Every sales promotion begins with a business or brand making the right offer. This is true of one-time marketing concepts that help in boosting your short-term revenue or expanding your business.

The ideal sales promotion offer needs to have the following components:

  • Align with your competitive edge
  • Creates real value for your clients or customers
  • It is relevant

The usual strategy is to go for conventional offers like Discounts , extra of the same product, a related product by the same company or a freebie of excess inventory. Lets look at each aspect

  1. Discounts – these work always, but to a extent. A brand cannot forever be giving discounts and get identified as “discount” brand.
  2. Extra of the same product – this is a slightly better strategy than giving discount as it gives a better perceived value to the customer.
  3. Get a related product – Good if want to sample your new offering that does not conflict with the existing product category
  4. Give a free from your excess inventory – This may save you some monies but could give the customer a wrong impression if not communicated right.

The new approach to sales promotions is to catch the fancy (and the spend) of your customers by giving them something which is aspirational and has a much higher perceived value. Two things stand out:

  1. Offer a service – Run a promotion that rewards the customer with something exciting that matches the target profile like Movies, a spa experience or mobile recharge .Something that gives instant gratification and has a high perceived value and is relevant
  2. Sweepstakes with assured gift – Everybody loves to win. An assured prize giveaway with a chance to win a grand prize appeals to all. A sure win gives instant gratification and gets the brand love and a chance to win big like a car / mobile phone / dream holiday keeps them engaged .

When you have decided on the sales promotion plan that you want to implement, it is important to prop up its message and communicate effectively. This is the point where many businesses miss it in their campaigns and marketing efforts. This failure usually happens in two ways:

  • They do not effectively promote their program to their clients and potential customers
  • They use the wrong message or marketing tools to reach their audience
  • The rewards are not exciting enough
  • It’s not easy to get the free gift

A close look at the first point shows that the default sales promotion drive of most businesses is to advertise. However, advertising adds to the expense that an organization incurs. The cost of running a media campaign is high and the returns may not justify the investment made. Research shows that price-sensitive shoppers may be attracted by an advert but may not return to consummate the purchase or transaction.

There are effective ways to drive sales promotion and some of them would be discussed below.

Use your Store effectively: It is ideal to make full use of your store signage to woo buyers to the products you have on offer. The employees can strengthen the stakes by mentioning the promotion to your customers. Employee stickers/tags/buttons can talk about the promotion while promotional flyers can also do a good job. Reminders on receipts or the use of an inexpensive sticker or rubber stamp can help to drive the best returns for your business.

Embrace the Internet: You can give a strong voice to your Sales promotion by highlighting it on the main page of your website.  You can create a page that talks about your promotion and draw in a strong following by offering freebies which can help you build lists for future marketing efforts.

The Telephone: Your employees can harp on the promotion to anyone that calls your business or you can change your answering machine message to let customers know about what you are doing.

Email – You are sending out hundreds of emails everyday. Add the promotion to the footer. Its zero cost free media.

There are other powerful media which you can harness to generate the right results for your sales promotion. They include Flyer distribution, use of conventional media and word of mouth. It is important to get the word to as many people as you can through these channels. It is vital to mention that you can have a great sales promotion plan but without a strong marketing base to drive it; no one will know about it and this can lead to failure.

The best sales promotion is simply anchored on understanding your market and driving your plan to bring the returns you desire. There is a thin line between success and failure in this range but following some of the rules listed above would get the job done for you.


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