How to draw in crowds to your new business

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

By Katie Tejada

So, you created a business plan and you’ve brought it to life. Your business is ready to open and now you’re wondering, “How do I attract customers?” It’s a daunting task for any business owner, despite carefully planned marketing strategies and rigorous self-promotion. Not to mention that in such a digitally saturated market, the task of attracting customers to your new business can present unforeseen obstacles.

One path to success is to combine savvy in-person marketing with a modern approach to understanding customers. Here are some ideas for attracting customers that utilize this approach.

Advertise and publicize

Where better to start than with proven classics like advertising and publicity? This may seem basic, but it’s easy to lose focus when trying to attract customers. A new business is a great way to offer a good/service to anyone. This does not mean everyone.

Knowing your business’s highest-valued demographic is key to drawing in crowds effectively, whether that’s with Instagram ads or podcast plugs. Focus on catering to wider demographics who lean towards a more tech-savvy side of consumer shopping.

Another tactic proven to work for new businesses is trade show booths. But in today’s world, these effective displays don’t need to be at large exhibition halls in empty convention centers, which often only cater to more select demographics.

In fact, they don’t have to be at a trade show at all. Setting up a mobile store at festivals, farmer’s markets, outdoor shopping centers, and other large outdoor events is a great way to attract customers to your new business. Just make sure you have an eye-catching mobile trade show display that represents your business in an accurate, charismatic, and inviting fashion.

Style, style, style!

This brings us to our next tip for drawing in the crowds: incorporate appealing style and design! No matter what market your new business is in, its aesthetic communicates your brand personality to current and prospective customers.

When it comes to mobile booths and trade show displays, it’s all the more important to have a killer design because more likely than not, you’ll be competing with other vendors looking to attract customers from the same space.

So creativity is key for your mobile trade show booth: it can go a long way in drawing in customers in a simple, effective way.

Here are a few ideas to get your trade show style booth to stand out from the crowd and attract customers:

-Make your display interactive

-Offer exclusives or other promotions only available during the event

-Advertise rewards for following your social media accounts

Attracting customers in the digital era

Creating a mobile store or booth may seem like an unnecessary investment, especially in the era of online advertisements. Before the pandemic, many small business owners steered away from selling their goods and services at brick-and-mortar stores in an age where digital purchases had taken over.

But the post-pandemic market has seen a significant shift back to in-person shopping, with people spending $400 million more in-store now than they did a couple of years ago. Along with returning to social interaction they’ve missed, in-person stores often build stronger customer relationships than online shopping alone.

Why does this matter? As people return to in-store shopping, business owners are having to blend traditional, offline marketing with newer, digital tactics to effectively attract new customers.

You don’t have to do it alone

One way to incorporate conventional methods into your playbook is by partnering up with non-competing businesses with common interests like sustainability, fair trade, or even giving back.

This can improve your brand’s public-facing image and incentivize customers to choose your business over your competitors’ when it’s time to make a purchase. Large businesses like Uber, KFC, and Hanes all have major partnerships with nonprofits or charities which they’ve leveraged to reach more people with their products and services.

As a new business, it may seem impossible to attract large partners. But many nonprofits and charitable organizations are eager to partner with small-to-medium-sized businesses if they are value-aligned.

Whether you choose to approach the task of attracting customers to your new business through conventional means (i.e. paid print ads, billboards, and trade shows), or choose to travel the newer road of podcast plugs, social media networking, and incentivized brand partnerships—the first step to bringing crowds into your new business is planning and brainstorming.


Katie Tejada is a writer, editor, and former HR professional. She often covers developments in HR, business communication, recruiting, real estate, finance and law, but also enjoys writing about travel, interiors and events.


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