Giving More For Less in a Marketing Strategy.

Jill Robb

Jill Robb

Digital Marketing Director
Strategy, Growth and Stylish Analytics

22nd October 2018Growth Marketing

Does Your Marketing Strategy Involve Gifts?

You have to offer discounts in order to acquire customers, retain customers and increase sales right? Not necessarily! As one very wise man once said: The excellence of a gift lies in its appropriateness rather than its value. Discounts can conjure a number of negative thoughts in the mind of the receiver:

  • ‘I’m not worth my own rates’ you don’t want to do anything as part of a promotional strategy that is going to de-value the product or service your business is offering.
  • ‘If you ask for a discount, I’ll give you one’ the power of giving should always remain in the possession of the company.
  • ‘I value this clientele over that clientele’ if your company is seen to be regularly rewarding discounts to one specific consumer segment e.g. students, and not rewarding discounts to other customer segments, you’ll significantly decrease conversions and sales from anyone outside of that rewarded customer segment.
  •  ‘I’m desperate for your business/custom’ if you offer discounts out willy nilly, it screams of desperation. Always portray the ‘sunny side’ of a discount; the truth may be that you’re desperately needing to increase sales but never reveal it. Instead, offer the discount in a positive light e.g. Bank Holiday discount, Pay Day Treat, Birthday offer…..

By no means are we lambasting the use of discounts in all cases; they can be terrific tools providing they fit beneficially within your strategy. Discounts work particularly well if your chosen industry competes on a price basis or if you’re a ‘newbie’ to that industry with zero reputation. However, it is possible to give much without giving much: case in point Coca Cola. Coca Cola launched their ‘Share A Coke’ campaign in the UK on 29th April and will continue to roll out further aspects of the campaign, both offline and online, throughout the summer months. If you haven’t already had the shock of a fellow shopper climbing out of the fridge as you reach for your chilled beverage, or been bombarded with endless social media pictures of Coke bottles, first of all WHERE have you been?! Second of all, this is what we’re talking about:

‘Share A Coke’ Campaign

For the first time in its history, Coca Cola have replaced its iconic logo with 150 of Britain’s favourite names. Names from Aaron to Zoe appear on individual sized bottles as Coke attempt to get personal. This ‘Share A Coke’ campaign comes on the back of some telling statistics from the Britvic Soft Drinks Report. The report reveals that Coca Cola sales only increased by 0.8% in 2012 compared to the 7.4% increase noted by rival Pepsi. Revert back to the beginning of this blog where we mentioned the appropriateness of discounts in strategies. Clearly in this case, discounts weren’t a good fit for Coca Cola. They needed to claw back some revenue so why reduce prices? They weren’t ‘newbies’ to the industry they’re arguably the most popular drinks brand out there. They weren’t desperate for business they just wanted bigger profit margins. They needed to give the customer more bang for their buck; raise the value of a bottle of Coke without raising the price. Voila!……personalisation. ‘Share A Coke’ with…. As proven here by Coca Cola, personalisation can be a great instrument to play with but it doesn’t have to be the only chord in your symphonic strategy. You can also tinkle the keys of:

  • Exclusive ‘first looks’
  • Exclusive opportunities to buy
  • Information previews
  • Loyalty clubs
  • Reward Schemes

As the old saying goes: The manner of giving is worth more than the gift.

We’ve taken a leaf out of Coca Cola’s book and ‘shared a strategy’ with you; keep the trend going and ‘share a blog’ with a friend…..preferably this one.

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