After nearly a year of working on the app, on the 14th May 2014 we launched!
We all met at FACT, picked up our In Hand t-shirts and were given schedules telling us the running order of the day. Everyone was a little bit nervous but really excited to showcase what we had been working on for such a long time.
As the presenters practised their lines, stalls were set up with the help of FACT staff. The stalls we used represented the four stages of the app. On the ‘Great’ stall there was a photo captioning competition which had the winners going away with a 1 year membership for FACT. This reflected the ‘Great’ stage due to the fact that in that part of the app, pictures come up on screen alongside a motivational phrase to encourage positive thinking and reflection.
On the ‘So-so’ stage, there was a sheet of quotes that appeared on the app to inspire people to feel better. To make the stall more interactive, we set up a live twitter feed so that when the guests visited the stall, their own motivational quotes could be displayed on the TV screens in FACT.
The ‘Not Good’ stage was filled with photo props on sticks such as top hats and moustaches which linked to the app because in this stage you are encouraged to take photographs and immerse yourself in creative activities to improve your mental well being.
At the ‘Awful’ stage, a telephone was set up with the In Hand team’s own motivational quotes recorded on the mp3 inside. The guests could then listen to the quotes and link this to the stage in the app when things aren’t going well for the user and they need to ring someone for help and guidance.
Once the stalls were set up, we all helped to make a guest tote bags filled with information sheets about the app and other goodies as a thank you for coming. Back in The Box, our In Hand Spotify playlist was on alongside a photo-loop presentation of pictures from sessions from across the year to welcome the guests. As well as this, there was an amazing selection of healthy mood food produce including homemade chocolate from The Garden by LEAF: a café located in FACT.
When guests started to arrive, they were given the tote bags alongside a stamp of our logo on their hands from smiling In Handers. As soon as everyone had arrived and was seated in The Box, the first presentation began!
On the presentation led by Lydia, Stuart, Tor and Charlotte, there was detail about our journey as a group, the future plans for the app, thanks to all of our collaborators and supporters as well as a screening of the documentary made during the first ¾ of our app making process. Once the presentation had finished and after a quick Q+A, the guests were free to look around all of the stalls and test the app whilst indulging in some mood food.
Following this, Lydia announced the winners of the caption competition and we had our confetti cannon countdown when the app was actually available to download!
We were so grateful for everyone who turned up to the launch, ranging from mayors, local celebrities, medical professionals, people who work with teenagers and young adults as well as all of the team who had helped to create the app along the process! The whole team were very appreciative that everyone was so supportive of the app and we hope everyone who came had a great time.
Waiting to begin the family and friends launch whilst FACT members cleaned up our mess of confetti, the In Hand team had some celebratory pizza which was really tasty!
The family and friends launch was another great celebration of all the hard work that has been put into the app over the past year and added to how special the night was.
On behalf of the In Hand team, we would like to thank everyone for taking the time out to come to our launch and everyone who has downloaded the app since!
We would like to thank all of the teams at Red Ninja and Mersey Care, the Marketing and PR agencies, Andy, Nicky, Lee, Steven, Paul and Justine for all of their help in the sessions!
Thank you also to FACT for helping us to hold such a great launch and for running the project as well as the funders: Nominet Trust, Comic Relief and Creative England.
Special mention go to Louise Latter for all of her hard work throughout the process and for keeping us all in check! You have made the process very enjoyable for everyone and without you and your ‘To Do’ list we would be lost!
Following the launch, we are planning more sessions to incorporate the feedback from the night to try and make the app as great as it can be! We will keep you all posted!
Emma and Robyn.