Let me share a story on a great grand opening, and how we began producing themed events. The first event we ever produced with the company I created after leaving Walt Disney World was a Monti Carlo themed event at what was at the time called the Dutch Inn in Lake Buena Vista Florida. When we sold the event, I asked one of my partners, Reid Carlson, probably one of the most creative designers I have ever worked with, to design the event, which he did beautifully. During the design process, we made sure that we kept our attorneys in the loop to ensure that we didn’t violate Florida’s procession of gaming equipment laws. We showed them the designs and fabrication plans and were given an opinion that our tables and fields would not be considered as realistic gaming equipment. With that assurance, we fabricated the sets, props, tables, staging, and entertainment for the event and produced the event for the client in 1974.
The event was highly successful, so much so that over time we built several different versions of the event.
What You Can Do: Experiences for a Great Grand Opening:
First impressions are incredibly important. The grand opening of your business is your first impression of the community. It’s not enough to just open your doors and hope people will walk in. You want a grand opening that will generate excitement and bring people to you. Here are 5 experiences you can use to create an incredible grand opening for your new business.
Host a Fundraiser
A fundraiser is a great way to establish yourself as a business that cares about the community. Search your local area to see what charities or causes are around. Pick one that aligns with your business. The charity you choose can help to promote your grand opening to their supporters and help bring more people out.
Break a World Record
A really creative event idea is to attempt to break a world record. The Guinness World Records has been incredibly popular for decades, and people are always trying to break records to get into it. Believe it or not, Guinness World Records actually has a team specifically dedicated to business. This team can help you with organizing your record-breaking ideas. For instance, they helped LG Electronics build the world’s tallest house of cards. Not only that, but the house was built on an LG washing machine as it was running. The Business Solutions team can help you to choose a record that fits with your business, and help you to break it.
Give a Tutorial
Certain types of stores, such as craft stores and hardware stores, often give regular classes for those who enjoy DIY projects. This idea can be incorporated into your grand opening event. You could choose to host a how-to activity and teach attendees a skill related to your business. You don’t have to be a hardware store or craft store. For instance, a bakery might teach attendees how to decorate a cake. For additional sales during your grand opening event, have kits ready to sell so that your attendees can then take what they’ve learned and recreate it at home.
Famous musicians can be hard to book. Instead, look for a local musician or band. Your attendees are sure to appreciate the music. There’s a good chance the musician will appreciate the free publicity, not just from your attendees, but from any press that may be at your event as well.
Another idea is to bring in art from local artists and hang it on your walls. If you go this route, make sure that you display information for each piece so that your attendees can contact the artist if they’re interested in it. Local art will give your business a unique feel and it will help you build a great relationship with the community.
Create a Themed Experience
Themes for business events can be quite important. They help to generate buzz and they tie your whole event together. They’re also just a lot of fun. There’s no end to the creative themes that you can choose from either. You can do a throwback to a specific decade, have a Gatsby party, or go all out with Mardi Gras. No matter what type of theme you choose, it’s important that you incorporate it in just about every aspect, including the décor, the food, and the entertainment. At Raymond Ramsay and Associates, Inc, we have created all kinds of themed experiences for grand opening events Marriott Marque Hotel and Resort Property openings. All of these openings were unique and had their own interesting stories. A great corporate themed event such as a themed grand opening is sure to create a lot of excitement and be an experience your attendees won’t forget.
Your grand opening is important. It tells your new customers who you are and what you stand for (brand awareness). It gets people talking and gets them excited. It also helps you to create new relationships with your customers and your community. If you need help putting together your grand opening event, we can help. Call Raymond Ramsay and Associates, Inc. today for more information.