During the economic downturn, our jobs as district managers were more vital than ever. Promotion and marketing are critical to attracting the shrinking number of household discretionary dollars out there. A recent piece in the Denver Post [Retail center "mechanics" do whatever it takes to maintain tenants, 3/1/2011] follows Allen Ginsborg, a principal at NewMark Merrill Cos, a California-based commercial real-estate firm, in his sometimes zany efforts to do whatever it takes to drive pedestrian traffic to the shopping centers that he managers. Some of those efforts include:
- Dressing up a man in a Santa suit and dropping him from a plane
- Putting on shows (dog shows, car shows, etc)
- Setting up seasonal events (i.e. Haunted House for Halloween)
- Sending out coupon mailers
- Using social networking sites
These efforts should sound extremelly familiar to most business improvement district managers. Helping your businesses find ways to collaboratively market their goods and services to residents, employees and visitors; managing seasonal promotional events; utilizing social networking sites to share happenings in your district; these are all activities that should be part of any district managers everyday playbook.