Bar UnCommon is a bit of a newcomer to New Orleans, a city known for some of the country’s oldest bars. Its location in the lobby of the Renaissance Pere Marquette Hotel, just beyond the French Quarter, prompted director of sales and marketing Michael Touchy to scout out a promotion that would drive both locals and hotel guests to the lobby.
“We began looking for people to partner with in the city, and we got in touch with B-native.com,” he says.
B-native.com is a web site started by New Orleanians to feature locally made products that highlight the creative and artistic spirits in the city. During the few years it has been around, the site has earned loyal fans among people from the city and beyond who check in weekly for new items.
“There is a following for this web site,” explains Touchy, “and these people all know each other and relate to each other more than just a customer-to-vendor relationship.”
Touchy and the group from B-native.com set up vendor booths inside of Bar UnCommon every Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. for the month of March. B-native advertised the live gatherings on the site and through customer e-mail blasts, while Touchy added announcements to the hotel newsletter and to the welcome packets for each hotel guest room.
“It really drew a crowd at about 6 p.m., and then those people usually stayed beyond 7 p.m. We made a good amount of revenue during these events. It was mostly wine and Martinis, because the buying crowd is sophisticated.”
The bar also pushed local libations like the Pimm’s Cup to underscore the focus on New Orleans style.