Rules for making your activation count

A properly run and organized promotion can do wonders for a business. It can be the difference between moving up to another level or slowly but surely disappearing into obscurity. Because the truth with promotions is that you are putting yourself out there, sticking your head up above the parapet, and making yourself visible. The result is that people are either going to talk about you (which is what you want) if you make an impact, or they are going to ignore you and be left feeling ambivalent or underwhelmed, if you do not strike the right chords. Ambivalence is not what anyone wants for their brand or product, so if you are planning a promotion there are plenty of things to consider if you want things to end well. Here are a few areas that you should seek to cover off.

It must all fit together

Every aspect of the promotion needs to be thought through. Where is it happening? Who will be interacting with the public? Will you be giving things away? What are your primary objectives? These are all important questions to ask. You can’t just print out flyers and stick them under windshields. That is not very strategic or effective and is the kind of half-baked plan that almost inevitably ends in the ambivalent space. So, if for instance you are going to be gifting people things, make sure that they have the means to get the goods home. You might have to buy promotional bags in advance and get them branded to ensure that the gifts or rewards can be carried and taken home. It is little things like this that need to be considered to ensure that the whole thing fits together well. In short, if you are not familiar with running activations or promotions, look to work with people who have done them before.

Go to the people

Activations and promotions are all about going to the people and meeting them on their terms in eth places where they are. Never expect people to come to you. That is immediately a barrier to engagement and an obstacle that creates a grudge or a level of resentment before your promotion has even started. It is not something that is insurmountable, but promotions are about convenience and relationship building and given that it is you and your brand that are looking to entice a person into a consumer relationship, you are the one that needs to go to the client – never expect it to be the other way around.

Bring real value

Any activation or promotion needs to bring real value to the lives of the people you are touching. If they feel like you are holding back or not offering real value, then the message that is conveyed is weak and brand damaging. So, go all out to make the interaction a completely positive one for the people who participate. You want to get people talking about their experience and putting out positive message about your product onto social media and other channels. So be big-hearted and generous. Flyers under windscreen wipers are not going to win you any prizes!