An innovative new product deserves an innovative launch

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In the B2B foodservice space, many manufacturers leverage industry trade shows to launch new products. And although the timing is great, all the ‘new’, ‘innovative’ and ‘must-see’ products can start to look alike after a while. That is, unless your launch looks very different.

At last month’s National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago, our team saw a lot of new products. But one launch stood out to me as really effective. Not because the new product was great, but because the company did a great job of demonstrating a rather abstract idea at the core of this new product – something that is often hard to do.

Explaining an ‘intangible’ isn’t the easiest thing to do, but this company employed three unique tactics to get people engaged and talking about the new product:

  1. An interactive station drew attention to the booth and the product. A special display with the inner workings of the product was front and center. The display showed the hard-to-describe process the product uses and was accompanied by a step-by-step video that engaged visitors.
  2. If that didn’t do the trick, the company enticed visitors to enter the booth with its ‘power station,’ outfitted with an array of phone and device chargers. (SIDE NOTE: How many times have you been at a trade show and your phone died? I personally borrowed a co-worker’s portable charger more than once over the course of my two-day NRA stint.) At the charging station were interactive iPad presentations that once again detailed the product and allowed visitors to try their hands at the new product’s user interface.
  3. Finally, and perhaps coolest of all, VR goggles were at the ready to take each visitor INTO the product and through the hard-to-articulate process – giving them a front-row seat to seeing how the product worked.

This product launch was among the most effective uses of booth space I’ve seen. And it gave the visitor the opportunity to experience the product in a way that simply isn’t possible with a simple product demonstration.

The next time your company launches an innovative, game-changing product, be sure the method by which you introduce it is just as innovative.

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