How to Plan Your Fourth Quarter Events Like a Rock Star

by : 

Megy Karydes

August 8, 2016
Marketing Monday - How to Plan Your Fourth Quarter Events Like a Rock Star

For many independent retailers, August tends to be a bit quieter in terms of traffic (unless you’re in a heavy tourist location). However, this month is integral to planning successful holiday special events for the all-important fourth quarter, which kicks off in less than a month!

One reason many retailers fail at having successful events, despite having some really fun ideas, is they fail to plan and properly promote their events. Even if you’re pretty solid when it comes to hosting a fun soiree, you need to do more than simply show up the night of the event. This is the month to create your event plans and craft easy, clear steps to make them a reality.

Let's get started!

Name game

Think of a clever name for your event (brainstorm with friends if you’d like) and finalize the time and date. If you’ve hosted this event in the past and people have good things to say about it, ask for endorsements from past guests to use in social media, press releases, email newsletters, and anywhere else you plan to post the news about this event.

Make a list, and check it OFTEN

Here’s a good practice for events year round: Create a list of places to post your events. You might be surprised to find that your local library sends out regular emails to its list, for example. Or, did you know that several media outlets have specific sections on their websites where you can easily go and upload your own data (saving you both the time and hassle of asking a calendar editor on staff to do it)? Most are free or low-cost, and the list is something you can work on when it’s quieter in the store.

Get social

Events are a great way to engage on social media, and you don’t need to wait until the event happens to get the excitement going. Create a hashtag and start using it to promote the event. The more people see the hashtag and event listing, the more likely they’ll think it’s worth their time to attend ... and invite others to join them!

Next week we’ll cover more ways to help you get the word out about your events.

Bonus expert tip

Here’s a secret if you hate planning special events: Hire a professional event planner. Yes, this is an expense, but I’d venture to guess that if you’re not someone who loves to plan events and promote them, you’re actually wasting both money and time (which translates into lost money). Hiring a professional event planner will net you additional revenue because they know how to do it right and will get people to come to your party.

Megy Karydes helps small businesses harness their marketing power. She’s also a freelance writer whose work has appeared in The Atlantic’s CityLab, Midwest Living magazine and Chicago Tribune, among others. Find her at