20 Powerful Product Launch Event Ideas
Give your products the launch they deserve. Discover product launch event examples from leading brands like Google, Moz, and Magento and more.
New product on the way? Congratulations, this is an exciting time for your company. All your hard work is about to pay off — if you handle the launch correctly, that is. You do have a launch plan, right?
One of the most successful ways to release a new product is through an event. But don't worry, product launch events don't have to be scary. Whether you are planning an in-person event or one that is powered by virtual event software—they just take a bit of strategic planning.
In this blog post we'll look at 20 product launch event examples and why they could be so effective for your company.
What Is a Product Launch Event?
Simply put, a product launch is when a company brings a new product to market. It's the moment in time when a new product offering is made available to the public for the first time.
A successful product launch starts well before the actual release date and the effects of one will be felt long afterwards. It will build anticipation, facilitate an initial influx of sales, and establish momentum that a company can then expand upon.
As we mentioned previously, one of the best ways to launch a new product is through an event. Some of the largest companies in the world have been doing it for years. You can do it too.
In the next section, we'll reference 20 events and the specific elements that have made them so effective. Take notes. These product launch ideas and user conference tips will help your company host an amazing event.
20 Powerful Product Launch Event Ideas
The following company events have been carefully selected. Some are traditional product launch event. Others are user conferences with a product launch element. But each has been extremely successful and there's a lot to be learned. Let's dive in.
1. Build Anticipation - Apple Worldwide Developers Conference
We'll start with the biggest company in the world: Apple. What can we learn from their conferences and events? A lot, actually. Take their latest event, the Worldwide Developers Conference, held at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York City in 2018.
Before the conference took place, nobody (outside of Apple, of course) knew exactly what would be announced. This is typical for all Apple events and is a great example of building anticipation. Both the media and general public go crazy speculating what the tech giant has up its sleeve.
This tactic works because Apple has such a long history of satisfying customers. They've earned the right to be mysterious and build anticipation in this way. What about your company? You may not work for the largest brand in the universe, but your customers hopefully are enthusiastic about your brand.
2. Create a Specific Atmosphere - Pulse by Gainsight
Pulse is one of the "biggest Customer Success learning and networking conference in the world." That's quite a claim, but Gainsight backs it up, year in and year out. How?
One of the most ingenious elements of the event is the atmosphere that the organizers of Pulse create for event attendees.
Pulse is a ton of fun. Sure, the best minds in their respective field share invaluable insights and there's a lot of knowledge to be gleaned. But the conference doesn't feel like work. It's a retreat; a break from everyday life. Case in point: the legendary afterparties Gainsight hosts.
How can your company create an intriguing atmosphere for your product launch? Answer that and your event will be well on its way to event success.
3. Add Exclusivity - Eureka! By Sisense
How do you make a conference about a mundane topic like business analytics and complex data sound exciting? Do what Sisense does and make it exclusive. Attendance to Eureka! Is invite only.
Growing up, were you ever not invited to a friend's birthday party? For whatever reason, everyone else got an invitation except for you. Remember how badly you wanted to go? On the flip side, being one of only a few people invited to a special event is something to be cherished.
Why? Because exclusivity can be a strong driver of awareness and attendance for events.
How can you add an exclusive element to your product launch event? Maybe you only invite your best customers. Perhaps you invite anyone willing to buy a ticket, but reserve a special lounge area for honored guests. There are many options to explore.
4. Find the Difference - MozCon
Moz is synonymous with marketing expertise. It's no surprise then that MozCon is consistently one of the top rated marketing conferences of the year. What's their secret sauce?
Besides being incredibly knowledgeable and generous with that knowledge, Moz has a distinct style all their own. From co-founder Rand Fishkin's legendary Whiteboard Friday segments, to company mascot, Roger the friendly robot, Moz is totally unique.
What makes your company different? Are there any fun quirks you can promote? Doing so will help your product launch event stand out and endear your brand to its customers.
5. Partner Up - The Growth Acceleration Summit by Zoominfo
Sometimes the best way to get people to your event is to partner with a few amazing speakers. ZoomInfo has really taken this idea to heart and it's one of the main reasons people love their Growth Acceleration Summit so much.
The speakers at their 2018 conference included Magic Johnson, Grant Cardone, Neil Patel, and more.Who can your company partner with for its product launch event? Even if you don't have the funds for an "A Lister" like the ones just mentioned, you can still use this tactic.
Perhaps there's a local expert you can partner with. Maybe one of your employees has a dynamite approach to a specific problem he/she would like to share. Get creative; we're sure you'll think of something.
6. Host from a Unique Venue - Imagine by Magento
Geared towards the e-commerce industry, Imagine has been inspiring attendees for the past nine years. It offers amazing learning and networking opportunities, while expertly promoting the Magento product at the same time.
But this event has one special benefit we haven't mentioned yet: it's held at the award-winning, Wynn Resort in Las Vegas, NV.
Event-goers learn how to grow their careers and companies while staying in five star, luxury accommodations. Not to mention all the other experiences Vegas has to offer. When planning your product launch event, consider hosting it in a unique venue.
7. Know Your Audience - Ramp by InsightSquared
InsightSquared offers revenue intelligence software for marketing teams. Its yearly conference, RAMP, excels because it's highly targeted. The event marketing team knows exactly who their target market is (revenue operations professionals) and caters everything to that demographic.
Who does your company serve? When launching a new product, don't make the event everything to everybody. Cater to your unique audience and serve them to the best of your ability.
8. Personalize the Attendee Experience - HR Redefined by Namely
Every attendee received a customized nameplate from Brooklyn-based design firm, Dirty bandits, who specialize in typography.
In the grand scheme of event planning, small details like this may seem trivial and unnecessary. After all, event-goers are coming to learn and network, not for the free gifts they'll receive. But this bit of personalization really goes a long way.
How can your company personalize the attendee experience at your product launch event?
9. Create a Branded Hashtag - Dreamforce by Salesforce
Dreamforce is a massive annual event, boasting over 2,000 sessions on a range of different topics. How was Salesforce able to grow this conference to such a large scale? One of the keys to their success is their strategic use of social media.
Event organizers do a fantastic job using hashtags to create a large collection of attendee-generated media and comments. Something as simple as the hashtag "#DF18" can go viral if every event-goer is encouraged to use it.
Your product launch event can use social media in strategic ways too. Consider creating a branded hashtag to help drum up excitement — both before and during the event.
10. Amplify Your Message - The "Made By Google" Event
On October 9th, 2018, Google hosted a product launch event named "Made by Google" in New York City. At the gathering they announced their new line of devices. In order to build awareness and anticipation for their big announcements, Google contacted many of the major media outlets. News spread quickly.
While your company may not have the same clout as Google, there are plenty of blogs, newspapers, and the like that would be willing to write about your product launch event. Email a bunch of them with the details and help spread the word.
11. Provide a Hands-on Experience - SuccessCon by Infusionsoft
SuccessCon is the largest gathering of Infusionsoft users in the world. Attendees get to learn from world class experts and improve at their craft over this three day conference.
One thing Infusionsoft does incredibly well with this event is allowing guests to acquire hands-on experience with the company's software. Not only does this provide event-goers with enhanced skill-sets, it also helps new, possibly on-the-fence users, become die-hard fans.
At your product launch event, let guests try out your company's new offering. Put it in their hands and allow them to experiment. They'll love it.
12. Put Technology to Work - MAX by Adobe
MAX, a creativity conference for users of Adobe's Creative Cloud, is quite the spectacle. Not only do event goers get front row seats to the latest Adobe product and update announcements, they're also treated to an impressive array of visuals and technology.
Speaking of tech, let's talk about one of the biggest MAX benefits: archived content. Recordings of every keynote and many of the individual sessions are posted online right after the conference has concluded. This allows attendees to "relive" their experience.
How can your product launch event better utilize technology? Whether you decide to record the whole shebang and post it online, or use event software to make sure your launch runs smoothly, tech can greatly improve your release.
13. Go Virtual - Digital Agency Day by HubSpot and Unbounce
Source: Digital Agency Day
Digital Agency Day is a joint effort, but that's not the lessons we want to learn here. No, we want to talk about how this event is hosted online. That's right, DAD is a digital conference.
HubSpot and Unbounce partnered together to bring attendees valuable information from industry leaders like Google, LinkedIn, and Sprout Social. Not to mention the wisdom that each hosting company was able to share as well.
Perhaps your product launch event would be better hosted on the internet. It may be worth considering for some companies. Especially since all the content can be easily recorded and used later as promotional material.
14. Put Networking Front-and-Center: Social Media Marketing World
Social Media Marketing World is the planet's top social platform conference. Attendees learn from the industry experts about best tactics and cutting edge strategies. But most event-goers would agree, the real value is in the networking opportunities.
SMMW is specifically designed to facilitate relationships. To do this, they've gotten incredibly creative by offering Slack groups, table talks, and networking exercise classes. They even have dedicated staff ready to help attendees make connections.
Can you think of ways to facilitate networking opportunities at your product launch event? Even a simple email invitation notifying your tribe about confirmed expert guests may be enough to convince people to attend. The networking opportunity will be too good to pass up.
15. Hijack a Larger Event - South by Southwest (SXSW)
SXSW is a music and film festival, tech conference, and business networking event. It has a little bit for everyone and that's the beauty of it.
When planning your company's product launch event, ask yourself how you can bring different people together to create an exciting, diverse atmosphere. For example, a SaaS company could invite it's top customers, local business leaders looking for investment opportunities, and tech writers looking for their next big scoop.
16. Get Competitive - Disrupt by TechCrunch
Disrupt is an annual conference for startups hosted by TechCrunch. In the past, the event has played host to amazing speakers such as Marc Benioff (Salesforce), Jessica Livingston (Y Combinator), and Steph Curry (NBA Superstar).
One of the conference's biggest draws is the "Startup Battlefield Competition", where early stage startups compete for a prize of $100,000 and media coverage. Past winners include Dropbox, Zenefits, and FitBit.
What about adding a competition angle to your product launch event? It doesn't have to be in-depth — a quick trivia game with the winner earning your company's new product for free would work just fine.
17. Feature Star Power - "I Create Music" Expo by ASCAP
ASCAP is a performance rights organization that represents Beyonce, Justin Bieber, and Meghan Trainor, among thousands of others. Every year they host a conference called the "I Create Music" Expo to inspire and train songwriters.
One of the biggest reasons musicians keep attending, year after year, is because ASCAP partners with famous artists and industry titans to host can't miss sessions. Often times, aspiring songwriters have an opportunity to learn from and even meet their heroes.
While your company may not be able to bring in a world-famous celebrity, you may be able to partner with local experts (inside or outside your company) to share valuable insights with your product launch event guests.
18. Tap into Your Local Community - GrowCo by Inc.
GrowCo is an annual conference for entrepreneurs. Founders go to learn from industry heavyweights like Daymond John (FUBU, Shark Tank) and Cal Henderson (Slack), network with their piers, and feel empowered.
Inc., founded in 1979, was able to grow their event to its current status partly by leveraging their decades of experience.
What about your business? Has it supported community projects for a few years, or partnered with other companies in the area? These are things you can leverage to improve your product launch event.
19. Inspire - Next Gen Summit
Earlier we said that your product launch event has a better chance of succeeding if caters to a specific group of people. That's exactly what Next Gen Summit does. But they don't just cater to youth, they inspire them.
Speakers at their events include company founders, star athletes, and corporate game-changers. Attendees learn a lot, but more importantly, they're inspired to go create their own dream business.
This is powerful. Inspire your product launch event guests by showing them the amazing potential of your company's new offering.
20. Feature a Live Performance - 36/86 by Launch Nashville
Launch Tennessee is on a mission to make Tennessee the most startup-friendly state in the Union. Their annual event, 36/86 (the map coordinates of Nashville), helps to accomplish this by educating and inspiring business owners.
But no Nashville event would be complete without live music. 36/86 hosts numerous after parties and brings in national touring acts to entertain conference attendees.
Your product launch event might benefit from some sweet jams as well. You don't need to go all out. A talented local artist may be all your gathering needs to set the mood.
Key Takeaways for Your Next Product Launch Event
That's it, 20 product launch event ideas you can use to improve your next launch. Let's quickly recap the key takeaways:
- Build up anticipation before your event. Exclusivity, well-time press releases and competitions can help build buzz.
- Create an intriguing atmosphere. Your event brand is what people will think of when they think of your product launch event. The venue, the speakers, the design and the speakers will all contribute to the wow-power of your event.
- Know your target market. Whether your company is B2B or B2C will influence the tone of your event and how you personalize the attendee experience.
- Personalize the attendee experience. Through event technology, hands-on sessions, and one-on-one access to product experts at your company product launch events have the potential to create a meaningful experience for attendees.
- Obviously, you won't be able to use every single one of these tips. The good news is, you don't have to. Even just a few of these tactics can improve your event. So choose a product launch example that works best for your company and go for it.
When putting together a product launch event, it helps to have the right event software features on your side. Demo the world’s most loved event software and see if it’s the right fit for your needs.