You notice that there is a season that creates great opportunity to sell more, or simply that you may have high levels of stock which needs to be cleared out, or you need to boost your cash flow by converting inventory to cash. All such situations call for one activity, SALE PROMOTION!
Sale promotions are done to fulfill any of the aforementioned situations and this Christmas season could offer high sales opportunities for business in the trade or service industry. But the question is; how many sales promotions really impact the business in the expected way? Since such activities bring on cost, they should bring good returns.
Business leaders should give considerations to these four (4) factors when planning sales promotion;
- Objective of the Sale Promotion?
This looks like a no brainer. Of course every sales promotion is to sell more. However, there should be specific objectives that underlie and drive every sales promotion. The business should establish the objective(s) of the intended promotion by asking themselves; What do we want to achieve? Here are some other plausible questions you can ask. Do we hope to drive more traffic to the business or in the case of a retail shop to increase the footfalls? How much revenue are we expected to generate or how much of our current stock do we plan to sell, how many new businesses do we hope to sign on? Answering this question in a strategic fashion gives the basis to devise the plan for the sale promotions and even the cost of the activity to the business. The answers would then be expressed in its quantitative or qualitative and measureable metric, e.g. sell N units of Y products, 15% above the average monthly/seasonal revenue, etc. Without an accurate analysis of the situation, the sale promotion may run but with no recognizable impact.
- Get Your Targets to See/Hear of the Promotion
Your sale promotion should get to your target. The traditional means by TV and radio are still potent. Others would turn to print media and currently the ever invasive social media. An incisive merchandising strategy for retailers is a must in such promotions. Be intentional in the strategies to reach your target.
- Communicating your Offering
Once the intended targets hear/see your promotional message, it should generate interest and move them into action. Action to patronize the promotion and ultimately buy. The message of your offering should stimulate interest. The message for the sale promotion should ask questions the customers/clients have answers to, e.g. How do you intend to spend this Christmas. Let the sale promotions be in tune with the customers’ answers. Of course the offering should be accompanied by an excellent customer experience. Visual communication should be clear, concise and colourful (the 3C’s of visual promotional communication). In-store audios and videos appropriately deployed work well.
- Measuring the impact of the Sales Promotion
Whatever is not measured is not managed. After every sale promotion (which cost money), the business should have the appropriate metrics to measure the impact in relation to the objective stated as a metric in the first consideration. Set up the system that makes it possible for the business to measure the performance of the sale promotion. In our earlier work with clients, this part has proved to be very rewarding and eye-opening as it has contributed largely to the assessment of the sales promotion strategy and which areas need improvement for future sales promotions. This exercise has informed whether an entirely different strategy would be needed for future promotions.
If the business would take a good look at these 4 factors sales promotion would very well be optimised.
Amma Adjeiwaa Antwi, M-DoZ Consulting