The new and ever evolving behavior of B2B buyers can only be garnered if you have been follow the trend and recognize the power of the internet and social networking sites. It is not easy to keep up with the behavioral patterns of customers as they have become more impulsive, more focused, more centered, more specific about what they want, and more socially connected. There is a thin line between advertising and promotion and when you try to promote your products and services, you must do it in such a way that your customers accept it naturally. The more forceful you become, the more aloof and prejudiced your customers are going to be. Customers already have access to a world of information that they can divulge from the internet and this information comes in the form of articles, blogs, white papers, audio, video, podcasts, news, tweets and so on. So they expect something more from you if you are looking to secure their loyalty. When you are promoting your products, you are not promoting just that, but your company as a brand and this brand awareness is very important to the success of your business. Brand awareness leads to customer loyalty and that in its turn, lead to ROI (Return On Investment).
The National Statistics Council claim that there are about 11 million business meetings each day and 37% of the employees in a company are engaged in meeting with customers. The meetings could be in the form of appointments or it could even be impromptu, and they can be in any format (video conferencing, one to one, telephonic meeting, emails and so on). In addition to the time spent in meetings, the monetary costs involved, could also put a major strain on the company’s finances.
Importance of promotion marketing
When you are launching a new product in the market, you need not go into intricate detailing about it since your customer will already have information about it. You need to think about unique ways to reach out to them. You can refrain from publishing product description and information repeatedly, unless it is a whole new product with a patent. So you need to concentrate more on the promotional aspect and the whole idea has to be changed from mere sales promotion to securing lifetime customer loyalty. It is imperative that the sales team should be able to identify and zone in on the interests of the customers while planning a promotional campaign. There is a subtle difference between advertising and marketing. In advertising, you encourage the customers to buy something from you, but in a promotional campaign, you are inducing them to buy from you and the incentive will follow in the form of gifts, sweepstakes, coupons and so on. Innerworkings is a company that helps medium-to-small business entrepreneurs devise interesting promotional programs and secure customer loyalty.
In their book, How to Sell More Stuff!: Promotional Marketing by Steve Smith and Don E. Schultz, the authors give a detailed explanation on how important it is to plan a promotion program and execute it so they are able to gain measurable, phenomenal success.
Different ways to come up with promotional products
Here are five interesting ways in which you can plan an effective promotional campaign.
1. Creating awareness
2. Showcasing your talents during trade shows and events
3. Encouraging customer loyalty
4. Motivational gifts for customers
5. Employee incentive programs