UPDATE, March 16, 2020: Things are moving very quickly throughout the industry and the economy at large. As of press time, several retail chains have suspended in-store sampling, and it is foreseeable that more will follow suit. This has obviously been very traumatic to the entire promotional industry, and many important details remain to be seen. In the days and weeks to come, we will be working with retailers to return to allowing demos in stores as soon as it is safe to do so. We remain hopeful that even before the point where actual sampling is has fully returned, they may allow non-sampling demos and promotions to be performed. To this end, many of our suggestions for what can be done in-store will still be valid; additionally, we are recommending that brands take this down-time as an opportunity to more thoroughly train their ambassadors so that they are more effective at consumer education once the doors re-open. We will, of course, keep you fully apprised of any new developments as they occur.
In this post, we’re diving a bit deeper into that idea to identify specific opportunities where healthy/natural/organic brands can gain share in a turbulent market. These opportunities are rooted in the fact that consumers are actively looking for specific information and products that will help them be healthier and combat the COVID-19 threat.
With that in mind, and based on our experience, here are some product brand categories that can and should be capitalizing on the opportunity to be front and center, educating and promoting to shoppers amid all the fear and panic.
- Natural Soaps
This one is easy. Truly natural soaps (such as the amazing products from Dr. Bronners) are WAY better than standard consumer soaps, or even chemical-based antibacterial soaps. For people who are already keenly interested in making sure they have cleaned their hands (etc.) well, all you need to do is tell them that this product is better, and you’ll have an attentive audience.
The key here – as with most Natural/Organic/Sustainable/Healthy (or NOSH) products – is that you need to be able to tell your value story to the shopper who doesn’t already know it. For most brands, the most effective way to do that is person-to-person, with a trained brand ambassador. With a bit of management (and help from Promomash, of course) you can make sure that the extra expense of a demo will be more than compensated by the extra sales and acquisition of new customers.
This is another natural fit for the times. There are 2 specific messages that should play well here:
- Immune-system support & boost products
- General health supplements
Demos are also a fantastic option for supplements, due to the importance of educating the consumer on how your products help to improve health and immune response, and due to the fact that it’s easier to get a substantial return on investment with the high per-unit prices of the best supplements.
- Healthy/organic foods:
Here, more traditional promotional tactics such as displays and discounts can help to increase the prominence of your brand at a more reasonable price. Well-designed coupon/flyers can help to convey your message. These tactics can be deceptively expensive though, and should be evaluated also on the basis of return on that investment; they will tend to require a high base volume in order to be net worthwhile.
- Natural sleep aids:
Here’s an opportunity that might not be so obvious – but when you think about it, it’s a potential big double-winner. People are stressed out about everything right now… and they probably need sleep. Help! And on top of that, it’s more important than ever that they get adequate sleep, because for many people that’s the one thing they can do to improve their overall health and immune strength.
If you have a product(s) that encourage a good night’s rest, it’s just a matter of gently reminding people of the importance of sleep, and they’ll be totally on board… probably for the long term.
These are just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing and to stimulate your marketing boldness. You know your products better than we do, and you know why you developed them for the market. The important thing now is to be bold, spread your message, and turn all the uncertainty into new loyal consumers.
If you would like to discuss ideas for how Promomash can help you get out there promoting fast and furiously during this time, feel free to reach out to our team…we have the expertise and resources to help you make the most out of your promotion dollars.