What Brands Can Learn From Launch Festival
Walking through the Demo Pits on the last day of this year’s Launch Festival I’m continuing to be stunned by two things: the sheer quantity of caffeine consumed by the tech industry, and the realization that everything exists. If you have ever thought of an idea for a business, someone here is doing it.
There is a $5000 electric motorcycle that gets a whopping 25 miles to the charge, three new applications of drone technology, and an agricultural robot offered “as a Service.” There’s even a kit to “make any helmet a smart helmet.” Hallelujah!
There are also companies that make me excited for the world we’re all growing into. Knocki, an Evol8tion favorite, is using an amazing piece of hardware to make any surface an interface. Maker’s Brand is an end-to-end platform enabling all of us to turn latent creativity into made, ready to sell products. And Hash Play…well, suffice it to say their virtual reality game-room was so immersive it shook my understanding of “reality.”
The Launch Festival is all about launching new startups, and while many companies here can be categorized as enterprise tech, the majority are aimed at exciting, delighting, empowering, and facilitating consumers in everything they undertake. For major brands willing to walk in step with these new technologies there is a huge opportunity to rise from the pack, not only to be seen as innovative themselves, but to connect with consumers on a higher quality level than competitors. Imagine, in a virtual reality gaming situation, a brand sponsored [ammunition, gold, health points] checkpoint right when a player needs it most. Now imagine being the only brand in a vertical doing this, having secured an early partnership with a first-of-its-kind company. Competitors’ Facebook ads be damned!
The lesson brands can learn from entrepreneurs is to disregard preconceived notions of what is good or bad. Instead of looking at a new idea for months, trying to decipher if it’s perfect, just try it. Let the results determine efficacy, instead of trying to make a non-empirical conclusion based on thought. Act fast, in small tests, and never let perfect be the enemy of good or done. This is a mentality that takes no small measure of courage, but it is also what allows these inspiring people to truly Launch change, instead of crawling toward it.
To brands: the first step is getting into the game. Take a chance, rush into something; who knows, maybe next year you’ll be the ones Launching something on stage!