7 Ways to Market to Tourists Staying in Your Beach Town

Marketing to Tourists
Pictured is the beautiful beach on Okaloosa Island, Fort Walton Beach, FL.

For many of us that are lucky enough to live in a beautiful beach town, we can take mini vacations to the beach often. This beach therapy is a great way to relax and let go of the stress that builds up from work, school, raising kids, etc.

With the school year winding down, there will be millions of tourists heading for beach towns around the country for an extended vacation. During their stays, they will dine in the local restaurants, shop in the local stores, and partake in some of the local leisurely activities and entertainment, such as water parks, bungee jumping, go cart tracks, concerts, fishing, parasailing, jet ski and boat rentals. Additionally, many of these visitors will look forward to some of the nightlife experiences at the local bars and nightclubs.

How will they find you?

Your business needs to be ready to entice these visitors to visit your establishment. Otherwise, you stand to miss out of thousands of potential sales. Below are a few ideas to market to tourists visiting your area.

7 Ideas to Market to Tourists Staying In Your Beach Town

  1. If your beach resort has a restaurant on property, print a menu of popular lunch choices on a beach ball and pass out inflated beach balls to families on the beach in front of your resort and at your pools.
  2. Use personalized frisbees with your restaurant logo and have your kids menu printed on them. They can be used a plate during their meal and a toy at the beach for later. The frisbees will be seen by many other beach visitors to advertise your restaurant.
  3. Partner with local hotels and resorts to have a welcome gift for each family checking in. You can give out flyers, beach balls, water bottles, lip balm, or any number of useful items for the beach. Also including a coupon to your establishment along with the promotional item helps drive even better results.
  4. Hire someone to walk along the beach and give out cool t-shirts with your logo and advertising message. If the t-shirts are stylish with a great design, you will have hundreds of walking billboards advertising your business to thousands of tourists (and locals).
  5. Become a local hot spot by hosting FREE concerts at your restaurant, store, bar, or resort. As you attract the crowd, people will purchase from your business. Be sure to advertise your events with banners, yard signs, flyers, and through social media.
  6. Get together with other businesses in your area to create a “passport” or card with places to visit. If they visit all of the places, they can pick up a “special gift” at any of the listed locations. The gifts can be a t-shirt designed with logos from all of the businesses participating or some other branded merchandise.
  7. Pass out coupons. Entice your town’s visitors with offers that will attract them but won’t hurt you, such as a FREE Appetizer with purchase of 2 Entrees or FREE gift with purchase, etc. Tourists are always looking for ways to stretch their dollar so they can do more on their vacation!

Your marketing efforts to target tourists coming to your town should involve 2 main strategies. The first is to pre-target before they arrive and the second is to target those already staying in your town that missed your pre-targeting efforts. The ideas above represent just a few low cost ways to promote your business to the tourists that are already in your town. A few of these methods require guerrilla marketing tactics in public areas to pass out your promotional products, while other require partnerships with other local businesses. Set yourself up for success by planning ahead and you will help ensure a steady stream of customers to your establishment.

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