The use of sales promotion is not limited to consumer products marketing. In business-to-business markets, sales promotions are also used as a means of moving customers to action. However, the promotional choices available to the B-to-B marketer are not as extensive as those found in the consumer or trade markets. For example, most B-to-B marketers do not use coupons as a vehicle for sales promotion with the exception of companies that sell to both consumer and business customers (e.g., products sold through office supply retailers). Rather, the techniques more likely to be utilized include:
- Price Reductions
- Free Product
- Promotional Products
- Trade Shows
Of the promotions listed, trade shows are the mostly widely used sales promotion within the business-to-business market. Trade shows, also called trade fairs, are especially critical for firms looking to expand into global markets. In many global markets, especially in Europe, trade fairs have a long history of being one of the most cost-effective ways to promote products.