To stand out from the myriad of quaint shops while outshining the giant retailers, boutique owners must be innovative in their marketing approach. There are many marketing ideas that are not only effective, but also fun. Consider inviting a celebrity to your shop, connect with your target demographic or create a fun game to entertain and inform the masses.
Invite a Celebrity
Having a celebrity shop in your boutique or endorse your products will create a quite a stir. Becoming the talk of the town will increase foot and web traffic as potential and former clients will desire to see what makes your boutique so special as to draw in someone famous. Although people often believe hiring a celebrity is both difficult and expensive, Timothy Farris, author of “Four-Hour Workweek, states, “It can cost a lot less than you think, if you do it right.” He recommends contact celebrity brokers such as celebbrokers.com or celebrityendorsement.com.
Create a Buzz
According to entrepreneur.com, “Buzz doesn't have to be expensive, but it does need to stand out.” This means connecting with your target demographic. Do this in a sincere and memorable way to get people talking. This may include finding specific influencers to talk about your boutique. Consider local media, industry bloggers and local heroes. Start a fan page on Facebook or give helpful and entertaining tips to Twitter followers. Another way to create buzz is through innovative programs such Groupon. Groupon Inc. is a company that offers one amazing deal per area per day. The catch is that a minimum sales quota must be achieved or no one receives the discount. This effectively sets a potential customer in action to share the details with her network. According to “Inc.” magazine, many of the businesses involved have had tremendous results increasing traffic. The program is relatively risk free for business owners as Groupon does not charge a fee. Instead, it claims a portion of the revenue generated.
Overall, it is common knowledge that people enjoy playing games. However, some innovative businesses have used this information to generate business through innovative marketing. “Inc.” magazine reported on a successful campaign by a collection of businesses called Peninsula Shops. They hosted a trivia game via Twitter that increased web and foot traffic for the involved businesses. Basically, people were sent on a hunt to learn details of participating stores. One of the tasks posed was “to name the third ingredient in Gaia's Cacao Tangerine Soap.” People did so in hopes of winning gift certificate valued at $25. This increased website traffic 400 percent within hours. Consider working with a group of businesses or trying it solo.
- clothing store image by Gina Smith from Fotolia.com