ColoradoBizMag (July 2017) - The Gold Rush of the 1860s brought thousands of people to what is now Colorado, all trying their luck at striking it rich. Towns sprung up like Butterfly Milkweed flowers, including Denver, where prospectors panned for gold in Cherry Creek and the South Platte River. Today, Denver is still a very desirable destination for newcomers, ranking among the top 15 of fastest growing cities in the United States, according to the latest census. So how can these new residents, and the businesses wanting to provide them with the services and entertainment options they need, connect? Mass texting or tweeting? Social media?
Nope - the answer lies in the mailbox – not the inbox – and a method nearly as old as Denver itself.
Our Town America has become the specialist in the coveted mover market simply by taking couponing to a whole different level. They have evolved the age-old coupon, offering a sleeker, sophisticated and most importantly, targeted, warm welcoming package full of trackable and tech-savvy gift certificates. The results are turning paper coupons into new mover gold for local businesses throughout Denver.
“Our gift certificates outperform ‘spray and pray’ coupon programs because we’re reaching people when they’re actively searching for new local businesses,” says CEO Michael Plummer. “Put simply, our gift certificates have changed the game for the ‘couponing’ industry because we help local businesses deliver valuable, often completely free, offers to new movers as soon as they get to town. I’m proud to say that our ability to evolve the concept of ‘coupons’ into highly targeted and results-driven gift certificates has been the key catalyst to our 45 years of success.”
Coupons are still big business, and this year marks the 130th anniversary of the paper coupon. (Coca-Cola issued the first product coupon in 1887 for a free glass of Coke. The success of THAT coupon now spans generations.) Recent studies show at least 90 percent of Americans, from every demographic, use them to save billions every year.
Our Town America, headquartered in Pinellas Park, FL. and represented in Denver by local franchise owner Brent Eklund, was founded by Michael’s father, Michael Plummer, Sr. in 1972. He owned a pizza restaurant in Iowa, and realized by welcoming newcomers with a certificate offering a free gift, he helped them connect with their new community. He also realized he could create brand loyalty, and increase his business by the simple, yet powerful marketing plan.
This summer, the company celebrates Plummer’s vision and their 45th year in business by issuing a distinctive –“45th Anniversary Edition” welcome package envelope and gift certificates for people new to their communities. And there are many reasons to celebrate the big anniversary. The company generated nearly $9 Million in revenues in 2016 and expects to grow another 6 percent in 2017. Plus, since offering franchises in 2005, Our Town America now has 54 franchises in 27 states and has received consistent national recognition. Michael Plummer points to a significant reason for all the success.
“Our response rate for clients is 16 percent in certain industries-more than 3 times our closest competitor,” says Plummer. “They take more of a “shot gun” approach, while we’re more of a rifle. We use cutting edge technology and data to lock in on specific prospects for our clients. It’s much more cost-effective for them, helps them grow their business, and keeps people coming back to service providers, grocery stores, car dealerships, and restaurants. “
The new gold rush is on for Denver businesses and the prize is the hearts and minds of new movers. Brent Eklund and the Denver-based Our Town America team are ready to help local business owners capitalize by delivering thoughtful and personalized offers direct to their doorstep as soon as they come to the Mile-High City.
Steven is Our Town America’s corporate sales manager and oversees the national sales team.