As counter-intuitive as it might seem, offering your customers a small amount of the product you’re selling for free is often a very good idea.The conversion rates that such techniques yield, along with the goodwill they generate, have the potential to more than offset any short-term financial cost.That said, there are certainly ways in which you might get a product sampling campaign wrong.Let’s take a look at some of them.
Preaching to the choir
If you’re sending out products to people who’ve already sampled your product, then you’re wasting your money.The biggest strength of a product sampling campaign is that it allows people who’ve never experienced what you have to offer to become acquainted with it.If your target has already done so, then a less costly, traditional advert might be all that’s required to get existing customers enthused.Don’t offer free samples via your company’s Facebook page; the chances are that everyone who’s taken the time to go looking for it will already be familiar with your product.
Failure to Communicate
While most people will appreciate free stuff, they’ll appreciate it even more if they know they’re getting it.This is why it makes sense to ask permission before sending out a free sample.Your would-be customer, moreover, will be more likely to use the product in question if they’ve given permission for it to be sent out.Asking permission will also allow you to cut your losses early on – if a customer isn’t interested in your product, then it’s better to target your product sampling campaign elsewhere.
Ideally, you should be looking at a product sampling campaign as an opportunity to start and conversation with would-be clients.Once you’ve given someone something for free, they may be willing to share their experience with friends and family on social media.Provide them with a nudge in the right direction.If you’re worried about someone saying something negative on social media, then be bold – and be aware that customers who’ve been given something free are more likely to say nice things about you, which will help to drive business your way.
As we’ve mentioned, not all product sampling campaigns are created equally.Some are better than others, and to get the best out of yours you’ll need to work tirelessly to improve it.That’s why it’s important to measure the impact that your product sampling has.Measure how much you’re spending on sampling, and the purchase conversion that comes afterwards.Ask your customers to fill in a short, optional questionnaire – the results of which might provide valuable direction for your business.
If the product is a new one, then this is especially important.The levels of support your product enjoys will be at their highest during the earliest parts of its lifespan – and thus it’s important to measure how big a role sampling played in the success – or failure – of the launch in question.That way, when the time rolls around for the next product to be launched, you’ll have a better idea of what makes it a success or a failure.
Choose the right products
Some products are better suited to product sampling than others.If your product is small, inexpensive, and its merits are obvious and yet difficult to communicate verbally, then a product sampling campaign might be the way forward.A great example of this is something edible, like a miniature sweet biscuit.
Hire in outside help
Product sampling is a task that requires expertise and experience.In order to give your product the best possible chance of success, therefore, it makes sense to bring in a specialist company like Tactical Solutions,who’ve a good idea of what they’re doing.They’ll have a number of advantages over an internal solution – the first of which being that they perform product sampling campaigns far more often, and thus will have a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t work.They’ll also have access to more specialised technologies and networks of potential customers.
Product sampling is a worthwhile strategy, but it’s hit-and-miss, particularly during the early stages when you’ve a limited pool of experience to draw upon.Rather than attempting to accumulate this experience yourself, it might be wiser to search for a ready-made reservoir of it – and specialist marketing firms like Tactical Solutions might provide just the right solution.Who knows?You might find the collaboration so worthwhile that you’ll wonder why you ever contemplated going it alone!