Let’s Play Hide and Seek!

Make your customers (and potential customers) find a special item around town or in your store

This is a classic trick that was highly successful in the 1960s that involved a highly publicised search for an item.  Variations are still used today, usually as promotional stunts by radio stations on outside broadcasts but still valuable.

I remember my father taking me to a Trade Fair when I was 9 years old.  It was in a huge 3 story building that covered most of the city block and had hundreds of trade stalls set up.  Thousands of people everywhere (or so it seemed to a 9 year old).

The local radio station was there on an outdoor broadcast and regularly announced that if you could find the toy monkey you can win a prize (brought to you by xyz company).

Yes, I remember the idea very well because I won a prize.  No, I didn’t see the toy monkey but my father did and he `accidentally’ bumped me into a corner where I had no choice but to see the cleverly hidden toy.

So, put a map on your website that shows a  general area in town that you have hidden an item or if you have a large store area, hide a small but unusual item in amongst your shelves.

Just make sure that the hidden item is inexpensive and requires it to be handed in to receive a much more valuable prize, otherwise it may just go home in someone’s pocket.  When the prize is claimed then you can give them back the hidden item as well (with your logo on it).

No, you are not being generous.  It is because the item found by the winner is usually something that ends up being displayed at home by the winner.  It makes for a conversation piece after the event, sometimes for years after.  There is a story to be told –  it includes you/your business and we know that people love to tell a story.

Remember to whip up the interest in the media.

You could also consider a joint treasure hunt with a few other businesses with complimentary products/services.  This works well for towns with a small mall of shops etc.  Of course media exposure within a joint venture is always more cost effective for everyone.

If you have any other ideas like this, leave a comment and share it with others…