Fun Marketing Ideas for a Shoe Boutique

By Katie Jensen

Boost buzz about your shoe boutique.
i Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images

Shoes have become more than strips of leather to protect tender tootsies. Fashionistas know that the shoes can make or break an outfit. Shoe shopping can be either a contact sport or a relaxing afternoon with girlfriends. When all is said and done, buying shoes is fun. Reflect a sense of playfulness or quirky edginess when you market your shoe boutique.

Trade Ins

Car dealers do it, so why can't your shoe boutique? Offer a $5 trade-in value for old shoes your customers trade in for a new pair. You might want to limit it to one pair of trade-ins for each pair of new shoes, or you'll have your customers cleaning out their closets to get that latest hot pair of heels. Donate the old shoes to a homeless shelter or a charity.

Celebrity Shoe Design

Ask local celebrities to design their fantasy shoes. Provide basic high heels in a pump style and offer feathers, sequins, jewels, chains, paints and flowers. Display the shoes in the store with photos of the celebrities. Create a contest where customers guess who designed which shoe. The winner gets a free pair of shoes.

Gambler's Sale

Some customers wait all season for that special pair of shoes to go on sale. Hold a gambler's sale over a holiday weekend. On Friday, shoes on sale are 33 percent. By Saturday, they are 50 percent off. On Sunday, the discount rises to 60 percent, and rises to 75 percent off on Monday. An auction is another possibility. Customers bid on the sale shoes. Highest bid wins the shoes.

Cinderella Story

Everyone knows the story of Cinderella and her glass slipper. Turn the fairy tale into a reality. Commission a glass shoe. Customers buy raffle tickets with the proceeds going to the charity of your choice, such as a kid's back-to-school clothing drive. The tickets go into the glass shoe. Ask the representative of the charity to pick the winning ticket. The winner gets a fall shoe wardrobe. Not only do you support a worthy charity, but you can probably get media coverage for the event. Go a step farther and offer champagne in miniature glass slippers when you announce the winner.

Go Social

Develop social networking profiles on Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+ around a shoe theme to play off your shoe boutique. Jennifer Abernethy, the author of "Social Media Marketing," suggests tweeting specials to your followers. For example, you could have a special Twitter discount for summer sandals, or offer your Facebook friends a "buy one, get one" special. Upload photos of the latest shoes to your profiles with clever captions to snag interest.