Hey, and welcome to the latest Escape Room Marketing blog. Last week I shared a Facebook Ad strategy that only costs the price of a coffee a day – if you’ve not checked that out yet, click here.
Today I’m going to talk about another marketing strategy, using a tool that is often neglected. Not only is this tool effective to use, it’s also entirely free to use! All you need is a clear strategy and a bit of time.
You’ll get the strategy from this post, but if you don’t go away and implement it as soon as possible, you risk missing out on new bookings!
And I’m not talking about bookings with a small group of people – I’m talking about large corporate bookings. And the tool you’re going to use to gain these corporate bookings is something you’ve probably already heard of – but might not consider it worth the time to look into, compared to the likes of Facebook or Instagram…
Linkedin, often referred to as the Facebook for professionals, is exactly that. It’s the place that businesses and professionals hang out. Sure, they use other social media too, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t target local companies using Facebook, etc. too.
But Linkedin is something that I’ve found a lot of escape rooms tend to neglect, and they’re missing out.
Some are aware of Linkedin, and even have a profile on it for themselves and their escape room. But they don’t post or advertise on it!
Others know of Linkedin, and believe it’s not worth even the time it takes to create a profile.
There are very few escape rooms who use Linkedin often and maximize their bookings from it.
No matter what situation you’re in, you do not want to miss this!
If you’ve not created a Linkedin profile for yourself personally, and/or for your escape room business, then that is your first port of call.
The set-up process is fairly simple, and Linkedin has a handy meter to show how much progress you have to go before you have a completed profile. But there are a few essentials, in particular, you need to have in place:
For your personal profile;
- A profile picture (of you) and a cover photo which should be of your escape room, your branding, etc.
- A brief bit of text about you. This should be geared towards providing local businesses a place for their teams to be rewarded for their hard work and to also bond together
- Next, you want to change your URL – that’s right, you can customize your Linkedin profiles URL! You want to use this to maximize keywords, so include your escape rooms name in it
- Following on, enter your current position (as owner or manager of your escape room) and give a brief bit of information about the escape room – this can be taken from your website.
- BUT, the key here is to sign off with a call to action. For example…
- Visit www.bestescaperoomever.com to book your team onto a thrilling and challenging escape room experience!
- Next, you want to share some of your amazing testimonials and reviews – this can be in text form, video, or images, onto your profile.
With a personal profile created, you can create your escape rooms business profile;
- A profile picture and cover photo of your escape room and branding
- A short description in the tagline – again, something geared towards providing an experience for local businesses
So you’ve got your personal and escape room profiles in place. Now what?
This is where sadly, many fall down at, leaving their profiles inactive. But you’re not going to do that!
Before I share the main strategy, lets first talk about posts. The chances are, as an escape room, you regularly post content on other social media channels – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.
These may be promotional posts, photos of winning/losing teams, reviews, news, and more.
But you need to do the same for Linkedin, too! Sure, that will take a bit of time every day, but by posting often the strategy I’m about to share will perform even better for you.
There are also ways you can automate and mass post across multiple social medias – Tools such as Hootsuite allow this and have free and paid solutions. It may well be worth looking into such a tool to save you time.
Now the moment you’ve been waiting for! The strategy.
Right now, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of businesses within 25km of your escape room – and most are on Linkedin! Their employees will use Linkedin, and their marketing and sales team will use it too!
The strategy you’re going to use is to go after each of these local businesses, connect with them, and invite them to book with you. Simple, right?
And it is. But running an escape room is busy and hard work! And most don’t have the time to try a new marketing strategy using Linkedin with no guarantee it will work.
I’m here to tell you however, that it will work! And it’s well worth the time! Escape rooms which follow this strategy find themselves getting consistent bookings from local businesses. And the great thing about targeting businesses, compared to groups of friends, is you’re able to get larger bookings and multiple bookings from one business!
Think about it. If your escape rooms capacity is 10 people. And the average local business has 50 employees. Let’s say 40 are interested in going to your escape room for a bit of fun and some team building. That’s 4 bookings of 10 people each! That can easily amount to hundreds of dollars/pounds.
So, what steps do you need to take to implement this strategy? Well, there’s three in total.
Step 1: Searching Local Businesses
First, you need to be able to find these local businesses. Sure, you may know of many already and can manually search for them. But what about all those you don’t know of? How can you find them on Linkedin?
Start by searching local businesses you know of, and connecting with them. Once connected, they’ll become a 1st connection – akin to having a friend of Facebook. And like Facebook does, Linkedin will suggest other profiles which are connected to your 1st connections – these are 2nd connections.
The more you connect with, the more suggestions you get, and your circle of connections increases. BUT, for now, only connect with those you know and those who know you!
Now it’s time to find all of the other local businesses…
Linkedin offers premium services such as Sales Navigator, which can make finding people and businesses on Linkedin a doddle. But you don’t need to use that, you can find them for free!
To start with, go to https://www.linkedin.com/search/results/people/
From here, click All Filters and you’ll see a range of searching options. If you do not have at least several dozen 1st connections from local businesses already, go back and do that first.
Then, select the 2nd Connections filter on your search page. Next, enter the Location of your escape room – the town or city. Lastly, enter a profile Title such as Owner or Manager. You want to connect and message (I’ll get onto that soon) those in businesses who have the authority to suggest and arrange an escape room for their business.
Then, click Apply. Hundreds, if not thousands, will show up, and you’ll have the option to Connect with a large number of them. To maximize your results, try varying Titles in the search option!
Step 2: Connecting & Messaging
So you know how to find local businesses, but now what? You want to connect with them and message them!
Firstly, when you’ve done your search, you can click to Connect to invite that person to connect. As part of that, you can attach a brief message. Connection invitations are much more likely to be accepted if:
-They contain a message
-AND, the message is personalized – i.e. starts with Hi Name
With each connection request you send, you want to send a message like this:
Hi Name – Are you looking to reward your team for their hard work? Perhaps you feel they’d benefit from some fun-filled team-building exercises? At Best Escape Room Ever, we provide exactly that! For more information, visit www.bestescaperoomever.com or message me 😊
Short and simple. But don’t expect 100% of all requests to be accepted – in fact, taking into account the inactivity of some users, how busy they are, and that not everybody will be interested, let’s safely assume 1/3 will accept.
As they’re now connected to you, they’ll start to see your regular postings, which will help build up a great impression of your escape room.
But the strategy doesn’t end there. Oh no!
You’re going to message them again.
Hi Name – Thank you for connecting! At Best Escape Room Ever we’ve been running exclusive evenings for local businesses just like yours. They’re perfect for team building as well as rewarding your hard-working team for their efforts. If you’d like to learn more, visit www.bestescaperoomever.com or message me 😊
This is very similar to your initial connection message, and it’s important to have that consistency of message. Remember who you’re speaking to – businesses. Not stag or hen parties, or families and groups of friends.
When you receive a response, follow up with whatever they reply and work towards arranging a booking. There are too many eventualities, so how you respond is up to you and what message you receive.
Part 3: Frequency & Consistency
It’s important to keep both frequency and consistency in mind with this strategy.
Frequency, or how often you carry out this strategy. You don’t want to do too much, nor too little.
I’d say searching and inviting 10-15 businesses a day (mon-fri) strikes the right balance.
Then each day, you check who has accepted your connection invitation and send them the follow-up message.
Consistency is also critical. Consistently carrying out this strategy every weekday, is essential to success. Don’t try it one day, see little results, and give up. Keep at it and embed it into your daily marketing activities. It needn’t take long, and you can train one of your team to do it.
Give it time to work, and the compounded results of your consistent action will ultimately lead to large, consistent corporate bookings!
So there you have it: A FREE but effective strategy to market and get bookings from local businesses. But it will only benefit your escape room if you take action! If you haven’t got a profile yet, start by doing that. And then each and every weekday, start searching local businesses and inviting them to connect.
Oh! And don’t forget to post often like you would on Facebook!
Consistent, unrelenting action is the key to marketing any business – and especially escape rooms!
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Thank You 😊
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