Customers have no shortage of options when it comes to places to have a drink or grab a bite, which means you have to show your appreciation to keep them coming back. Studies show that 68% of customers cut ties with a business because of a perceived indifference to their loyalty, so an appreciation event can go a long way towards keeping regulars happy and turning them into advocates. Retaining current customers is also ten times less expensive than winning new ones, so this type of event is also a profitable idea.
If you’re in the midst of planning your next customer appreciation event, here are five ways to promote it to ensure its success.
Create an event page on your website
Your customers are living online, so your event should too. Create an event-specific page on your website with all the relevant information. Promote the event in the header of your website and consider adding a banner that links back to the event page. Any digital marketing for the event should lead directly to that event page.
There’s no better place to reach your customers than in your venue. Create table tents and inserts for your menu and check presenters with information about the event. If you have promotional space in your venue, be sure to use that as well—and don’t forget to have staff mention the event to every guest that comes in.
Get active on social media
Social media is one of the most effective, easiest and cheapest places to promote your event. Start by creating a Facebook event page and invite all your followers to attend. You can also change the button on your Facebook page to lead directly to the event page on your website in the weeks leading up to your event.
While you can create ads on social media, organic posts are free and should be used in the weeks, days and hours leading up to your event to get people excited. On the day of the event, be sure to share lots of pictures to encourage people to stop by.
You’ll also want to create a hashtag for your event, include it on all posts and encourage customers to use it when posting about the event.
List your event in local calendars
Many local newspapers, radio stations, community-based websites and your local Chamber of Commerce have event calendars where you can post for free. You can also add your event to sites like Eventbrite, Thrillist and Eater to widen your reach.
In addition to event calendars, create a short press release with event information and send it to local papers for publication.
Partner with local businesses
Finally, consider partnering with other local businesses to co-host your event. Create fliers for them to hand out in their stores and write social posts, so all they need to do is copy, paste and share.