The marketing of a retail shopping centre is critical to helping the overall property performance, and encourage the tenant mix to thrive in sales and customers. Even in these tougher retail times, a small strip shopping centre should have a marketing plan, albeit simple and basic. The larger the retail property the more complex the marketing plan and the costs involved.
The property manager, landlord, and the tenants in the property all have a vested interest to make the marketing of the property successful. A performing property will have stronger rentals and less property vacancies. The tenants in the property will achieve more sales from a well run marketing campaign.
More Customers Matter
Attracting customers to the property is really what the retail marketing effort is aimed at. That being said, you will have other properties in the same area chasing your tenants, and shoppers. For this reason your marketing has to be well planned and implemented. It must focus on your property and how your property can serve the customers locally. As part of that process you really do need to track door counts on the shopping centre on different days of the week.
A retail property marketing plan will extend across a full year of operating the property. All of the trading seasons and customer shopping patterns should be accommodated.
You want customers to come to your property and you want them coming back frequently. A ‘happy customer’ will do that. Convenience means a lot when it comes to property performance in retail strip malls and shopping centres.
Over a period of time the tenant mix of a property should serve your customers comprehensively and comfortably. A convenient shopping centre is usually a successful property. Our shoppers want variety of offering and convenience of access and parking.
Retail Shopping Centre Marketing Plan
Here are some more ideas to incorporate into your retail shopping centre marketing plan.
- Brochures should be dropped quarterly into letterboxes of all residences in the surrounding shopping area and demographic. Each of those brochures should be branded to the shopping centre and heavily geared to the changes in seasonal shopping.
- Bag stuffers are brochures and leaflets that are given to shoppers as part of purchasing goods. All tenants should work together to make the ‘bag stuffers’ process work productively.
- Community groups can be involved in your property and its marketing efforts. Give the local community groups some times throughout the year to have a booth in the common areas of the mall or the property. It is best that the booths are run and manned by the community groups at peak shopping times for the local shoppers. That will usually be on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.
- Giveaways are always are a valuable part of retailing and travel competitions can attract more people to the property. The giveaways and competitions can be funded from the marketing levy in the property. You should get a reduced price on an attractive prize for your competition in exchange for some special ‘free’ promotion at the shopping centre.
- The tenants in the property will know what the customers are looking for when it comes to retail goods and services. Ask the tenants frequently as to what they are seeing in customer needs and shopping patterns. Adjust property promotions around the tenant mix and the ideal shopper that is coming to the property today.
- Seasonal festivals and holidays can be incorporated into promoting the property. The local area will have patterns of seasonal festivities. Get the community groups involved in the promotional activity.
- Schools should be involved in your property. Perhaps the local schools and colleges could be invited to run a music concert or art display in the mall on Saturday mornings. The marketing fund could donate money to the school as part of that involvement. The local school can promote their concert in your Shopping Centre in their Newsletter.
- Charities and similar organizations that benefit the community will want space in your property from time to time. You can also have them cross promoted in your Shopping Centre Newsletter.
- Purchase large decorations for the seasonal sales and promotions at the property. The alternative to purchasing your own marketing material is to hire it. There are advantages in both methods and it really depends on your budget and your ability to store marketing materials in the ‘off season’.
Marketing levies should be applied to all the tenants as a basic way of funding the marketing effort throughout the year. The tenants lease should be adjusted to allow for this process.
A good shopping centre manager is also a good marketer of a retail property. They know how to attract more shoppers to the property, to encourage sales results, and increase tenant involvement.
If you want more tips on Retail Shopping Centre Management and Marketing you can get them in our Newsletter right here.