Marketing Your Company’s 25 Year Anniversary

by Chris Brown on Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Is your company celebrating a 10 year, 25 year or even a 75 year anniversary? How are you marking and marketing your company’s celebration?

I think that as long as you’re spending the marketing budget to celebrate, why not consider some additional benefits of marketing the anniversary with some memorable, clever ideas to catch the attention of a prospective customer or client?Here’s a few idea starters:

1) Flyer: Create a tip sheet with ideas for your target market to help them in whatever business you are in. If you’re a doctor, how about 25 tips for staying healthy? If you’re a realtor how about 10 tips for improving your curb appeal for potential home sellers? If your business is a greenhouse, how about 50 plants for shade and sun? Make the number of tips match the number of your anniversary.

2) Tell Everyone! Distribute the tip sheets to the local newspaper, post them on your web site, post them in the article banks, send it to your chamber of commerce, even your industry association.

3) Great Headline: Call it “25 Tips for (Target Market) to Improve Your (Product/Service).”

Something like this: “25 Tips for Home Sellers to Improve Their Curb Appeal.” for a realtor. Of course it would vary by your business.

In the first blank, list your best target market. Maybe seniors, teenagers, or homeowners. Fill in the second blank with your product or service.

In the above examples, it might be health (if you’re a personal trainer), driving record (if you teach drivers training), or yard (if you’re in the landscaping business.)

If it’s your 100th anniversary, it might be tough to come up with 100 tips, but maybe not as hard as you think. (Did you try it?! Ask other people in the office for their ideas!!)

4) News Service: Take advantage of the regional news services of PRNewsWire, BusinessWire, PRWeb or E-Mediawire. It’s not very expensive if you just pay for distribution in your region rather than national.

5) Make a Book: Create a corporate history book to honor the founders of your company. Give one to each employee. Provide some to the local libraries, historians, universities and your industry association. If it seems like a daunting task, contact one of the companies who create company histories. (My friend Barb Cagley runs a business called Stories Worth Retelling and they are experts at gathering information in story form and creating books or videos from all the sources into one wonderful keepsake.) They can help you with gathering photos, interviewing, writing, and making it all come together for a real keepsake.

6) Brand with a Logo: Have a graphic designer create a special logo for your company that plays off the 25 years in business. Use it all year long on things that are “temporary”… stationery, Website home page, etc. Reinforce your branding and positioning with a statement in the new logo too. “On Time Delivery for 25 Years” “Keeping Homes Safe for Over 25 Years.”

7) Use Advertising Specialties: Get golf shirts with the anniversary logo. Padfolios. Pens. Custom label wine bottles. Give them to each client, potential client and employee.

8) Open House: Invite key vendors, customers, and business friends to celebrate with the employees at an open house at your office, factory or store. Bring in snack food. Run a PowerPoint slide show of photos at every stage on each computer.

Updated 8/22/2013: Check out how one company decorated their sign for their open house!

9) Quiz: Create a Trivia quiz with questions from the year the business was founded. Give out prizes (maybe customers only?!) for the people who get them right.

10) Golf Outing: Organize a golf outing and give all the money to a charity that fits with your company’s mission.

What other ideas do people have? I know that there are other companies who have had some great ideas for celebrating an anniversary. Please, share your ideas for commemorating a company’s anniversary if it’s 10 years, 20 years or 50 years or 100… What worked? What didn’t?

Anyone know the colors and traditional gifts for each year? I think I’ve heard of that before but I don’t know it by heart.

ADDED July 10, 2008:
My company, Marketing Resources & Results, celebrates its 10 year anniversary this year. Check out how we brainstormed ideas for our party, blog posts and press release.

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

MarketingTwins-Randy October 19, 2008 at 2:42 pm

I really enjoyed this – I’ve got a client with a 30-year anniversary coming up. Very timely. My only problem is the client “doesn’t want to make a big deal of it” – WHAT????? WHY NOT???? Auuugggh!

Chris Brown June 25, 2009 at 2:12 pm

Randy:
It can be very frustrating if it seems the company or client doesn’t care. It’s been my experience that we all do well when we celebrate things, especially when the economy may be in a slump (understatement!!).

Maybe there are a few very low cost things you can try so that it doesn’t pass un noticed.

Chris

John Stewart August 19, 2009 at 3:35 pm

By definition, a corporate anniversary comes at least every 5 years, and, therefore, is a powerful opportunity that should be strategically leveraged. It’s best if you can align the company’s anniversary celebrations and aspects from the company’s history with current business drivers. You should also start with future and desired outcomes and work back with tactics to drive these.
Audiences are also important. An integrated corporate anniversary campaign should identify all important audiences, and tactical solutions should be created to carry the desired messages to the appropriate audience.

In terms of tactical solutions to support a corporate anniversary, everyone thinks they need a book. While this is often an excellent tactic, this is by no means the most effective, but, depending on goals, can certainly be worth doing. Other good tactics include: documentaries, websites, archival creation programs, oral histories and knowledge preservation programs, exhibits, displays, museums, and let’s not the celebration itself. An anniversary logo is a must. It does not have to be impressive, but you should always have one to tie the celebration together. Also, think about spreading the celebration over two years (one year to hype it up; the other, to celebrate). You can also build off your celebration’s success by giving away a gift, like a book at the end of the celebration.

Ruth Dean November 17, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Great ideas, Chris! (As usual.) Making a tip sheet into a flyer would be very effective, and not really expensive. Plus it would be fun for you and your staff to do.

Ray Lopez December 9, 2009 at 10:42 am

A Commemorative Custom Coin. Not only your employees would love it but so would your clients. Since 1984, Northwest Territorial Mint has minted limited edition coins and medallions for governmental and private entities around the world. Our designs have commemorated events, honored champions and saluted achievements large and small. Our medallions have been bestowed as merit awards, years of service, retirement gifts, etc. If you would like more information please contact me at ray@militarycoins.com or call 1-800-504-0811 or my direct line (703) 922-5794. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Montrie Rucker Adams February 1, 2010 at 3:45 am

We’re celebrating 10 years! Thank you for the great information. I am definitely going to incorporate some of your tips.
This is right on time!

Carol Galle March 15, 2010 at 10:19 am

At The Anniversary Company (www.theanniversarycompany.com), our mission is to help organizations make the most of their anniversary opportuntiies. We view these milestones as strategic opportunities to move a business forward. It’s more than just an excuse for a party; you should celebrate the past & also launch the future. If anyone is looking for ideas or assistance in this area, please contact us at 248.336.8612.

Chris Brown March 19, 2010 at 5:48 am

Carol:
I really liked your logos and displays that I saw in the portfolio section of your website. Also saw that you too are nationally certified by WBENC. Looks like a good company. Thanks for connecting here.
Chris

the promotions guy March 20, 2010 at 10:56 am

Thanks for the link to my blog! Would you mind putting a link to my website at the paragraph about ad specialities?
greg

Chris Brown March 22, 2010 at 3:16 pm

Hi Greg: Would love to, but you know, that’s the difference between PR and advertising. With PR you get what the editor needs, with advertising you pay to get what you want.
We can talk later about a “sponsored link” if that interests you.
Chris

Tom Serle January 23, 2011 at 8:56 pm

Hi Chris,

Just happenned across your website in some general google searching. You have a very nice and user friendly website. Nice job! Hope you are well.

Tom

Tim Convery February 5, 2011 at 9:05 am

We manufacture metal products like badges, medals, lapel pins, coins for anniversary. Been in business since 1852 in the USA.

Rachel @ business promotional items May 26, 2011 at 3:19 pm

A special anniversary logo is a really good idea. I remember growing up, the company my dad worked for used to celebrate milestones with an anniversary logo. He’d bring home a anniversary items, and they all looked special — it was so nice that it made an impression in my young mind. It’s a great way of commemorating company successes, and I’m sure the employees would feel so proud of such a company.

Lauren August 8, 2011 at 2:27 pm

This all sounds great! I was just appointed as the new marketing coordinator at my business and we are about to celebrate our 20th anniversary in 2012, so I am constantly looking for new innovative ways to create an inspiring open house. This information helps alot. Thank you!

kimberley August 9, 2011 at 9:39 pm

This year it is our organisations 25th anniversary, but we have no budget to celebrate it as we are a charitable organisation. I am writing a big feature about the organisations history for our in-house magazine. But want to get a press release sent out, the problem is our 25th Birthday is not enough to get coverage on its own, especially as we are not hosting an event. But I could not use your tip idea as we are a charity for dementia/Alzheimer’s disease.. just trying to think of other ways of engaging the media?

Mai September 5, 2011 at 8:32 pm

oh I’m a student at Uni and I must prepare a plan to celebrate company’s 100th anniversary ….to give my teacher…you help me more…thanks you ^ ^

Susie December 14, 2011 at 5:59 pm

Thanks for all the great info. We are celebrating the 20th anniversary of our photography studio in 2012. The visual history will be pretty funny to create a then and now kinda thing. We are tossing around a few other ideas like 20 weeks of savings, 20% off, or 20 days 20 products 20 winners. Facebook will also help in promoting the anniversary, it’s just 1 more way to get to our target market.
Thanks for all the ideas, keep them coming.

Di January 28, 2012 at 5:25 am

Similar situation to Kimberley…a Not For Profit organisation looking to celebrate 20 yrs. This may be too late for press exposure for you but even a gathering for a good old cake cutting can attract local media.Especially if you can attract a local celebrity to do it for you.
I also liked the idea flagged previously (and seen successfully ) of a special event logo. Ideally one which can be modified as events come and go but can keep a constant theme.

seo January 31, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Right now it seems like BlogEngine is the best blogging platform out there right now. (from what I’ve read) Is that what you’re using on your blog?

Patrick March 8, 2012 at 5:27 am

Hi guys, like other posters, I stumbled on this through google (at the top so well done :-)
Anyway I found it incredibly useful as I too have a client with a 25 year anniversary to celebrate and this gave me some great fresh ideas to go to them with.

As for my suggestions I have created several timeline wall graphics which look great visually as well as demonstrating the history of the organisation and milestones along the way.

One example can be seen at:/www.geniecreative.org.uk/work/exhibition/o2-displays/

cheers
pat

Bojana March 14, 2012 at 4:59 am

How do we organize anniversary for a sport website?

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Melinda April 10, 2014 at 1:53 pm

Can anyone tell me when you should BEGIN celebrating your 10 year anniversary? We have our 10 year on Dec 1st, 2014 and I think we should use the entire year leading up to to the 10 year to plant seeds & celebrate up until the big event itself.
Thank you.

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