No one will forget the “Share a Coke” promotional marketing campaign anytime soon. It was an instant international success that won Coca-Cola some awards and, most importantly, customers.
With tight competition, high innovation, and various substitutes, it was high time that Coca-Cola showed everyone who the king of cola drinks truly was – and show us they did.
By using this clever strategy as well as many others, Coca-Cola has been able to dominate the charts as the #1 favorite soft drink for many years.
This can be further seen in the fact that Coke in its various versions is one of the most popular drinks in multiple states including Hawaii, Idaho, New Hampshire, North Dakota, & even Wyoming!
There’s a lesson to be learned here and that lesson is that your customers need to know and be reminded of the uniqueness of your brand, products, and services. This is where promotional marketing comes in.
What is Promotional Marketing?
Promotional marketing aims to increase knowledge and interaction with a brand, product, or service, with the ultimate goal of increasing sales.
Your target audience needs to first be aware of and trust your brand if they are to make their first purchase, remain loyal customers, and tell their friends all about you.
Promotional marketing seeks to give people a favorable impression of your brand while incentivizing them to do business with you. It also keeps your current customers up to date with your brand and any special offers that might be available to them.
Why Is Promotional Marketing Important for Your Business?
The 4th P in the marketing mix is Promotion. This means that once you have the other 3 Ps (Product, Price, Place) in place, you should then let your target audience know all about this amazing brand that you have spent weeks, months, or even years perfecting.
What is the point of all the stress you put into building the best brand if your customers don’t even know about it, right? If you have it, flaunt it!
Here is what promotional marketing does for your business:
It Increases Brand Knowledge & Awareness
You always want to remain at the top of the mind of your audience.
Promotional marketing keeps you on their radar and they’re always talking about you, so whenever they are in need of your services, you’ll be their go-to brand.
This brings up the importance of making sure your have a consistent and well branded online as well as offline presence.
Let your audience know everything you have to offer and make sure it is a quick and simple process for them to access exactly what they need, when they need it.
It Creates Demand
Once you have established yourself as a well-known and reputable brand, it’s time to let consumers know why they need you and how your products and services can solve their problem.
Promotional marketing creates demand for your products by educating them on why they need them.
Using promotional marketing, you tell a story that gives potential customers an overview of how your products can serve in ways they may not have considered had they just randomly stumbled across your brand.
It takes a lot of hard work and creativity to effectively market your company in a way that speaks to the consumer, but the benefits of increased demand makes promotional marketing a must for any business looking to grow.
It Converts Demand to Sales
Steve Carlotti rightly said: “sales is what you buy and demand is what you want”.
Your promotional marketing strategy should be such that converts potential buyers to paying customers.
When done correctly, your campaign should cause a consumer to want your products even when they didn’t even know they need them.
But to be truly successful, your promotional marketing must also convert that person from a general consumer to your customer or client.
An effective and clear call-to-action should be the focal point of your campaign in order to bring in the results you are looking for.
It Differentiates Your Product
What makes your product unique?
Using the appropriate promotional marketing strategy will let potential customers know what sets your business apart from the rest and why they should choose you over your competitors.
It’s not just price and quality that drives consumer decisions, it’s also important that your promotional marketing presents a brand image and message that speaks to the consumer in a way that is unmatched by any of your competitors!
Steps to Create a Successful Promotional Marketing Campaign
Identify and understand your target audience
Understanding the needs and interests of your target audience will enable you to tailor your promotional marketing campaign to them.
When you truly understand your customer it becomes easier to develop a personalized and emotional connection with your audience through your marketing building even deeper trust in your brand.
It is easy to get into the mindset of just marketing to everybody, but this lack of focus will cause lackluster results and can really end up hurting your growth in the long term.
For promotional marketing to be the most effective and to give you the biggest return on investment, it is important that your narrow down your audience and focus your efforts on promoting your brand to the right group of people.
Determine your budget
Your strategy doesn’t need to break the bank but having a budget will allow you to maximize your marketing efforts.
There are free promotional marketing tactics you can use but these cannot always be relied upon to bring results.
Spending money on promotional marketing is an investment in your business.
At first, it will take a lot of testing, but over time you will be able to determine the most profitable methods that allow you to reach your targeted group of customers at the best cost.
But it all has to start with something.
Determine your budget and plan effectively with your audience in mind.
Select an appropriate strategy
Your strategy could make all the difference in the world. If your target audience is millennials, you better not be running your campaign in a newspaper.
Part of understanding your target market is understanding where that demographic of people spend their time and using the right channels to reach those people where they are.
Using one or a mix of all the channels below will give you an advantage in your marketing campaign.
Some promotional marketing strategies include:
Almost 50% of the world population, (3.81 billion), use social media.
There is no better time than now to tap into this resource to interact with, understand, and generate leads from your audience.
It is important to note that each social media network differs in demographics when it comes to their user base.
While it is great to have a presence across all of social media, you may find that focusing on specific networks where your target audience is at will maximize your return on the amount of time invested.
Gone are the days of fluff. When we talk about content marketing, it is more than just creating a piece of information, it is about creating a resource that answers questions, educates, entertains and provides value to the consumer of that content.
People crave connection and when you can give them that, through your content, they’ll always come back for more.
This can be through blogs, podcasts, videos and can be incorporated into other strategies.
Content that speaks to your audience can help you build trust in your brand and attract the clients to your business that you want to work with.
Every day, millions of people check their email and many do it multiple times per day.
This makes email marketing a great strategy to create brand awareness.
Remember that quality, concise content is key to a successful email promotion, so make sure you don’t spam your audience as that could quickly get you blocked.
Who doesn’t love free products?
Discounts, free samples, and promotional products are ways to endear customers to your brand and keep you top of mind.
90% of people who receive a promotional product can recall the name of the brand and 82% of people have a more favorable impression of a brand after receiving them.
Incorporating promotional products in your marketing strategy gives you an excellent advantage over your competition!
Get Started With Promotional Products
With the 3 steps finished, it’s time to set your goals.
If you haven’t already done so, create a timeline for completion and diligently follow-through with your campaign.
Then review it, refine it and put it into action!
Now that you understand promotional marketing and just how important it is for your business, it’s time you use it to your advantage.
Go out there, implement a promotional marketing strategy, test, improve, adjust, test again, and repeat.
There is no magic formula to it, you simply must find what works best for your brand and what speaks to your target audience.
Your promotional marketing strategy may never be perfect, but just implementing one can put you miles ahead of much of your competition!