The Power of Promotions
There are hundreds of ways to promote your business. Promoting is an ongoing endeavor to stimulate sales and keep your brand in your consumers’ and referral sources’ eyes and minds. Here I will focus on one strategy, promotions through events, which uses multiple marketing tools to reach a broad swath of new and current customers, and appeals to consumers’ thirst for education.
Promotions, whether in-store or online, enable a business to target specific markets and customers with competitive angles and marketing activities. They help build brand awareness and increase word of mouth referrals, while rallying employees to contribute to the effort. Promotions that are based on an event, whether a themed activity or a specific sale, require a creative angle to capture attention and motivate action.
For your promotion, first select a topic where you see customer need. You’ll identify this by product sales, your main categories—mobility, sleep, back care, diabetes care, etc.—pertinent local health issues or customer feedback.
Structure the promotion to allow plenty of time to plan. This usually takes at least a month, but two to three months is more common. The most effective promotions use more than one marketing tool (more than advertising in the newspaper, for example) and are run over a timespan that gives people time to read, think and get to your store. Online promotions take less time to prepare, but still require creativity, a compelling offer and a reason to buy.
Let’s use as our example promotion “Home Modification Month: Make it Easy.” Select the products and services you will feature. Contact manufacturers to obtain special promotional discounts, in-store demonstration help, speakers, free giveaway items, videos, marketing materials, special displays and more. Ask for everything you will need. If you don’t ask, you won’t know what they are able to provide. Consider them your partner in the success of the event—after all, your success is good business for them.
Schedule a different speaker and/or topic per week. You want to continue to drive momentum and interest with different home modification topics throughout the promotional period. Offer a door prize each week from one of your manufacturers. Keep in mind, door prizes do not have to be related to the speaker/topic. Make them something you would enjoy and odds are your customers will enjoy them, too.