Launching a new product requires some kind of event to really create a buzz around it.  A product launch event should showcase your new product to its full advantage in front of an interested audience.  An industry-specific trade show is therefore the perfect place to hold a product launch event.  You already have a captive audience from your industry who are in buying mode.  Research shows that 81% of trade show attendees have buying authority, nowhere else will you find such an enthusiastic, ready-made audience for your product launch event.

What is a product launch event?

A new product launch event is a place to launch a product to the market.  Creating an event to launch a product will get people talking about it, both in person and on social media.  You may also make your first sales.  It’s important to hold a product launch event in a venue that is related to the product, which is why an industry specific trade show can be the perfect opportunity.

You don’t want to make people travel a long way for your event so holding it at a trade show they are already attending can be beneficial.  A product launch event agenda should allow attendees to interact with your product and see how it works, this will generate interest and may make sales.

Some tips for launching a new product at a trade show

1. Choose the right show

You need to ensure your target audience is going to be at the trade show so make sure you do your research.  The event organiser should be able to give you some information about who the trade show attracts, you can also research it online.  See if you can get an exhibitor list – if all your competitors are on there, chances are you should be too.  Speak to someone who has exhibited there in the past to find out who it attracts.  If you are able to, attend the event yourself before using it as a product launch event.

The type of trade show you choose will reflect your goals – if you want to make a lot of sales or gather a lot of leads, a larger event will be the most appropriate.  However, if your goal is to introduce yourself and your products to a specific market, network and develop partnerships, a smaller, niche event might be better.

2. Source an eye-catching stand

The objective of your product launch event is to attract as much attention as possible, so you need a stand that is going to do this for you.  Large format graphics, high-level branding and text that can be read across the hall will all help draw attention.  Think about going taller than your neighbours and using rotating headers or hanging signs, these will all help you stand out.  Don’t include too much text on your stand, no-one will read it and it will just look too busy.

Clever use of lighting can really draw attention to specific areas of your stand, like your products.  You can include back-lit product showcases within your stand to draw attention to your products.  Or have separate plinths towards the front of the stand to show them off.

If your product launch event is the start of exhibiting at a series of events it is a good idea to source a modular stand that can be reconfigured and re-used at all the events.  Custom-built stands are not only expensive, but wasteful as they generally can’t be stored and re-used easily, so are often binned after the show.  A good custom modular stand will give you the unique, stand-out look of a custom-built, but enable you to store, transport it and re-use it at the next event.  At Quadrant2Design we offer a free re-configuring service for your stand to show how you can re-use it.

3. Get the support you need

It’s true, a modular stand can be self-built without the need for specialist tools and machinery.  But it adds another layer of stress to the event organisation.  Will you be able to do it properly without damaging it?  If you are incorporating high level branding or rotating headers it’s best to get someone who knows what they are doing to help.

A good exhibition stand contractor will take care of all the logistics of getting the stand to the event, build it for you, make sure you have completed all the necessary forms that the organiser requires, and then dismantle it and take it away.  If you are self-building you need to complete a risk assessment too which can be complicated.  But your stand contractor will do this too if using them.

UK stand designers pre-building display booth

UK stand designers pre-building display booth

4. Have activities on your stand

Have activities planned as part of your product launch event agenda, it should be as entertaining as possible to attract attention.  Demonstrate your product if possible, or if that isn’t an option have demos running on TVs or iPads for visitors to view.

Run a contest to win your product or something similar in exchange for visitor details, this will always attract attention.  You need someone who will entertain the crowds, so if that is not for you it’s a good idea to hire someone who will be charismatic and entertaining enough to draw in the crowds.

Have promotional items to hand out – try to think of something more original than a pen.  Branded merchandise that is useful, like a memory stick or re-useable coffee cup, will ensure your branding lives on in peoples’ minds.

5. Promote your product launch event on social media

Before the event, market your product launch event on social media to drum up interest.  You need to start this several weeks prior to the event.  Use the same hashtag as the event organiser to get your posts in front of a wider audience.

You may also want to email all your contacts and let them know about the product launch event.  Issuing a press release or two is also a good idea.

6. Post-event follow-up

Don’t neglect to follow up the leads you take at the product launch event, otherwise it has all been wasted.  Email and call the people who expressed an interest in your product to thank them for their time and ask if they’d like any further information.

Continue to post on social media to remind people of your product.  To drum up sales you could have a special offer for the first people to buy.

When launching a new product the objective of a product launch event is to attract as much interest as possible.  Using a trade show for your event will give you a captive audience in buying mode who are from your target industry.  But you need to pick the right show, source an eye-catching stand, provide entertainment and market your product launch event if it is to be a success.

For help with your next trade show, speak to one of our experts on 01202 723 500 or email