3 New Year’s Resolutions for a Better Promotional Marketing Plan
As the year winds down, it’s that time again when people start thinking about setting resolutions to make the coming year better than the last one. And while it’s usually personal resolutions that make the headlines, like joining a gym or eating less takeout, it’s also a good time to make some resolutions for your business. This year, why not think about incorporating some simple actions to take your brand awareness and engagement up a notch by making some resolutions for a better promotional marketing plan?
Some of you may be asking what exactly that means – and what is a promotional marketing plan? Promotional marketing is a branch of marketing that includes incentives such as sweepstakes, contests, games, loyalty and rewards programs, coupons, offers, and any other type of giveaways or incentives that encourage people to engage with your brand. Promotional marketing can be used to do things like build email lists, drive sales, increase brand awareness, and gain followers on social channels. A good promotional marketing plan can help you to set brand engagement goals and meet them. The trick to a really good promotional marketing plan, however, is more complex than simply throwing together a contest on Facebook or giving out some coupons; it takes research and knowledge of your brand, as well as the promotional marketing industry tactics and laws.
To take your business to the next level, here are three things you can start doing this year so that your promotional marketing plan will help you achieve your business objectives.
1. Learn more about your audience and what they want.
How will you ever know what works for your audience if you don’t know your audience? If you don’t know who is buying your products, then ask. Take advantage of social posts on Instagram or Facebook to do quick polls of what people want — prizes, rewards, coupons, or something else? You can also ask for data on past promotions your company ran and use it for future ones – use social, traffic, location, age, sex and opt-in data to figure out where your audience is, how old they are, and what engages them.
2. Research and set realistic goals, tactics and measurements
Once you know who your audience is and what they want from your brand, decide what the primary goal of each of your promotions will be. Maybe it’s to drive brand awareness, or to build an email database. Whatever it is, the key here is to not try to do too many different things at once. If the goal is too broad (e.g., If you want to increase sales AND build the email database AND brand awareness AND gain new customers AND increase repeat business…), then you won’t see much success since each primary goal requires a different tactic. Your primary goal should drive what tactics and advertising you should engage to meet that goal.
If you need to know what tactics can drive what goals, you will need to research the types of tactics available (see links to various tactics to start your research below) and what each one is good for. For example, if your goal is to build an email database of younger people, you might want to run a sweepstakes on a social platform geared to this younger demographic with a high value prize that is appealing to that demographic. The sweeps will collect people’s email addresses and opt them in to your email list.
Finally, be sure to decide before you run the promotion how success will be measured at the end of the promotion, and set a number or percentage you would like to reach. That way, at the end of the promotion you will be able to show if the program achieved your intended goal. For our email list example, if you want to increase your list by 20%, you would need to know how many people are on your email list before you start the promotion. Then after the program, when you compare opt-ins with the new list, you will be able to measure the increase and determine the success of the program.
Be strategic and set one primary goal per promotion, then plan out your tactics and measurement plan — and stick to it!
3. Educate yourself on legal and compliance issues
The final piece of making a better promotional marketing plan is to learn all you can about promotional marketing laws and compliance issues. There are quite a few things to consider when it comes to promotions. States in the US and countries internationally have strict laws that could impact your plans, and there are other guidelines or best practices that are enforced by other governing entities such as the FDA, CARU, the FTC, and others. You can read up on promotional marketing basics by subscribing to Chief Marketer and taking advantage of their resources. And for specific questions, you might want to ask us, check our blog for legal and compliance topics, or refer to any of the other businesses in the CM200.
Once you have a promotional marketing plan in place, or if you need help getting started, let us help you take your business to the next level. Contact us at 516-365-3999 or click here.
Resources for Various Promotional Tactics:
- 10 Amazing Prizes Under $600 Your Customers Will Want to Win
- How Do I Run a Text to Win Sweepstakes?
- From the MK Promotion Archives: Marden-Kane Advertisements Through The Years
- From the MK Promotion Archives: Hunt’s Great Recipe Hunt
- Why Do People LOVE Cash Prizes