Are you worried about how to attract the target audience to your product? A product sampling program might be the thing for you. Everybody loves freebies, and it is a great strategy to attract customers. It is a conventional thing to acquaint a customer with the product samples. It enhances their personal experience, and your product has a chance to dominate the market
To implement a product sampling program might sound like a piece of cake, but in reality, it is an art. Understanding this art can make you a master among your competitors. Let us have a look over what it is.
What is product sampling?
Product sampling started way back in the 1800s, and it simply means to hand out the free products to your target audience. The question is where you should distribute the samples. Well, you can do that on the streets too. With modern technology, it has become easy to increase your audience reach with the help of digital sampling. In the world of ever-increasing competition, Giving out product samples may offer you an opportunity for exposure.
It is also imperative that you keep in mind your budget while planning a Product sampling program. It is advisable to create a minimum viable product first. A minimum viable product means a set of features you want to build for your product considering its sufficiency to approach the target audience. Rolling out an MVP strategy keeping sight of the future possibilities is the right thing to start. It will help you know how well your product can do in the market.
What are the methods of product sampling?
As stated above, Product sampling involves both traditional and digital methods. Let’s understand both in detail.
- Traditional product sampling
A traditional product sampling program is a method that various stores and outlets use. When you visit a store, you must have witnessed them offering free samples of the products they already have in stock, hoping that the customers might purchase them. It helps a business amplify its sales. It is a viable option for products that can generate instant reviews. Other options serve for products that need a week or two to show their results.
- Digital product sampling
A digital product sampling program helps you target a specific audience. After thorough market research, you can build an appropriate marketing strategy that can help you build a loyal consumer base. Digital sampling is costlier, but a loyal clientele balances it out. It can generate more honest consumer reviews.
Why is product sampling important for your business?
You might want to consider building a product sampling program for your business because,
- Free samples attract more audience
It’s a human tendency to divert their attention towards the place that offers them free samples. Product sampling attracts maximum customer attention. It increases the awareness about your product in the market, thereby fixing a place for you in the competitive world.
- It introduces the customer to your product
Many people do not want to invest in products they have not tried before. Sometimes, customers are skeptical about the results. Unless they can try the product without risking their investment, they may opt out of purchasing it. The Product sampling program gives them a chance to try the product without paying anything, and if they like it, they are sure to buy it next time.
- Customers remember your product
When a customer visits a shopping store with a few things on his mind, he might not feel encouraged to buy something that is just lying on the shelf. A free sample or a demonstration is likely to make a customer fix the product in his mind. So, he will automatically be drawn to your product if he likes it.
- Builds a loyal customer base
Experimental marketing with product sampling helps build a long-term customer base. Every business aspires for loyal customers. Freebies leave a good impression of the company on the customer’s mind. As a result, they would positively associate themselves with you.
Types of product sampling
Now that you know how beneficial product sampling is for your business, you may want to learn about various options that you can include in your next product sampling program. You can consider
- Retail– Retail sampling on stores and outlets encourages instant purchase by the consumer if he likes it. It is divided further into
a). In-store– When the brand ambassador personally presents a sample to the customer, it increases the chance of interaction between the customer and the brand. It usually happens in the in-store retail sampling.
b). Outside store– Product samples distributed outside the store, maybe by setting it up outside the front door or at a parking lot, form a part of outside store sampling.
2). On-Premise sampling– This kind of product sampling program is usually presented at the bar or a restaurant and relates to malt beverage, spirit, and wine promotions. A customer can choose among the many options before him.
3). Off-Premise-Off premise sampling relates to the promotion of wine, malt beverages, etc., at some special events like sporting, horse race, etc.,
4). Special events– You can plan your product sampling where any special event is happening. It will increase the number of your targeted audience.
5). Guerilla sampling– This sampling indicates that you have not asked for any prior permission to distribute your products here. It can take place almost anywhere.
6). Product demonstrations-If your product is too expensive that you cannot afford to give away free samples for it, then you can go for a product demonstration. Under this product sampling program, you can have a customer try out a small quantity of your product. A product demonstration will help them have a first-hand experience of your product.
7). Service trials– While giving a service trial, you are still following a product sampling program. Service trails give the customer confidence to purchase your product. Face-to-face interactions help eliminate any possibility of doubts regarding your product.
To formulate the right sampling program, you must have the objectives of your business in mind. You can not forget about your target demographic and implement a product sampling program that will showcase your brand in the best way.
Psychology of product sampling
Here are some tips that you should consider for your next product sampling program
1). Know your objectives
What is it that you plan to do with your sampling program? Is it increasing brand awareness or increasing sales? Are you looking to generate reviews for your product to make it better? You should be clear about your objectives to plan a gifted product sampling program.
2). Target the right audience
If you have a sample of a make-up product, you know the right target group for your product. You should have information about your target audience’s tastes and preferences.
3). Choose the correct sample
In a product sampling program, not all samples are the same. You have to consider logistics to cut high shipping and handling costs. A product sample of the right size and weight should be made available.
4). Follow post-purchase updates
It can be a challenging task but, it is crucial for your business. Do not forget to hand out questionnaires or send emails to follow up with the customers. It will help you understand the shortcomings of your product.
5). Study the insights
You can collect plenty of data during your product sampling program. These insights can help you study the prevalent patterns in the market and boost your sales.