Even though you might think it’s simple enough to launch an event for your new business, there are many things you shouldn’t forget when it actually comes time to plan everything.
1. Make it Exclusive
Invite-only events offer a sense of prestige… and the intrigue will attract potential guests! Ensuring your event has a strict invite-only policy will make sure only the right people are present at your event, for networking and reputational purposes.
2. Factor in Networking
Creating the right environment for networking is one of the most important aspects of any business launch event – it’s one of the biggest reasons people will come! Be sure that your DJ is briefed not to go too wild with the music choices and/or volume so people can chat (if you do want to party hard, consider having a quiet chill space as well) but don’t neglect the fun, party-like environment altogether to help guests relax.
3. A Broad Focus Guest List
When compiling the guest list, make sure you target the right audience for showcasing your new business. You should include an invite to selected local press (pro tip: offer them extra passes as an incentive for them to join with friends) to ensure your launch enjoys optimum media coverage and that people notice your business.
4. Incorporate a Theme
Make sure it’s relevant! A theme for your evening can really tie together the proceedings of an event in a fun and entertaining way, but there would be no sense in having a ‘pirate-themed party’ for the launch of a new laptop, unless the brand references this somehow!
5. Setup is Key
Even if you’ve found the best DJ in town, organized an amazing prize giveaway and a speaker to host it all, none of this will matter unless you set up all audio/visuals ahead of time! Sound and lighting checks are absolutely essential to ensure everything will go smoothly during the party and don’t even think about trying to take care of it all yourself; hire a professional who knows exactly what they’re doing and can fix technical issues if anything goes wrong.
6. Varied Menu
As well as signature or themed cocktails for your event (these make a great talking point for guests), make sure you have a decent non-alcoholic option as well. When it comes to catering, be sure to devise a menu that accommodates all dietary requirements, including halal/kosher, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan. One way to tackle this is to email guests in advance asking them to get in touch with any allergies or intolerances they may have and, if need be, you can have your caterer prepare separate dishes for them.
7. Pick the Right Time
If you’re hosting a product launch or something slightly more interactive/sales based, you might want to go for a daytime party. Similarly, if the focus is more of a celebration (i.e. club atmosphere, a DJ and so on) opt for early evening. Ensure guests have arrived by a certain cut off point, so that proceedings can get underway without people arriving late and causing an interruption.
8. Presentable Handouts
Once you have guests into your event, be sure to give them something to read or takeaway that sums up the vision and aims of your business. You want attendees to leave with a lasting impression of your enterprise, so forget printing anything off on your computer at home. For brochure printing, use a service such as print24 to ensure your handouts look 100% professional.
9. Keep the Momentum Going
As well as giving guests handouts and takeaways, another tip is to make sure you use the same channels that were used to promote your event in advance to remind everyone about your business and provide updates afterward. If you ask guests to leave their emails or business cards, you can create a mailing list to provide them with interesting developments going forward using an email marketing tool like MailChimp.
10. Give Thanks
Last of all, but perhaps most importantly, be sure to publicly thank the people who made your business dream possible, particularly if they’re present at the launch event. Giving thanks reminds your team and guests that you’re humble and grateful for their support and attendance, and will ultimately leave the room with a good impression of you.