Guide for hosting a Product Launch Posted: 8th Nov 2016 3:27pm 3:27 pm Published by London Audio Visual Ltd Product launches are an effective way to market your brand, a new product or idea to your desired target audience or clients. Over the years product launches have proved they do not have to be the formal affair they once were. Event organisers are now looking into planning a launch which will always outshine the last one. Having provided audio visual set up for hundreds of product launches over the years, we have designed this guide to help you think about what your launch event will need to make it an exciting event for your audience and clients. Themes Product launches are not just a company’s way to get a new product or idea recognised, but also a chance to throw an event which will captivate their audiences imagination. Themes are most common way to get people talking about your event ahead of attending. We have seen a fair few product launches with some wonderful and weird themed ideas, so here are just a few examples: Colour theme: For example the Blue party- get your guests to dress in the colour to be consistent. This would be brilliant way to further endorse your brand or product colours as well. Games theme: Really useful if you are in the gaming industry or even if you want to lighten the mood with a game or two. Magical and Fairytale themes: Allow your guests to be enchanted and open their imaginations up to a world of fantasy. Winter Wonderland: Often people think that you can only do this in the winter, but what better way to surprise guests by creating a charming wintery environment during the summer time. Floral themes: Use flower power to wow your guests sense of sight and sound. Whimsical themes: From mad-hatter’s tea party themes, to the craziest circus themes, keep your guests entertained during your product launch. Film themes: Pick your favourite film and make the running theme of your launch, you could do anything from Gangster to Disney themed events. Green Events: Make the event one which people (your guests included) will have to power. Whichever theme you chose to go with, remember to be consistent with it throughout your launch. Make sure you think about the theme for every aspect from flowers, food, waiters/waitresses, models, to the drinks served at the bar. Sales Strategy Always keep in mind your sales strategy. It is easy to get carried away with throwing a party, but remember to keep your aim of how you will show off your product to generate interest in purchasing the product, at all times. Think about the following points to help to sell your product: Have displays around the venue, having your product image and information on 4K display screens will always ensure that your audience are reminded of why they are at the launch party. Show off your product with how to use it videos, live demonstrations, allow guests to use the product and experiment with it. You have a choice of either a hard sell or soft sell. You can place branded material everywhere possible or go down the more subtle route and be very selective with where you position your brand logos and messages. Goodie bags are an excellent way to make sure your guests all leave with a tester of the product. Or you could let your guests choose what gift they want by setting up a gift bar. Staff uniforms could also have the product printed on them in order to further promote it. You may want to think about a designated area for filming, this footage could then be linked to a live web link or added later to a blog. Venues Location, Location, Location, hosting your product launch in the right location is paramount to the clientele. You have to think of where the majority of your guests will be travelling from, as well as the prestige of a well known venue. Make the location and venue an interesting one. You could have a traditional venue or you could go down a more creative route and have a weird and wacky industrial site, or why not hire a grand house and host a product launch party with each floor in the house representing a different product or parts of the product. You may also want to consider a secret location, this will make the launch one which your guests will continue to talk about. Overall you need to keep in mind that the venue should reflect your product and brand. What Media, AV technology to use? This will depend on the venue, number of people attending as well as what you envision the final look of the launch to be. Our technical team will discuss in depth with you what you desire the outcome to be and after a site visit, they will be able to go through the options you have with the media and AV equipment and which technologies will best serve your function. Remember that technologies are forever changing, so be sure to check with our technical team what new technological products we have to offer. You could also think about using AV equipment with ideas such as, positioning projectors around the venue, showcasing videos or abstract images of the product to keep guests intrigued until the big reveal. Audio Visual Equipment you may want to consider Stages can be a dull area, stage lighting will help to bring focus to the stage area. If your product will be revealed on stage, then installing a follow spot (spotlight) on main stage will allow you to place emphasis on the product. Placing mini stages around the venue like an exhibition may help to further promote your product. Having custom built lecterns to match your theme and with branding added to it will help with creating a strong message. Having banners with you company name, logo and product name on it attached to the panels of the stage area will also draw more attention to your brand. When it comes to lighting, we would recommend uplighters set to the colours to match your theme. As well Gobo lighting to reflect any shape, symbol pattern of the brand or product. Organising Staff on the day Have a meeting prior to the event to check that every staff member knows what their role is and where they will need to be positioned. It is important to have staff circulating the event, in case any of your guests require an assistance or product knowledge. It will be crucial to give all staff training on the product as well, so they are well prepared for any questions which may come their way. It is also imperative that all staff members are aware of the venue emergency exit and procedures. Remember health and safety is also a part of holding an event! Who to invite? There are different sets of people to consider. External agencies who you want to sell your new product/service to. As well as internal people, who will need to get to understand the product/service so that they can sell it. It will be important to get a save the date note out to all your guests. Nearer the time be sure to confirm the number of guests attending. It would be a good idea to use your guests database to send out invites, or if you want to shake things up, you could invite a completely different crowd to mix with your regular clients/audience. Invite celebrities to attract more attention to your product, make sure you get photographs of them using your product at the launch. Post these images on social media sites to help market your product (obviously always seek the celebrity’s approval first). Another tip would be to use focus groups prior to the product launch to determine who you actually need to attend the event. It may also be wise to over invite, as you may find some of your guests who have RSVP’d may not be able to make it at the last minute. Other factors to think about: DJ Booths can make an interesting focal point. Try not to be tempted to just place them on a stage, make them part of the spectacle to match the theme of the product launch. Good stage effect lighting can also be set up to help with this. Music is important, ideally you do not want a club atmosphere, but you want something upbeat which will reflect the message of your product. Make sure the volume is correct as well, you want to make sure your guests can hear one another. Keep your product a secret until the day of the launch in order to build up anticipation for the product…except of course for those “leaks.” Use Social Media marketing to post up the product launch images and of course of the product itself. These images will also help to market for your next product launch. Have a live blog set up for the product launch and get guest to leave pictures of themselves and others using the product, along with comments of it. Manage the live blog and comment back immediately to keep the conversation flowing online. The latest fashion in the food department is, to have a cake baked and styled in your product, not only will it look great, but the end result will taste great. Remember what you say and what is said about your product is very important. So ensure you work on the language for the night and make sure there are no mistakes. Think about you seating options, if you are planning a lengthy talk on the product you may want people seated or at least have some seating around a bar area as not all your guests will enjoy standing. Find a charismatic speaker, the last thing you want is someone who will not engage with the audience and bore them! Selfie stands allow guests a designated area to take pics/selfies with the product. Remember the more that they do this, the more likely they are to post them onto Facebook, twitter, instagram, which results in free marketing you. For the sponsors of your product you may wish to create a sponsor lounge or add a VIP lounge to help your sponsor’s feel important. Post launch make sure your evaluation team collate feedback/comments, you can use these to help with your marketing campaign for the product.