Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 22

MYSTORE RETAILER'S GUIDE VOL. 10.3: IN-STORE EVENTS

Neighbourhood events can be a boon for smart retailers.
Events and the BIA

Across the lake from Windsor sits Detroit, and
most nights, when the mood is right, partiers
from the Motor City hit Windsor's streets and
indulge in Canada's legal drinking age. Partying is part of the nightlife in Windsor, and so the
BIA works hard to stage events that round out
the public image of the border town, says Debbi
Croucher, Acting Director of Downtown Windsor Business Improvement Association.
The BIA's events have the most success when
retailers participate because shopping is central to the life of a downtown. Croucher says one
event-Balloonapalooza, Windsor's festival of
colour-has thrived over the years because retailers have bought into the event and built promotions that support the community activity.
The value of community-wide events to the
independent retailer is enormous, Croucher
says, and deserve the attention and investment
of independents. Participating retailers often

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canadian retailer | summer 2014 | www.retailcouncil.org/cdnretailer

receive marketing support in addition to the
greatest benefit of the event-increased traffic. Unfortunately, not all retailers capitalize
on the opportunity of traffic. To get more from
the event, Croucher and Cappella advise retailers to change how they execute at community
events. Here are some of their suggested tips:
* Stay open during events: Extended hours
might cost more but they're necessary to getting the most out of the event.
* Staff adequately for the event: Croucher
says that a common mistake retailers make
when participating in BIA events is not having enough staff to handle the crowds. In the
first year of Balloonapalooza, retailers saw
crowds of 15,000 people. But by the third
year, the crowds had swelled to 50,000, yet
some retailers hadn't upped their staffing to
keep up with the growth of the event.
* Tap into the event's theme: Most BIA events
follow a theme. Adopt the theme as the store's
own as a way of giving customers what they
expect out of the event.
* Learn how to capitalize on social media:
Too few retailers link to the BIA's events,
and even fewer leverage the BIA's strength
to generate attention, says Croucher. When a
person "likes" an upcoming event or tweets
that they plan to attend a BIA event, that's a
potential customer who's going to be in the
neighbourhood and will appreciate an invitation to visit the store. Yet most retailers
don't use the network available to them.
* Learn new upselling techniques: As an observer of local independent retailing, Croucher says she often sees retailers shying away
from upselling at BIA events. Part of the
execution of the event includes selling the
event-related product or service, selling up to
an add-on product and hooking the customer
into future sales.
Get involved in planning events: Retailers
can develop community events that benefit
them most if they get involved on the organizing committee. Cappella was on the organizing committee of Salsa on St. Clair, a free event
that brought 200,000 people to his part of town.
Steering so many people to his specific spot on
the strip was more than a stroke of luck-it was
part of the plan. For any retailer, such a huge
crowd can help the store make the monthly
numbers. "If you have 200,000 people on your
doorstep and you don't know how to make a
sale, something's wrong," says Cappella.


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014

Publisher's Desk
Retail Currents
Food for Thought: The State of Canadian Grocery
Driving Sales With Personalized Advertising
Come One, Come All
Unsure About the Future
Education Leading to Organic Growth
The Total Retail Package
Advertiser's Index
Retail Quick Tips
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - cover1
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - cover2
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 3
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Publisher's Desk
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 5
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Retail Currents
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 7
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 8
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 9
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Food for Thought: The State of Canadian Grocery
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 11
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 12
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 13
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 14
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 15
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Driving Sales With Personalized Advertising
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 17
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 18
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Come One, Come All
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 20
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 21
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 22
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Unsure About the Future
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 24
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 25
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Education Leading to Organic Growth
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 27
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 28
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 29
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - The Total Retail Package
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 31
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 32
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 33
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 34
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 35
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - 36
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Advertiser's Index
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - Retail Quick Tips
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - cover3
Canadian Retailer - Summer 2014 - cover4
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