The slow season is upon us, but there are still opportunities to sell rentals if you know where to look.
When the weather starts to get cold, large outdoor events tend to taper off (at least they do in the Midwest). As a portable restroom provider, you may be wondering how you’re going to fill the gaps in your rental schedule.
Even though the rental requests may not be flooding in, there are probably still events happening in your area. You just have to do a bit more work to find them. Here are six ways you can find outdoor events in your area to help you fill your slow season.
Plan out a sales strategy for winter holidays
There probably aren’t too many outdoor concerts or large festivals, but the winter still holds some big holidays. Event organizers and businesses could still need portable restrooms for Christmas, New Year’s Eve, St. Patrick’s Day and general holiday festivals. Start looking for rental opportunities a few months in advance. The sooner you speak with people about their portable restroom needs, the more likely they are to pick you over your competitor.
Check out local event magazines and publications
Most major cities have local event publications, and most of these publications have their very own event calendar on their website. Identifying these resources is key to filling in your portable restroom rental gaps. Check in every week to see what new events are being added. These events calendars are usually organized in an intuitive way, making it all too easy to find out about all the local happenings in the winter.
Check out events on Facebook
Social media is the newest and perhaps most effective way for event organizers to get people out to their events. It’s also a great way for you to find out about events in your area that may need your service. Start following large event organizers, local music acts and also keep an eye out for what your friends and family are planning on attending. Most event pages on Facebook will also contain information like the venue or event’s web page. Facebook could just be the gift that keeps on giving.
Event posting sites
Since we’re talking about electronic resources for finding local events, we can’t forget about other event posting sites. Websites like meetup.com and eventbrite.com are remarkable hubs that can produce real leads. If you haven’t visited these websites, event organizers post their upcoming event, and people can rsvp or purchase tickets right on the site.
Another benefit to these sites is you can get a pretty good idea of how many people will be attending the event. Information like this provides you with the leverage to provide the right number of portable restrooms for their event. If they already have 2,000 people who have purchased tickets or rsvp’d, you can do the math and ensure they don’t have overused units.
Ask your current customers
You already have good relationships with your current customers, right? Event organizers can be a perfect resource for finding other seasonal events. Part of being a good event planner is being in the know about other events happening around their neighborhood.
Ask your current customers if they know of anyone who might need portable restrooms. If they do, you could casually drop your customer’s name when making your pitch. “We recently worked with ____________ on ______________ event. They mentioned that our services could be a good fit for your event as well.” This shows potential customers that you have experience in similar events.
Business networking groups
Everyone in the portable restroom industry probably has a network of event organizers and party planners that they may meet with on a regular basis. However, if these are the only people you’re introducing your business to, you may be ignoring potential customers.
Attending business networking events could introduce you to individuals that could be planning winter holiday events for their company. They could also know of other businesses that could use your services in the near future.
These are just a few ideas to help you fill in those winter rental gaps. The good news is that during the winter months you may have a bit more time to close the deal.
The colder months are a great opportunity to spend time online finding new events you may not have known about. You can also take the time to have conversations with your current customers, who may have some insights into future events. Don’t forget to also poke around the web looking for new happenings.
Erin Black is the marketing coordinator for On Site Companies of the Twin Cities, Rochester and Mankato, Minnesota; St. Louis, Missouri; and Omaha, Nebraska.