A series of articles discussing marketing strategy & execution.

Make the MOST of Your Promotions!

Special short termpromotions are excellent for getting new customers in the door. If you really want to get the most from your promotion, use it to grow your own database. Promotional activities can range from a short term special (remember those “Kmart Blue Light Specials”?), a contest or drawing, a family night, or even something like our Secret Santa scratch-off card with a surprise offer. Your offer doesn’t have to break the bank either, as long as there is a perceived value to your customer. You can use social media, flyers, mail, and email to get the word out. If you want to gather information to create a database, here are some suggestions:

Have a prize drawing.

Use your imagination for the prize—people love anything if it’s free, so it doesn’t necessarily have to cost a lot. Customers fill out a form to enter the drawing, and you request an email and/or mailing address and permission to email. Presto, you have a bunch of new names to add to your database. Now you can mail and advertise to those NEW customers with a great bounce back offer when they come in, or a follow up message or mailer. Quickly convert them to regular customers!

Use walk-in customers to promote other products. 

During some of the busiest times, offer samples of new or different products to the walk-in customers. Follow with a marketing card with a special offer to use on their next visit. 

Promotional marketing not only encourages sales of a particular product, it also increases the likelihood that customers will remember specific details about the company. Recent data from the Promotional Products Association found that 76% of people who own promotional materials remember details about the promotion itself, the company it promoted, and even special contact info like phone numbers and email addresses tied to the promotional campaign.

Make Use of Well Placed Signage.

Use additional signage to invite impulse purchases! When you see a picture of delicious food, the urge is to add on to the order you were already going to make! An indoor banner stand and vertical banner is an inexpensive marketing tool that utilizes otherwise ‘dead’ space. The convenience of a banner stand allows easy changes.

In Summary

Make sure you have a clear goal in mind when you plan your promotion. Once you get a customer in your store you want to maximize their experience to keep them coming back. If a customer feels a ‘warm and fuzzy’ when they visit your store, they will remember; and be more inclined to return.  

Lastly, at the end of your promotion, be sure to evaluate the effectiveness of your campaign. Did you get some new customers? Were you able to add or create a customer database? Was the cost of the campaign worth the business it generated? A well-organized promotion with clear goals will not be a waste of marketing dollars, if you take advantage of the tools you have on hand and a bit of imagination. Your business will grow, and you will have loyal customers.