Case Study: How a Nashville Salon Retains Daily Deal Customers

Julie Marler is the owner of J. Bangs Salon, a hairstyling studio in Nashville that has had great success running deals with Groupon and LivingSocial. Marler estimates that she’s retained 50% of her daily deal customers by preparing her staff ahead of time and increasing stylists in the weeks following each deal…

Case Study: Restaurant’s Major Discounts for Foursquare ‘Mayor’

When Amelia Sawyer and her husband Jonathon jumped on the Foursquare bandwagon, they had no idea what an impact location-based services would have on their bottom line. Years later, customers are “fighting to the death” to become mayor of the Greenhouse Tavern – both for the bragging rights and to take advantage of the 40% discount – making it one of the most sought-after mayorships in Cleveland…

For a Couture Cookie Shop, Branding Is Everything

At Cookie Couture in Miami, co-owner Jael Toledo is careful about the image she projects. Together with her sister and business partner Cindy Toledo, Jael has eschewed more well-known daily deal sites in favor of “high-end” niche sites like Gilt City and DailyCandy Deals as a way to position Cookie Couture as South Florida’s premiere purveyor of chic baked goods.

Realtor Reaches Clients Through SEO Marketing, Hyperlocal Blogs

Realtor Karen Benvin Ransom’s listings have moved far beyond the newspaper classifieds. With a Twitter account, a Facebook page, a personal Web site, and a series of articles she’s written about her local community online, Ransom has honed in on the exact sites and search terms that her clients at Houlihan Lawrence are using to shop for homes in Westchester County, N.Y.

Case Study: The Difficulty of Turning Coupon Buyers Into Customers

Brooke Randazzo Eggert, the owner of r3mg, a creative boutique that specializes in photography and invitation design in Oak Park, Ill., has experienced the highs and lows of hyperlocal marketing. She tells Street Fight that she’s had more success gaining loyal, local customers by advertising on community news sites and blogs than by running group coupons on sites like Mamapedia and Gleeday…

Case Study: Minneapolis Music Club Becomes a Foursquare Hot Spot

Minneapolis isn’t a city that’s lacking for nightlife options, but First Avenue marketing coordinator Machen Davis believes her music club has been able to stand out from the pack by using location-based services as promotional tools and by turning the club’s Foursquare mayorships into a fierce competition…

Case Study: Hotel Uses Deals to Fill Rooms Without Diluting the Brand

Laura McIver knows her demographic. As the general manager at the Canary Hotel in Santa Barbara, California, McIver targets an upscale clientele by advertising in strategic publications and by offering exclusive deals online. She’s also found success in her partnership with SocialStay, a mobile application that lets users check-in and connect with fellow guests at select hotels…

Case Study: Restaurant Chain Builds Loyalty With Check-In Discounts

Scott Wise is the president and CEO of A Pots & Pans Production, a management company that runs seven restaurants in Indiana. He says businesses need to approach online media like they would a cocktail party, and that it’s better to take notes and learn from what other people are saying than to “go in screaming, drinking, and trying to enter everyone’s conversation.”

Case Study: N.Y. Bookstore Finds Value in Hyperlocal Ads

As the owner of Present Tense, an independent bookstore in Batavia, N.Y., Erica Caldwell maintains close ties to her local community. She uses online and offline advertising to strengthen these bonds, running advertisements concurrently on hyperlocal news websites like The Batavian as well as her community newspaper.

For Seattle’s Garage Billiards, Lots of Daily Deal Offers

Since running a campaign with LivingSocial last year, Garage Billiards co-owner Mike Bitondo says he’s been inundated with offers from every coupon site under the sun. Together with his business partners, Jill Young-Rosenast and Alex Rosenast, Bitondo remains picky about which companies he’ll work with, and generally makes his decisions based on what kinds of revenue splits they’re willing to offer…

Case Study: Pilates Studio’s Successful LivingSocial Campaign

Carla Vercoe is the owner of Studio BE, a popular Pilates studio in Fairfax, Va. Although running a deal with LivingSocial may have cost her money up front, she says it was worth it to be able to instantly connect with her target clientele...

Austin Bakeshop’s Groupons Reward Existing Customers, Entice Newbies

When newspaper and magazine ads failed to deliver the customers she’d hoped for, Olivia O’Neal turned to the web. As the co-owner of Sugar Mama’s Bakeshop, O’Neal has used group coupons and positive online reviews on sites like Yelp to help turn her from-scratch bakery into a dessert destination for foodies in Austin.

Atlanta Chef Reaches Diners on as Many Platforms as Possible

When he’s not in the kitchen at one of Atlanta’s top steakhouses, McKendrick’s Steakhouse executive chef Thomas Minchella is busy managing his restaurant’s Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare accounts, along with his personal social media accounts and a company blog. He aims to keep his messages authentic and can’t stand it when celebrity chefs hire outside companies to do their tweeting for them…

Salon Owner Courts a Niche Market of Eco-Friendly Customers

Aurora Marks isn’t a fan of mass-market coupon sites. As the co-owner of Salon Botanique Eco-Chic, an organic hair salon and spa in Morristown, New Jersey, she says she focuses on reaching customers who care more about getting the best quality hair and skin products than about getting a bargain basement price.

For Portland’s Bar Method, Groupon Was Key to Exposure

Denise Burchard and Meghann Markham weren’t sure how to reach potential customers when they opened Bar Method Portland in 2010, so they turned to Groupon for help (because “we’re old. We think Facebook is hard. Even Twitter is scary”). The daily deals website gave them exposure to the specific demographic they were targeting, and helped turn Bar Method into one of the most popular exercise studios in town.

Phoenix Restaurateur Prefers Social Media Over Coupons

Chef Justin Beckett is one the proprietors behind Beckett’s Table, a go-to restaurant for foodies in Phoenix, Arizona. Since the restaurant opened last year, Beckett has developed a community on Twitter and encouraged check-ins on Foursquare by seeking out diners and introducing himself personally...

A Chicago Retailer is Skeptical of Services Like Groupon

Shelley Young is the chef and founder behind The Chopping Block, a recreational cooking school and retail store in Chicago. Since opening her doors in 1997, Young has seen a dramatic change in the advertising landscape. Whereas she once employed a publicist, she now manages multiple social media accounts in-house and offers check-in specials on Foursquare. She remains skeptical about the long-term viability of daily discount sites.

Boulder’s Om Time Yoga: ‘Inspiring Content’ Works

For Shannon Paige Schneider, marketing locally to customers of Om Time Yoga, the popular yoga studio she founded in Boulder, Colorado, is about connecting. Schneider has found that her clients respond more to inspiring online content – which she posts daily on Facebook and Twitter – than daily deals and web-based promotions. Schneider recently responded by email to questions from Street Fight for its series of conversations with local retailers.

Roger Smith Hotel: Social Media Beats Location-Based, for Now

If you’ve been to the Roger Smith Hotel in Manhattan, you know it’s hip. And it’s the same online. The “Twitter hotel,” as it’s known, has developed a cult following online thanks to social media maven Adam Wallace, director of digital marketing. Wallace recently spoke to Street Fight for its series of conversations with local businesses.