There are many ways to commemorate a new business. One of them is hosting a successful grand opening ribbon-cutting ceremony. Done properly, a ribbon-cutting ceremony is excellent for PR because it serves as a way to advertise and publicize your brand. Not only that, but it involves the entire community, giving you a chance to mingle with other local business owners. The ceremony can make your guests feel like valued members of your brand and bring the whole community together.
Understand the Ribbon-Cutting Etiquette
Like any other formal occasion, ribbon cutting should be carefully planned. It's a good way to introduce your business as a new member of the community. Knowing the right etiquette increases the chances of success. Start by determining whether or not the event will benefit the community. If not, phase it out and brainstorm some more charitable ways to market your brand. Here are some ribbon-cutting ideas with a proven track record.
1. Choose Your Time Wisely
Take a few months to plan the affair and create a guest list. If you are moving to a new site, make sure it is finished before the big day. Occasionally, contractors fail to meet deadlines and things get out of control. Communicate with the vendors early and often to ensure reliable deliveries and prevent that from happening.
Before finalizing the ceremony date, confirm with the chamber of commerce and the officials that will be attending. Check the local calendar for any upcoming events that might coincide with your ribbon-cutting ceremony. Choose a day when most business folks are on a break from their normal routines (like a weekend). It is also recommended that you hold the event earlier in the day to maximize the quality of photos.
2. Get the Word Out
After creating a guest list, it’s time to call everyone to the event. Send formal invitations to county commissioners, the mayor, and other eminent persons. Follow up on the invitations with emails. Ask your family and friends to pass the message to their family friends. You can even ask the local media to cover the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Be sure to post regularly on social media. Update your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and blog. Take some spectacular photos of the event preparation and build interesting content around those.
3. Personalize the Cutting
Don’t use just any old pair of scissors to cut the ribbon. Make it exciting and attract people’s attention with other alternatives for a giant pair of scissors. Pick something that matches your brand. A few of the more creative ideas include a blowtorch, a chainsaw or, if your local chamber doesn’t offer big scissors, perhaps a fire hose. Most online party suppliers have these items on hand and you can hire them for a small fee.
4. Serve Food and Refreshments
Choose an experienced caterer for the perfect food display. You don’t need complicated cuisines; something simple and easy-to-eat is fine. Just make sure it is healthy. Consider serving drinks and appetizers to go along with the main meal. By including food in the ceremony you can entice those people who might be on the fence about attending.
Timing is critical for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Choose the date well and send invitations in advance if you want a big turnout. For the ultimate experience, hold an after-party later in the evening. Fun activities like raffles or prizes can also make it more memorable. Last but not least, hire a professional photographer rather than depending on the local media.
A groundbreaking ceremony is not to be taken lightly. If you're serious about planning one, be sure to do it within a few months of your business’ launch. It is best to celebrate while the business is still new. If you would like more guidance when it comes to planning a ribbon-cutting ceremony, contact Synuma today and speak with one of our experts!