This is the second of a two-part series on how to plan your own Christmas Open House, step by step. Click here for tips on Step 1: Plan Your Fun-Filled Event.
Promote, Promote, Promote.
- Get the word out about your open house via postcard mailings, email newsletters, Facebook and Twitter. For inspiration, see the postcard Patricia Jane & Co. sends out (at right).
- Include your open house information on your website. Invite customers to bring a friend and double their own chances at your door prize drawings.
- Place an ad in your local newspaper or request a story on your open house in the social or business section.
- Put a large sign in front of your store and small sign at the register. And make sure employees invite customers when they ring up each sale.
The Day of the Event – Have Fun!
- A staff member at the registration table should first greet customers with a warm smile, then encourage them to sign up for the drawing and take a “Wish List” to fill out while they browse. This is also a great time to mention your sale merchandise and free gift wrapping.
- Let your staff handle running the store. Relax, enjoy your guests and be available to answer their questions.
- To build excitement, draw the winners for your door prize(s) while there is a crowd. Make sure you get pictures of the customers who win the door prizes. Publish these on your web site or local paper.
- Thank customers for coming as they are checking out and as they leave. Collect their Wish Lists, let them know you’ll keep them on file, and encourage them to tell family and friends about the registry.
- First, put up a thank-you sign in the store. If you have the time, send personal notes or postcards. If you send a thank-you email, create a group recipient list first so your customers’ email addresses stay private.
- Post your photos on Facebook with comments about the event.
- Organize your Wish Lists in a binder alphabetically and keep them current when purchases are made.
Jump start your holiday sales with a Christmas Open House this season. Start this annual tradition now and watch your business grow. We’d love to hear your open house success stories!
Buffie Baril & Kathy Green