DO NOT wait until launch day to begin reaching out to your target audience. Early relationship building is crucial to establishing a core group that will become your initial revenue source, influencers, and evangelists. Inviting potential early adopters into the fold not only makes them feel special; it allows them to share their experience with your brand. And they will argue to debunk cynics. It works. Do it.
This is a huge competitive opportunity for brands both big and small. It perplexes your competitors and gives you more time to move into your new market culture.
Often times, your PR agency will argue that if you do this, you ARE essentially launching. And you can only launch once in the press. So don't launch the solution (i.e. your brand's value). Instead, focus on developing a common understanding of the problem your brand will solve upon being launched.
An intense and focused program will unearth the consumers really concerned about the problem. You will be responsible from bringing these consumers together. By unifying like-minded consumers around a common problem, you create the social "water cooler" chats that amplify the importance of your brand's solution.