Today’s guest post comes from Allison Canty, Social Media and Community Outreach Manager at Grasshopper.  Grasshopper is a virtual phone system for entrepreneurs and small businesses.  

As a small business, we’re always looking for cool tools to help us run our business better.

One of the tools we love to use when we travel is Eventbrite. When we’re on the road we try to make the most of it and meet with customers we’d otherwise only interact with through social media, so we use Eventbrite to organize customer dinners. A customer dinner is simply an event we host where we invite a handful of customers in a particular area to dinner and drinks.

Eventbrite makes it easy for us to organize these dinners in cities we’re already travelling to for business.  With its simple interface, Eventbrite enables us to easily invite our customers and track RSVPs, allowing us to work on the finer details of the event.

Arranging customer dinners does more than boost employee productivity during business trips. They help us connect with and build relationships with our customers in ways no amount of promotions can, because of the following benefits:

Enhances Word-of-Mouth Marketing and Referrals

How many phone companies do you know of that treat their customers to dinner?  Seldom do companies engage in such informal and friendly events; and yet, we think it’s the best way to cultivate loyal fans and brand advocates.

Humanizes the Brand

As business owners, we all too often get so entrenched in our business that we forget to get out and actually talk to people! During these company-hosted dinners, our customers get to interact with the people behind the company and we get the opportunity to not only get to know them but also learn from them too. These events allow customers to view us on more of a peer-to-peer level and make them feel more comfortable engaging with our brand.

Keeps Customers in the Family

Business is all about relationships. And that’s what we try to forge during these dinners with our customers. Putting a face to the brand allows our customers to connect with us on deeper level. Having a personal connection with someone at our company encourages customers to come to us with any issues, rather than venting online or sending us an angry support ticket and they generally tend to be more loyal because of this connection.

Connects Like-Minded People Hyper-Locally

In addition to using the same virtual phone system, our customers have other things in common.  These dinners provide local entrepreneurs and small business owners with an opportunity to network with each other which often times leads to new ideas, clients and even partnerships.  If our intimate dinners are the catalyst for our customers’ growth, then we’ve accomplished our core purpose of empowering entrepreneurs to succeed.

To us, Eventbrite is more than just a tool to organize events.  It’s a tool that helps us build authentic relationships with our customers.  Many people use Eventbrite as a tool to create and find out about cool events, but it’s so much more than that. Eventbrite helps us efficiently plan and execute events so that we can focus on the one thing that truly matters – building lasting relationships with customers.


To find out more about Grasshopper and the services they offer, check out their website here.