Pop-up shops are a terrific way to reach new customers, introduce products, and build your brand quickly and efficiently.
But all your hard work will be for naught if foot traffic lags. So how can you promote your pop up shop and actually make a profit? By reaching potential customers in person, online, and through their friends.
1. Buzz Buzz: Guerrilla Marketing To The Rescue
One of the biggest advantages you have as a small business owner is that you are already part of the community. As such, you know the best way to reach customers, and often these are low-cost solutions like flyers and stickers.
Maybe Kohls and McDonalds have TV ads at their disposal, but are those as effective as a witty, well-designed flyer tucked into a mailbox, touting a new pop-up space downtown? We think the personal touch wins every time.
Guerrilla marketing doesn’t end with sales. In fact, a new customer is just the beginning when it comes to spreading brand awareness. Consider giving customers branded stickers with their receipts. Satisfied consumers might very well place it on their water bottles or cars, and you’ve just snagged yourself brand ambassadors with very little effort on your part.
2. Influencer Marketing: Not Just For Big Brands
Oh, influencers. Though the term has been co-opted to refer to Insta-models shilling diet tea, the truth is that influencer marketing is a new buzzword for an old practice.
The influencers in your area probably aren’t the Kylie Jenners of the world, but might be local news anchors, radio personalities, and sports stars. These personalities have legions of regional fans on social media, fans that might be your target market.
Based on the type of people who follow them, narrow your list down to a few influencers, and straight-up ask them if they will spread the word about your pop-up store or pop-up restaurant. As long as they aren’t politicians, feel free to sweeten the deal with free merchandise or services in exchange for their endorsement.
If you are a retail or food and beverage business, Instagram influencers are generally the most lucrative, and you can also consider personalities who post to Facebook, especially if your market is older.
3. Make Your Pop-Up Worthy of a Share
Today, every customer is a potential influencer. In an ideal world, every happy visitor who passes through your pop-up shop immediately whips out their phone and advertises you to their social media followers.
In reality, you may need an incentive to encourage consumers to share their positive experiences. This can be achieved at the point of sale. Make sure to advertise your social media handles next to your point of sale hardware, and ask satisfied customers if they’ll share a picture of their purchase right away. If they’re on the fence, offer to take $1 off their purchase if they share immediately. You might be surprised at the amount of inexpensive digital “press” you gain with this tactic!
Of course, this strategy requires a versatile point of sale system that can be customized for unconventional businesses like pop-up shops. Even if you aren’t ready to commit to a monthly plan with ShopKeep for your temporary pop-up, you can use a free version of the software with very little upfront cost to you.
4. Partner With Related Businesses
Even if this pop-up shop is the first business you’ve ever opened, you’re part of the local business community now. You’ll find that partners are easy to find. After all, they have plenty to gain by teaming up with you, too!
Who should you partner with? Team up with a business that sells a complementary item or service to offer extra value at your pop-up experience. A few examples of what that might look like: a hairstylist + a nail artist; boutique retail store + an on-site tailor; a toy store + a candy shop.
A unique culinary or shopping experience becomes more possible when small businesses team up to create a one-of-a-kind experience.
SEE ALSO: How To Create a Successful Pop-Up Shop
5. Offer Exclusive Goods
Maybe your pop-up shop is a smaller version of an existing business, whether that be a brick and mortar location or an online store. If you have an existing customer base, consider offering an exclusive item at your pop-up shop.
A cafe might join a Christmas market and offer an exclusive, festive drink themed around the holiday season, or a florist might offer an exclusive bouquet outside the local high school’s graduation.
And then make sure your customers know about your temporary space by publicizing it at your brick-and-mortar retail or restaurant location.
Location, Location, Location
It almost goes without saying, but the most important part of any pop-up shop’s marketing plan is the shop’s location. That’s because a pop-up shop is a marketing vehicle of its own. When executed well, it can boost your brand, goodwill, and profits in one pop.