Customers willing to go to extreme measures for some promos

Some businesses struggle to find effective strategies for promotional giveaways, but others have people lined up around the block, sometimes for days, to get these items.

Some businesses struggle to find effective strategies for promotional giveaways, but others have people lined up around the block, sometimes for days, to get these items. Whether it's brand loyalty or collectibility, harnessing some of the traits that make these so popular can really help other companies make their marketing drives more successful.

Another key part of marketing strategy is figuring out how to hang on to the customers a business already has while still drawing more revenue. That means attracting new consumers while being careful not to alienate existing shoppers. Finding these balancing points can help a company enjoy maximum effectiveness for its advertising techniques.

Bringing in business

Sporting events have always seen great success offering branded promotional items to fans who purchase a ticket and patronize venues where they are playing or performing. These items play on the loyalty of consumers for a team, ostensibly a brand, and serve to create scarcity and desire for the products among others who see them.

News-Leader Online recently wrote a spotlight on St. Louis Cardinals fans willing to wait outside for days in extreme weather conditions just to get a special promo item at the gate. The giveaway was a replica ring from a previous World Series win. For the venue, this represented a massive revenue boost, seeing as purchasing bulk promos like this would be nowhere near as expensive as the minimal $6 ticket purchase a consumer would need to make to receive one. Baseball stadiums aren't always able to fill every single seat, so finding promotional giveaway ideas like this one to bring in more fans is essential to making money every season.

Focusing on target audience

Not every business will be able to get the same crazed response as this for promo events, but they can attempt to make their items more desirable by advertising them better. Since the economy is still in a slump, some may be resistant to trying a new product or shopping in a different store, so showing resilience and confidence in a corporate financial picture through strong promotional programs can resonate with shoppers.

A study by Acosta Sales & Marketing found that two-thirds of consumers aren't expecting to make more money in the near future, so one tactic to pull people in while retaining current customers could be promotional items that promote planning and balance. Since many people these days cut coupons and look specifically for sales, running certain promotions for only a limited time will create buzz and scarcity like that enjoyed by major sports teams, but on a smaller scale. This strategy is still customer-driven while using the roots of an obviously successful campaign.

Combining tactics

"Faced with an increasing competitive business environment, more of the same is just not good enough," the report stated in an article published by Chief Marketer. "Companies and retailers must look beyond simple promotional tactics to create true sustainable demand. They need to redefine value as…unique benefit claims and superior product experiences."

Shifting marketing ideas doesn't mean giving up on existing clientele or changing a brand completely. It means looking at the competition for inspiration, creating immediacy and scarcity and offering a quality item to consumers that will not only peak their interest, but result in conversion from awareness to sales. Investing in promotional products can help businesses of all sizes realize that outcome.

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