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7 ways brands can benefit from ‘smarter’ Promotional Marketing

In this feature we look at how brands can utilise technology to drive smarter, more effective digital promotions and build long-term relationships with their customers....

7 ways brands can benefit from ‘smarter’ Promotional Marketing

Here at Púca we’ve provided the technology behind hundreds of interactive digital promotions for leading brands such as Arnotts, Reckitt Benckiser, Fyffes, Deep River Rock, Sprite, Coca-Cola, and Tennents. Our aim is to help these companies and their agency partners deliver a high quality user experience (UX), gain the maximum value out of their promotion budgets and build a sustainable, long-term relationship with their customers.

Drawing on this experience from a technology and data perspective, we bring you 7 simple strategies to help you capitalise on Smart digital promotion technology.

1) Make it multichannel

It goes without saying that today’s “always on” consumer expects a consistent and seamless user experience across multiple devices and technologies such as email, SMS, app, social, digital vouchers, and location-based services. Your technology partner should be able to support these technologies in-house and tailor your sales promotion mechanic according to your requirements and budget.

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2) Reduce and re-use

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel each time – be efficient in your promotions by building up a library of promotion templates, terms & conditions and processes. If you are part of a family of brands the efficiencies can become even greater. Keep it fresh by different entry channels, looking at tiered prize schedules, varying winner selection formats and so on.

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3) Think Big, Spend Less

Instead of planning 6 or 8 stand-alone promotions or events per year, think of them as a continuous cycle of activities feeding into one central loyalty database. By engaging with your technology partner on a longer term basis you will end up spending less per project on average. And if you are considering bigger investments such as apps and multichannel CRM, ask your technology partner for a 2 year plan to help you justify the spend and demonstrate the return on investment (ROI) over time.

4) Unique codes

Not all sales promotions require proof of purchase, but if you’re doing an on-pack promotion it makes sense to incentivize product sales by requiring all entrants to redeem a unique code (or ‘URN’) printed on the packaging in order to participate in the promotion. There are many other advantages to using unique codes such as reducing the chances of fraud and over-redemption and being able to place limitations on entry such as one entry per customer per day, entry only during particular times of the day (especially relevant for alcohol brands) and other limitations. Unique codes can also be issued as prize claim codes or digital tickets to help reduce fulfilment overheads.

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5) Invite Opt-in

Build opt-in into all your promotions so everyone taking part is given a choice to receive future marketing so your database can grow organically and deliver value over time. Don’t be afraid of data, as long as you have a data protection compliant opt-in and opt out process and store the data securely you are fine. Again, families of brands and retail chains are at an advantage due to economies of scale, but even independent brands and retailers should be up to speed on database marketing.

6) Keep people informed

If you have a great new promotion coming out – the best and most cost-effective way to get the message out is to use your existing social channels and database of loyal customers. Utilise all the channels at your disposal – you don’t have to pick Social or SMS or Email or print – use them ALL to maximise your response rates.

“Consumers are not thinking in channels, they think in brands. Brand X stays brand X, whether they see it online, offline or anywhere else.” (Insites)

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7) Centralise the data

It makes things complicated, costly and even risky to have customer databases scattered around on different platforms and with different agencies. Engage with a trusted technology partner to provide a promotions engine and “data hub” that interfaces with all your front-end promotions. This approach will ensure that your opt-in and opt-out customer data is kept secure and in sync at all times.

Finding the Balance?

There are numerous challenges to face in order to make brand sales promotions effective and profitable. But by focusing on process efficiency, working closely with a technology partner and nurturing your customer database you can maximise return on investment and fuel your brand’s growth in the longer term.

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