Promote & Get The Word Out


Build Your Own TestTown Portal

This is the main portal through which to learn about how to run a TestTown event and keep up to date with developments.


TestTown Branding

The TestTown logo and brand colours are freely available for use – please click to download the logos below.

Original TestTown artwork which you may find elsewhere online (floating town illustration) was produced by George Pearson – redistribution or use of the image(s) is forbidden without the express written consent of the copyright holder George Pearson.

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Local Press

Use your local press as much as possible – draft a short press release with photo and circulate this prior to the event. Use the stories of the participants involved to bring the event to life. Work on getting the TestTown event listed in local events calendars. Finally make sure you invite the local press to the launch and the trading days.


Local Broadcasters – TV and Radio

Again these local broadcast channels have been very important for all the 19 TestTown events. Try and secure an interview or advert before the events and as above invite the local broadcasters to the launch and trading days.


Online/ Social Media

#testtown ( – Over the past three years we have witnessed the expansion of the use of social media and the opportunities this offers in promoting, marketing and documenting events. There is a wealth of information online which offers tips and advice on how to use all the channels effectively. Just as in the recruitment of participants, we strongly suggest developing a social media campaign to promote the events themselves. Examples of this can be found in the Bridgend case study below and the TestTown Glasgow Saltmarket Storify here -
Depending on what stage of the enterprise journey your participants are on, some will already be using social media effectively in their businesses and some not. Encourage your participants to use or create their own social media accounts and share their stories/experience through these. Online Marketing could also be
something you build into your training/preparation programme. It may also be worthwhile to spend some time with the participants to go over responsible use of social media during the TestTown event.


Social Video/ Audio

Similar to social media, social video and audio has also seen a dramatic rise in popularity over the last three years, with more people having access to the tools to make these. The TestTown team has used social video in a variety of ways – to encourage recruitment, to promote the event/town, to capture feedback and to make a lasting document of the events themselves. A number of local TestTowns
have also used social video very effectively.
Again similar to the use of social media, it might be worth going over the responsible use of social video/ audio during the TestTown event with the participants.
Watch past films on our TestTown YouTube Channel

Listen to Enterprise Ian’s interviews with the Saltmarket Finalists on


Marketing materials – print

For previous competitions, we have often produced a variety of print items including:
• Posters that can be used in local shops and businesses
• TestTown T-shirts – make people a walking advert!
• TestTown flyers which include a map of the town, where all the shops are and a list of the businesses. We have also included competitions and discount vouchers to encourage visitors. Examples of flyers produced can be found in Section 8:TestTown Templates.
• Promotional beer mats (fill in a comment about TestTown and hand in at one of the shops for the chance to win a prize)
• Pop-up banners (useful for identifying information points or for ‘branding’ the awards event and participant/winner photographs)
• Shop window vinyl stickers (effective and easy to remove)


Marketing materials – outdoor

We have also used various outdoor marketing materials including:
• Washable chalk on streets to direct to TestTown shops
• Washable graffiti art (paint) on streets to direct to TestTown shops (more durable)
• Billboard advertising
• Black-board A-Frames
• Balloons and bunting – make the spaces stand out!
• Street Murals
• In 2013, we ran a marketing campaign on local trains and buses, and at local railways stations to drive customers to the pop-up festival (this was organised via Exterion Media but will differ depending on location).


Street Promotion

There is nothing as effective as getting out there, walking the streets and chatting to people about the event. Encourage your participants and TestTown Ambassadors to do this pre and over the trading days and have fliers prepared for them to handout. We have had giant bunnies, bananas, cupcakes and acrobats walking the streets, cakes, chocolates and coffees being handed out, impromptu street performances to giant cardboard shops fronts- the list and possibilities are endless!

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Words of Advice

  • I also felt that the event could have been more rigorously promoted, particularly during the three market days. It became apparent that the public were not aware of the event taking place in their high street and that they did not understand what it was for. This could have been tackled by posters throughout the town and in shop windows in the lead up and during the event.

    TestTown 2015 Participant

  • I would advertise the event on local radio stations and also in the local newspaper to create local interest in the town to raise awareness of the event. As not everyone who shops in the town uses the internet.’

    TestTown 2015 Participant

Highlights from the recent years

Five Ways To Supercharge Your TestTown

We believe there are five things which would Supercharge your TestTown:

  1. Every town should create a clear, supported pathway into trading and opening up a shop  for new town centre entrepreneurs.
  2. Every town should have a permanent pop-up facility in a viable trading space which offers flexible lease arrangements up to a year for new town centre entrepreneurs to learn.
  3. Every town should work, within their means, to reduce financial barriers in reduced rates and rents for new traders during their first year of business.
  4. Every town should carry out a regular (every five years) entrepreneur-led consultation which would feed into a business-led strategy for town centre development and business support.
  5. Every town should develop a hyperlocal cross-sector partnership to lead local innovation, ensuring that agencies, businesses, and residents are all powerful in leading local development.