You’re finally ready to open the doors of your brand new business but aren’t sure how to get people through the door. You need some big ideas! We have 5 grand opening ideas that are sure to pique the public’s curiosity and bring them to your door.
1. Family-Friendly Fun
If your business is welcoming to children and families, such as a children’s clothing store or ice cream shop, you can’t go wrong inviting the whole family to your grand opening. Parents love family-friendly entertainment for their kiddos, and in the meantime, you can show them why your business is the best! If weather and season permit, have a cookout in your parking lot! Offer free hotdogs or burgers, Inflatables or Face Painters for the kids. An Acoustic Band will provide music but still lets the families interact with you. Show your new customers a good time and they’re sure to come back!
2. Embrace Your Niche
For specialty businesses such as record stores, western apparel, or motorcycle shops, music can be a universal bond among your patrons. Embrace your niche when thinking about grand opening ideas. Bring in a Tribute Band that fits your audience! Give the people what they want. Turn your parking lot into a music festival with a tribute to artists like Tim McGraw, AC/DC, or The Eagles. (Or other Cover Bands to add a wide variety of well-known music.)
Bonus: The music may even help draw in potential customers from the street.
3. Classy Cocktail Hour
Maybe you’d rather portray an image of upscale sophistication for your business, or maybe you just want to tap into people’s love of happy hours! Either way, hosting a cocktail hour can be a classy way to invite potential clients to tour your establishment. Send invitations for a “soft opening” to the local tastemakers and encourage them to bring a friend. Set up an appetizer buffet and bar serving simple cocktails, beer, and wine. Try getting your employees to chip in as servers, or hire waitstaff to free up your team for hosting. Be sure to take some time to show people around and make them feel like valued guests. A soft Jazz Band or Classical Guitarist can make the space feel warmer for your grand opening.
4. Get Creative With Culture
Restaurants, bars, or specialty food stores can especially use culture as a way to draw attention to their grand openings. For example, a tea shop that serves Indian tea can hire a Sitar Player or Belly Dancer to highlight their international offerings. A new Mexican restaurant can invite Salsa Dancers to entertain guests on their first visit. A new Irish-themed bar can draw attention from passersby as Bagpipers play outside the door! Tap into your cultural side as you’re brainstorming more unforgettable grand opening ideas.
5. Neighborhood Block Party
If your new business is in a strip mall, or in close proximity to other businesses, get to know your neighbors! Most of the time, business owners are open to cross-promoting which can be very beneficial to everyone. For your grand opening, get your neighbors involved to help pass out flyers at their cash registers or promote your event on their social media pages. In return, you can do the same for their next big sale, or send your visitors next door after they check out your place! Make it a big party by working with local Food Trucks and a Party Band in the parking lot. Hire Stilt Walkers to stroll through the crowd passing out coupons or taking photos. Who says you can’t be friends with the competition?
Make sure to promote your event as much as possible to generate buzz and draw a crowd. It may be worth spending a few dollars a day to boost your event on Facebook, or give away prizes when people share it on their own pages. Hang up flyers around the area, send email invites to any email lists that you might already have, and recruit your family and friends to spread the word. At the event, pass out coupons or maybe even free samples of your products to get people interested. Free swag like sunglasses or frisbees is always fun if the budget allows! You may want to let your local chamber of commerce know about it, or add it to your city’s community calendar. Collect email addresses or business cards for follow-up by holding a raffle for a prize. You worked hard to get all those people there, so make sure to follow up with them when it’s over.