I was in charge of a local raffle not too long ago. It was grand opening time at Jerry’s Generators of Ottawa, a new store that specialized in all sizes of units for every conceivable use. I have a small portable camping model myself, and everyone I know has one or more at home. It may be relegated to the garage or basement, but it is there and psychologically comforting!
Nevertheless, I was familiar enough with the product and proceeded to plan the event. Jerry wanted to call attention to the new facility while supporting a favorite local charity for educating kids (a free after- school tutoring service). We could easily kill the two birds with one stone. PR is fun. We got out the ads, flyers, mailers, and press releases. We set up tables and chairs. We had selected a nice mid-range generator as the coveted prize. It was for personal or residential use in case of a power outage. We do get them now and then, and often when least expected. Sometimes even a small device saves the day.
Jerry agreed to donate one of the best generators he sells, the Honda Super Quiet Converter that runs about $1,000 retail. Tickets were purchased a week in advance and on opening day for $15 each. If you bought ten, you got a discount. The 2000 watt is a marvel of modern industrial science. It is a good choice for its additional RV application and camping use. It can power a hair dryer, refrigerator, a microwave, and small AC units. Since most people have a home version, this was a great choice. It comes with a spark arrestor/muffler, advanced inverter technology, and works well for computers and sensitive equipment.
It proved to be a winner. People bought the tickets and flocked to the opening to see who prevailed. They looked around the warehouse, and many generators from his small generator range were sold that day. I got accolades for my service. These things might seem run-of-the-mill, but you are never sure of attendance and the final outcome. Jerry was thrilled and the new store was launched in style. Refreshments were available and people spent a nice afternoon enjoying a local band and munching on delicious fare.
The store is modern, clean, and efficient. The samples are well-spaced with plaques noting features and usage. Prices are fair and there will be specials in the near future. The walls are colorful in a low-key way. Jerry had a previous business and is no novice. There is a small play area for kids while mom and dad shop. A soda machine and free coffee stand complement the family-friendly atmosphere.
The day’s winner was a young couple who had just gotten married. They did not get a generator, however, as a gift. They said they were really dying for one and thought they would have to wait. Jerry was pleased for them and hoped the new homeowners would come back later for a larger home model. It was a win-win for everyone and good feeling abounded. The charity was represented and thanked the owner for his thoughtful donation.