If you are starting a new company, a business launch is exactly what you need to let people know who you are, what you do, and how they can benefit from what you have to offer. You may be surprised to find that the launch event can make or break your first few months of business! If you get it right, you’ll walk away from the event with new clients and an expanded network. Do it wrong, and you’ll have wasted a lot of time, money, and effort!
So how can you do it right?
Step 1: Set a vision
What is the purpose of your business launch event? Are you launching just one product, or are you trying to sell the brand of your company? Are you re-launching a business that has been rebranded or reformed? Are you trying to drive sales, increase consumer awareness, or get media coverage for your company? Decide what the most important objectives of this business launch event are, and write them down. The objectives will definitely affect the type of launch.
Step 2: Figure out the budget
How are you going to pay for this event? Do you have investors who will help to cover the costs, or are you footing the bill all by yourself? You’ll need to pay for food, drinks, the venue, decorations, signage, staff, vendors, marketing, promotion, and the list goes on. You may want to bring in sponsors for the event, but only if those sponsors help to further your image as a brand. How much do you want to spend on the event? Setting a budget will help you know exactly how much you need to raise, as well as how large of an event you can afford to plan.
Step 3: Find the right venue
The venue should match the business you are trying to launch. You wouldn’t hold a high-tech business launch in botanical gardens nor would you launch a food catering company at the zoo. Your venue needs to suit the theme and the audience, and it definitely needs to be within your budget. Think about how many guests you want to invite, and find a venue that offers sufficient space.
Step 4: Choose the date and time
When is best for your clients? Are they busy during the week, or would they be better served having the event held on a work day? Think about your target audience, and set a date and time that will be realistic for them to attend.
Step 5: Plan the promotion
How are you going to let people know about your event in advance? This has nothing to do with the advertising or marketing you will do AT the event, but this is about how you will get people interested enough in the event that they will want to go. Social media is just one of the tools available to you, along with blogs, websites, press releases, radio and TV spots, forums, and more. It’s vital to plan an effective promotional/marketing campaign that will help you reach the right people in the right places.
Step 6: Write the narrative
How do you want your event to play out? Should it be a fun, laidback event, or do you want it to have a more formal, elegant feel? What are you trying to promote/market/advertise to the attendees? How are you going to put your image or brand inside their heads? How are you going to appeal to their lifestyle and desires with your product or service? What tagline do you want to come to mind when they think of your company? How can you convince them that you can deliver on your promises? If you can answer all of these questions, you will be writing the narrative for the event – increasing your chances of success drastically!
Tell us about any business launch events that stand out in your memory – events you planned or attended. What made them so great? Leave a comment below and let us know…