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  • #974955
    Jazzah
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    We have our first birthday party at our new venue today, it went really really well and the place looked amazing! I will be putting some photos on our website really soon.

    but

    there are no more bookings….

    so school holidays are coming up, we were thinking of offering some really cheap (just covering material costs) activities. Any ideas, we have craft, disco, cooking… we are aiming for primary kids. The idea is to just get some foot traffic.

    To let people know, found these http://www.illuminateentertainment.com.au/page8.htm

    I thought that they could walk through the Frankston shopping precinct after school, handing out flyers. Do I need permission to do that, if it is not in the shopping centre…although the shopping centre may allow it, if I ask.

    What do you think?

    #1071480
    Munch
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    I don’t like revenue netural / loss leading marketing for small businesses, unless you are desparate to raise market awareness. It risks devaluing your image and that kind of damage can be very difficult to wind back, especially if you are in a service industry.

    Here’s a couple of low cost marketing ideas you may like to consider…

    Do you collect clients details? Marketing to your existing clients always produces better results than generating new business. Try a “bring a friend for free!” offer and you could get new clients this way.

    Do you have friends with a shop who want to boost traffic? – It doesn’t have to sell kids stuff, it could be a fruitbarn or bakery. Even if you dont know a store owner, front up to a couple of potential candidates and see if the managers will be happy for you to provide some free balloons to kids in store if you can hand a “bring a friend for free!” to the mums & dads on a Saturday morning. Get your logo printed on the balloons if you can. As you are no doubt aware, children will drag parents over mountains of jagged lego to get a free balloon, so the store owner will get a lot of traffic. No mall permission (or fees!) required.

    Do you have a van? Go to your local sign writer and get some high quality printing on the van stating “School Holiday fun for Frankston kids at illuminate!” “Child Care!” “Circus Training!” “Magic!” etc. Put your website address on (see if you can get a shorter URL!). Park in McDonald’s car parks after school / at weekend lunchtimes – stick a brochure holder to the outside and pop a couple in.

    Good Luck!

    #1071481
    Jazzah
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    Hi Munch, Thanks for your reply. We did do balloon centerpieces for 2 local shopping centre school holiday programs. Each child received a flyer to take home. The displays were really fantastic, but I don’t think we received one sale from it.

    Giving away balloons sounds great, but helium balloons are $1.80 each! people don’t realize they are quite expensive, I also don’t think they would generate the same buzz as the balloon costume idea.

    Any other ideas? We don’t have any car signage at the moment and will look into it.
    Jazzah

    #1071482
    daydreamer
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    Hi Jazzah,

    Had a quick look at your website and understood your business to be more about selling party kit, rather than hosting the parties.

    Perhaps you can make it a bit clearer about the hosting part on the site.

    #1071483
    Jazzah
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    Yes, we will have more info on the party venue on the website, the paint literally only dried on the walls on Friday! So I can now take some photos to put up as well. That is on my list for this week.

    Cheers
    Jazzah

    #1071484
    daydreamer
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    Cool, you might also want to try targeting much more wealthy areas like Mount Eliza, rather than Frankston, especially for hosting parties, which would be considered a luxury option.

    Not sure why you picked Frankston for your first location, maybe the rent was cheap, but isn’t Frankston one of the lowest socio economic areas in Melbourne?

    Maybe it is a good idea to be located in areas closer to your target market (ie. parents with the cash to spend on their kids).

    #1071485
    AngelaGirl
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    • Total posts: 330
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    Hi Jazzah

    I think your ideas of craft/cooking workshops and discos are great. My friends and I are always on the look out for these kinds of activities, especially as school holidays approach. We all have girls so I can’t comment on whether they would appeal to boys as much. I’ve seen advertising for these types of activities is in the local paper, Events Calendar of the various free parenting newspaper, or notice boards in shopping centres. You could also leave posters/pamphlets at the daycare centres that offer before and after school care, but close down over the holidays.

    For the craft you could do jewellery making, ANYTHING involving glitter, make a pinata, painting activities, face painting/tattoos/coloured hairspray.. basically the messier the better as I know I would much rather my daughter do these activities anywhere except inside our house!

    A free cuppa and biscuit for the parents is always a drawcard for me too :).

    Re: free helium balloons… I’ve seen other businesses use normal balloons on plastic sticks which I imagine is a much cheaper option. The kids don’t seem to notice the difference and it saves a lot of tears if they accidentally let go of it.

    Angela

    #1071486
    The Infotainer
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    are you advertising on kidspot.com.au I get countless enquiries from advertising there for my kids magic business and cheap as well $90 a month for me in Sydney.
    check this link out- all these people are getting enquiries I would assume http://www.kidspot.com.au/parenting-directory/Birthday-parties+1+Decorations-party-supplies+4/0+search.htm

    with a business such as yours- you should be selling Australia wide, I mean you don’t have to physically go to the individual parties, you just send stuff through the post

    You should get other kids entertainers to promote you and you promote them- sure it will benefit you more than them at first but eventually It will benefit them as well.

    Forget handing out the flyers, howabout you approach all the schools in your area (primary) and put on a coloring in competition- black and white photo copies are easy and cheap to print out, you go to your local supermarket and ask the supermarket if you can have a box at the main cash register (out the front of coles where they sell cigarettes at that big counter) and with a little sing- you say you will be promoting this to every child (and their mums) in all the schools- they normally want to help local businesses, this box is the place to put entry forms, have your details on the coloring in page that they tear off with a quick list of what you offer

    where I live there are over 8 primary schools around my suburb and the neighboring ones) so start with 2 schools. ) the prize can be a birthday party kit High end that makes people want to say- I want that!

    ok on to website
    the header is large but says nothing about what you do and what services you do, it is alot of space for zero messaging

    Instead of having your address right at the top – tell then what you do and let them know you are Australia wide

    here are some more problems that I see

    Text is too small, I have to squint to read it
    colors seem dull- I would brighten it up
    Header does not communicate anything and is too big
    show physical products on the home page, not just images of the different brands, if you sell birthday favours- then show a picture of it- Basically your money earners go on the home page the ones that are most popular- and show pictures of them

    2nd paragraph- on each of the product types- make these links to the different sections

    Choose from a range of kids birthday party supplies including invitations (this should be a link), balloons(this should be a link), themed party kits and so on and so onand more. If your looking for inspiration on party games and ideas, then che……..

    Make it easy to navigate and quick to naviagte so those 3 boxes you have right at the bottom are assuming that people are going to read everything before hand- which they are not- have them up the top and make it a bolder color to make them really stand out.

    Cross linking
    There are a gazillion kids entertainers who do not sell what you do- so have them link to you and you create a mini directory of different entertainers- Not for SEO but for recommendations, become the one stop shop for birthday parties and while you don’t do the parties yourself, you offer suggestions on magicians, fairies clowns etc

    process:

    I added some things to my cart but it took a while to find out where to go to pay for things- I realise it was at the top called CART but that link was not there when I first arrived so I didn’t look there again, Also when I click My account it had cart details- but I had no account so I did not click it

    you need a “purchase now button” or something because your making it harder to sell by not having it, instead you have estimate shipping- No BUY NOW ( I am not sure how your cart works) but shouldn’t this shipping be done after they have clicked purchase right now or buy now.

    I don’t know but navigation is vital for your shop

    #1071487
    The Infotainer
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    OK School holidays from a kids party magician = zip nothing nada

    Unless I get booked for shopping centres I really get no bookings for parties during the school holidays- don’t worry as much about school holidays- work goes down in those times for party enquiries

    parents are looking for workshops – things that they can send their kids to so possibly there is some work there not sure about your area.

    Please tell me tho

    what is the difference between your business and any other party supply business, as in why would I do business with you over any of the others on kidspot for example? from looking at your site – I do not see a big difference and this may be a problem.

    on the home page- I suggest you have a form to fill out to get a free gift like how to put on an amazing birthday party for example- PDF ebook

    why- well at the moment you have nothing really, you have a newsletter link in your menu- but realistically people don’t want to sign up for a newsletter, but what they do want is a solution to the problem your having right now

    mailchimp (google it) will alllow you to create a form to fill out that you can place on your site plus an autoresponder which you can attach a PDF file, this will help develop the database.

    you see on your site- the only way you really know if anyone is visiting your site is if they buy something, no you need to offer something for everyone so you can 1: build the database and 2: measure results. on the form you ask for name, email, date of birthdays and what they are interested in (in a drop down menu) this allows you to not just create a database of names but a database of potential customers

    when designing flyers have a promo code on it- or even easier have a saing near the phone number that reads call 909090909090 and ask for Susan, now you may not have a susan working for you, but if people are asking for Susan you know if is from your flyers and not other marketing

    #1071488
    The Infotainer
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    according to wikapedia there are 12 primary schools in frankston
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankston,_Victoria#Demographics

    there should be a gazilion customers for you. I am not sure what the problem is

    It must be frustrating as hell

    #1071489
    Jazzah
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    HI, Thankyou for your replies. Our website business does very well and ranks good too, so that isn’t so much of a problem. We sell party supplies throughout Australia on our website.

    It is our new venue that i am more worried about, as people don’t know we are here. Frankston was chosen as it is central to transport, good visibility, and has a variety of income bases. Some parts are low socio-economic, but others are really high, Frankston South, Mt Eliza etc. Then there are some boundary growth areas for families like Langwarrin and Carrum Downs and Skye. We are right along the train line, so good visibility once our signage is completed.

    I will follow up on the newsletters at the schools this week. We have tried Kidspot for our website a year or so ago, for $1500 for the year I think we had 4 sales from it. It was not worth it, and I would hesitate to go that way again.

    The coloring competition looks like a great idea, just have to get it organized

    Keep the ideas coming though!

    #1071490
    King
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    Having given this some thought, this is what I suggest:

    Contact the dozen schools. Make an arrangement that if they agree to your promoting it to the school community (school newsletter, maybe even as part of take-home notes), and that the schools takes the booking and the 10% deposit, that the school gets to keep the 10% deposit as commission and you get the booking. Once you start getting a few parties, natural WOM will start to take over.

    It is important to keep revitalising your offerings every year so that as the kids grow up they can have parties there that are not same ol same ol….

    #1071491
    SalenaKnight
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    Hi Jazzah,

    School holidays for us are really quiet as well, and we’ll be introducing school holiday activities for kids in our party room, similar to what you’ve mentioned.

    Unfortunately we’ve become a victim of council inadequacy, and our DA will not be approved in time for these holidays :(

    If you want to give me a call tomorrow, I can give you some of the ideas we’re thinking of running. None of them are cost neutral – they all make money, and we have had people asking for bookings, even though we’ve only mentioned it to a handful of people instore etc.

    sal

    #1071492
    The Infotainer
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    corporatemagician, post: 0 wrote:
    This is really good strategy for retaining the customers & to promote your sales as marketing requires skills to increase sales & avoid comaparisow with others.

    got to get customers before you can retain them

    Discounting is not always the best option- it can work but you have to give a good reason

    #1071493
    Jazzah
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    • Total posts: 193
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    flower-child, post: 89435 wrote:
    If you want to give me a call tomorrow,

    sal

    Hi Sal, Sorry been a bit busy last few days and only just saw this, but I will give you a call!

    thanks
    Jazzah

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