Yesterday my family and I went on our yearly trek to the Mill Creek Town Center where we’ve found it to be a great trick or treat location. It’s a terrific hip/trendy outdoor shopping area, and the crown jewel of the town. They host great events, and the Halloween celebration is always a hit with the kids. The local businesses do a great job at dressing up their stores, themselves, and creating a fun, safe atmosphere for kids to trick or treat. It’s a win-win as the residents get a great option for trick or treating, and local businesses get extra exposure for their business.
That is of course those that actually choose to participate and that’s where the inspiration for this somewhat social media free post comes in. This year their were literally 30-40% of the businesses that choose NOT to participate in this year’s event. Nothing. No candy, no employees, CLOSED. Excuse me, but ARE YOU KIDDING ME???
Some background first. Mill Creek Town Center is an expensive place to have a business as is evident in many of them folding throughout the past few years with the tough economy. If you want to run a business here you better have a great business one way or another. That or at least deep pockets.
How could a local business not choose to spend a few hundred bucks for some candy, decorations, and have one or two people out there? That’s thousands of opportunities to expose your business to new customers. Not to mention a tremendous opportunity to hand out coupons, business cards, anything to promote your business. I was floored by how so many of these businesses choose not to participate. These are the same businesses that would probably spend a couple thousand dollars on a magazine or newspaper ad. Really?
I would have taken it even one step farther. How’s about integrating social media? Encourage those walking by to tweet something about your business. Give something away to those that do. Or pass out coupons for something with your digital assets plastered all over them. Get your name out, be memorable, inspire new customers to try you out. They’re all there anyway!
It was unbelievable to me the utter failure these businesses were committing. Who knows, maybe they don’t need the business now, but any long term successful business knows not to rest when times are good.