How to Create a Virtual Grand Opening
• Great for Start-ups or Home-based Businesses
• Little of No Cost
• No Brick and Mortar Building Required
Not every business has a physical location where they sell products and offer services. Some businesses are run solely online or at home. For these types of businesses, a virtual grand opening is ideal. Virtual grand openings are not limited geographically, so you have the advantage of including potential clients from all over. Provide useful, engaging information on your site that encourages visitors to bookmark your page. Offer a special grand opening prices and host online giveaways. Include social sharing buttons on your site so that visitors can pass the site along via email, Twitter, Facebook and on social bookmarking sites.
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Here are four ideas that can help you expand your potential audience and capture the growing expanse of social media users.
1. Tweet and Greet
Your new store needs a Twitter account. It doesn’t cost anything monetarily and it will cost you very little time, but it can reap tremendous rewards if you work it. Once you set up your business account in Twitter, advertise a “Tweet and Greet” on your business website, promotional fliers or any other media you plan to utilize for this event. Ask participants to tweet their questions using the you hashtag # so that you can identify their questions and enter them into a drawing for a free item that is related to your business.
2. Facebook Post
When it comes to whether or not Facebook should come into play in your social media, marketing plan, it’s a no-brainer. Facebook is a must. In 250 words or less, you can have a grand opening announcement that circulates to your 250 friends, who share it with their 250 friends and so on. And it’s free!
3. Go Viral with Video
Use all of your social media channels to promote your big announcement day through video. Hype a contest that will conclude with announcement of the winner during the virtual grand opening. Use some of the ribbon cutting props from the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce such grand opening flag or banner, ribbon or scissors. If you really want to take a risk, plan something creative like a reception in your home, a hotel or use the Chamber’s conference room.
4. Live Stream Your Team
Consider live streaming your event to entice further participation, especially if you have an online presence. By live streaming your grand opening, you give potential customers a chance to experience the magic from the comforts of home, home office or mobile device.
Use Google+, Justin TV or BlogTV to assist in this project and reign in more potential fans and customers who want a part of the action. Consider making an offer for all of the remote participants and announce winners during your podcast. Utilizing this option is just one more opportunity to include another segment of potential customers and expand your growing base of customers.
By utilizing traditional methods of announcing your grand opening and blending them with some more creative efforts in the social media realm, you can explode your attendance potential and multiply the opportunity to broadcast your brand from the outset. It’s a win-win proposition, one that virtually ensures a larger startup client base.