Samples are everywhere because they work. Customers love them. It gives them the opportunity to “try before they buy”. With the number of product choices available to consumers increasing every day they do not have time to research all the new products before buying them. Samples provide them a way to uncover something new.
- Introduce New Products – at no risk to the consumer
- Create Instant Demand/Trial
- Acquire New Customers
Properly done, product sampling is the single most powerful way to generate awareness, product trial and first-purchase conversion to brand loyalty in fast moving consumer goods (FMCG).
Consumers’ perception of product sampling?
Consumers see product sampling as an opportunity to try a product with no risk.
They love to try new products, but don’t want to spend $7 or $8 on a new shampoo to see if they like it. So they are relying on product trial experiences to tell them whether they are going to like the product or not.
How best to sample products?
The success of a sampling program depends upon the following main points:
- The product should perform and be competitive.
- The program must be supported by retail distribution.
- The sample must be of an adequate size.
- Packaging recognition. The consumer must recognise the product in store.
What type of sampling is best?
The best method of product sampling is Mass Selective Sampling. This offers the benefits of selectivity, while ensuring a massive payback by covering large metropolitan areas (like Sydney) in just a few weeks. Mass Selective Sampling, can convert 15 per cent or more of users of competitive brands to become brand loyal to the sampled brand and all within a few weeks.
Why Product Sampling Works so Well
Ideally, advertising, distribution, packaging and pricing should be more than ample strategic methods of motivating consumers to try a product. However, consumers are bombarded with messages and often perceive little difference between products so these methods are not powerful enough to break the straight re-buy behavioural pattern.
Sometimes, a brand has to lead by a sample. Consumers feel the sample gives them the actual experience of the product with no financial risk.
By encouraging trial and use, brand loyalty is created amongst new members of the target audience. It also creates the perfect “breeding ground” to generate word-of-mouth advertising to further promote acceptance of this product.
Product sampling allows competition without price.
Integrate sampling with your website & Social Media
By integrating the sampling program with a website, marketers have the chance to learn more about their customers. When offered a small incentive, consumers will often provide valuable feedback about their sampling experience.
Likewise, many brands are making use of social media networks in their sampling efforts. It’s becoming increasingly common for brands to mail samples of new products to a select list of targets and then watch as those recipients go to Facebook and other sites to post rave reviews about the samples.
Empire Marketing has been developing sampling programs for marketers over the past 10 years. Contact us now to see how sampling can work for you.
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