After Halloween, have you ever held a candy buy-back event for trick-or-treaters in your community? It’s a great way to:
- strengthen patient relationships
- promote better health
- garner publicity
- create a story that spreads, and
- give prospective new patients an opportunity to visit your practice and meet your team!
Last year, there were many dentists who held a “Sweet Swap” event! This year, you can too!
Step 1: Use In-Office Print Materials AND Social Media To Build Excitement
In addition to using our free designs for great-looking fliers and posters, be sure to regularly post related content on your Facebook event page with tidbits to get patients excited about the upcoming Sweet Swap, including Halloween history, fun photos and information about where the candy is going, etc. With each update, those who have RSVP’d for your event will be pinged!
Be sure to create an official Facebook event! It’s easy. If you’ve never done that before, here’s a simple 2-minute training video
Step 2: Choose A Cause That Will Benefit From Your Event
Many of the practices that did a Sweet Swap last year collected hundreds of pounds of candy for donation to our troops overseas through the Operation Gratitude program! During your event you may want to encourage kids to write letters to the troops that could accompany the candy. Let them know how much we appreciate them!
Other practices have donated their candy to their local food banks and/or homeless shelters.
Step 3: Try To Garner Some Local Publicity
Don’t ignore traditional publicity channels—just be sure to use your social media platform as well to share any attention your event receives! Contact your local television, radio, newspaper, community magazines, etc. They typically love stories like this.
Step 4: Be Creative With Your Games, Contests, Or Incentives During The Event
Remember that kids aren’t swapping because the candy is unwanted. They’ll be excited about trading it for something fun, longer lasting, and (per parents’ promptings) better for their teeth.
Consider giving away goody bags! Perhaps you could do an “enter-to-win” contest for fun prizes. Some practices trade candy for little tickets they can use in booths to play games like Pin-The-Tail-On-The-Donkey. Others give away t-shirts. Get your whole team involved in brainstorming! Be creative!
Step 5: Take Photos And Video During The Event
Take lots of photos of your team, your patients, the decor, the costumes, the candy, etc. Perhaps you’d like to set up a photo booth. Have participants sign a simple release that allows you to use the photos on your Facebook page (some sample text is provided at the end of this post). Be sure to “tag” people in the photos on Facebook so that they are more apt to see and share them!
Step 6: Download Your Free Packet of Materials
Click here for more details about running your own Sweet Swap event—AND to download all of the graphics you’ll need!
Sample Text for Consent Form
I consent that <your practice name> may use photographs or videos of me, taken on the date indicated below, on their social media tools which includes but is not limited to their Facebook page. I understand that these images and/or videos will not be used for any other commercial purposes.
Name (please print):
Name of Minor (please print):
Name of Parent or Legal Guardian (please print):