How to Improve the Effectiveness of Your Promotions

Effective promotions in marketing can take your business to new heights. Everyone loves a great deal, no matter what you sell or to whom. In fact, consumers have come to expect promotions in today’s highly competitive and digitally led landscape. But it’s no longer enough to simply offer promotions—you must offer personalized offerings based on prior interactions.

If you’ve found that your promotional offerings have received relatively underwhelming responses, here are 5 ways to improve their effectiveness and ensure that your brand resonates powerfully with your target audience.

1. Communicate!

Communication through the proper channels, the value of the promotion, and instructions are critical to the success of any promotion. Consider your reach—in other words, where your target audience is most likely to see and engage with your promotions. This could be via text, email, website, or in-store signage.

a) Text

Promotional text is a proven way to upgrade any business’s marketing strategy and boost customer engagement… And the stats speak for themselves. 75% of clients want to receive offers via SMS.

Keep it concise: Text messages have a 160-limited character count, so make sure your message is brief and to the point. Providing further details about the promotion and including a link is worthwhile if you have space within the character limit.

Be clear: Promotional messages are delivered to the customer’s phone with the primary goal of advertising discounts and allowances and should convey information in a digestible way. In other words, the type of promotion, start, end date, and call-to-action (CTA) should all be clearly communicated upfront (remember the 160-limited character count!) with easy-to-click links—which leads us to the next point…

Use a clear CTA: Encourage the recipient to act by including an eye-catching and clear call-to-action, such as “Buy one, get one free!” or “Limited time offer—don’t miss out!” Omitting the CTA will result in low click-through rates and conversions.

Personalize the message: The most effective promotional text messages are personal. Businesses must consider age, gender, location, and more to maximize customer engagement in each promotional message. Use the recipient’s name if possible to make the message feel more personal.

Here’s an example:

“Hello John, it’s cold in [City] today. Warm up with some free trade coffee? Here’s 40% off, just for you.”

Other noteworthy points: Promotional messages must be sent at a reasonable time, such as between 8 am – 9 pm.

Although it is advisable to steer clear of slang, abbreviations, and emojis, they can be utilized only if and when fitting. For instance, emojis can be used to appeal to a younger audience.

Never use ALL CAPS in sentences, and refrain from using too many exclamations and question marks, as this could damage your brand’s image.

b) Email

Some points above can be applied here, such as using a prominent and well-designed CTA and personalizing your emails. Use the recipient’s name and customize the email content based on your customer’s preferences and past interactions with your business. This helps create a sense of connection and builds loyalty with your customers.

Segment your email list: Divide your email list into different groups based on demographics, interests, and behavior. Then, send targeted emails to each segment that are more likely to resonate with their specific needs and interests. Note: Suppression to exclude certain groups will give you a clearer picture of your actual conversion rates.

Create engaging subject lines: Your subject line is the email’s first impression, so make it compelling and attention-grabbing. Keep it short and to the point (no more than 9 words and 60 characters will do), and try using personalized or action-oriented language that conveys urgency, curiosity, etc.

Optimize your pre-header text: Your pre-header text should support your subject line and provide another reason to open the email. Lead with an offer when relevant and use personalization and urgency (such as “ends soon” or “expires tonight”) to engage the subscriber and drive open rates.

Align the content and offer: Your call-to-action, body text, preview text, and subject line all impact the recipient’s experience with your email. Ensure all four text elements tell the same story without too much overlap and repetition.

Utilize a consistent brand voice: All of your marketing is an extension of your brand. Developing a well-thought-out tone of voice will be more relatable to your followers. When consistent, it will help users feel like they can trust you for a particular experience, which makes them more willing to engage with your content.

Choose the right cadence: Consistency is important because your audience will get used to seeing your emails, whether it’s once a week or every other day. It will also ensure you aren’t unknowingly hounding them.

Optimize for mobile: With more and more people checking their emails on their mobile devices, ensuring your email promotions are optimized accordingly is essential. Use a responsive design that adjusts to different screen sizes, and avoid using small fonts or images that may be difficult to view on a smaller screen.

Be deliberate with your sender’s address: Sending from a personal email address helps you pass spam filters and convey a human-to-human connection.

Follow compliance laws: Both the US CAN-SPAM Act and Europe’s GDPR require businesses to include a conspicuous unsubscribe link in all marketing emails.

Constantly test and experiment: Try different approaches and see what works best for your audience. Test different subject lines, email designs, and CTAs to see which ones result in the highest open and click-through rates.

Regularly cleanse your email (and text) list: Engagement rates are consistently higher on well-maintained lists than on older, neglected ones. On average, up to 40 percent of your subscribers are inactive. Sending email marketing campaigns to subscribers that do not open or read your emails can negatively impact deliverability. Remove subscribers who haven’t opened an email within 12 months and focus on subscribers who engage with your campaigns.

Successful promotional emails don’t feel promotional in nature. Promo emails like offers, coupons, discounts, or giveaways leave much room for creativity.

Great email promotions examples:

[Alt text: Promotions: Starbucks]

Why it works:

Emails can get static, boring, and impersonal. Starbucks subverts those expectations with its focus on exclusivity without going overboard.

[Alt text: Promotions: Amazon]

Why it works:

Amazon stays true to brand consistency and leads with an incentive; you can save $5 by selecting your pickup location (rather than having your packages delivered).

c) Push notifications

Businesses can use push notifications to send promotional offers, discounts, and sales alerts directly to their customer’s devices through mobile apps or web browsers—even if the app or website is not currently open or in use. Push notifications can be a powerful tool to drive more engagement and conversions from your promotions.

As discussed in the email section, standard best practices include segmenting your audience, personalizing your messages, and using an attention-grabbing headline. A/B testing is a never-ending process, so using the right data and analytics to test and optimize for different messages and strategies is important.

Push notifications also have limited space, so use clear language that is easy to understand and avoid jargon or technical terms.

Timing and frequency are key here. You need to send your messages at the right time when your audience is most likely to engage with them. Consider the time zone, day of the week, and time when scheduling your messages. While your customers may have opted to receive your messages, you shouldn’t abuse their permission by sending push notifications too often. Limit the number you send, so they don’t develop negative sentiments about your brand.

d) Store Signage

Promotional signs like window displays, banners, posters, floor decals, and digital signage are among the oldest forms of marketing and the most effective. You need to understand what drives and motivates customers to visit your store over the competition and test different types of signage to evaluate which ones are successful at driving sales and attracting customers.

Keep it simple: Use clear and concise language on your signage. Avoid cluttering with too much information.

Use high-quality graphics: Use high-quality images or graphics to grab attention and convey your message.

Choose the right location: Place your signage in a visible, high-traffic location where potential customers can easily see them. Great areas for store signage include windows, near counters, waiting areas, and areas near the entrance.

Make it eye-catching: Use bright primary and secondary colors, bold fonts, and large text to make your signage stand out.

Focus on the benefits: Highlight the benefits of your promotion, such as discounts, freebies, or limited-time offers. A call to action urges customers to act now.

Be consistent: Use consistent branding and messaging across all your promotional signage to create a cohesive look and feel.

email blast

2. Checkout Alerts

Checkout alerts are notifications or messages triggered before a customer completes a purchase online. Notify your customers during checkout that they can access a promotion if they buy or spend more. Make the promotion details clear and visible, and provide any necessary instructions for them to access the promotions now.

This type of deal entices customers to buy more. You don’t have to offer a huge discount, but make sure it’s attractive enough to give them a little shove in the right direction.

Buy more, save more:

  • Entices the customer.
  • Makes spending more money guilt-free.
  • Helps to sell more.

Some examples:

“Hey there! Don’t miss out on our exclusive promotion. Spend [X amount] or more and get [Y discount/offering]. Add more items to your cart to take advantage of this deal!”

“Hey there! Did you know that if you spend $X, you can qualify for our special promotion? Check it out now!”

“Congratulations! You’re just $X away from unlocking our exclusive promotion. Keep shopping to take advantage of this offer!”

“Thanks for shopping with us. We wanted to remind you that if you spend $X, you can enjoy our incredible promotion. Hurry, offer ends soon!”

3. Personalize

Promotions based on purchase history are a popular marketing strategy to track and analyze customer purchases using customer relationship management software (CRM). By analyzing the purchase history of individual customers, businesses can tailor promotions and discounts to their specific interests and buying habits, making them more likely to make a purchase. However, data must be used ethically and transparently, respecting the privacy and preferences of individual customers.

For example, if a customer has a history of purchasing athletic gear, a business could promote a new line of running shoes or workout apparel. By offering relevant and valuable promotions to the customer, businesses can build a stronger relationship with them, leading to increased loyalty and repeat purchases.

email coupon

4. Integrate

Integrating a central promotion engine across your point of sale (POS) and eCommerce store can offer several benefits for your business. You can create a unified customer experience and reduce the complexity of managing promotions separately for each channel.

Here are some advantages:

Consistent promotion experience: You can ensure that promotions are applied consistently across both channels. Customers can enjoy the same discounts and other promotions regardless of where they shop.

Increased efficiency: Managing promotions through a single system can increase efficiency by reducing the need for manual data entry and other administrative tasks. As a result, more time can be spent on other important tasks.

Better data insights: You can gather data from your POS and eCommerce store to gain valuable insights into customer behavior, purchasing patterns, and the effectiveness of your promotions.

Easier tracking: You can track redemption rates, monitor inventory levels, and adjust promotions based on real-time data.

Improved customer satisfaction: Customers appreciate a seamless shopping experience across all channels. A centralized promotion engine can ensure customers have a consistent and positive experience, leading to increased loyalty and repeat business.

5. Create Urgency

Expiring and limiting benefits is a common marketing tactic used to create a sense of scarcity or fear of missing out (FOMO) in the minds of your customers to encourage them to buy now. For example, you could offer a limited-time discount or a limited quantity of a product.

Use urgency in your messaging: Use messaging that conveys urgency, such as “Only 24 hours left!” or “Limited availability, act now!”

Highlight the value of the benefit: It’s important to highlight the value of the benefit. This could be a discount, free product sample, or limited-edition product.

Be transparent about the limit: Being transparent about the expiration date or benefit limit will help customers understand the urgency of the offer and encourage them to take advantage of it.

Provide reminders: If you offer a time-limited benefit, consider sending reminders to your customers as the deadline approaches.

Contact the sales team or request a demo to see more about implementing these promotional strategies and integrations on our loyalty marketing platform!