I just saw the greatest Christmas Marketing Lesson.. It’s so funny..
So.. it’s Christmas time. Decorations, Christmas carols, presents … and that means busy shopping centres. Hard to get a car park… losing your car in the car park.. etc.
Don’t forget the usual running around crazy in the days leading up to Christmas.
Here’s what I wanted to share with you today, what I just saw. It was funny because… I thought, well there you go.. Another reinforcement of my business and marketing principles that I live by.
I was walking through my local shopping centre, just buying the last couple of presents .. I went up the escalator from the underground carpark, walked in and past the first shop.. And there was a lady standing out the front of the shop giving away free samples… It was a Seafood shop and I didn’t see what was on the silver tray but let’s take a guess and say prawns… right? They’re easy to cut up and stick toothpicks in them. I can’t imagine what else it would be.
So the lady was out the front offering a sample to everyone who walked past.. But it didn’t end there..
The very next shop! Which was Bakers Delight I think, or one of them bread shops… a girl was standing out the front with a tray of cut up Christmas pudding I think… and again.. She was just handing out free little samples to everyone who was walking past..
Now, isn’t that funny… ?
- Free Samples Work, Not Just For Food!
There’s a few key things here to take important note of:
- Both these shops probably ordered additional stock for Christmas.
- Both Owners or Managers of these shops, recognise that to sell the extra stock they can stand someone outside and give samples.. And finally …
- When I walked past these two shops the week before… no one was standing out the front these two shops giving away free samples.
Isn’t that funny?
If “spruiking” (to promote in public – Australian slang) your goods / or giving away samples was an effective way to sell your products… why wouldn’t you do it every day? Or at least just every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday if you were to argue that you need a busier day with more foot traffic to make the numbers work.
But if your business has an online presence… than foot traffic or eyeballs… is not a problem. You can pay for more “website traffic” than what a small business could ever handle (that goes for several thousand employee business also…if it’s website traffic you want… you can get enough until they crash your website, which of course isn’t recommended).
Make more sales.. Offer samples. Seems simple, but it works.
This is a key strategy that every smart business use… because they’ve tested it, tweaked their strategy and looked at the numbers… They’ve asked themselves “did the cost of the free samples get OUTWEIGHED by the increase in overall sales?”… even for first timers.. It’s hard to get this wrong.
It’s a strategy that works. It’s funny that a business owner can see the sense in doing it one day… but then fails to make the commitment to it on other days.
I say commitment because yes you’ll need to order extra stock, and roster some extra hours for the person handing out the samples… but if the numbers work out… why would you not do this?
Achieving this outcome of more sales by giving away samples works perfectly online, because a lot of the moving pieces can be automated and don’t need an employee on an hourly rate to get it done.
This is also a part of my Social Formula course, which is an advanced course on Facebook marketing and it’s something that I personally do in my own business.
A free sample does not have to be a small bite size of food.. That’s just one example of a free sample.
As a business owner, I know what it’s like trying to get some traction and trying to find something that works. I was in those same trenches for years.
What you need to be careful of is staying in the ‘new idea mode’. Constantly trying new thing, after new thing, after new thing. Several times.. I’ve done it and I’ve seen it.. A new idea like a free sample, or a particular marketing campaign will work.. But you are so focused on completing or setting up the new idea.. That you don’t spend the right amount of time to really look at the results.. What was the breakdown of the numbers? What worked, what didn’t work?
When I was getting started with Facebook Ads in about 2007 or so.. I remember an advertisement that I ran that was for a product that taught men how to increase their muscle size. This wouldn’t even be allowed on Facebook today as they’ve cracked down on this sort of stuff.. But was interesting is that I remember that this campaign was a break even campaign.
That meant when I spent $100 in Ads, I made $100 in revenue. This is breakeven. At the time I moved onto something else.
But now I would realise this for what it is.. Which is a fantastic opportunity to make profit. When a campaign is break even, I can spend $100,000 and get $100,000 in return… what this gets me besides ‘profit’ is actual customers. So allll I need to do is to sell them just 1 extra thing, just 1.. And I’m now in profit. So, if I could sell these people more training or supplements or protein or anything related.. That would all be pure profit.
Because I’ve already won the customer over. I was able to get customers at zero cost, because it was a break even marketing campaign.
- A Break Even campaign to first win a customer is fantastic. Every future sale = profit.
Does that make sense?
But.. because I was too busy with testing and trying every idea that I saw and thought of, I missed this opportunity all together.
Just like the shop owners miss the opportunity to increase their revenue and profits by 10%, or 20%.. By committing to giving away samples on the busy days EVERY week. And not just when they want to sell the stock they’ve ordered this week.
In the next post, I’m going to giveaway a plan to you, for the Best Business Idea for 2018.. So be sure NOT to miss that one.