Blog » How to Survive CES
How to Survive CES
The annual International Consumer Electronics Show (CES)in Las Vegas is typically the place you (and hundreds of thousands of other people) can see the year’s most innovative and newly launched products. The 2013 show was no different. According to the organizers, the 2013 CES was the largest in the show’s history with 1.92 million square feet of exhibit space and 3,200 exhibitors unveiling 20,000 new products for 150,000 attendees.
Talk about breaking through the clutter!
It’s safe to say our team was a little nervous flying to the show, as a few things were tied up with legal departments still, the client’s new branding was only a few weeks old, and a few of us had never launched a product at CES. We learned as we went along what it takes to have a successful product launch at the show, especially from a public relations standpoint.
Here are some of the important things we learned:
Pre-show media events are a great way to showcase a new product.
• We exhibited the new product at both CES Unveiled and Pepcom Digital Experience! and had great results. Fifteen minutes after the first press event opened, the product was featured in prominent trade media (Laptop Magazine and Engadget). The following day, several stories appeared in national mainstream media (New York Times and Wall Street Journal). Much of our coverage resulted from these two events, and we were able to build relationships with media during both events.
Know your 30 second pitch.
• Sometimes you only have a few seconds to convince someone to come see a demo and hear about the product. Many times we found ourselves scanning the crowd for press badges and chasing (stalking?) reporters to try to bring them to the booth for a demo and hopefully an interview. In such a chaotic environment, pitches should be short, memorized and ready to go.
Bring plenty of business cards and press kits.
• Along the same lines as the 30 second pitch, always have business cards and extra press kits handy and available. You never know who you’ll meet on the shuttle, at the hotel restaurant or in the elevator. You don’t want to find yourself sitting next to a reporter on the Vegas Monorail without any information to give them.
• Although the show can be overwhelming, be sure to take breaks and see what other companies are showcasing. Don’t pass up an opportunity to attend one of the nightly post-show events, and try to take some time each day to regroup and relax.
CES is truly an experience (to say the least), and its vastness is overwhelming. You will be tired and sore, and your face will hurt from smiling. Even after all of the last minute revisions, tracking FedEx shipments, and waiting in the never-ending shuttle line, it will all be worth it. After our client’s product won three prominent awards and was included in a multitude of “best of CES” roundups, we can proudly say CES 2013 was a success.