Tips for Opening a MOBILE Play or Party Business

As I mentioned in my blog about the important trends I see emerging for indoor play spaces in 2020 and beyond, Mobile Play services are a great option for thinking outside the box and either generating an additional source of revenue for your brick and mortar indoor playground OR for raising funds to start a brick and mortar space.

SO, WHAT IS A MOBILE PLAY RENTAL SERVICE?

Specifically, what I referred to in my “Important Trends” blog are businesses that bring a mobile soft play area or some other form of decor or entertainment to a party or event site, instead of having the guests come to them at a physical brick and mortar location.

Most commonly, businesses bring these mobile play set ups to fairs, lodges, recreation centers, corporate events, or peoples homes. 

Most offer a variety of play options, sized to fit different venues and a wide variety of ages and play styles.

However, these mobile services can also include catering, decorating (like balloon arches!), entertainment (like children’s’ TV show characters) and more.

What makes mobile play services different are that they are not tied to a physical location and therefore your reach has greater potential. Therefore, if your brick and mortar space is smaller, like ours, and can only accommodate private parties, this is a GREAT way to book more parties than your space typically allows.

And since a mobile play business generally costs much less to get started than the typical brick-and-mortar, it can be a great way to test the “play” business waters without signing a lease or investing in a full build out.

I am launching a full mini-course about this concept, but for now, here are some AMAZING tips from members inside Play Makers Society, my group coaching program for those who have taken Play Cafe Academy and want to take their skills & business to the next level.

There are SO many members ROCKING this business model-- what are you waiting for?! Join the group and get the inside scoop on this business here.

TIP #1: PARTNER WITH OTHER LOCAL BUSINESSES

Bianca from Little World Play focuses on bringing the ENTIRE experience of a birthday party to her clients, including decorating and food! For services she can’t provide (since she does not have a commercial kitchen, etc) she reaches out to local businesses to partner. It’s a win-win because she can be the one-stop-shop for her clients but does NOT have to invest in a full build out in order to offer a full suite of services. She has also found that local businesses she partners with have begun referring her to THEIR clients as well, expanding her reach and client base!

TIP #2: DO YOUR RESEARCH ON THE EQUIPMENT YOU PURCHASE

Sydney from Little Bits Play Rentals and Bianca from Little World Play have both experienced disappointment when it comes to toys or equipment they’ve ordered. Sydney struggled to find an aesthetically pleasing yet EASY to use gate, and Bianca learned that commercial is definitely best (and sometimes legally required) when it comes to bounce houses.

The bottom line? Do your research and ask around. Amazon is a great place to start since they generally have trustworthy reviews, but sometimes it’s best to have a conversation with someone who has personal experience.

If you’re thinking of starting a mobile play business, look no further for all the research and knowledge you need! Play Cafe Academy and Play Maker Society has hundreds of seasoned professionals willing to offer their insight to you!

TIP #3: USE EVENTS AS A MARKETING TOOL!

Krystyne from Sweet Peas Play Cafe has been doing mobile-play set ups at local events and festivals in order to gain exposure in her community ahead of opening her brick-and-mortar space!

She brings a branded tent with her (which was an investment, she admits, but has helped her be very visible and eye-catching!) to provide shade and a space for customers to ask about her services and her business.

She is sure to collect email addresses and answer questions from prospective customers so that by the time she opens her physical location, she will already have a customer base excited for her to open!

She also uses these events to showcase her AMAZING balloon arches and decorating abilities which is sure to help her book parties once her calendar is open!

 

Regardless of the type of mobile play business you intend or hope to open, you will be AHEAD of the game if you get started right away-- because I truly believe this will be an integral part of opening a brick and mortar space in the near future, especially if your physical space can only accommodate private parties.

FOLLOW MY YOUTUBE CHANNEL FOR MORE INDOOR PLAYGROUND BUSINESS MODEL TIPS-- AND DON’T FORGET TO DOWNLOAD MY FREE E-BOOK BELOW!

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