Walter, the shop cat at the Exeter Chamber of Commerce, doesn’t sprint out the door anymore when customers come in. Now he sits and enjoys the attention and interaction with visitors as people often come to the chamber just to see him.
The chamber is hoping he can do the same for your business.
The Exeter Chamber is using Walter’s likable likeness to get customers to visit your business by asking, “Where’s Walter?” At the beginning of each month, the Chamber newsletter will announce where Walter is in town. Businesses will pay $25 per week to have a life-size cutout of Walter displayed at their place of business. The chamber will provide the business with a promotional poster to display on the outside of their business. When customers come in and ask about Walter, they will receive a small prize from the business.
Walter’s first stop will be at Exeter Family Dentistry, where Exeter Chamber Board member Valerie Agahi says the faux Walter will bring a smile to her face when she walks through the door.
“I think it fits with the whole small town image of Exeter,” Agahi said. “There are a lot of shop cats and pets in Exeter and that’s something you only see in small towns.”
Agahi said she hopes the promotion will attract customers who might not normally come into her business.
“I hope they will walk through the door and feel comfortable and think of us when they need a dentist,” she said.
Walter will make his appearance on Monday, Aug. 5 at Exeter Family Dentistry, located at 148 N. E St. Walter’s location will change every two weeks and will be announced in the newspaper and on the Chamber’s Facebook page and weekly E-blast.
Walter has become somewhat of a local celebrity in Exeter. He was originally left by an owner at Pacific Crest Equine. In February 2012, the staff at the Exeter Chamber of Commerce saw the veterinary’s posting on Facebook and decided to adopt the cat as an office pet. Since then, Walter has made an appearance in Experience Exeter, the chamber’s annual membership directory and promotional guide, for the last two years. Many locals stop by just to see Walter and even tourists know about him.
“We have occaisionally received requests from tourists to take a photo with Walter,” said Exeter Chamber Executive Director Sandy Blankenship. “People just seem to love him and of course we think he is really cute.”
For more information on Where’s Walter?, contact the Exeter Chamber of Commerce at 559-592-2919 or visit www.exeterchamber.com.