Part 2: 10 Must Consider Grand Opening Marketing Strategies

Note: This entry is a continuation of a past blog post. View the 1st five strategies here.

Whether you are a retailer, retailer developer, museum, restaurant or amusement park, grand openings provide an opportunity to increase awareness among your target audiences, drive attendance, drive sales and increase employee excitement. In order to achieve these benefits it is critical to document a solid marketing plan.

While your marketing strategies will depend specifically on your target audience, your objectives, the opportunities and challenges, there are 10 specific marketing strategies that should be highly considered as part of any grand opening.

Geo-targeting/0nline Advertising: Geo-targeting allows you to target your audience down to the zip code, ensuring you are not wasting impressions on those outside your target geographic region. For example, this could be especially useful if you are opening a location in a major metropolitan area and want to ensure are you targeting a very specific geographic region.

Community Sponsorship: Identifying community sponsorship opportunities that directly target your audience can help to increase brand awareness and communicate the company’s commitment to the local community. Certainly not all community sponsorship opportunities are created equal, and there are typically a plethora of organizations to develop partnerships with. Therefore, it is important to accurately assess what will help you achieve your goals most effectively, and ensure measurement metrics are in place.

Government Relations: Depending on your company’s goals (e.g. development expansion), it might be necessary to contact the local and state government officials. If you are directly impacting the local community (e.g. bring jobs, etc.), the local and state government will likely want to take note. Involve government officials by incorporating them into your grand opening celebration, and/or requesting letters of commendation. This will ensure they are aware of the value you are bringing to the local community and state.

Guerilla Marketing: From street teams to flash mobs, guerilla marketing is low-cost marketing that grabs the attention of your target audience in a more personal and memorable level. This is where you really get to be creative in communicating your unique value proposition and creating some social buzz.

Promotions: If it makes sense for your brand, promotions are a great way to increase foot traffic during the grand opening celebration. It can be anything from coupons to sales, gift card giveaways and promotional products. Determine a tie in with your brand, and something media might even be interested in to gain some additional exposure.

Jennifer Manocchio


After starting her career with Edelman in Chicago, Jennifer joined Sweeney and quickly established herself as an exceptional industry innovator. In 2004, she opened Sweeney’s first full-service office outside of Cleveland and quickly rose through the ranks to become agency president. Jen leads by example and without fear. She has been critical to agency growth throughout the past decade and continues to lead the agency into the future.