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What is a Good Sales Promotion Plan?

Advertising and PR are two components of marketing that serve the purpose of generating product awareness as well as creating positive consumer attitudes. Sales promotion programs, on the other hand, are primarily focused on generating more sales for the business. A business that finds itself caught up in the quagmire of low sales volumes can liven up their sales figures by engaging in a major sales promotion program. There are several sales promotion programs that a business can undertake namely:

  • Discount coupons
  • Price discounts
  • Promo items and product bundling
  • Contests and raffles
What constitutes a good sales promotion plan? Why are some sales promotion plans wildly successful while others record less-than-ringing success? A good sales promotion plan is one that clearly identifies the business’ target group and then goes ahead to develop a sales promotion strategy that focuses on this group. The target group can be the business’ customers, its own sales force or its distribution channels and intermediaries. A good sales promotion plan should have a strong sense of urgency. In other words, it should be time-limited. It should last two or three months at most. Longer sales promotion plans fail to induce people to act fast and are therefore less successful.
A good sales promotion should draw new customers and retain the current ones. Sales promotion strategies can be classified into three main groups namely those that use a ‘‘push strategy’’, those that use a ‘‘pull strategy’’ and those that combine the two techniques. The push strategy involves pushing products through a business’ distribution chain. Good examples here are free trials and discounts. A pull strategy involves inducing the consumer to buy directly from the product manufacturer. Loyalty programs and cash refunds are good examples here.
To create a good sales promotion plan, you should follow the following procedures
  1. Make a list of your product attributes. You should focus on the particular features that make your product stand out from the pack.
  2. Carefully assess your target market. Identify the consumer groups that are most likely to use your product. Your product can either have a single market or multiple markets depending on its purpose.
  3. Carefully analyze your competitors’ strategies. It is necessary to see where the pack is running before you can successfully ‘‘pull away from the chasing pack.’’ Check your local advertisement, the point of purchase offers and so on. Where possible, make anonymous visits yourself to see for yourself what your competitors are doing.
  4. Create a win-win promotion. Develop your sales promotion in such a way that both the retailer and the customer benefits from it. For instance you could create a customer loyalty-card program with a reward program for successfully completing the loyalty-card.
  5. Create enthusiasm in your employees. Employees who use and love your product can be of great help in passing on their enthusiasm to new customers.
  6. Develop criteria to measure the promotion’s success. Identify quantitative measures that you can use to check whether your sales promotion is achieving its objectives or not.
  7. Implement the promotion. Ensure that you have enough of the product you are promoting at hand. Highlight the product with store graphics as well as promotional supplies from the product’s manufacturer.
In order for you to reach your intended target markets, use the media format most commonly-used by these markets. Suppose you are promoting a golf-product, you should advertize on golf or golf-related websites as well as in local county clubs and regional golf publications. If your product is organic makeup products, advertize in health magazines as well as health and fitness centers. By following these tips, you can create great sales promotion plans that will drive your sales volumes.


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