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The Ice Cream Man Goes Viral
Summer is here at it is human nature to remember fantastic memories of summers-gone-by. There was one part of childhood that immediately signals summer has finally arrived- the sweet siren call and music of the ice cream man!
To this day, neighbors can still hear the echo from blocks and blocks away. As a child it meant getting out the door as fast as one could. As a parent, it usually means scrambling for any loose change to satisfy your child's immediate need for ice cream. Either way, generations are hooked.
Wouldn't it be great if your business had the same lasting viral marketing? Think about it, it is a van, with a loud speaker blasting the same calliope music and in the end, the promise of a product which is overpriced and not that great. But in one’s mind, it is still something for which we long. Good news, there are ways in which you can leave an indelible mark on the next group of visitors to your institution:
Keep it simple
Often the best experiences in life are those we can enjoy on a level free of complexity. Don't over-explain, flooding a potential customer with details which should be left to the imagination. Remember, the allure is ice cream, the price, flavor and delivery are all decisions made while standing beside the van ingesting fumes from the exhaust.
Become accessible to the consumer
The ice cream man came to your neighborhood. Understandably, not everyone can pick up and take a business to a neighborhood, but position your business as "in the community," a "local treasure" or “a destination.”
Ensure you meet expectations
The biggest mistake is to generate immense interest in what you are selling and then fail to produce. Meeting that expectation means the communications team, the sales team and the key operations people are all on the same page. If there is a gap between any of these players one runs the risk of disappointment or underachievement.
Create opportunities for engagement
The act of buying ice cream is somewhat monotonous. The real joy is in the experience. The laughter of other children, the feel of the side of the van, the look your mom or dad gives you as you take that first bite. The same is true for a buying experience. Create opportunities for people to interact with the a sales team, with other patrons, give real-time feedback and share their experience instantaneously with potential customers on social media.
Strike the same nerve
Don't let memories fade. Strike that nerve each and every time an opportunity presents itself. Utilize social media reminders, seasonal coupons and most importantly, market and engage customers on an on-going basis through drip marketing and targeted digital ads. The best spokesperson for your product or service is a previous customer.