There are few things more depressing than a vacant business. One of those things is when you bought a Groupon-type deal for one of these places a few weeks earlier.
First thing is first, apologies for rarely posting the last few months. Honestly, just wasn't feeling Small Business Marketing. I'm so pre-occupied with my full-time E-Commerce Marketing life that I come home from work and have no interest in my side gig (Small Businesses). We all feel like that sometimes; just being human.
A few weeks ago, my girlfriend and I got a "Group-On type deal" from an also-ran daily deal site (I won't name them here; you can ask if you want) for a small Hot Dog/Hamburger vendor in Springfield (once again, ask if you want to know).
Three weeks after purchasing the deal, we decided to cash in and get some lunch. We drove to the spot, saw the business sign, and parked the car. I walked up to the business and tried to open the door.
I looked in the storefront and saw some tables, but no chairs. I looked by the register and saw nothing. No register. No menu on the wall. Nothing. It looked bare, vacant.
We left disappointed. We went to Muscle Maker Grill instead (love the BBQ Wrap).
Now, this business must have not tied up all its loose ends if this Daily Deal site was still offering their $10 for $20 worth of food deal (The Daily Deal site did refund our money). They might even be offering promotions elsewhere that they haven't closed down.
The truth is, in the 20 minutes of attempted research on the company before buying that Daily Deal, I did see the writing on the wall.
They had no website. It took a while to find a menu on the web (it was hidden on their Facebook page).
Their Facebook page had less than 80 followers and was rarely updated (Our attempt to visit their shop happened in December; their last update was May and before that, January). No Twitter. No reviews on Yelp or Google. Nothing.
It seemed like two people (likely a married couple) wanted to start a Hot Dog/Hamburger business, but had no business plan what so ever. They found a location (decent location for foot traffic, but mediocre for driving visitors), got equipment, and thought they had a business.
But they had no plan.
I guess the Daily Deal might have been a last-ditch effort to get business. They obviously weren't promoting themselves properly, and this attempt was too little, too late.
It always makes me a little bit sad to see a "For Lease" sign on a Small Business; someone put their money and effort into something that was a dream for them, but due to their inability to put money and effort into their Marketing, they failed.