Celebrating a milestone gives organizations the opportunity to remind target markets of their strengths, but they’re also a feel-good way to connect with audiences with a positive message.
Additionally, and especially for smaller businesses, anniversaries are a sign of staying power and longevity. With the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy reporting that only about one in three small businesses make it to the 10-year mark, anniversaries of any sort should certainly be recognized. But, what’s the best way to go about planning for your celebration? As Thomas/Boyd is in the midst of celebrating our 20th anniversary, what better time to share tips on making the most of your anniversary.
Plan – As Thomas/Boyd began planning for our 10th and now our 20th anniversary, we took the time to sit down to brainstorm and determine how exactly we wanted to celebrate this milestone. Ultimately, we opted to refresh our logo, hold an extra special agency Christmas party and draft blogs and social media posts that tie back to the 20th anniversary message. When you begin planning, just remember, the list of options for celebrating is endless – a new website, a unique hashtag for social media, a big celebration or special event, a donation to one or many non-profits, a day of volunteering or an advertising campaign.
Identify Your Key Messages – We wouldn’t be celebrating our 20th anniversary if it weren’t for our clients so first and foremost, it was important for us to thank them. But, what else did we want to communicate? It’s essential to nail down what you want to say and to whom.
Remember Your History – An organization’s anniversaries are a time to look forward but they’re also a time to think back and reflect. Just think about the number of big businesses, hospitals and other institutions that celebrate significant milestones. There’s a reason “Throwback Thursdays” have taken off on social media – people get nostalgic with a blast from the past. Don’t discount the impact of recalling memories from the past. There are a number of ways to recall your history that can be adjusted for your celebration’s size, scope and budget, including an album on Facebook with old pictures, a wall display with key milestones and photographs or a keepsake book.
You’re the Expert – Whether you’re celebrating five years or 50 years, you’ve learned a thing or two. Don’t be afraid to brag a little and shout your success from the rooftops. Use this opportunity to tell your audience what you’ve accomplished, what you’ve learned and your plans for success. Prepare a news release to drum up some earned media coverage, write a blog on a subject matter you’ve mastered, share photos from a memorable event you’ve organized or even present your knowledge as a part of a panel.
No Time like the Present – While it’s important to remember the people who have supported your business through the years, it’s equally important to recognize your current team. As a team of eight, we’ve been able to plan opportunities to showcase each individual. While larger organizations may not have the same opportunity, there are other ways to give credit where it’s due. For example, give a shout out to a department for their great work or highlight accomplishments, such as meeting a quota or securing media coverage. Your employees are the people who will help you reach your next big anniversary – don’t forget them!
When your next big anniversary hits, don’t skip out. Take the time to plan, remember the business you used to be and the business you are today and recognize the people – past and present – who have helped you along the way.
To keep up with how we’re celebrating TBC’s 20th anniversary, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram and look for the hashtag #TBCis20.