Thanks in large part to our local council, tourism bodies and event organisers, the Coffs Coast is a mecca for large special events and local businesses have an abundance of opportunity to get visitors through their door.
Below are tips for helping your business get a share of our visitor pie.
Use what you have to its maximum potential
Your shop window offers a perfect place to market your wares to passing customers. The key is not to fill your window, choose a few items that will most appeal to the demographic attending the current event. Consider that with some events, attendees could be here for a week or two either side of the event, so don’t be afraid to set up early and keep in place after the event.
You can be the marketing tool
Take it upon yourself, or your staff, be as vocal and animated as possible to attract attention. Stand on the street giving away flyers, or holding a colourful sign. I’m sure most of us have smiled to ourselves watching Dominos staff standing on the corner wobbling their board, but I bet you haven’t gone through that intersection, where you can literally see 20 different types of businesses and not thought about a pizza.
Promote yourself outside of your business
Attention grabbing images or slogans on display outside your business are an awesome way of attracting attention. Ensuring they comply with local laws, signboards, sign posts and posters are a great way of attracting customers. Better still, give passing customers free access to your business, let them feel, taste and experience a small sample of what you offer.
Create a local network
The old saying goes, “many hands make light work”, so partner with local businesses to generate referrals and recommendations for each other. Visitors struggle knowing where anything is in a new town, ask questions and build rapport with your customers, not only will their experience with you enhance, it uncovers new needs that you can recommend your partners can fulfil.
Nobody can sell a secret. Visitors aren’t aliens, they are people like us. Whilst in town they read the paper, watch TV, listen to the radio, read tourist publications and access the internet amongst others. The greatest opportunity of capturing this pool of potential customers is picking an option that puts you in front of the largest number of people and promoting your most attractive products and services in the lead up, during and after the event.
The key to success sits with you owners and managers, you can sit back and hope customers walk through your door, or you can be proactive and go out and get them. If you’re the latter, I wish you well, and chamber members have a wealth of local business knowledge available to you, you just need to ask.