In Store Events are what set the independent retailer apart from the big box stores! Retail can be much more of an experience, rather than just a quick errand run. Events can actually have an impact far beyond the scheduled evening or two day time frame.
A good example is a store in Portsmouth, New Hampshire called Attrezzi’s Fine Kitchen. This store has a wine tasting every Friday night. Evening strollers can stop by for a glass or two and wander the store before heading to a restaurant down the street for dinner. The romantic effect of walking through the store on a pleasant evening causes people to stop by again during the week. This is a classic example of the halo effect an event can have on customers – it brings them back to the store again and again, hoping to create a similar positive experience.
An event also has positive word-of-mouth effects. To continue to use Attrezzi’s as an example, every time a new customer comes into the store, store employees can easily mention the wine tasting as an incentive for the customer to return.
There is a huge amount of Social Media fuel with events. Not only is this an opportunity to create Facebook events and invite people through Instagram, but it offers up excuses for great photos that can be blasted through social media channels for months to come! It is instant marketing for the next event; when Instagram followers see customers drinking wine and buying items at the store, they see an experience they wish to be a part of. Stores often offer up a small discount to people who tag them on social media.
Have an event, and encourage attendees to take photos and tag their friends and the store in their social media posts! Offer up a photo booth, or a discount, and be sure to supply an incentive like food, wine, or another experience that customers are sure to remember.