This article originally appeared in Sleep Retailer eNews on December 28, 2017
For the bedding retail industry, special events are a valuable opportunity to increase store traffic and consumer engagement. As e-commerce brands continue to host buzz-worthy retail pop-ups, companies like BEDGEAR and Beautyrest have utilized special events and creative partnerships to build their brand awareness. While store events are not exactly revolutionary, there are ways to take a fresh approach to driving traffic via events and community involvement.
Here are a few tips:
Focus On Educating Consumers
While the ultimate goal of an event is to bring in revenue, positioning your RSA’s as the authorities on both the products you carry as well as trending topics in sleep health will help you develop a stronger rapport with potential customers. Educational events like seminars and health and wellness trainings with local health professionals provide potential customers with useful information while bringing them into your store.
Engagement is Essential
When considering an event theme or content, focus on engaging your audience. Interactive technologies are particularly exciting for consumers. Many manufacturers even provide their retail partners with new and exciting technologies around which storeowners could easily produce events. For example, Kingsdown’s BedMATCH technology would be an excellent piece of equipment through which to engage potential clients. Holding an event like “Find your Match” for Valentine’s Day, for example, could generate buzz around your store and provide consumers with a free diagnostic experience. Add some cupcakes and online promotion and you’re done!
Remember that some of the most effective advertising is free. Utilize social media like local Facebook groups to promote your event. Study and understand what resources community members pay attention to and use those channels to build excitement. Game-ify the experience if you can; drop clues on your social media, offer a reward for the first person to guess the event theme, be creative and make it fun!
If You Can, Include Food Or A Giveaway
Nothing gets people to pay attention quite like a freebie. If you have the resources, provide some sort of giveaway and bring it into your marketing. If you don’t have the resources to give a product or serve food, try to think critically about what sorts of educational resources consumers are most likely to need – if shoppers can’t find the information you offer elsewhere it could help bring customers to your store.
Sponsor Community Events
Don’t have the resources or energy to produce your own event? Get involved with a community event – sponsor a local play or donate time to a local charity. If you are representing your brand while giving back to your community, potential customers will notice! Not only does engaging in philanthropic work cast your brand in a positive light, it’s a great way to build work place morale for your employees and can help you more deeply understand the community your store serves.
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