Sales Promotion Techniques are Not Just for Increasing Sales These Can Also Change Behavior

Methods of sales promotion are inherently techniques for encouraging someone to do something. Whether the promotion is in the form of a coupon, rewards program, free sample or many other methods, to most marketers the “something” they are looking for almost always involves customers spending money.

However, methods of sales promotion do not always have to be about building sales. As we note in our definition of Sales Promotion, the ultimate goal in using these methods is to get people “to respond or undertake certain activity.”  Yet, getting someone to do something is not only about having them spend money. Parents and teachers have known this forever as they are masters of offering incentives to get kids to do non-monetary activity, such as cleaning up their room or speaking up in the classroom.

The extent to which sales promotion techniques are being used to incent non-monetary activity is discussed in this Trendwatching story. For example, in the U.S. an insurance company is offering its policyholders Amazon money if they attain a fitness goal. To monitor policyholders’ fitness level, the company is also giving out free wearable fitness trackers. In Brazil, as part of an anti-smoking campaign, people can place cigarettes in a vending machine and in exchange receive free gifts. And in Canada, police officers are handing out tickets that reward positive behavior by children. The tickets can then be redeemed for various prizes. Other examples discuss how promotions encourage use of sustainable methods of transportation and promote recycling. There is also an example of a shared social incentive program, offered by Fitbit, where participants can help feed those in need by burning off calories.

Overall, the examples presented in the story can offer ideas for any organization that wants to achieve an objective.