Here are a couple of more reasons why it pays to keep an eye on junk mail (digital and snail) as well as a lookout for quirky marketing gimmicks at the local level:
Casino humor. My mailbox offered up a large postcard from the Motor City casino in Detroit, featuring a frowning Mayan statue with the caption “We’re giving away money like there’s no tomorrow!” It was a come-on for a special Dec. 21 doomsday promotion, playing off the end-of-the-world scenario I outlined in a recent blog post. I thought it was pretty amusing; you might check for similar seasonal promos at gambling parlors nearby.
And it’s another reminder of why business writers should subscribe to e-mail, Twitter and rewards clubs for companies they cover, even if they don’t patronize them. This mailer was a result of signing up for the slot-machine-players program at that casino to keep tabs on their marketing tactics.
Frantic shoppers? In a twist on “fear-based marketing,” my local downtown business coalition has come up with an antidote for males who quake at the notion of showing up empty-handed Christmas morn. A group of merchants in the Main Street shopping district are promoting a “Men’s Panic Party” for Dec. 17. Boutiques will offer shopping assistance, registry information or, as a last resort, gift cards, while bars and bistros are planning specials to reward the manly shoppers for all of their hard work.
I thought it was a clever way to appeal to a specific demographic that doesn’t regularly browse the quaint knick-knack and apparel shops in this area; you might check around for similar outreach or other quirky last-minute tactics by malls and shopping areas. It’s also a good time to check in on the results from any other shop-local campaigns underway this season.