Man with an opening soon sign

Use some of these ideas to generate buzz and foot traffic to your grand opening.

When you have a grand opening, it’s an opportune time to make a great first impression to your local community.

It’s important to get it right because, just as they say, you never get a second chance to make a first impression.

With that in mind, here are six ideas to use to make your next grand opening a great one that will generate lots of attention and, hopefully, some happy customers who will tell all of their friends about your wonderful new business location:

Send out postcards
Postcards can be cheap or they can be expensive. They’re kind of like wedding invitations in that way. It all depends on what sort of impression you’re hoping to make and what you think is necessary to get there. For most businesses, a simple postcard sent to several thousands of people in the local area should do the trick. You should mention the grand opening and then provide some reason for the customer to visit your new location. It could be a discount or some other special reason (we offer a few ideas below). Either way, make sure to include a phone number, email address or website URL to allow people to find more information or ask questions.

Partner with a charity
This can be a great way to ingratiate yourself to the local community. If you decide to use your event to raise money for a charity that means a lot to people in the community, you’re sure to attract some attention and supporters will visit your business to help the charity. Of course, that’s also your chance to make a great first impression on those future repeat customers so make sure you treat them with lots of loving care.

Advertise in local media
Here’s another way to ingratiate yourself to the local community. Advertisers often underestimate the connection that local newspapers and television stations have with the communities they serve. But for a small business, those media outlets can offer the best bang for your buck when it comes to advertising and getting in front of the local community. It’s probably best to advertise a few weeks out before the event and then do another advertising blast right before the event as a reminder.

Invite special guests or speakers for a ribbon cutting ceremony
If you have the right connections, you can stage an event where some local leaders (think politicians, clergy or chamber of commerce types) can come for a ribbon cutting ceremony and make a short speech. With any luck, the people who support these leaders will hear about the event either before or afterward and that will generate some buzz about your business. Again, this is a nice way to ingratiate your business with the local communities because you’ve aligned yourself with these sought-after and respected leaders.

Hire an entertainer or band
If you don’t have those types of connections, you can always hire some local musicians or other entertainers to come and play at your grand opening. This can help foment a party atmosphere to ‘celebrate’ your grand opening. Again, with luck, some in the local community will have heard of this band and they will come out to support the event.

Offer one deeply discounted product
This is another way to create some buzz. If you don’t mind taking a bath on one product or item or service that you can offer on grand opening day for a deep discount, it can create significant referral business and it will likely bring in lots of foot traffic. Some of that traffic will not come back to your business afterward but a sizable portion will return and you’ll want to turn them into long term customers by, you guessed it, making a good first impression.

Want to learn more about how your point of sale system can help with inventory and promotions? Contact us today for a demonstration.