If you’re hosting a business launch, you will want to communicate important information about your product or service. The details you communicate can be determined by asking yourself, what is your event’s goal?
Write down the most important things you want to accomplish with your event. These notes will make other crucial decisions down the line a bit simpler. If it doesn’t add value for your guests or help you reach your key goals, do you really need it? This will help you with the next step.
Step 2. Set a Budget and Think about Funding
Sponsorship? Which sponsors might increase the event value and experience for your guests? What can you offer each sponsor?
Who might be a good fit as an event partner? What relationship can you have with these brands/individuals?
Small but important details: In this step you can get really crafty and resourceful, for example, if you know you want to have flowers (and you absolutely should, even if they are low key) you may be able to incorporate different sponsors to make that happen. Or, you might simply save money by buying flowers (or having them donated) from a local supermarket and having family or a friend with some deign flair to put them together.
If your business is particularly high tech, you may want to look for opportunities to have sponsored charging stations, wi-fi, etc. at your event.
Before becoming overwhelmed looking for these relationships, develop a branded sponsor or partnership template with the details of your event, your business history, your prediction for the event’s numbers, what you would like, and what you can promise in return.
Plan to have a 10 – 20% contingency for unexpected costs.
Step 3. Pick a Venue
Does it suit your audience?
Does it add value to your event?
Is it within your budget?
Will it provide you with enough space to accommodate your anticipated number of guests?
Will it be simple for people to find? Is there ample parking if guests have to drive?
Step 4. Choose a Date and Time
What makes sense for your audience? You really want to make sure your business's target guests can attend! What does a typical day/week look like for your potential guests? Are there any times or dates you know they’re likely to be busy?
For example, you wouldn’t want to schedule a networking event for event coordinators on the weekend, because that’s when industry professionals are busy working their own events.
Also, don’t forget to check your calendar for holidays and look out locally and nationally for other industry events or functions that may compete for your audience’s time.
Step 5. Develop an Event
Who are we? What do we do? Keep it simple and easy to communicate quickly.
Why are we advertising/hosting an event or communicating to our audience?
to introduce your brand/product?
to tell current users that there’s something new to look out for?
Who are we talking too?
Think of their mindset, lifestyle, personality, etc. What makes them tick?
What do they currently think? As in, how do they feel about your brand or your category?
What do we want them to think?
What’s the single most important thing we can tell them?
Just one thing!
Why should they believe it? Get some factual support.
Are there any creative guidelines for the event?
What should the event feel like?
What shouldn’t it look like?
Have you promised a partner anything?
Are there any venue restrictions?
Step 6. Make a Promotion Plan
Social media blasts leading up to the event and even create event specific hashtags, but go next level by providing “moments to keep,” such as professional photos of your guests, or a fun photo booth, or a bottle of wine won in a raffle, or a goodie bag . . . Why? Because if you’re going to bother putting your logo somewhere, put it on something that goes home !
Don’t forget to use your social media accounts to communicate announcements or any changes to your event. You should also monitor social platforms for any questions or complaints.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to bloggers/websites/brands that may allow you to sponsor a post (or create a guest post) on their site leading up to your business event. Many sponsor packages include valuable social media mentions. Just make sure each partner/sponsor is a good fit for your audience and message.
Think of your audience and where you can find them online and in person. From the moment you conceive the idea of your business launch event, you should be in/on the forums, blogs, networks, organisations, and groups that your audience is. How else will they meet you? How else will they hear your valuable message?