Using Marcom Events, Public Relations For New Product Launches

Using Marketing Events, Public Relations For New Product Launches

Disclaimer: Pooki’s Mahi’s “Guide: Using Marcom Events, Public Relations For New Product Launches” provides insight to Pooki’s Mahi new product introduction and go-to-market launch frameworks, type of marketing events and public relations partners used to introduce new 100% Kona coffee pods or single serve tea products to existing customers, distributors and brand advocates. The guide is a comprehensive review and also provides insight to how each marketing event helped Pooki’s Mahi grow brand awareness.

Pooki’s Mahi guide does not cover:

  1. Reviews of firms offering celebrity gifting services or gift bag services
  2. Pricing to launch products through an awards show gift bag
  3. Suggest vendors (marketing firms) offering “access to celebrities.”


Les Magsalay-Zeller is the Founder/CEO of Pooki’s Mahi. Pooki’s Mahi’s Founder/CEO expertise is in new product launches.  Pooki’s Mahi has a detailed strategy and product launch plan for new product launches.   Pooki’s Mahi™, The PMO Practice™, and Matcha Matcha Man™ are trademarks of Pooki’s Mahi.  New Product Launch introductions, Go To Market Planning and supply chain frameworks are protected under VA 1-294-170.  Pooki’s Mahi has a zero tolerance policy for individuals or firms engaged in cyber-bullying, slander or cyber-criminal activities.

Summary:  Pooki’s Mahi’s “Guide: Using Marcom Events, Public Relations For New Product Launches” provides insight to Pooki’s Mahi new product introduction and go-to-market launch frameworks, type of marketing events and public relations partners used to introduce new 100% Kona coffee pods or single serve tea products to existing customers, distributors and brand advocates. The guide is a comprehensive review and also provides insight to how each marketing event helped Pooki’s Mahi grow brand awareness.

This guide is not the “secret sauce” and may not work for all products. Use Pooki’s Mahi’s guide to marketing events and public relations to understand the various marketing events and how each type could drive brand awareness.

Our Process & New Product Introduction Framework:
Pooki’s Mahi follows a patented framework to launch new products to market that involves roadmap planning, digital marketing, and timelines.  The new product launch framework includes cross functional agreements from product development (ecommerce), digital marketing (marcom events, product story) and operations (supply chain management). Pooki’s Mahi launches new products Q1 and Q2 of each year.  Pilot launches or limited releases occur in Q3.  No launches in Q4. - it is suicidal to launch in Q4 because the focus should be on selling through existing inventory built from a master demand schedule.

Suppliers, vendors, and core Pooki’s Mahi operation functions live on a schedule.  New product launches are approved the prior year during the roadmap planning process.  Marketing events require a 12-18 month calendar.  Marcom events are approved 6-9 months prior to the estimated launch date.

Advise:  Product launches fall into two categories:  Pilot Launch (also known as Beta, Pre-Production or Pre-Launch) or New Product Introduction (major release).  Do not spend money on a marketing event if the product is not ready.  

A Pooki’s Mahi considers updated or new 100% Kona coffee pods are ready to launch when:

  1. 100% Kona coffee pods are ready to ship from the distribution center.
  2. Simulated an end-to-end test 4-5X. This means ordering 1 box of 100% Kona coffee pods from all channels, receiving it and running a  FAI (First Article Inspection) for the order.
  3. Product pages or Customer Success knowledge base articles for 100% Kona coffee pods has been updated.
  4. Pooki’s Mahi transportation team provide a report on the manufacturing site and the disty fulfillment centers.

In general Pooki’s Mahi does not trust copackers or manufactures that do not consistently meet commitments.  Pooki’s Mahi’s Founder/CEO run an overall-schedule. Manufacturing does not make the final call on product availability.   


Part 1 Overview: Marcom Events, Public Relations For New Products

The events used to showcase Pooki’s Mahi new product introductions fall under “marcomm” - short for “Market Communications” - events. Pooki’s Mahi owns creating brand awareness, and driving customers to fall in the love with the product by creating “buzz” or excitement.

Pooki’s Mahi hosts or participates in 24 events per year.  This is about 2 events per month. Pooki’s Mahi events are hosted by Hollywood producers for Oscar gift bags, (approved) private label platform for  private label distributors and by Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO for new private label products roadshows. Pooki’s Mahi is a frugal company; the budget for marcom events is very small compared to the budget allocated for digital marketing.

Pooki’s Mahi uses a combination of digital marketing, marketing events and traditional press media to communicate brand messaging, product updates or introduce a new product on the private label products platform.  Traditional press releases drives awareness for Kona coffee pods or single serve tea pods product updates.  Marketing events creates excitement for new customers.  Existing customers tend to purchase Pooki’s Mahi's 100% Kona coffee pods or single serve tea pods.

Part 2 Definition:  Marcom Events For New Products or Product Line

Pooki’s Mahi defines marcom events as a marketing platform to obtain creatives, sound bites and to introduce new customers to Pooki’s Mahi's 100% Kona coffee pods, custom private label tea pods or black/white truffle salts. Examples of marcom events include non-profit charities, sporting events, celebrity gift lounges, award show gift bags like Oscar gift bags, tradeshows like Specialty Foods or Private Label Products or International Expo West. Selecting the marcom event is dependent on how well the company understands the existing customer base. For example, Pooki’s Mahi repeat customer base and subscribers are affluent, love high tech gadgets, visiting sporting events and watching primetime TV.  As a result Pooki’s Mahi will consider attending an award show or craft a gift bag for sporting events because customers want to see photos and videos of celebrities with Pooki’s Mahi luxury Kona coffee pods, artisanal single serve tea pods or white truffle salts. Pooki’s Mahi will not attend a conference that does not relate to the existing customer base like a Specialty Food Show or an Animal Award Show.

Do marketing events generate revenue?
Marketing is always tied to many metrics. The main metrics are sales and inventory turns. Marcom events do not generate revenue. It’s to get potentially new customers excited about the brand and products in the new product launch.  

Marketing Events For New Products:
Pooki’s Mahi is careful in selecting the marketing event to introduce updated Kona coffee pods or to launch new products. Pooki’s Mahi thoroughly vets vendors hosting the event.

  1. It takes an average of 6-9 months or longer for Pooki’s Mahi to approve a vendor.  
  2. Vendors must provide a rolling calendar of events in 12-18 month increments.
  3. Pooki’s Mahi is booked from January through September at events with previous commitments.
  4. Pooki’s Mahi approves marketing events the prior year because successful marcom events are dependent on how well the plan was executed.
  5. Piss poor planning - “I want your products at next month’s events” - will never generate the intended buzz or interest from new customers.

 

Part 3 Definition:  Public Relations For New Product

Pooki’s Mahi creates the PR - short for public relations - buzz in the media.

Definition: Public Relations
Pooki’s Mahi defines public relations as the individual or firm that owns strategic communications like product messaging, brand messaging, new product introductions, new product launches, go-to-market partnerships, or announcing accomplishments to customers or  businesses. Pooki’s Mahi owns and drives strategic communications to the media using an approved technology platform partner to share the news.

PR (public relations) is generated from accomplishments, new product launch announcements or marcom events like celebrity gift lounges or the Oscar gift bags.

Examples:

  • Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO introducing the new private label products platform at a roadshow.
  • Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO featured at a TV interview
  • Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO introducing the new sustainable tea pods
  • Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO landing a new retailer carrying 100% Kona coffee pods
  • Pooki’s Mahi products featured at a TV show or movie premier
  • Pooki’s Mahi products carried by a prominent hotel chain

 

Part 4 Which Marketing Events Worked For Pooki’s Mahi

Be ultra selective in identifying the marketing event for your product launch. Customers are excited about new product launches if it solves a common problem, luxury (product) brand offering an affordable price or there is better interaction (with the product).  For example, Pooki’s Mahi customers enjoy opening the individually wrapped 100% Kona coffee pods.  Customers can smell the Kona coffee, see the Kona coffee grinds (fine or coarse) and “touch” Kona coffee beans through the sustainable mesh pod. Pooki’s Mahi’s repeat customers or subscribers do not have the same interaction in an enclosed white or black (non-recyclable) plastic cup.

Pooki’s Mahi Marketing Events:
Pooki’s Mahi attended or hosted several different types of marketing events. A “lessons learned” approach was conducted for each marcom event.  The purpose was to determine if the marcom event was worth the time or walk away and focus on Pooki’s Mahi digital marketing activities.

Note: This is not the complete list of marcom events Pooki’s Mahi attended or hosted.

  1. Award Show Gift Bags: People’s Choice Awards, Emmys, Oscars, MTV Movie, Sundance
  2. Celebrity Gift Lounge for TV Shows: Sons of Anarchy, NCIS, NCIS LA, NCIS Nola, Boys Before Friends, anime, cosplay, cooking shows (not hosted by a chef), celebrity chefs
  3. Celebrity Gift Lounge: Musical - Country Music Awards, Country Music Awards, BET
  4. Celebrity Gift Lounge Autographs: TV or movie actors/actresses, retired athletes, athletes
  5. Specialty Food Shows: Winter Fancy Food Show, Summer Fancy Food Show, International Food Expo
  6. Specialty Foods Food Conferences: BITE, Edible Foods Community, Edible Silicon Valley, Beverage Festival
  7. Sporting Events Award Show Gift Lounge: ESPY, Super Bowl, Hall of Fame
  8. Sporting Events Gift Lounge: Football, Basketball, Women's Golf, Mens Golf
  9. Non-Profit: Veterans, Higher Education, Back to School Campaign
  10. Sporting Events: Casino Tournament, World Series Poker, casino events at hotels
  11. Sporting Events Auto Racing: Concours d’ Elegance
  12. High Tech Corporation Mico-Kitchen
  13. High Tech Conferences
  14. Product Roadshows - Private Label Beverage*

Product Roadshows for Pooki’s Mahi private label Kona coffee pods, high end single serve tea pods are not marcom events. Pooki’s Mahi hosts product roadshows with distributors.  Private label buyers are presented with Pooki’s Mahi latest Kona coffee pods, truffle salts and single serve tea pods.  Buyers will either provide an initial purchase order or provide feedback to improve Pooki’s Mahi private label products.

Lessons Learned:  

  1. Success hinges on vendor’s ability to deliver determined by Pooki’s Mahi strict RFI / RFP process. If a company doesn’t have a documented process to vet a vendor’s capabilities, then trust the gut instinct. 
  2. Hire Hollywood Producers; Walk away from vendors without a 12-18 month calendar. Pooki’s Mahi defines a “great vendor” as a company that plans for the future, collaborative and delivers. Pooki’s Mahi refuses to work with vendors who cannot provide a 12-18 month calendar or has a false sense of urgency.  Example - “You need to be in MTV Movie awards next month!” Another example - “I need your products in next week’s event!”
  3. It takes 9-12 months to plan, design and launch new products. Marcom events use a similar timeline. Do not shorten the design process. Taking short cuts will lead to very poor experiences. Celebrities, marcom event attendees will not be happy.
  4. Celebrity Gift Lounge, Award Show Gift Bags, Celebrity Gift Bags returned a positive ROI long term with approved (previously used) vendors.  Actors and actresses from TV shows that won an Emmy resonated with Pooki’s Mahi brand and luxury 100% Kona coffee pods.  Pooki’s Mahi expanded in other country thanks to an introduction by an actor and the associated TV shows. Pooki’s Mahi landed product previews for a major sports team coffee break room. Pooki’s Mahi expanded brand awareness in the Midwest and East Coast by sharing a “Guide to Selecting 100% Kona Coffee Pods” and donating proceeds to a non-profit cause.
  5. Traditional trade shows like specialty food shows, food conferences, high tech conferences, or high tech corporation micro-kitchen returned a negative ROI. Pooki’s Mahi’s subscribers and repeat customers could care less about Pooki’s Mahi’s products at a traditional trade show or a foodie chef show.  However, Pooki’s Mahi customers are more excited to see celebrities and athletes engaged with the latest 100% Kona coffee pods or single serve tea pods.


Part 5 Driving Brand Awareness Via Public Relations

There are a lot of firms who will provide an opportunity to “place” your product in the hands of today’s leading trend-setters like celebrities, athletes, Hollywood Producers, etc. Many companies will claim “known for acquiring top quality products, high profile celebrities and sought-after national press that attend every celebrity gifting suite.” In addition the same firms will claim to “make loads of money” for placing products on a “well known TV network” and grow your revenue and market share.  

Really?!  How?  Beware.

Pooki’s Mahi approved a small list of vetted firms offering product placement, celebrity gift bags or events services to expand product awareness.  Refer to a separate detailed guide on how to vet vendors. At minimum refer to Pooki’s Mahi Apply to Become A Vendor or Supplier.

Pooki’s Mahi creates the PR - short for public relations - buzz in the media because the company owns:

  • Product messaging
  • Brand messaging
  • New product introductions
  • New product launches
  • Go-to-market partnerships
  • Announcing accomplishments to customers or  businesses.

Pooki’s Mahi owns and drives strategic communications to the media using an approved technology platform partner to share buzz and latest news. In addition to owning messaging Pooki’s Mahi, the Silicon Valley startup takes a holistic approach to engage existing and new customers.

Pooki’s Mahi Owns PR Messaging (Strategic Communications):
Pooki’s Mahi owns messaging.  All messaging is reviewed/approved by Pooki’s Mahi Founder/CEO and an executive team that includes legal, accounting, digital marketing and operations. If the host of a celebrity lounge firm wants to write a press release, then have the host submit and launch the press release through their media channels. Do not submit another firm’s press content through your media channel because press news will not come from you.  

Do not let a vendor control your company’s messaging or “strategic communications.” Do not get glamoured by empty promises from untested vendors.  Complete a due diligence on the vendor and require 3+ reference checks. Companies that produce (manufacture) high value products will always receive an invite to present products at events attended by celebrities, athletes and brand influencers like Hollywood producers.

Lessons Learned:

  1. Write press releases with Pooki's Mahi executives having the final approval.
  2. Creatives are designed with the appropriate content; focus is on the high end photography.
  3. Mobile first - Customer Journey: Design catalogues, ecommerce with the end customer and mobile first in mind.
  4. Technology & Digital Marketing: Use Technology to drive digital marketing.

Part 6 Summary

  1. Understand your customer journey and customer persona because these will drive which marketing events will help new product launches.
  2. Create and own all types of messaging - brand messaging, product messaging, etc. - for public relations (PR) and media outlets.
  3. It costs Pooki’s Mahi ($25,000 - $250,000) to launch new products at celebrity gift lounges or award show gift bags. Nothing is free.  
  4. Marcom events do not generate revenue.  Marketing events are used to expand the brand, generate buzz and excite celebrities or customers about the brand.
  5. Have a documented vetting process to assess vendors.
  6. Walk away from marketing vendors that are pushy or comes across as scams.
  7. Walk away from a marketing vendor pitching celebrity gift lounge events that isn’t founded by a Hollywood Producer.



 

New Product Launch Resources:

Pooki’s Mahi will add new product launch services for private label customers. Pricing is reflective of the total cost to launch new products to market using oscar gift bags, award show gift bags and increase brand recognition.  

  1. Pooki’s Mahi is not responsible for driving sales for private label customers.
  2. The Silicon Valley startup is not responsible for presenting private label products or  promotional products to Pooki’s Mahi existing distribution channels.

Private Label Resources:
Visit the resource links to find out more information on private labelling Pooki’s Mahi Kona coffee pods or custom tea pods.  Customers can start designing private label coffee, private label Kona coffee pods, or custom Kona coffee pods for the next launch event.  Private label single serve custom tea blends will be available to order in 2017.
Pooki’s Mahi will continue to update the “How To Private Label” Guide to assist new customers.

Resource Links:

  1. Kona Coffee Pods:  Custom Promotional Products
  2. Private Label Kona Coffee Pods
  3. Private Label Coffee - BYOC (Bring Your Own Coffee)
  4. Pooki’s Mahi Customer Success Center

Pooki’s Mahi™, The PMO Practice™, and Matcha Matcha Man™ are trademarks of Pooki’s Mahi.  New Product Launch introductions, Go To Market Planning and supply chain frameworks are protected under VA 1-294-170.   

The Academy Awards® is a registered trademark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences®. The Gift Suites where Pooki’s Mahi’s products are show cased are not authorized by and is not associated with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences®, The Academy Awards®, or any of its official partners or vendors.

 

About Pooki’s Mahi:
Pooki’s Mahi™ is a Silicon Valley-based private label coffee pods and custom products manufacturer offering Hawaiian 100 Kona coffee and award-winning private label teas in sustainable pods. Private label brands partner with Pooki’s Mahi for the efficient supply chain, go to market launch and new product introduction expertise. Pooki’s Mahi’s mission is to revolutionize the supply chain ecosystem to make it efficient by using technology in bringing the highest quality Kona coffees into market in sustainable pods with competitive pods pricing.

Follow Pooki’s Mahi on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter to keep up with news insights to launching custom promotional products. Pooki’s Mahi has a zero tolerance for firms engaged in cyber-bullying, cyber-criminal, slander, negative reviews, or cultural discrimination.  


Contact Information
Pooki’s Mahi                                                                                         
Support(at)pookismahi(dot)com

 

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Les Magsalay-Zeller
Les Magsalay-Zeller

Author