Holiday Shopping Campaign
We use the holiday shopping season to remind customers the importance and joy that comes from buying local. We annual produce a holiday gift guide that we send to DNR readers and market digitally through social media.
We also partner with Harrisonburg Radio Group to get the word out about shopping local. We do an on-air segment before Small Business Saturday and coordinate a dozen recordings with downtown businesses to talk about their shops and the value of supporting local (at no cost the business owner).
HDR and the Friendly City Merchants team up each year to produce Winter Wonderfest – a holiday event that features child care, photos with Santa, a holiday art & craft market, free yoga, face painting, carolers, photo opportunities with costumed characters and more. Also, over a dozen handmade, crafting workshops are offered throughout the season so you can learn how to make gifts yourself!
In 2018, we used a grant to publish a magazine timed with the opening of Hotel Madison this summer. We are updating the content now and will publish this winter a second addition of this in-room magazine that is focused 100% on downtown. We are getting a subscription to Issuu – an online tool that will give us a digital platform for this magazine so more people – not just guests of the hotel and Joshua Wilton – can read all about how much downtown offers and so we can expand our reach.
Link to the magazine.
On-going Digital Marketing
We have a robust social media effort that we manage throughout the year via Facebook and Instagram. We complement our posts with boosted posts and ads, too. We use these tools to document cool things happening around town as well as to promote local businesses.
We also have a strong blog calendar – we do weekly round ups of events before the weekend, weekly round ups of cool merchandise that you might not know is downtown, holiday promotions that are coming up, and in-depth features of businesses and the people behind the scenes.
Speaking of calendar, we manage downtown’s calendar of events to help bring more people downtown and to help businesses and organizations promote their events. This require daily updates and we work with a team of volunteers to keep it current.
HDR also produces an e-newsletter that comes out every other week. We use this to announce new businesses, promote things happening downtown, talk about what we’re working on, and share our blogs and other content.