Although Christmas is still a week away, any good business is always planning 3-6 months ahead of time and thinking about their upcoming big seasons. For many tourist based businesses in a beach town, Spring Break can be a booming time for business. However, if you don't plan ahead, it could be a huge bust. Just a few of the questions you have to ask yourself is, "How am I going to promote my business to get more customers?" and "Once I get those new customers, how am I going to retain them and promote repeat business?" These questions apply to many different businesses including hotels, condos, restaurants, retail shops, and entertainment venues. Below are some ideas for you to promote your business if you are located in a beach town!
MARKETING IDEAS FOR SPRING BREAK PROMOTIONAL ITEMS
HOW DO I MARKET TO PAST CUSTOMERS?
Promotional Mailing - For hotels and condos, do a mail-outs with custom beach balls printed with your logo with a message on the balls that says the beach and their room is waiting for them.
Raffles and Drawings - For restaurants, start capturing your customers' addresses with raffles and drawings and send them a printed brochure and a coupon with your full menu that is full of mouth-watering dishes.
Text Messaging - For nightclubs, start a text messaging list to keep your patrons informed about upcoming entertainment, bands, and events.
HOW DO I TARGET NEW CUSTOMERS THAT WILL BE VISITING ON SPRING BREAK?
Online marketing is the best bet for marketing to out-of-towners. For hotels and condos, offer incentives for booking such as free passes to your local water park, restaurant gift certificates, and other perks for booking at your establishment. You can work out prearranged deals with the water park or restaurant for these deals and factor that cost into your per night room charge.
FREE Gifts - For all other businesses, offer a FREE gift for visiting, such as personalized coolers or a Spring Break 2014 T-Shirt or other beach-related giveaways. Make sure the giveaways are worthwhile and not too cheap. You can always put restrictions for obtaining the free gifts such as a minimum purchase amount. Not only will free gifts attract new customers, but those gifts will help them remember your business for future visits.
Updated Website - Additionally, to attract new customers, make sure you are updating your website frequently and continually adding fresh content. This fresh content will help your site rank better and give potential customers a reason to keep coming back to your site.
Direct Mail - Regardless of what you have heard, direct mail is not dead. In fact, it is alive and well and a great way to target a specific region. Start with locations that are within a few hours drive from you and send out full color postcards with an exclusive special. On your postcard, you can also promote a free gift or incentive to entice them to book with you or visit your business.
WHAT ARE SOME PROMOTIONAL ITEM GIVEAWAY IDEAS FOR OUR SPRING BREAK CUSTOMERS?
One thing that you want to do is make sure your customers remember your business and a great way to do that is to give them something to take home with them. Think about items they will need and use like sunscreen, beach towels, coolers, and other necessary items for the beach.
Beach balls are great for mass giveaways since the cost per piece is low. If you just want to get something beachy and budget-friendly in their hands, think about a mini beach ball. If your budget is a little bigger, go with a larger beach ball, such as the 16" size.
For a more premium giveaway, custom beach towels are great. They are a necessary item for the beach and an item that most people flying into your area don't pack due to space limitations. Beach towels are kept for years and continue to advertise your company logo.
With beach towels, you can choose from the promo light-weight towels or the heavyweight towels. These are great to sell in gift shops and retail stores and for giveaways for your big spending customers.
Custom flip flops are excellent giveaways for conferences and events that are happening in a beach town. They are also great for retail and gift shops to sell with branding from your local area. These souvenirs can be printed with your town name and your logo and business name.
Promotional flip flops come in all price ranges. If you are looking for cheap, budget flip flops, you can get them. If you want the premium flip flops, you can also get them. The customization is virtually unlimited, but keep your time frame in mind because the more personalization you get, the longer the production time.
Tourists often don't realize how quickly they can burn when visiting a beach town because sunblock is not a part of their normal, everyday life. Not only do they forget to use enough sunblock, they often never even think about applying it to their lips. That's why custom lip balm with SPF is a great, inexpensive giveaway! You can give these out in bulk and not break your budget. The labels on the chapstick can be printed in full color to really capture their attention.
Custom frisbees and flyers are fun giveaways that are cheap and well-received, especially for families with children. These are great for beach resorts and restaurants to give out. Restaurants can event use them as a plate for their kids meals.
Choose from many different sizes and styles, including mini flyers and foldable flyers.
This is a giveaway that is like gold in a beach town. If you are going to the beach, you must have sunblock; however, most tourists don't pack it. They either plan to buy it once they get in the area, or they mistakenly think they don't need it because it is an overcast day and they get badly burned. Why not go ahead and help out your guests by giving away promotional sunscreen bottles with your logo printed on them?
No matter what item you have, make sure you have some kind of gift for your customers during Spring Break. And remember that the more useful the item, the better impression it will make on them. The idea is to attract new customers and turn those customers into repeat customers. So prepare early and enjoy a busy Spring Break season!