Planning and executing a company’s grand opening or product launch is one of the best ways to create excitement, buzz, and interest for your products or services. It has been said, and professionals notice, that the majority of businesses that close within the first two years did not have an official grand opening event. Having a successful grand opening can set the pace. There are ultimately 5 secrets for planning a successful product launch or grand opening.
1. Identify the Target Group – In order for your event to be successful in the long run you need to ensure that the correct potential customers are in attendance. For this, consider your typical customer such as: young children, busy adults, middle aged women, etc.
2. Date Selection and Choosing a Time – Selecting a date and time for your grand opening is a very important step in the planning process and sets the atmosphere and style of the event.
- Avoid overlapping with major community events by researching county calendars within your area.
- Avoid holding your event around a major holiday. If you are planning an event around a holiday time, it will work best to separate your event 10 days + away from the holiday date.
- Morning events should always be after 8:30 am
- Late evening functions typically tend not to work as best on weekdays so always try to end your event before 9:00 pm.
3. Create the Buzz – Advertising the grand opening event through press releases, social media, ads, and websites helps create the buzz for your event. Below are a few items that in turn create a power list for building social media buzz.
- Create an event logo that includes your company logo, event name, date, and time. This should also include the theming of the event and what it is.
- Decide on an event hashtag to create and utilize.
- Create a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram event page. It is great to utilize an RSVP tool so that you will be able to see how many will be in attendance.
4. Development of the Event and Program Planning – Plan events and activities for guests, such as a ribbon cutting or others that may go along with the theme. You will want to make sure you include a brief program which will add focus to the event; Make sure that it outlines the recognition to those involved and permits the opportunity to explain more about your business.
5. Be Prepared – While planning and executing a successful product launch or grand opening, you always need to remember that preparation is key. “You only get one chance to make a good first impression, so make it count”, a few items that will help ensure this are below:
- Always check on permits and if they are needed for your event.
- Follow and watch your budget carefully so that there are no surprises once the event is complete
- Develop and stay with a distinct theme that you see being a driving factor to get an audience to attend the event
- Make sure you have enough hands on support the day of the event
Overall, hosting a successful grand opening event gives you the chance to showcase your product or services as part of a marketing and business plan. It is something that should not be thrown together quickly or you could end up wasting your time and money. Hosting an exciting kickoff launches your business faster, and builds awareness much more quickly. Ultimately, a successful grand opening will ensure you won’t be one of those companies that opens silently and then disappears just as noiselessly.