Gulf Coast Balloons - A National Event Marketing Company
Houston/Gulf Coast: 713-898-5176
San Antonio/Austin: 210-845-7622
Nationwide:                 888-396-6653
Providing Attention-Getting Visual Marketing Since 1983

Wind Dancers and Air Dancers and Wacky Dancing Inflatables…. Oh My!

by Dave Key, President and Cheif Attention Getter
dave@gulfcoastballoons.com

Well the Wizard of Oz had Lions and Tigers and Bears but if you want to attract a crowd quickly, easily, and inexpensively, one of the best ways is with the use of these constantly dancing wind tubes, flapping their arms and in the air, smiling and just daring you to LOOK OVER HERE for a great sales opportunity.

These attention getting devices have many names also including Sky Dancer, Tube Dude but at the end of the day these all fall in the category of outdoor promotions. These dancers are a great ideas for grand openings, help with sales promotions and advertising. You will see them featured in retail and restaurant ads to tie the sales promotion to their visible marketing strategy. These dancing inflatables are also used in conjunction with sale flags and grand opening flags as well as giant inflatable balloons.

The nice part of using these wind tube dancers is that they are so easy and economical to use. You can plug them into any standard outlet when the business opens in the morning and bring them in at night. They are very lightweight and easy for your local retail employees to handle. Wind Dancers can be found on various sites online for purchase.  Some companies even offer rentals.

If you are purchasing you need to be careful because there are many cheap wind dancers on the market where the blower just won’t hold up or the wind tube will wear out very quickly. Your best bet is to buy or rent from a company that specializes in outdoor signage and promotions.  Typically, outdoor marketing companies that utilize giant cold air inflatables, will also carry commercial grade Wind Dancers.

The standard inflatable dancer comes in a variety of colors with cute little arms, a smiley face, a smiley face and a nice wisp of hair at the top. For a special touch you can look into a variety of holiday wind dancers that include themes and characters for all of the major holidays.

Purchase your very own wacky wind dancer here! Hope you enjoy and Happy Dancing!!!

Four Must-Have Elements of Visual Marketing

BLOG-MINI-INF-01 By Elizabeth Pritchett, Digital Marketing Manager 

lizzie@gulfcoastballoons.com

 

Visual marketing is one of the most effective advertising efforts a business can use to attract attention and therefore increase sales. Including as many of the following four aspects will promise a high ROI on your visual marketing efforts!

 

Plan Now, Profit Later: The Seasonal Promotions You Need To Be Thinking About TODAY

 

 By Elizabeth Pritchett, Digital Marketing Manager

 

Every business owner has experienced a feeling of #FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) at least once in their professional lives, especially when a competitor launches an awesome promotional campaign that totally slipped your mind. As we are entering the beginning of April and the second yearly quarter, it’s time to start thinking ahead about your business’s promotions for May, June, and July. Plan now, profit later!

 

How Do I Increase my Sales with Custom Inflatables?

These days, retailers are doing everything possible to attract attention to their business. In a challenging economy combined with a lot of visual noise, retailers have to stand out in any way they can. One way successful retailers are finding to drive customer traffic is with the use of a giant custom inflatable that can be used for sales, promotions and grand openings. These giant custom inflatables are a novelty and stand out amongst traditional outdoor visible marketing.
  • Use an inflatable that reflects your brand
Retailers get the most out of their giant custom inflatables when they make an inflatable that is reflective of their brand and tie it to a promotion they are running.  One recent example is when McDonald’s used a giant Ronald McDonald inflatable balloon to promote their 24-hour breakfast. The Ronald McDonald figure is familiar to many people and allowed McDonald’s to call attention to their 24-hour breakfast with the clever use of a 24-hour breakfast banner on their custom inflatable.
  • Make a custom inflatable that is easy to install
When making a giant custom inflatable, it’s also important to make a size that is giant but not so large that it is difficult to install and maintain. If the inflatable is too small, it will be ineffective. If it is too large, it will be a challenge to install, cumbersome and it won’t get used as often as it should. Retailers should find a quality custom inflatable manufacturer who has years of design and production experience and can guide them in their ideal giant custom inflatable balloon.
In summary, giant custom inflatables can help to bring attention to a retailer’s business, drive customer traffic and increase sales. While recognizing this, retailers need to have a custom inflatable that represents their brand well and is of the correct sizing and quality.

Stay Open During A Renovation

Tips on how to keep sales up during a commercial renovation!

So you have a successful business and have decided to renovate your building.  The first question you ask yourself is, “Should I stay open during the renovation period?”.  Most businesses do not have the luxury of closing up shop for the weeks or months it may take to complete a remodel.  As long as you can maintain the quality of your products and services during the renovation without it being costlier than temporarily closing, then staying open is a viable option. 

The challenge then becomes combating the perception that you are closed due to the exposure of construction equipment, unfinished surfaces, and maybe the removal of previous signage.

To maintain sales and revenue, it is crucial to increase the visibility of your location to potential customers and make it clear that you are open for business.  Here are a few ways to attract customers during your renovation.

  1. If, during the remodel, your signage has been removed or your building looks closed, then temporary signage is a MUST.  A giant inflatable advertising balloon installed on the roof is a great way to get your message out there.  Custom banners that attach to the inflatable could include your company name and logo.  Even a simple “WE ARE OPEN” message informs passing motorist and potential customers that your business is not closed.

  2. Utilize other promotional products such as pennants streamers, banners, or flags to detract attention away from the construction blight while simultaneously peaking the interest of those who pass.  Onsite temporary signage and visual marketing is an inexpensive way to stand out.

  3. Promote a “Construction Reduction Sale” or offer discounts during the renovation.  Everyone loves a sale. Going through a renovation might be one of the best times to offer great deals to your customers. 

SIX PROVEN IDEAS TO PROMOTE AND MARKET YOUR FITNESS CLUB

IT MIGHT SOUND OBVIOUS, BUT CUSTOMERS CAN’T BUY A MEMBERSHIP IF THEY DON’T KNOW YOU’RE THERE. THERE IS SO MUCH VISUAL CLUTTER ON THE RETAIL FRONT AND PRINTED MEDIA THAT SUCCESSFUL RETAIL MARKETERS HAVE TO MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO “STAND OUT” AMONG THEIR RETAIL FRIENDS.

“OUTDOOR VISIBLE MARKETING RESOURCES ARE SOME OF THE BEST WAYS TO PROMOTE YOUR BUSINESS!”

THIS IS TRUE IF YOU ARE A NEW BUSINESS TRYING TO GET SALES DURING A GRAND OPENING OR AN ONGOING RETAILER THAT NEEDS TO BOOST THEIR UNIT SALES OR SAME STORE SALES.

IDEA 1 – PROMOTIONAL OUTDOOR TENT AND BANNER

SO LET’S THINK ABOUT STANDING OUT. SET UP A TENT OUTSIDE YOUR BUSINESS AND SUPPORT THE VISUAL WITH A PROMOTION BANNER ANNOUNCING A SPECIAL FITNESS SALE. PEOPLE ARE ATTRACTED TO TENTS AND HAVE A NATURAL CURIOSITY.

IDEA 2 – GIANT INFLATABLE – MUSCLE MAN

SUPPORT YOUR TENT PROMOTION WITH AN ON THE GROUND OR ROOF TOP COLD AIR INFLATABLE USING A MUSCLE MAN BALLOON AGAIN WITH A CUSTOM BANNER ANNOUNCING YOUR PROMOTION.

IDEA 3 – JOINT PROMOTION WITH A COMPLEMENTARY RETAILER

YOU CAN SHARE THIS PROMOTION WITH A NEIGHBORING RETAILER THAT HAS A COMPLIMENTARY BUSINESS. WITH FITNESS GYMS A COMMON RETAIL PARTNER COULD BE A SMOOTHIE STORE OR EVEN A NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENT STORE. YOU CAN RUN A CROSS PROMOTION PROVIDING COMPLIMENTARY PRODUCTS AND LIMITED FREE OR DISCOUNTED MEMBERSHIPS.

 

IDEA 4 – HIGH FLYING BALLOONS

ANOTHER SURE WAY TO GRAB THE ATTENTION OF PASSING TRAFFIC IS THROUGH THE USE OF HIGH FLYING BALLOONS THAT WILL START AT THE SKY LEVEL AND LET THE EYE TRAVEL DOWN TOU YOUR STORE AND PROMOTION.

 

IDEA 5 – PROMOTION OR SALE FLAGS

MANY SUCCESSFUL RETAILERS USE FLAGS ALONG THE ROADWAY AGAIN SIGNALING A SPECIAL PROMOTION AND THEN MORE SALE FLAGS CAN BE PLACED IMMEDIATELY NEAR THE BUSINESS AND SOMETIMES EVEN ON THE ROOFTOP.

 

IDEA 6 – SEARCHLIGHTS

FOR A NIGHTTIME PROMOTION, TRY A SEARCHLIGHT. THREE COMMON SEARCHLIGHT TYPES WELL KNOWN IN THE INDUSTRY FOR THEATERS, AUTO DEALERSHIPS AND LARGE RETAILERS ARE THE DOMINATOR – A HUGE 46 INCH BEAM AT THE BASE – AN AD LIGHT – A COMPACT SINGLE INTENSE CIRCULATING BEAM AND THE QUAD LIGHT WITH 4 CIRCULATING HEADS.

JUST LIGHT A TENT AND A GIANT INFLATABLE; A SEARCHLIGHT IS A CLEAR INDICATOR THAT IS A SALE IS UNDERWAY. PEOPLE ARE ATTRACTED TO A FESTIVE ENVIRONMENT THAT PUTS THEM INTO THE MOOD TO COME SEE, ENGAGE AND BUY!!!!

True Colors: Your Sales Promotions Say A Lot About Your Brand

by Elizabeth Pritchett

Every decision you make as a brand says something about you. The colors and font of your logo and general branding. The copy on your website. Product packaging. Every decision impacts the core of your culture and customer perception.

Take a moment to consider the following questions prior to deciding on a promotion for your seasonal sale, grand opening, or holiday promotion:

What are you saying with your sales promotions? 

Are they colorful? 

Do they attract the eye of passersby? 

Do they make potential customers feel welcome?

Are you displaying the real message you want to be received?

Outdoor advertisements such as Wind Dancers, Advertising Flags, and Giant Advertising Inflatables tell an obvious story to your potential customers. 

  • They are FUN. 
  • They are WELCOMING. 
  • They are COLORFUL. 
  • They are ATTRACTING. 
  • They MOVE. 
  • They tell passersby exactly what is going on at your business location at that exact time. 
  • They make the sale for you!

Take a look at the following infographic regarding use of color in promotions, and consider how using your specific logo and colors in an outdoor promotion can quickly and effectively tell the story of your business’s current or upcoming promotion:

How to Get What You Really Want from a Google Search

 by Elizabeth Pritchett, Certified Google Partner, Bellwether Concepts

How many times have you typed descriptive words into a Google search and come up with search results that have nothing to do with what you need? So frustrating! Unfortunately, this happens quite often and can waste precious time. Here are some tips to help you get exactly what you are looking for on the internet and expedite your search process.

  1. Think Thesaurus:

I saw a colorful Grand Opening balloon on top of a nail salon the other day that really caught my eye, and I think a giant heart balloon would be great for my own company’s Valentine’s Day sale next year. The first thing I could think to search was big heart balloon. Sounds accurate, right? The results I received were definitely not what I wanted. Take a look:

By using thesaurus.com I was able to come up with some alternative and more specific terms for what I was looking for, such as giant heart inflatable rooftop, and received search results that were much more accurate.

2. Use Negative Search Terms

If you are getting many similar search results that are not what you intended to find, use those results as a negative keyword by putting a minus sign in front of the keyword you don’t want. I googled  giant rooftop inflatable -mylar -helium to exclude results that mention the words “mylar” and “helium” on their site. This resulted in displaying search results that were geared more towards what I was looking for.

3. Use Quotes to Search for an Exact Phrase

When Google sees several words in a search, they don’t always consider the order and grouping you specified. Use quotes within your search to specify an exact phrase you are looking for, for example: “giant heart inflatable”, which gives me very accurate results.

 

Implementing these tips into your everyday searches should make your searches faster and less frustrating!

HOW TO DESIGN AN EFFECTIVE CROSS MARKETING PROMOTION TO INCREASE YOUR SALES

SO THE FIRST QUESTION … “WHAT IS A COST MARKETING PROMOTION?” THIS TERM IS OFTEN USED LOOSELY SO LET’S PUT IT INTO CONTEXT WITH AN EXAMPLE.

ONE OF OUR WELL-KNOWN RETAIL CUSTOMERS, Chick-fil-A, WORKED WITH OUR TEAM OF MARKETING GURUS AT GULF COAST BALLOONS AND PROMOTIONS TO COMBINE A THREE WAY CROSS MARKETING PROMOTION.

HERE’S HOW IT WORKED AND KEEP IN MIND EACH PARTICIPANT PROVIDES SOME LEVEL OF SUPPORT AS WELL AS RECEIVES SOME LEVEL OF BENEFIT. IN THIS CASE THE THREE MARKETING PARTNERS WERE Chick-fil-A, 360 AUTO DISPLAY USA (ROTATING AUTO TOWER) AND A LOCAL AUTO DEALERSHIP (COULD BE ANY REPUTABLE AUTO DEALERSHIP)

THE MARKETERS ARRANGED TO HAVE 360 AUTO DISPLAY USA DELIVER AN ELEVATED ROTATING TOWER TO A LOCAL Chick-fil-A LOCATION AND A LOCAL AUTO DEALERSHIP PROVIDED A CAR TO FEATURE ON THE DISPLAY.

NOW HERE COMES THE COOL PART. THE SPINNING CAR WAS POSITIONED ON THE TOWER OUTSIDE THE DRIVE THROUGH WINDOW.  AS THE CUSTOMER DROVE THROUGH, THEY RECEIVED A COUPON FOR A LIMITED TIME FREE Chick-fil-A MEAL WHEN THEY TOOK THE COUPON TO THE LOCAL CAR DEALER AND TEST DROVE ANY CAR OF THEIR CHOICE.

THE PARTNERS SHARED IN THE COST, Chick-fil-A RECEIVED GREAT LOCAL TRAFFIC, THE AUTO DEALERSHIP GAINED NEW SALES LEADS AND 360 AUTO DISPLAY USA GOT EXPOSURE BY SUPPLYING THE TOWER.  THIS PROMOTION WAS TOPPED OFF WITH THE USE OF A GIANT INFLATABLE CUSTOM Chick-fil-A ROOFTOP BALLOON.  BANNERS AND FLAGS BROUGHT FURTHER VISIBILITY TO THIS AMAZING, CREATIVE PROMOTION.

HOW CAN I USE A GRAND OPENING BALLOON FOR A PROMOTION?

Many people see giant custom inflatables as they are driving around town and have no idea how to use one of these or even how to get one of these for their grand opening promotion.

The easy answer is most retailers use a full service outdoor promotions company that actually has many types of products to offer but is particularly well versed in the manufacturing, installation and maintenance of this form of inflatable advertising. While a retailer can design, sub contract the manufacturing of the inflatable and then have their own people install the inflatable, most opt to use a professional company that belongs to the IADA (Inflatable Advertisers Dealers Association).

Many of these companies have been members for over 30 years and supply quality products that meet the demands of outdoor conditions. They are also well versed in city codes, working with inspectors; proper rooftop installation and they will also carry at least a $1million liability insurance policy to safeguard your interests.

Using a seasoned professional inflatable advertising company provides the best of all worlds including a huge selection of custom inflatables, grand opening balloons, and suggestions for best practices for inflatable advertising. The larger inflatable advertising companies know the city codes well and have a great reach across regions and the nation with the ability to install and maintain multiple locations simultaneously.