By Staff at VendingMarketWatch.com
Promotions are all around us. When we enter a grocery or convenience store, when we turn on the television and when we listen to the radio. Most recently, promotions can also occur in the workplace, specifically in micro markets.
Promotions in micro markets increase consumer engagement, move a slow-selling product and grow sales, in addition to many other benefits. Though harnessing a good promotions strategy can be tough at first, it is necessary for operators wishing to get the most out of their micro markets.
For those just beginning to implement promotions and others who have been running them successfully, here are eight unique ways to enrich your promotions strategy:
1. Have a promotions calendar
Having a promotions calendar is important for a few reasons. First, it encourages organization and allows an operator to get all of the products in place in time for implementation. If you’re placing advertisements within the market (which you should be doing), a promotion calendar will give you plenty of time to create marketing/promotion materials such as clings, posters and digital advertising. For larger promotions, it’s recommended to start advertising two weeks beforehand to build anticipation and buzz. Make sure a staff member is managing your promotions calendar to ensure timely implementation.
2. Work with brokers, manufacturers
Operators have the opportunity to work with most manufacturers to create a promotion. Work with your brokers to negotiate promotions with product manufacturers as well. When offering promotions, stay consistent with all of your locations and offer the same promotions across the board to make implementation, buying and merchandising easier.
3. Place the product on promotion
One of the worst things that can happen is offering a promotion and not having the product stocked. When it comes to knowing how much product to stock, try looking at average weekly sales of items, then add 20 percent to 50 percent more units depending on the response expected.
4. Use digital advertising
Building hype for promotions comes through advertising. And where you place your advertising matters, as customers won’t be able to take advantage of promotions if they don’t know about them. Use digital advertising to get the message out—not only can it be updated almost instantaneously, it can help substantially increase sales of the promoted items. There can even be a paid advertising opportunity when using digital signage, an additional way to earn revenue. For an added bonus, publicize the promotions on the consumer’s micro market mobile app if your provider offers one. Consumers rarely leave their phone behind, so that’s one marketing technique sure to reach the user.
5. Offer specific weekday promotions
Promoting a specific food or beverage category on specific days is a great way to build anticipation and get employees to stay in the office. For example, try offering a discount on all fresh food on Wednesdays. It doesn’t matter how large or small your location is, promotions to move fresh food to limit spoilage make sense at any location size. You can even hold a promotion at a certain time of day to get people into the breakroom when they wouldn’t normally be there, such as when they are on their way home.
6. Promote seasonal and themed foods
Whether there is a big rivalry game, a holiday or a new food trend, a promotion that is tied to seasonal/themed foods is a great idea. Consumers will already be familiar with seasonal/themed offerings in other retail segments, and will come to expect it in the micro market. This time of year is great for pumpkin spice flavored products, autumnal items and football-themed promotions. To make sure you don’t miss out, this is where a promotions calendar comes in handy so you can plan well ahead of time.
7. Offer outside incentives
Engaged customers spend more money in micro markets and using promotions is a great way to increase consumer engagement. In fact, using promotions has given some operators a 10 percent increase in micro market sales. To engage consumers even more, offer an outside incentive, such as tickets, giftcards and prizes. Anyone who participates in the promotion will be entered for a chance to win, which will encourage more customers to engage.
8. Reward your top customers
Knowing your top customers is smart in every business model, and in the micro market segment it’s no different. Recognize your power users – those who have participated in each promotion –and reward them for their spending. Look at your data to determine who spends the most money per location—this is easy to do when customers use their stored value account. Operators can then see that customer’s name and spending history. From there it’s easy to credit $5 (or any amount) into the customer’s account to say “Thank You”.
Don’t let your micro market go stale. Create a promotions strategy and get your consumers engaged today. How do you enhance your micro market promotions strategy? Let us know at editor@VendingMarketWatch.com.