Jenna Lynch analysis: National's campaign launch misstep and what Chris Hipkins needs to sharpen up on

ANALYSIS: Both of the major political parties have had their launches this weekend, so was there much of a difference in the vibe of the events?

You could feel the money in the room at National on Sunday. There was not an expense spared and the National launch was slick. Lights, cameras, videos, it was a 10/10 for production value.

There was a bigger crowd than Labour drew on Saturday but the energy felt a bit off.

The venue was bigger than attendance required, meaning empty seats and Luxon struggled to get them pumped as he repeated his slogans.

The lack of policy to get the base going was a misstep for a major campaign moment. 

National's tax policy would have been perfect for today. Instead, it followed Labour's free dental free-for-all with a postcard pledge, something Luxon said was important to make sure people understood his promises.

"I think New Zealanders are confused as to what we are trying to do in Government," he said.

On the other side though, Hipkins has a headache of his own.

He can rally his base, but talking to the public feels awkward for him. The base is going to back him, but it's the punters in public who he needs to put him in power.

During his walkabouts he kind of asks if people want a selfie and moves right along. That worked with someone like Jacinda Ardern with her incredible star power,  but not so for the self-proclaimed humble boy from the Hutt. 

His task for the next six weeks is to sharpen up the small talk.

Jenna Lynch is Newshub's Political Editor.