Most businesses now realise how important good reviews and ratings are to the sales of their product through increased conversion and e-commerce insights. Reviews put consumers’ minds at ease and reassure them, which help with their purchasing decision; therefore, encouraging more people to try your products through a planned sampling campaign is an important part of your marketing plan.
Set your goals
Having a clear idea of what it is you are trying to achieve with your sampling will go a long way towards understanding whether you have met your objective. Understanding the profile of your intended customer will also help the success of your campaign. Targeting the right audience will ensure your engagement is optimised and your sampling campaign effective.
Having reviews is especially important for new products launching into the marketplace. We are all wary of the unknown, but consumers are often willing to try before they buy.
Sampling also works well for seasonal products. Humans are creatures of habit – if we regularly buy a competitor brand or we have forgotten your product because we haven’t seen it for a while, a free sample is a good way to remind us what we are missing. It can also help with creating demand while supply is limited and get people talking about it with anticipation ahead of the seasonal launch.
Timing is everything
Businesses want their product to do well and rack up sales. Make the most of your sampling by getting the timing right for your product sample distribution. Start before the product is live, but not too far ahead. You want consumers to be keen to buy your product, but they will forget about it if the time between trying it and the opportunity to buy is too long. Depending on the type of product you have, you might consider a pre-order form for interested parties to commit at the point of sampling.
Sampling is a perfect opportunity to gather insight and data about your product that can shape future support and even product development. Plan the information you want to collect in advance and make it as simple and straightforward as possible for the consumers to give this information to you. If it takes them too long or they are not clear what they are being asked, they won’t give you the information you want. There is plenty of technology available to make collecting information easy.
Transparency is key to a great many consumers in the current market, so make sure you indicate which reviews were given on the back of a free sample. This builds trust in your brand.
Above all, planning is vital to make the most of your sampling and to ensure it is not a standalone activity.