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25 Ways to Make Buy Nearby and Get Caught Blue-Handed Day Work for You

Get Caught Blue-Handed Day, an important part of Michigan Retailers Association’s Buy Nearby campaign, takes place on Saturday, October 3. It’s a special day for retailers to attract shoppers and for shoppers to have fun showing their support for the great retail businesses nearby where they live, work, vacation or visit in Michigan.

The day is designed to boost your sales and digital presence. To help you get ready, campaign mascot Buy Nearby Guy has put together 25 tips and ideas on how you can use Buy Nearby and Get Caught Blue-Handed Day to draw more attention and customers to your business. Check them out!

  1. Use the logo. Download the Buy Nearby logo and incorporate it into your advertising and other store materials.
  1. Put up a poster. Download the Buy Nearby poster, print and display in store window.
  1. Share the infographic. Download the Buy Nearby infographic and share on your website and social media accounts to remind shoppers of the importance of buying nearby.1
  1. Host the Buy Nearby Guy. Invite Buy Nearby Guy, the campaign mascot, to your next event in town or in your store.
  1. Publicize Get Caught Blue-Handed Day. Use Buy Nearby images provided by MRA to promote the day in-store or online through a postcard, email promotion or Facebook event.
  1. Be Blue-Handed. Commit to participating in Get Caught Blue-Handed Day and plan a fun and rewarding day for your customers, such as offering a discount or offering treats to celebrate buying nearby.
  1. Follow the campaign on social media. Follow Buy Nearby’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts to see the latest news on the campaign and share the news on your own social media.unnamed
  1. Lead as well as follow. Tell your social media followers why buying nearby is important to your business, community and state.
  1. Spread the word. Tell customers, retailers and community leaders about Buy Nearby in person at meetings or events and online.
  1. Use Blue-Handed tags. MRA is printing special tags to affix to merchandise you highlight on October 3. These tags are available at no cost. Blue-Handed Tag request form.
  1. Say thank you with bag stuffers. Place a “Thanks for Buying Nearby!” card in every customer’s bag, especially leading up to October 3. MRA will provide the cards to you at no cost. Thank You card request form. Or make your own using Buy Nearby artwork and images available at the BuyNearbyMI.com website.
  1. Hold a blue sale. Stuck on figuring out a clever promotion for October 3? Give a 10 or 20 percent discount off everything blue in-store or anything marked with a blue tag.
  1. Hold a “Made in Michigan” sale. Give 10 or 20 percent off everything in your store made in Michigan.unnamed
  1. Add a tagline. Whether you advertise on television or radio, in print or on the web, add this at the end: “Strong Supporter of Buy Nearby” or “Buy Nearby and Get Caught Blue-Handed on October 3.”
  1. Take photos of customers getting caught blue-handed. Don’t just sell merchandise to your customers, involve them by posting photos on social media of them getting caught shopping at a great Michigan store. If your customers post their own photos, have them use the #ibuynearby hashtag so they can be eligible to win a gift card in a Buy Nearby drawing.
  1. Ask for special ad rates. Talk to your local media and, if they’re not already doing it, ask them to offer special ad rates for promoting Get Caught Blue-Handed Day.
  1. Write a letter to the editor or op-ed. Write a letter to your local newspaper to increase awareness of Buy Nearby and Get Caught Blue-Handed Day. MRA can provide sample letters or op-eds on request.
  1. Check out billboard advertising. Ask your local billboard company as a public service to share the cost of a Buy Nearby ad featuring your business. MRA can provide free Buy Nearby images.3
  1. Involve your local government officials. Contact the mayor, supervisor, commissioners or council members to declare October 3 as Buy Nearby Get Caught Blue-Handed Day in your community. MRA can provide a sample proclamation.
  1. Hold a Michigan trivia contest. Post an easy-to-answer question about Michigan on social media and give all winners 10 percent off merchandise on October 3.
  1. Host an “I Pledge to Buy Nearby” ceremony. Gather friends and customers and hold a fun pledge session. Pledgers receive special discounts and maybe some treats.
  1. Enjoy the Merchant Spotlight. Let Buy Nearby feature your business on social media.
  1. Incorporate Get Caught Blue-Handed Day with other events. If there’s a festival or other community event taking place on October 3, talk with organizers about incorporating Get Caught Blue-Handed Day into the festivities.4
  1. Get friends and family involved. Ask your biggest supporters, friends and family, to help promote your business and Buy Nearby by sharing on social media and sharing Get Caught Blue-Handed Day informative cards with their networks.
  1. Ask groups to promote for you. Ask your local chamber of commerce or relevant networking groups to share information on Get Caught Blue-Handed Day in their e-newsletters and community calendars.

Got more ideas or tips? Share them in the comments section.