Is it ever a good time to launch a new bar night/brand?

As a nightclub and bar promoter (marketing consultant) I have the task of developing and creating new events and weekly nights all the time.

In the eyes of the venue owner there is never a better time than NOW to start a new night and start bringing in revenue, but on the marketing side is there also a bad time to launch? A time that will hinder the level of success the night will have? Will an ill timed launch kill the event right off the start?

I think that most people would agree that there are great times and terrible times to launch a new night and there are others that say any good marketing plan can succeed in any market. They would agree that there can always be excuses for why a night won’t work. OK let’s look at both angles.

Carefully Select Your Launch Time

In this camp the idea that an event can be dead in the water with a bad launch date is the absolute truth. If you are in a market that does most of its business during the summer, you would be crazy thinking of launching a weekly series in the middle of winter. Traffic is lower, the area isn’t known for great parties during that time of year, there is resistance to people coming out. The same example works for a school town that has its population moving away for summer. There won’t be anyone around? So this group of promoters carefully select the best weekend of the year to launch, pre-promote and start off with a bang. The event works well and has legs to it, but they did lose out on all of the early revenue and most likely ‘type cast’ the event to being popular when every thing else is popular (i.e. only a summer time party).

Anytime is a Good Time

Here we look at any pitfalls the market may have and over come them no matter what. In the above winter scenario we would look the other way and start to build the buzz for the event early, have little competition in the promotion landscape and create revenue immediately with smart promotions. What about the school town where the students left for summer leaving a ghost town? We all know that while students leave the area there are countless hometown students that come back (and look forward to seeing their friends again, making a vibrant opportunity). This angle creates an evergreen event that will have small ups and downs but always be a popular choice for customers all year round.

While there will always be excuses and reasons why an event or promotion will not work, there are also equal amounts of ideas and concepts that overcome those reasons and allow you to become the hottest venue. You don’t want to train your customers on reasons why your club may have ups and downs. Weather, school in or out, big name DJs booked or residents, outside competition coming in, etc should be minimized as to the effect they can have. Otherwise you train your crowd to be fickle and can lose them quickly. So stop to think, plan and develop your event before launching.

I am positive that in your market there is at least one venue that thrives no matter what. What are they doing right? They are fearless and smart in their marketing and continue to dominate the competition.



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