep the hype going just a bit longer. If you capitalize on it, you might bring in more sales from attendees who didn’t purchase at the event.
Use the same strategies you did for the pre-event marketing. This includes lots of social media activity, continuing use of the event hashtag, and sending out newsletters.
If sales of the product did not meet expectations, then offer some sort of incentive — a trial offer, rebate, or complimentary add-ons. The whole idea is to keep discussion of the product going weeks after its release.
Product launch event planning provides guests a firsthand look of the newly released product or service. This is your opportunity to show attendees what it is, how it works, and how it benefits them in their personal or professional life.
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