If you’re planning a launch party you want to be a smash hit, whether it’s for a new product or a new business, it will take some meticulous planning. There are lots of different things to plan for, and you might feel overwhelmed before you even start. If you want some help, here’s a quick step-by-step guide of what you’ll need to formulate an effective plan.

#1—An Objective

What is the ultimate goal of your launch party? Is it for opening day of a new business, or the release of a new product line, or something else? These is the very first question you and everyone else involved ask and answer. You can narrow down your launch party’s primary objective:

  • Increasing sales
  • Get more media attention and contacts to cover your business
  • Generate more brand awareness among customers and clients
  • Establish strong connections with key sponsors

You’ll probably want to achieve more than one of those goals, but thinking about each should help you figure out where your main priority is.

#2—A Budget

You’ll be surprised at how many things you will have to pay for, so at the start of your planning you should start making a thorough list of everything you’ll need. Here are the most important things:

  • Venue—space/building rental, parking, staff, etc
  • Food—drinks, appetizers, meals, giveaways, etc
  • Decorations—tables, chairs, flowers, centerpieces, etc
  • Signage—banners, posters, boards, signs, programs, etc
  • Promotion—online, print, radio and TV advertisements

Aside from these, you should also be seeking out potential sponsors to know what material or financial support you can get for your event.

#3—A Venue

When choosing a venue to host your launch party, you should balance the desire to be unique and flashy with the ability to be accessible to your potential customers and invitees. Make sure you consider the following:

  • Parking—are there enough spots for your desired audience size and will they have to pay?
  • Budget—does the cost to rent the venue fit with the budget you planned?
  • Location—is it easy to find and get to for your invite list?
  • Style—does it suit your target audience, your brand, and/or your product?

Make sure when picking your venue that you can rent it at a date and time that does not conflict with the available hours or other industry events. You want everyone you invite to be able to show up.

#4—A Promotional Plan

Once you have the logistics planned out, you need to start getting the message out to build interest. The most important question you need to answer for people is: why should they care about you. Try to answer that question in a simple and cohesive branding message. Once you have this, you can start putting it out to various promotional platforms:

  • Social media—promoted posts, videos, a custom event hashtag, guest blogs and articles, etc
  • Print—flyers, posters, mail campaigns, newspaper and magazine ads or articles, etc
  • Media—television and radio

Have your sponsors help out, and try inviting a few bloggers or journalists to attend and cover the event. If you have a network of connections in the industry, you can use them to further spread the word and maybe help share news or post promotional articles.

#5—A Meaningful Giveaway

You’ll need something to give to those in attendance that they will remember. Pens, mugs, stationery or other cheap items with your logo slapped on is not good enough and it shouldn’t just be a sample of your product. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but it should be relevant and meaningful to your business. Some common ideas that you can take and give your own twist:

  • Food & drink—chocolates, spirits, coffee, tea, or something else that’s quality and tasty
  • Apparel—Shirts, hats, or bags can have your logo on them
  • Green—tree seedlings, grow pots or bottles, natural candles or soaps
  • Tech—with the right budget or sponsors you can get good gadgets for a reasonable price

Some of these sorts of things would work better for different types of businesses. T-shirts would great for a new brewery, for example, but for a tech-based company it might not have as much of an impact.

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