6 Ways Companies Can Leverage Milestones to Increase Sales and Drive Business
Whether you’ve achieved a significant sales goal, reached a company anniversary or opened a new location, every business has milestones that should be celebrated – both internally and publicly.
Launching a milestone marketing campaign is a great way to help your business gain more exposure and increase sales. In fact, if you’re strategic when announcing and promoting the news, you’ll not only attract new customers, but also re-engage people who have supported your business in the past.
To ensure your company is ready to leverage your next big milestone, include these six proven strategies in your milestone marketing plan.
Create a Commemorative Badge or Slogan that Highlights the Accomplishment
One of the first steps businesses should take to publicize a milestone is creating a badge or tagline that can be used on banners, ads and all other sales and promotional materials.
Remember, it’s important to keep the messaging consistent across all materials and platforms. After you’ve decided on a tagline, use the same language to develop your badge, and alternate version of the written tagline and badge depending on the medium used to advertise and available space on materials.
When possible, localize the tagline to draw community support. Some examples of commonly used anniversary taglines are “Proudly serving the Florida Panhandle for 10 years” or “Serving the Jacksonville community since 1985.” If your business is celebrating a sales goal or receiving a coveted accolade, consider a slogan that emphasizes the growth or status of the company, such as “Tallahassee’s No. 1 Realtor” or “Best Tampa Food Truck.”
Businesses with storefronts or offices that clients and customers frequent should also include the badge on all indoor and outdoor signage and banners.
Acknowledge Your Customers’ Role in Reaching Your Goal
Loyal customers and clients are paramount to a company’s success, so it’s important to acknowledge their role in helping the business or organization meet goals and reach milestones. Following a significant company achievement, announce the news to customers and supporters with an email, on social media or through the company website by thanking them for their continued support.
Businesses should even consider rewarding loyal customers with discount codes or special offers. According to a survey conducted by Salesforce, 65 percent of consumers say their loyalty is influenced by companies sending personalized or exclusive offers or discounts. Celebrating a 10-year anniversary? Treat longtime customers to a 10 percent-off coupon. This small gesture not only shows regularly returning customers that they are appreciated, but it also may help entice customers who haven’t made a purchase in a while to do so again.
Be Your Own Ambassador
There are no better ambassadors for a company than its employees. Employees are perhaps the biggest stakeholders in a business, and they are invested in its success. So, it’s important to involve employees in promotional and marketing plans.
Companies that choose to include their commemorative badges or taglines on promotional items such as T-shirts, hats, jackets and buttons can then encourage employees to both distribute and wear them. If employees are mandated to wear company shirts or uniforms, investing in a new design that features the badge or slogan also can be an effective, yet relatively inexpensive, marketing strategy.
Businesses that require workers to travel to appointments in company vehicles should take the employee ambassador idea one step further by featuring the badge or slogan on vehicle bumper stickers, custom car wraps or other signage.
Engage the Community in Your Celebration
When a business is genuinely engaged in the community – volunteering, holding public events and serving on community boards – they are able to tap into the goodwill they’ve fostered when in need of community support.
For businesses that have already established a strong community presence, hosting an event and inviting the community to come celebrate is a great way to promote your milestone and get people engaged. Building on the idea that customers and supporters are key to a company’s success, position the celebration as a “thank-you” to the community. Brick-and-mortar stores can even host the celebration at or outside of the business if space permits.
Remember, it’s the thought that counts, so the event should be scaled to fit the company’s budget. While businesses with large marketing budgets may host a celebration that includes food, entertainment and pricey giveaways, companies with smaller budgets can scale back and host a more economical gathering by offering small treats, such as ice cream or popcorn, and giving away branded promotional items.
Pitch Your Story to Local News Outlets
When developing a milestone marketing campaign, businesses should place added emphasis on earned media or unpaid brand coverage that originates outside of your organization. Earned media placements on trusted outlets can help give your brand third-party credibility while expanding audience reach.
Businesses should pitch local news outlets and industry publications after reaching a large company milestone. In the pitch, include a compelling hook that touts the company’s achievement while focusing on the significance to the community. Big company anniversaries, national or statewide recognitions, and grand openings of new locations are all milestones that can be of particular interest to local media.
Hosting a community event also is a way to pique media’s interest in a business reaching its milestone. Prior to the event, send out a media advisory inviting local news outlets, television and radio stations, bloggers and industry influencers to attend. To improve your chance of getting the story picked up after the event, follow up by sending a recap news release and photos to media contacts who were unable to attend. You should have the bulk of the news release prewritten so it can be distributed to media outlets immediately after the event, or the day after.
Spread the Word on Your Website and Social Media Platforms
In today’s digital age, if somebody can’t find it online, did it even really happen? It’s imperative that companies promote their business milestones on their websites, social channels, email and and possibly even digital ads. Milestone marketing is essential for growing businesses as they work to establish credibility while larger organizations need to tout achievements to reinforce their strong brand.
Businesses should feature their new commemorative taglines and badges prominently on the company website, Twitter and Facebook cover or profile photos, and in employee email signatures. Additionally, businesses should post a blog that highlights the significance of the company reaching its milestones, then encourage employees, partner organizations and other stakeholders to share the content to their personal and professional networks.
Has your company reached a new milestone that you need help publicizing? Contact Fiore Communications today to get started building your milestone marketing campaign plan.