Sales promotion is the strategic element within the 4P?s of the marketing mix which the marketing department will have the most control of.
The outcome of a successful promoting strategy is measured against the following: Arouses Attention
Initiate Action to buy the product
This brief introduces to you the four main ingredients of a promotional strategy, one or all of which may be the best fit for your new marketing strategy marketing strategy. These are: Advertising
Types of Sales promotion
Advertising is the process of communicating persuasive information about a product to a target market by means of the written or spoken word or by visual material.
We need to ask certain questions about our advertising: Which is the best media to use to put our sales promotion message across?
How much do we spend on advertising?
What message do we want to put across?
There are five main principal media of advertising: The press-newspapers, magazines, journals - Most popular (70%)
Commercial television - (25%)
Outdoors - hoardings billboards
When choosing the media it is important to think about the target market you want to attract.
If you are seeking wide coverage(eg. Banking), this may best be done through a TV commercial. However the cost of TV advertising is very expensive.
For a more specific target, you could use specialist?s magazines for your sales promotion. Eg. You can target new recruits to your sports club through the members monthly newsletter.In the final analysis you have to weigh up the benefits against the costs.
How much should you spend?
The amount you may spend on advertising will to a large extent depend on the product life cycle.
At the introductory stage it recommended that you spend a considerable amount on advertising. At the maturity stage, you will mostly use advertising as a means to scoring points against the opposition.
When deciding how much you should spend on advertising, you may take the total cost as a percentage of your sales or seeing how your competitors spend their money on sales promotion campaigns.
The advertising message
This is concerned with what to say and how you should say it. Advertising may try to enable you get across one of the following messages. To increase people?s familiarity with your product
Inform potential customers of specific features or benefits of your product
Maintain loyalty of your existing customers (eg. Cigarettes)
Encourage potential customers to buy your product
2. Personal Selling
In industrial markets personal selling plays an extensive role. Personal selling is a face-to face meeting between the buyer and seller. A sales representative needs information on theproduct, and promotional material and will personally promote the product to potential customers.
This selling strategy will be best suited if your product is the type of product which is not bought off shelf, but would probably require some kind of technical evaluation or persuasive presentation in order to convince a potential customer to switch from their existing product to yours.
3. Types of Sale promotions
These can include the following activities:
Customer sales promotions: These types of promotions try to encourage customer?s interest in the product if it is not selling well or to get customers to try the product for the first time.
Techniques include free samples, ?money off? coupon offers, competition, free gifts in exchange for packet tops, prizes placed under bottle tops to entice soft drink consumers, etc.
These promotions are classified under a term known as a pull policy and will try to pull customers in to the store to buy the product.
Retailer/middle man promotions: These are classified under a term known as a push policy and will encourage the retailer to stock the product and push it to his/her customers, as well as developing the goodwill of the retailers.
Here the retailer/distributor is offered discounts or performance based commissions, while you the supplier invests in an advertising campaign.
Industrial promotions: Include sales literature, catalogues, special discounts exhibitions and trade fairs.
Here the Sales promotion measures are usually short-term.
This is the final element of promotion and will involve getting the company?s name mentioned on radio or TV without directly paying for it. Unlike a big budget promotion, you can achieve this through a publicity stunt associated with social responsibility, adventure or by issuing a press release.