American Express Selects DDA Contest as an Exemplary Restaurant Promotion
ALLEN PARK – The Allen Park Downtown Development Authority received an Exemplary Restaurant Promotion award from American Express at the recent National MainStreet Convention.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, downtowns across the country have encouraged their communities to support local restaurants in creative and engaging ways. American Express recently celebrated the ingenuity of these Main Street programs through its “Order In, Help Out” Innovation Challenge.
The winners of challenge rallied their communities to support restaurants when they needed it most. Applicants were invited to submit a local marketing campaign they launched to support local restaurants.
The APDDA launched its “Takeout to Win Contest” days after the March 2020 government-ordered shutdown closed all indoor dining. Daily Facebook posts encouraged customers to post photos of their takeout, curbside, or delivery meals from any downtown restaurant, tagging the establishment. The DDA then randomly selected an entrant and awarded a $25 downtown dining gift certificate every day.
The DDA kept up enthusiasm with colorful graphics and videos for “Whatca Eating Wednesday,” “Thirsty Thursday,” and “TGITO (Thank God It’s Take-Out) Friday” to encourage participation.
The Takeout to Win Contest coordinated with the DDA’s “Comfort Food for Uncomfortable Times” campaign, an online downtown dining directory. The program injected $1,875 in DDA-funded downtown dining gift certificates into cash-strapped restaurants at the beginning of the pandemic. Participants spent an estimated $5,000 in carryout purchases through the contest.
Entries were judged on strategy, innovation and engagement, feasibility, need or response to COVID-19, and results and impact.
The other national winners from Michigan were Rochester and Royal Oak.