Thursday, December 15, 2011
It can sometimes be a challenge to sell small business owners on Business Improvement Districts. In this short clip, Commissioner Rob Walsh of the New York City Department of Small Businesses, Fulton Area Business Alliance Executive Director (and Coro Neighborhood Leadership alum) Phillip Kellog and various small business owners talk about how BIDs are helping small businesses with their bottom line.
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
|Retailers, brokers and developers set up booths at ICSC for |
the purpose of making deals. Commercial districts can benefit
from ICSC's tradeshow too.
So how do you prepare for ICSC? Planning starts early…
Our team has spent the past year preparing these sites to attend ICSC. The process began with market analysis, but certainly did not end there. We helped these groups develop a retail vision for their districts while simultaneously identifying opportunity sites by working with landlords and local brokers. We also developed district-wide leasing plans that pin-pointed retail categories that reflected three basic criteria – 1) retail categories could be supported by the market, 2) retail categories that matched the space available in the district, and finally 3) retail categories that complemented local community needs and wants. Finally, we prepared marketing material that conveyed the message of these leasing plans for distribution and use in retail prospecting.
Once all those elements were in place, preparing for ICSC included scouring the exhibitor and attendee lists to develop a hit-list of retailers (and brokers who represent those retailers) who reflected our priority retail categories. With district marketing material and sell-sheets for the available spaces in hand, we worked the floor methodically, approaching booths, grabbing business cards and site selection information. In some cases, we made appointments with the right people in advance. In others, we simply walked up to the booth and asked to speak with the rep for the region we were in. If we couldn’t talk to the representative at that moment, we grabbed a card and moved on.
...and doesn't end once the trade show is over!
As you can imagine, a lot of work happens after the trade show ends. Follow up is critical. The contacts made at ICSC are invaluable, not just in the short-term, but in the long-term. We will recommend that each district send regular e-mail blasts detailing their vacancies to their now growing list of brokers and retailers. These retailers may not need space right now, but you never know what their expansion plans will be in 6 months or even two years. It’s a slow-tedious process….but it works!
Friday, December 2, 2011
|Partners from l to r. Michael Kreha, Justin Steel, |
Bobby Fry and Kevin Cox
|A custom-designed chandelier |
graces the restored tin ceilings
The loss of relationship lending has hurt "Main Street" businesses
Willing to pay a higher interest rate, but not offered the option
|Love the fixtures...|
At this point, they also plan to continue pressing lenders, finding any way possible to get them into the space to show them what they've done in efforts to revisit lending opportunities.