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Five Promotion Techniques Your Business Can Take Advantage Of

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by Eileen O'Shanassy
May 16, 2017

Eileen O'Shanassy
Eileen O'Shanassy has written 19 articles for PromotionWorld.
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When trying to get a startup off the ground, it's important to think about the marketing techniques you can use to build up brand awareness and buzz, as well as increase sales. You have to make good first impressions, reach a lot of people, and convert as many sales as you can. In this post, we will go over five key promotional techniques you can use to accomplish your goals within the particular limitations of a typical young startup. 

Email Offers

The bread and butter of online marketing is the email subscriber list. It is just too useful to be ignored. Collecting email addresses and convincing people to sign up for your list comes down to offering them value, and the simplest way to do that is to send them offers as soon as they subscribe. You can do this with an automated mailing tool to make it easier. In any case, use your subscriber list as a group of extra-motivated potential buyers who just need a little more convincing to commit.

Target them with small, but meaningful discounts, coupons, and bundles to give them the value proposition they need to buy. You don't want your offers to be too good or you risk losing money. Find a balance where you will gain a notable amount of customers, but still maintain reasonable profits. These subscribers will stay loyal if you can keep offering them new and fresh value, so you can use this technique over and over. It won't take much time or effort once you have a good subscriber list up and running, and this approach also scales well.

Exclusive Content

If you are using content marketing to draw in site visitors and interested searchers, or even if you are not, you can offer special exclusive content as an incentive for various actions. Have a web developer look at where your site might be lacking in content and get up to speed with modern site and blog design. You want your blog to look and load well. According to Frontier Communications and Business services, most hosting set-ups these days come with different plans that can be upgraded in speed as you grow.

For example, you can create an email newsletter stocked with content that doesn't go on the rest of your site and make that exclusively for subscribers as an extra reason to sign up. You could also bundle content with products themselves. The effectiveness of this approach will depend on a few things. Most importantly, it depends on the type of product you are selling and the quality of your content. If what you sell is itself a form of content, then adding more is just a straightforward promo that delivers more value. The farther your product gets from being content, the less appealing exclusive content tends to be for buyers, because it isn't what they wanted. In terms of quality, if your content is well-sourced, has useful and actionable information, and took a lot of effort to create or curate, then you'll garner more interest. Remember that content creation is a one-time investment, but you can keep using that content for a long time if you do it correctly. Make sure it is as evergreen as possible.

Loyalty Bonuses

Everyone loves to be rewarded for loyalty, because it feels like an extra gift. If they are loyal customers who buy multiple times, they are already invested in you and your brand and are clearly happy to consume your product. By adding loyalty bonuses to the mix, you'll reward them and make them feel even better, forging a powerful bond with customers that will ensure they keep coming back.

The simplest type of loyalty bonus is simply a discount of some kind on future purchases. You can also allow them to accumulate points that unlock higher tiers of rewards, like better discounts, more quantity, or anything else that makes sense for your product. The goal is to show your appreciation and demonstrate you value them as supporters. Remember, these loyal customers are the key to creating a consistent revenue stream and to building up word of mouth marketing. Think of something that will make them feel glad to be loyal, but also still want to keep buying more in the future. Be creative and look around your industry to see if anyone else is running a loyalty program: that can serve as inspiration.

Free Trial

The free trial is a classic promotion that works well for most business models. The applicability of this promotion depends on exactly what you are selling. It is harder to provide free trials of physical products, but very easy to offer trials of software and content. There are also different kinds of trials. Some are time-limited versions of the product. Others have no time limit, but don't have all the features. Some trials have both forms of limitation. You also don't need to pitch it as a trial at all: simply market it as a free version of the product with extra or additional benefits for the paid version. As much as possible, you want the paid version to feel like an enhanced upgrade of the free version, instead of the free version feeling like a stripped-down piece of the paid version. The first approach subjectively feels like a reward for spending, while the second one feels like a punishment for not spending. 

Social Media Flash Deals

Build up a social media presence and a followers list just as you would with your email subscriber list. You can motivate people to follow you by offering up very short-term deals and discounts. In general, only followers will see these in time to act on them. However, keep in mind that these deals are much more public than an email offer, so don't make the discounts too big. It's a good idea to use coupon codes in these offers. Make them different from emailed codes or any other discount code you offer. That way, you can check your sales data to see how many people used that particular code to get an idea of the reach of your social media promotions.

If you use these techniques or ones like them, you'll start to build a core of loyal buyers and boost brand awareness. Stay creative and focused, because that's the key to growth.


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