2. Use the power of direct mail. People still look forward to getting mail and set aside time to review it. It’s also more likely to be delivered than e-mails that require exact addresses and can be caught in spam filters.

3. Drive traffic effectively. Social media was made for opt-in, “friend-only” items like coupons or promotions. Don’t forget to include offers and your social media sites on ads, too.

4. Brand your business. Create fun take-home snacks or trinkets with your name and website. You can easily use existing concession machines to create tasty treats and store them in personalized containers.

5. Mix up your marketing. Studies have shown response rates increase the more times customers see your name. Plus, using a variety of channels–like direct mail and e-marketing–increases your chances of grabbing their attention.

6. Build your mailing lists. Offer discounts and insider information as carrots to build your e-mail and mail databases.

7. Host community events. Partner with local non-profit organizations or chambers of commerce. You’ll reach numerous new customers, build goodwill, and they’ll share in the marketing costs and responsibilities.

8. Clean your mail lists. Forty-million Americans change their addresses annually. Consider options like the USPS’ National Change of Address software (

Information provided by Bethe Ferguson, Marketing Communications Coordinator at Gold Medal Products Co.


Field Notes

On June 1, 2011, PlayGuard Playground Safety Surfacing said goodbye to its old logo in favor of a more modern and playful one.

Bison Inc., a manufacturer of sports equipment for over 25 years, acquired the BRP Enterprises product line, which includes bench seating, chairs, tables, bike racks and trash.

Jacobsen, the Charlotte, N.C.-based manufacturer of turf-maintenance equipment will rely on dealer Horizon Distributors, Inc. for the sale of its turf-maintenance equipment in the South Florida and Caribbean markets.


Thanks And Praise

Hello Ron,

I’d like to let you know that I enjoy reading your articles in PRB and especially like your note about not being on Facebook (“Living Smarter,” June 2011). Your recent articles about safety and self-reflection are important reminders for everyone in the parks and recreation business or otherwise.

Many thanks,

Mary Van Haaften, RLA

Landscape Architect

Preservation Parks of Delaware County

Sunbury, Ohio


Word On The Web

On “Slow Down, You Move Too Fast,” May 20 Week-Ender Blog Post:

“I too grew up in the 1960s. That song has had the same impact on me before. Great point you make. Sometimes we just have to kick back and enjoy the music, the trees, the clouds and feel groovy.”

–Billy Moore, Gloucester, Va.

“Thanks for helping us to slow down and think–nice story.”

–Dan Downey

“Now that’s a good way to start the weekend!”

–Jill Korsok, Mentor, Ohio

Note: Not receiving the Week-Ender blog? Start/renew your subscription at for this exclusive online content.




7-10 Alaska Recreation and Park Association Annual Conference, Seward, Alaska;

12-13 South Carolina/North Carolina Recreation and Park Association Joint Conference, Charleston, SC—North Charleston Convention Center;

13-15 Iowa Parks & Recreation Association Fall Workshop, Clinton, Iowa—Wild Rose Hotel, Convention Center, Casino;

14-16 New England Park Association, Inc. Annual Fall Meeting & Conference, West Dennis on Cape Cod, Mass.–The Lighthouse Inn;

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