Ice Cream is Sweet Way to Honor Customer Engagement


Vanilla vs. Chocolate. The great ice cream debate has not cooled off. There is only one way to settle it; we need to sample more!!! And in a long-standing tradition of customer engagement, the opportunity is available to residents & visitors in Salem Ma with The Salem Ice Scream Bowl.

As a way of saying “thank you” to the community for year ‘round support, local small businesses will serve samples of classic flavors and new combinations at booths on the Salem Common, Wednesday night, Aug. 8th from 6-7:30pm.

According to the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), the top five “best-selling” ice cream flavors are:

  1. Vanilla
  2. Chocolate
  3. Cookies N’ Cream
  4. Mint Chocolate Chip
  5. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

You can see there is no winner here. Vanilla is first by virtue of all the toppings you can add to it. But chocolate-filled flavors dominate the top five. All this according to a 2017 IDFA survey of ice cream makers and retailers across the United States.

But there is a winner

How much does a scoop of ice cream cost in your community? For $4 a kid ($6 if you are an adult) can get not one, not two, but perhaps 5 or more (depending upon how many merchants are participating) cups of ice cream at this Salem Ice Scream Bowl !

(At press time the list included area favorites Melt Ice Cream, Maria’s Sweet Somethings, Captain Dusty’s, E.W. Hobbs Ice Cream, and Cherry Farm Creamery.)

Furthering the spirit of community engagement, the participating small businesses don’t take any of the gate. Proceeds support Salem Main Streets (SMS), the downtown revitalization nonprofit that organizes the Salem Farmers’ Market and many other events in downtown Salem.  Since SMS also offers direct support to downtown businesses, these ice cream shops are helping other merchants in Salem.

Do you have something like this in your community? It’s another one of those win/win/win customer engagement events I love to promote. And whether you are a social media manager or small business owner, it is something worth looking into. If you would like more info regarding this event, contact Kylie Sullivan at Salem Main Streets at (978) 744-0004 x115 or email at

And, just in case you are wondering, my favorite ice cream is Mint Chocolate Chip. What’s yours?

(Your thoughts are ALWAYS welcome. Turn this into a conversation either here or on my Twitter account @amssvs)


Hashtag “National Day Of” Events are Short Cuts to Increasing Customer Traffic


Hashtags can be profitable for you & your business— and they don’t cost you a penny, unlike advertising. Hashtags are being used everywhere, not only on Twitter and Instagram, but they are also creeping up in Facebook. How do you and your customers benefit? Tie-ins of products & services with national events.

Week of July 23, 2018

  • National Vanilla Ice Cream Day, July 23- Did you know that the country that consumes the most ice cream is USA, followed by Australia then Norway? Or that Vanilla is the only edible fruit of the orchid family, the largest family of flowering plants in the world?
  • National Drive-Thru Day, July 24- Think about it, besides food outlets, businesses from banks to pharmacies encourage you to use your car to use drive thrus. Lots of creative options beyond food.
  • National Hot Fudge Sundae Day, July 25- Did you know that reportedly one of the most expensive sundaes to be ordered is at Serendipity 3 in New York City for $1000?
  • National Coffee Milkshake Day, July 26- Cool deal on a hot July day!
  • Take Your Pants for a Walk Day, July 27- Did you know that walking not only helps burn calories, but can also boost a person’s mood and can help treat depression?
  • World Nature Conservation Day July 28- Discuss conservation of nature, trees, plants, city parks.
  • National Chicken Wing Day, July 29- Buffalo, New York lays claim to the birthplace of the chicken wing and that’s why they are often called Buffalo wings as well.

Obviously, the hashtag “National Day of” items I selected are mostly food oriented, and the tie-in, if you indeed serve them, is evident. Some form of discount that day in honor of the food item would be the enticement to increase traffic flow. A cleverly worded tweet. A tantalizing photo on Instagram. Customers & pictures on Facebook.

Or cross tie-in with a restaurant— for example, products purchased in your store earn a voucher for chicken wing lunch or ice cream sundae snack! Win/win/win for your store, your customers, and other small businesses in your community.

(Your thoughts are ALWAYS welcome. Turn this into a conversation either here or on my Twitter account @amssvs}