Posted On: 2006-08-08
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Welcome to Small Business Trends Radio. I'm Anita Campbell, your host, and I am so glad you could join us today. The topic of today's show is "New Ways to Market a Small Business." Our featured guest today is Michael Plummer, founder of Our Town America. Michael started Our Town America in 1972, when he discovered the power of welcoming new neighbors and spotted a business opportunity in that. Today his company has grown to 55 employees. Welcome to the show, Michael!
Well thank you Anita. Thank you for allowing me to share about our company.
Well that's great. This is a very interesting concept that I know our listeners are going to love hearing about it today as much as I love discovering and learning about it. Michael, where are you talking with us from today?
St. Petersburg, Florida.
Oh. Beautiful Florida! Well tell us a little bit about Our Town America, and what you do with it today.
Well, what we do is really a very simple concept, kind of like when we were kids and we used to see a new neighbor move in, and our parents would ask us to take a cake over or something to welcome that neighbor. What we do is we extend that now to retail businesses. We handle that on a professional basis by sending out welcome packages when people move to the neighborhood on behalf of the neighborhood businesses, and invite those new consumers into that business to let them experience it.
And so you're really developing relationships with local businesses, probably among them small businesses as well as large businesses, and the consumers in the community.
Right. And essentially that is what we do is to build relationships, because as you know in marketing, one of the biggest problems a business faces is just getting people to find them. There's such a craziness of signs and streets and traffic and things like that that take away from their attention to find those businesses in those strip centers and in the malls. And what we do is kind of pull that face out of the crowd and tell these new families that those businesses are there, and direct them there by giving them a gift certificate to invite them in.
Now I wonder if you would share for our listeners exactly how you came to start the company, Our Town America. I know our listeners include many entrepreneurs who have started their own businesses, or who are looking to start a business, and so they love to hear these stories of...