Word of Mouth

Last year, I spent almost $700 on advertising during the basketball tournaments.

I bought a full-page ad in the 7-A tournament guide, another big print ad in the 1-A State guide. We also printed hundreds of fliers that we put on cars in the parking lots near the gymnasium.

We even donated almost $300 worth of food to the “hospitality” room for the coaches. A thousand bucks invested total.

My return?

Nada.

We didn’t get one, not ONE team to come in for a meal. We were busier than usual, yes, but nearly everyone was a local resident. We surmised that they had been bumped from downtown by the tourists and had made their way to the outskirts of town by necessity.

I mentioned this fact to our local Chamber director just prior to the recent basketball tournaments, and she said “Well then. I didn’t do my job last year. I need to work on that.”

There is no doubt she took her words seriously.

She must have been our biggest cheerleader, because we had numerous teams come in to eat, as well as a ton of out-of-towners who would have never found our restaurant otherwise.

Invest in your local Chamber of Commerce. It pays much higher dividends than traditional print advertising.

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