Marketing for Small Businesses

It’s National Marketing Celebration Day!

Well, not exactly… although we do celebrate marketing every day around here! But really, who doesn’t love a reason to celebrate? Inject a bit of the unexpected into your business calendar by playing into the wealth of all the off-the-wall and crazily specific holidays out there. Whether you’re a small online shop competing against the giants or a brick-and-mortar small business hustling to stake out your sliver of the market, inviting your customers to enjoy a unique and festive shopping experience with you can pay off in more ways than one.

Know Your Audience

You’ve got a quaint book store in town and sales are a bit sluggish due to the ever present smart phones and tablets in customers’ hands.  Approach things from a different  angle and play to the strengths of your product by working themed days into your calendar. March 4th is Unplug Day so invite customers to the store for a day to get away from the rat race for a few hours by inviting readers to spend some time with a book. Provide staff to guide guests to areas of interest and set up a cozy seating area to allow bibliophiles in training to find a new favorite book. Offer themed drinks and treats to promote lingering over your newest titles and offer incentives to those who don’t look at their phone once while in the store!

Marketing holidays add buzz to your business!And don’t forget about Read a Book Day on September 6th Gear it to young readers by inviting parents to bring children to story time to introduce kids to new classics and foster the joy of the touch and feel of a new book in their hands. Set up a craft for little hands to get busy while parents catch a break and find a new title to consider. Or set up a book challenge to encourage readers, young and old, to commit to reading a themed title a month and provide space for a Meetup to allow for book discussions. By knowing your audience and appealing to their interests, themed days can provide a unique experience that helps you become the go-to source not only for your product but for supporting a community of common interests.

Make It Fun

Having a hard time filling tables on weeknights at your family-style restaurant? Think outside the dinner specials and offer something unexpected. Feature a key off-the-wall holiday once a month and play it up! May the Fourth Be with You Day on May 4 fall on a slow Tuesday?  Make it a family night and invite themed characters to show up to mingle with diners and have staff go by character names for the day… no reason the customers are the only ones having fun, get staff in on the antics, too.

Looking for a way to get customers into your toy store? Plan a special UFO Day on July 2nd. Run specials on science-themed toys, crafts and kits and have staff wear neon or space-themed outfits like NASA t-shirts or goofy costumes. Invite customers to wear something space-themed for a special discount themselves!  If you and your staff are having fun with it, it shows. And remember, the holiday you decide to feature doesn’t have to be an obvious extension of your business.  Don’t always go for the given – sometimes the more off the wall, the more entertaining the fit!

Make it Social and Rewarding

Who says only those who attend can be in on the holiday action? Invite customers to share live video of themselves trying on your hat collection on January 15th for, you guessed it, Hat Day and invite others to come down and do the same. Or offer a free dessert during their next visit to those who tag a photo of their table via Instagram on June 21st, National Selife Day. By inviting customers to share their experience via social media, a visit to your store takes purchasing a product from an interaction to a social experience.

With so many options available to purchase everything online, making the in-store visit dynamic and rewarding helps to ensure that customers will turn to you when looking to purchase. And don’t forget National Know Your Customer Day is October 20th is this fall, which gives you plenty of time to start putting your plan in motion!




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