Three Tips to Plan a Successful Grand Opening

Dittoe PR is no stranger to planning grand opening events. Between Broken Beaker Distillery, two CycleBar locations, six GetGo locations, Carmel’s Market District, Hickory House, and Broken English Taco Pub – among many others – we’ve got the process down pat.

 

When Chicago-famous taqueria Broken English Taco Pub decided to expand to Indianapolis, they had to not only find the perfect location but an Indianapolis public relations team to assist with grand opening planning and secure media coverage around the expansion to the Circle City. Assisting with everything from creating the guest list and sending invitations to coordinating a Facebook Live interview during the grand opening event, Dittoe PR did it all.

When planning for a grand opening event, keep the following tips in mind:

 

Set a goal. Is the goal to pack the house? Secure TV coverage? Work with key influencers? Once you know where the finish line is located, it’s much easier to start the marathon. Setting an overall goal will help keep the team’s eye on the prize during the planning process.

 

Outline the run-of-show. Keep everyone on track by creating a run-of-show document that will include all the key details, including contacts, timeline, media interviews, menus, entertainment, and more. The level of detail depends on the depth of the event, but collaborating with the team to ensure everything you need is in one place is integral to pulling off a successful event. Modifications can always be made, but having this prepared ahead of time relieves stress that will inevitably arise the day-of.

 

Give yourself plenty of time. There is a long list of steps that need to be accomplished to ensure the big day goes off without a hitch. Typically, grand openings can take weeks (or even months) to plan. By creating a time table for weekly tasks and checkpoints, it’s much easier to stay on track. Are there potential issues that might arise? Have your vendors signed contracts? Do you know who will field media interviews or check the guest list? Include these questions and details into your ever-evolving run-of-show to keep your team on track.

 

Have a grand opening coming up? Contact us for a consultation to find out how Dittoe PR can help!

How To Pitch a Unique Client to the Media

A blood-soaked box. Severed fingers. Barrels of slime. Surgical masks. Creepy, crawly critters.

Who knew that would be part of our media efforts for one of our most interesting clients.

This is our sixth year working with Indy Scream Park, Indiana’s premier Halloween event filled with haunted attractions, and the frights keep coming! The challenge of gaining media attention for a client this unique is the local competition. How does Indy Scream park stand out from its competitors, despite being the only interactive one with five attractions? We decided to create “media boxes”—in addition to our individual, personalized pitches—and it worked!

The box included the following:

  • Box splattered with red paint (or “blood”) and wrapped in zombie caution tape;
  • “Bloody” surgical mask to represent the Brickmore Asylum attraction;
  • Barrel of slime to represent the Pandemic: Mutation attraction;
  • Faux spiders, cockroaches, and centipedes to represent the Backwoods attraction;
  • Severed fingers to represent the Monster Midway attraction; and
  • Glow sticks to represent the RAGE 3D

Each item put a little taste of horror straight in the hands of the media and represented one of the haunted attractions within Indy Scream Park.

Dittoe PR created a list of key local media, as well as select national media, that we thought would be intrigued by this new-age approach to garnering media coverage. In addition to the scare-inducing items in each box, there was an invitation to a VIP media event at Indy Scream Park. The event included sneak peek access to all haunted attractions, as well as interview opportunities with haunt directors, the makeup manager, and even the actors in their natural element.

The box was received with mixed emotions but mostly intrigue, which resulted in a good buzz around Indy Scream Park and even landed them a Business Insider mention. Throughout the season Dittoe PR secured 54 pieces of media coverage totaling 60,069,640 media impressions and $685,124 in publicity value.

So sometimes it does pay to “think outside the box!” If you appreciate creative and unique PR strategies, request a consultation with us today!

Dittoe PR Takes Over Seattle With ‘Strawless In Seattle’ Campaign

It all started with a plastic straw.

 

Plastic straws seem harmless, but after working with Aardvark paper straws for more than three years, we’ve learned more about the dangers of plastic straws than one can even imagine possible.

 

Plastic straws pollute our oceans, beaches, and harm our marine life. Fish feed on microplastics, which can then end up on our own plates, and before you know it, humans ingest plastic for dinner. In the U.S. alone, we use 500 million plastic straws daily. By 2050, plastics in the ocean will outweigh the fish.

 

When Aardvark teamed up with Lonely Whale Foundation and HBO ‘Entourage’ star, Adrian Grenier, to spearhead an environmental campaign to #stopsucking plastic straws in Seattle, Dittoe PR was thrilled for the opportunity to work on something that would truly make a global impact.

 

And it did.

 

Through Lonely Whale Foundation’s Strawless in Seattle campaign, 150 Seattle businesses, venues, and restaurants eliminated more than 2 million plastic straws across the city in September 2017 by using Aardvark’s marine degradable, biodegradable, FSC-certified, Made in the USA paper straws. Dittoe PR shared the Strawless in Seattle campaign with local, regional, national, and international media, which resulted in media hits in several major media outlets including PEOPLE, TIME, Fast Company, The Seattle Times, Puget Sound Business Journal, Treehugger, and much more.

 

The Aardvark paper straws account team also traveled to Seattle for the official Strawless in Seattle press conference, which Dittoe PR coordinated from the ground up. Keynote speakers in the presser included Adrian Grenier, co-founder of Lonely Whale Foundation; Dune Ives, executive director of Lonely Whale Foundation; Ed Murray, former Seattle Mayor; David Young, GM of CenturyLink Field for the Seattle Seahawks, and more influential Seattlites. Dittoe PR handled technical and venue-related logistics, drafted talking points for speakers, developed media kits, invited media to the event, managed media interviews with key spokespeople, and ensured the event was a success!

 

The day after the presser, the Strawless in Seattle announcement went totally viral. While our team had already secured some national stories about the campaign, and of course, local stories in the Seattle market, 50+ local media outlets across the nation, ranging from New York City to Texas to Nebraska, shared the news of the Seattle campaign.

 

Strawless in Seattle was one of our most successful campaigns yet, as Dittoe PR came out of the month-long campaign with 248 media hits, 290,946,957 media impressions and a total publicity value of $2,896,547! It was one of the most rewarding PR experiences we have ever had, as we helped spread the word about why plastic straws “suck” and garnered media attention of such high value in just one month.

 

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