Hi Everyone:

 

I'm looking to do an open house for my small business, but the space is very small- 250 sq ft. small.

 

What would some of your suggestions be? Is it possible to even do?

 

I have been open for a month and am looking to generate buzz for my business.

 

Any ideas would be great :)

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I am in almost this same situation...I have about 325 but not really room at all for an open house in my actual space.  I am not sure what your surrounding area  is like, but I was thinking about doing a tent type thing outside...and then maybe doing some type of tour of the space or something like that.   

Have you had your open house yet?  If so, what did you end up doing?  If not, maybe we can brainstorm and come up with some stuff together.  I opened Feb 21 so I am thinking April woudl be the time to finally do an open house.  how has business been for you and where are you located?

When we did an open house, we had people schedule 15 minute time blocks for skin analysis, chair massage, makeup consults, etc.  That way not everyone showed up at one time and it flowed better. Everyone who scheduled an appointment that night got a discount, we gave a free goodie bag (not sure exactly what was in it), and had fruit, cheese, crackers and wine.  That 2.5 hour event in late Feb booked me completely for March.   Good luck! 

I have  about 500 ft but still not a lot of room to have people hanging out in. I have done a couple of open house/fund raisers for breast cancer and this is what I have learned. 

1) Make sure the day you plan is not around a holiday or big game event.

2) I have had a better turn out when the open house supported a cause. Like for every appt book that night 10% went towards a charity. Local charity is better then national because you can get support/clients to show up from charity.

3) Like Jodi said, have them pre-book mini services to help with traffic flow plus to know someone is going to show up. Nothing is worse than having an open house and no one shows up.  Yes, it has happen to me, hence rule #1!

4) Everyone likes a party favor/gift bag, plus if you fill it with good stuff not cheap stuff they will tell their friends about it and create buzz for your spa/next event!

5) What has always been a huge hit at my events is the tarot readers, always a long line to get a free reading. I did a trade with the reader, so it didnt' cost me a thing.

Hope that helps!

Liz

oooh i love the sound of the tarot card reader for your open house!  Girls love that stuff!  The charity idea is good too (local) and of course the cheese, crackers and not forgetting the wine of course!  Wish i could attend, it's got me all in the mood for a party!

Wow, I am loving these ideas!

 

Sheila, I haven't had the event yet. It is scheduled for April 19. I am located in New Castle, Delaware. My business is in the heart of a historic, waterfront community. The tent idea won't work, since anything exterior has to be approved months ahead of time with the historic commission. I am having a hard time as it is with retail signage!

 

I am planning on having a tray of tea sandwhiches and a tray of mini desserts, along with coffee and tea. There will be a ribbon cutting ceremony first, followed by the open house.

 

My business is focused only on facials and chemical peels. Therefore, no makeup or waxing, etc. What type of mini treatments could I offer besides free skin consults?

 

I like the goody bag idea. What "good stuff" should I include?

 

Thanks for helping me out! Business has been good so far, mostly word of mouth from the local ladies in the town.

Good luck with the grand opening and let us know how it goes!  Post pictures if you are able to :), would love to see how you set up.  I really need to do my grand opening in April too, i just feel mentally burned out with ideas from putting my place together but I need to get moving on that. 

I think in a good bag maybe you could get with your skin care line and see if they will get samples.  Mine said that I can get about 30 different samples of things plus I already have some.  Maybe do that, with a little tea bag and a inexpensive candle or something, or maybe you could make a little room spray that you could put in there, print up a how to care for your skin at home guide like with cleansing toning, etc and how to apply products from thinnest molecular weight to thickest.  Just a thought. 

My business has does a lot through Facebook, first 3 weeks I was seeing about 7 people a week, then I had a week of only 2 so that was bummer but then this past week I had 9, so it is slowly but surely getting around, I am probably going to start doing some printed advertising in a newspaper this week starting in April.  hopefully that will help. 

So happy for you!  Also, maybe you could serve some cucumber water at your open house.  I know thats always a huge hit when I have done that. 

Thanks, Sheila. I will call and ask about samples.

 

Do you have a fan page on facebook or just your own personal page? I have both and am having a hard time getting people to "like" my business page. I certainly don't have even 7 clients a week, so I am not doing as well as you are.

 

Print ads are expensive, so I am at a loss for what else to do.

I do have a fan page, VitalizeMe Skin Therapy.  I have a little over 100 people and to get to 100 I said once I hit 100 I would be giving a free 1 hour facial away...so I did that and I chose the person that looked likely to utilize different services the center offers like yoga or massage.  Now I said if I hit 125 I would give another free service but thats not working.  I have also given out a few free facials to people as well even just 30 minutes, so they will then share the page.

Keep looking and talking to different places to run ads, I actually am starting one this week and I can run once a week for a year 1/4 page in color for 350 bucks.  I thought it would all be way too expensive too but you never know. 

I have zero clients this week so it's definitely not consistent, but work during the down time and just research advertising or anything like that.  Maybe get some advertising on your car, get some shirts made, just ideas if you havent' done so already.  Try linking up with a local nail salon, hair salon, etc, gym, and see about doing some trade for advertising in their spaces. 

Erica, will it be just you at the open house, or will you have someone to help out with traffic flow and booking appointments?  I guess you can only book for skin analysis.  Where I work we do makeup, waxing and massage, along with facials and peels, so we had 3 rooms going with all that.  Is there maybe a local hair or nail salon nearby you could 'partner' with and do a joint open house type thing to have more for people to do, and maybe do referrals to each other? 

Jodi,

 

Yes, it will just be me doing everything. No hair or nail salon nearby.

 

There are many people who live in small houses and they are happy. But a small house is more difficult to be clean because families tend to have many things and little storage for their belongings. Maybe some of them should be interested in the best home maintenance solutions Kenosha and hire professional handymen to do these changes.

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