Autumn is a season that’s tailor-made for small businesses. Filled with seasonal activities and unique holidays, it offers a wide variety of marketing opportunities that can bring big returns on a just a small investment. If you’re willing to work it, the fall months can make for a very lucrative quarter. Here are eight ways to leverage this bountiful season.
Hit the Festivals
Fall festivals represent a last chance for communities to pack in a little fun before winter takes hold. As such, they’re filled with potential customers with fun on their minds and money to spend. By sponsoring a booth, your business can enjoy valuable face time with prospects. Make the most of this opportunity with prize drawings that require they provide their name and email address. Then follow up quickly after the festival.
The months of September, October and November provide a variety of built-in themes you can use as a foundation for special sales events. Halloween, October Fest and Thanksgiving promotions are just some of the options you can leverage. Offer discounts, hold special sales, create ‘Boo Bucks’ – the sky’s the limit.
Store for Winter
Ever notice how squirrels and birds get extra busy during fall in an effort to prepare for the lean winter months? Think of your business in the same light, and make collecting leads and prospects your mission during fall so they’ll sustain you in winter. Use event giveaways to capture customer information.
Designate Your Festival Strike Force
Nothing is more depressing than a poorly run event booth that’s staffed with the wrong personality types. When you commit to a festival, bring your A-game – the best and brightest employees who can turn your booth into a main attraction. You want extroverts and charismatic employees in charge who thrive on energy and interaction.
Make Your Product the Star
Employees can engage event attendees, but your product will ultimately sell them. Give live demonstrations so that prospects can see how effective it is. For a more persuasive sell, let people try the product themselves. Perhaps you can weave a contest around the test run. For instance, if you sell a great leaf blower, set up targets and award prizes to those who can blow them down the fastest.
Create Excitement With Social Media
When your business attends a festival, promote it on your Facebook page. Include lots of pictures of the products you’ll be selling, the people who will be there and any special items you might be offering at a discount. Use Twitter during the event to share updates and create a sense of excitement.
Bring a Band
Few things bring people together more than live music. If the festival you’re attending allows it, hire a local band to be a part of your experience. Look for a group that reflects the festival. For instance, if it’s a harvest theme, up-tempo folk or Bluegrass music would mix well. For a twist, offer karaoke and reward participants with discounts.
Capture the Moment
There’s something about a photo opportunity that attracts people of all ages. Create your own with a setting that includes your product, and let event attendees snap selfies or pictures of each other they can share on social media. Cutouts of famous people are also big photo opportunity draw.
You don’t have to run a big operation to cash in during Fall Festival season. All it takes is some ingenuity and a willingness to try new things to enjoy the season’s harvest.