As we start to settle into our new facility and hurriedly prepare for our mixer tomorrow we want to reflect on the marketing we put in motion in order to inform our customers and the public of our expansion. Some tactics were successful, some not, so if you are looking at a big move in the future you can take our dos and don’ts and make them your own.
After a month in our new 8,000 square foot facility, we are still seeing the remnants of the move with boxes still unpacked, pictures unhung and customers still confused by our move (even despite our best efforts). All we can say is, it takes time, so don’t worry if people still call saying they showed up to your old location. After 15 years, (as it is in our case) at one place, it is bound to happen.
First and foremost, before your move you need to sit down with your team and come up with a marketing plan. Decide what you want to focus on during the move. Are you expanding? Are you moving to a more convenient location? Are you offering more services or products? Make sure to identify these early and highlight them in all your marketing pieces throughout the move so people can get excited about this new change. Get started early, this is our best advice. Somethings cannot be done until after the move but prepare yourself for that day!
Then make a list including deadlines and assignments to each on your marketing team. You want to focus on a couple key areas: public relations (getting some ink for your company), social media, websites and Google as well as networking groups to gain help from your partners and their resources, such as a local chamber of commerce. Even if you have a limited marketing staff you can achieve these things easily in order to keep your customers informed and the community excited, which can help you gain some business.
As daunting as moving is, it is an opportunity to be in the limelight and expose your business, so take full advantage.
Public relations is a tough sell if you are a small business, but take a stab at it anyway and locate some influential journalists in your area, try and get to know them and their beat. If it fits your industry, send a press release at least three weeks before your move date (see here for tips on how to write a press release) and be sure to follow up with them.
Social media is a great, inexpensive and fast way to inform your customers and the public about your move. Set up a separate plan for this and take photos, schedule posts and make videos all leading up to the big day. On the day of the move make sure to include some posts as well and maybe some before and after shots of your new location.
Your websites and Google are something you should set up with your webmaster ahead of time so they can change all backlinks, articles and blogs to match your new address. Google and Google maps' are something you should change about four days before you move because it takes an average of about five days for them to update the change. Don’t forget to update your Yelp, all social media, Yellow Pages and any other online platforms that could have your old address associated with your name. Just do a Google search of your business and look through the results to see if everything matches up.
Lastly, make sure to take advantage of your friends and networks by asking them to share your social media posts, host a ribbon cutting or mixer and basically just help spread the word. Make sure to update all your business cards, brochures, notepads and promotional items as well, which can help you when you are out and about by reminding them of your impending move. Also, any chance you get make sure to inform all your current customers as well as vendors so they can be prepared for the big day.
With all this in mind, you should be set to move on and up in your business and maybe even gain some customers in the process. It will be stressful but oh so worth it.
Always look for new ways to gain attention for your move and don’t be afraid to ask for favors.
AJ Printing & Graphics and Wine Country Signs is a commercial printer in Santa Rosa, California specializing in digital and offset printing including business cards, brochures, direct mail and more for your next move. We put our relationships with our clients over everything in order to ensure their success. With over 30 years’ experience in the industry, leave the printing to us and focus on other things. We are a green business, recycling all of our paper and buying from trusted businesses that commit to the sustainability of our planet. We are your partner in print, design and marketing located at 1315 North Dutton Ave, Santa Rosa, CA (707) 525-8600!