You can’t forget or ignore people like Tim Cook and Elon Musk, even if you don’t use their products. They’ve mastered the art of presentation and they are taking their audience’s awe to the next level.
Both focus on storytelling and strong punchlines and transform their product launches into an exciting show that millions of people follow live.
But what exactly makes their presentations so dynamic and special? And most important, how can you replicate their success and create an unforgettable presentation of your own when launching your new product?
Let’s find out.
The case of Apple 🍏
What’s fascinating about Apple is the way they've mastered the feeling of anticipation.
People start talking about the new iPhone months before it’s released. 💬
News outlets claim to have access to secret image leaks. Hundreds of YouTubers create videos sharing their expectations and predictions about the new iPhone’s looks and features.
Millions of Apple fans are saving the date in their calendars to connect via live streaming to the event. The anticipation is incredibly high and everyone is waiting for the big reveal. Apple events have become some sort of a Super Bowl for geeks and tech enthusiasts.
What exactly makes anticipation so powerful?
According to author James Clear,
“Dopamine is released not only when you experience pleasure, but also when you anticipate it.”
He goes on to suggest,
“It is the anticipation of a reward—not the fulfillment of it—that gets us to take action. Interestingly, the reward system that is activated in the brain when you receive a reward is the same system that is activated when you anticipate a reward.”
Isn’t this incredible?
You can almost say that Apple has managed to hack our brain’s rewards system and get us all to pay attention to it.
Another thing that makes Apple presentations so thrilling is an extraordinary combination of technology and human touch.
Just take a look at the Steve Jobs Theater, where Apple events are held.
Although it’s a massive event, the settings are almost intimate and as if inviting to disclose a secret (like the iPhone reveal). The decorations are warm, the images are compelling, and the people on the stage are truly passionate.
Watching the event gives you the feeling of an intimate atmosphere, where you’re surrounded by friends.
Although it’s technology news, the narrative itself is human-focused, as if someone you know shares the most guarded secret with you. This entire setup sustains the iPhone magic and makes us excited for the next release.
The case of Tesla and Space X 👨🚀👩🚀
I’ve put the product launches of these two companies together because of Elon Musk. Whether it’s a product presentation for Tesla or Space X, he has a way of building up suspense and revealing incredible achievements, as well as a true talent for getting people exciting about his vision and mission.
He does it through his quirky sense of humor, incredible confidence, and a well-built narrative about a greater purpose. It’s all about the things that make us dream.
It’s not about a new electrical car or truck—it’s about becoming more sustainable and saving the planet. It’s not about space rockets—it’s all about us becoming interplanetary species and conquering new worlds.
In other words, Elon Musk is always presenting his products beyond their characteristics or benefits. He focuses on the dreams one can achieve by using them.
The same was true when he introduced the first private passenger on Lunar Starship Mission.
Again, he focused on making people excited about the future.
He also showed the compassionate face of his mission, highlighting the project’s hardship and failures. His presentations are always epic thanks to the values and the mission he communicates.
Best practices to run a memorable product launch
Regardless of your industry and product, you can also deliver equally memorable product launches using the same techniques. Here are some of the best practices you can try starting today:
✅ Develop a personal brand
Promoting your products, building an audience, and captivating your followers all starts long before a product launch event. Both Tom Cook and Elon Musk have a strong personal brand.
While you don’t need to have international recognition, you can still become known inside your industry. You can do that gradually by attending or speaking events, networking with people, accepting podcast invitations, creating content, being active on LinkedIn, and building conversations around your industry and products.
All these actions require consistent effort, but by having the right promotion and content creation strategy, you’ll be able to make a name for yourself and humanize your company’s brand.
✅ Create anticipation before the product launch
Get your future attendees excited about the event by releasing behind-the-scenes videos, providing unique, on-site images, or even announcing a catering collaboration with a prestigious chef.
You can also involve other industry stakeholders to promote your event by releasing different snippets that will get people truly excited about the event.
✅ Build a strong mission around your product
Whenever you’re about to launch a new product, look beyond the product’s features and benefits. Go to the roots of your business, unravel your values, and highlight your mission. Bring your products to life by wrapping them into your mission.
Focus on their greater purpose and always pinpoint the greater good your product can provide. For example, you won’t be launching just a cosmetics line—you’ll be launching a brand that empowers women to be themselves and achieve great professional results.
Regardless of your product, remember that it’s always about its purpose and less about its characteristics.
✅ Make your big event feel small
Yes, you’ll be renting a big venue and have hundreds of attendees, along with plenty of press and fun activities for your guests. So why in the world would you want to make it feel small?
Because a more intimate and friendlier environment will help your guests relax and pay more attention to your presentation. Apart from that, it will make them feel more comfortable as if they were surrounded by friends, which will improve their overall experience.
How can you do that?
Three ways: decoration, lighting, and a personalized approach. Create a friendly space, add warm lights, and choose comfortable furniture. Also, get your company representatives to engage with your guests and walk them through their entire event experience.
✅ Build a product presentation style specific to your brand
From the website design to your content, the voice of your brand should be everywhere. The same is true for your product launches. So before your event, work on building a specific presentation style that aligns with your brand.
You can do this in several ways, such as choosing an interesting style of music for your event or find creative ways to deliver the presentations or stories you plan on sharing.
You can also work on a branded visual presentation that will sustain your speech. Moreover, you can come up with differentiating brand experiences that, apart from amazing your attendees, will highlight your company’s style.
This type of event is so much more than gathering your attendees inside a venue and delivering a speech about the product features and benefits. To have a successful product launch, you’ll want to start working on your personal brand as the CEO or Chief Product Officer.
Apart from that, you’ll want to focus not only on preparing for the event, but also igniting people’s curiosity and creating a higher level of anticipation. You’ll also need to work on your presentation and see how you’ll be communicating your company’s greater mission through your new product. Look for ways to make your product launch feel cozy and intimate, and finally, find your product presentation style.
Having all these elements, you’ll be one step ahead of your competition and ready to run an unforgettable product launch.