Most brands are looking for ways to either increase sales or consumer engagement.
Why are consumer sales promotions so effective and used by so many global brands? Brands partner with creative advertising agencies to assist them with crafting a variety of customer engagement and consumer promotional offers. These promotions are designed to make your customers respond in the way that you want. They usually run for a fixed duration, or period of time (typically anywhere from 3 to 6 weeks) and are used to meet a specific business goal, such as testing new products, increasing market share, sales or revenue growth.
The most popular consumer promotion is related to purchasing products, although it is not the only one. This can achieved by developing custom tailored rewards campaigns that are offered to consumers when they are shopping in a retail store, they are used to create value or incentives by partnering and cross promoting other products or services when someone makes a purchase. An example of one these type of rewards promotion campaigns was with, Virgin Mobile, which offered their customers a free concert, festival ticket of their choosing when they purchased a new phone. This campaign was a success.
It’s not only about connecting a promotion to an immediate purchase, other promotional strategies can be used to generate product awareness or build brand loyalty. It’s all about creating a high value experience in the eyes of the consumer. Here is a list some the typical consumer sales promotion methods:
- Contest and Sweepstakes
- Free Product
- Loyalty Programs
- Promotional Pricing
- Sampling and Free Trials
- Experiential Rewards
Experiential Rewards Programs or Experienced Based Rewards
There is a hot new trend in the retail sales promotions, advertising program space, which is called “Experiential Rewards” which taps into the emotional subconsciousness of the consumer and rewards them with an experience rather than just offering coupons or discounts. What does this mean exactly? Whole Foods, the organic grocery store chain is tapping into their health conscious, sophisticated customer lifestyle (organic food and cooking), and rather than just solely offering discount points on a rewards card program, they are giving them other choices like experienced based rewards such as gourmet cooking classes, that will help to differentiate them from their other supermarket competitors. Experiential reward loyalty programs can be personalized based on individual purchase behaviors and preferences.
Offering coupon’s can do more harm than good from a brand point of view. Discount seekers often ignore the countless brands that offer them. So what is the better solution to capturing a consumer loyalty? You must find a method of engaging your customer’s emotions so that the value of the brand and its products can be perceived to have an intrinsic value. So by foregoing decaying discount promotional techniques and turning to experiential rewards such as incentives, brands are letting consumers know that they value and care about them.
A perfect example of this is by Ray-Ban, which leveraged an experienced based campaign, that offered a free concert ticket as a gift-with-purchase of a pair of sunglasses, a global brand can open a door into their customer’s mind and lifestyle where they will become a positive engrained memory of the shopping experience. And now suddenly, redemptions do not have to be as the biggest consumer satisfaction matter- the fact that a brand offered them an experienced based reward alongside the produce created a value added benefit (i.e. Get more for the money). Not only has the brand made a sale, but it also has found a way to engage with the consumer’s emotions and therefore achieved brand loyalty.
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