Make the Most of Summer Community Days!

Edmiston Group summer Days

Are you excited about all the events going on in your community this summer?  As a business owner, you should be! Community Days are a great way to get your name out there.  In this article, we’re going to share strategies and tips to help you make the most of summer events.  Opportunities to grow your business are abundant at this time of year, so, so be sure you don’t miss out.

What events should I participate in or sponsor

Deciding which event(s) to partake in is no different than deciding where to advertise.  Participating in an event takes time, money and effort and you want to be sure that you put your money toward an event that attracts your typical audience.  Regardless of how many people the event draws, if the event’s audience is not representative of your market audience, move on and select another.

Example:  If you’re asked to participate or sponsor a regional festival that draws an audience from outside Pittsburgh, you have to consider the geographic and cultural criteria of your target audience.  If the event attendees don’t represent your typical customer base and if your customers are typically from within a 50 radius, you would be better off sponsoring a local event.  Don’t get caught up purely in the name appeal, size, or location of an event.

Sponsor an engaging booth

Now that you’ve determined the event that is the best fit for your business, what are you going to do to attract people to your booth?  A great suggestion is to have a game of some type.  Have a game that attracts kids or that adults will play just for the fun of it.  You want to talk to as many people as possible.  You never know whom your next best customer might be, especially when dressed in summer attire.   Do make sure the game you choose is permitted based on any rules and regulations associated with the event.

Sample game ideas:  The options for games are many, but here are a few examples to help you start brainstorming what you’d like to offer.  Spin the wheel, pin the tail on the donkey, knock over pins, corn hole, guess the number of candies in a jar, etc.

People Love Giveaways

People love giveaways, so make yours good.  Participating in a community event is no different from a trade show when it comes to giveaways.  You want to have a nice giveaway and use it to capture names, addresses and emails to add to your database.  Ask people if it’s ok to add them to your list to receive special offers and coupons.  Add a simple check box to your registration to capture their permission.   Depending on the event, it’s also a good idea to have small prizes for kids.  Don’t forget to state when and how you will be announcing the winner of your giveaway.  Social media is great way to share who the winner is.  It not only encourages individuals to follow you on the selected channel, but once the winner is announced, it’s another opportunity to have your company information shared among new followers.

Marketing Materials

It’s good to have fun and interact with the community, but remember, you are there to promote your business, so be sure to have top notch marketing materials available to share. This might include business cards, brochures, and/or promotional items.  If your handing out promotional items such as water bottles or pens, be sure your business information is printed on the items.

A final note:  We wish you the best of weather, but you never know what Mother Nature has in store.  If your booth will be outdoors, be sure you have a backup plan to protect your marketing materials.  Is tenting permitted?  If not, plastic storage bins can be used to protect your goods.  There’s no point losing all your marketing materials due to a little rain.

About the author: Autumn Edmiston is the CEO and owner of the Edmiston Group. The Edmiston Group is a multifaceted Pittsburgh based marketing consulting firm providing senior level marketing management services to businesses and non-profit organizations on a short or long term basis. Core areas of service are business development, marketing, strategic planning and public relations. The Edmiston Group has consistently delivered and implemented real-world, proven business marketing ideas and strategies for business growth.

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