How to activate a successful instore sampling campaign

Many of our clients are FMCG brands who retail in grocery stores. We regularly activate in-store sampling campaigns and promotions for them to drive trial, incremental sales and long term brand loyalty. Having completed over a thousand in-store activations over the years we want to share our key tips for activating a successful in-store project

  1. Planning is paramount. This sounds obvious but store selection is much more than looking at listings. You need an in depth knowledge of your retailer’s estate to know which ones to include in your plan. Timing of the campaign should be planned in the context of other marketing and advertising plans and scheduled to ensure the live activation is delivering maximum return on investment. Pre activity promotion, post activity amplification and social media should all be programmed in conjunction with your promotion.
  2. Meet your sampling team. Your sampling team will have been booked on your behalf. The likelihood is they are experienced promotional staff and are completing in-store sampling promotions on a weekly basis for a different brand each week. They will be professional, enthusiastic, proactive and able to deliver a food sample to a consumer following the guidelines.
    These are the people who will be representing your product to thousands of consumers (and maybe potential buyers, press and trade). Unlike a TV ad you will not have final approval on each interaction so you need to equip them with the specific product knowledge and brand ethos to take your message to the masses.
    No one is more passionate about your brand than you and you will never be able to communicate that passion through a briefing document. The team will be enthused and engaged after meeting you and hearing about the journey the brand has taken and that passion will, in turn be passed onto the consumer.
  3. Work with the store retailer. Hopefully you have a strong and collaborative relationship with your buyer already. Ensure they understand what you are aiming to achieve with your activation and get them to support the promotion. Having them involved will ensure less hiccups. They will be able to authorise stock uplifts in advance, make store data available and facilitate additional in-store support.
  4. Ensure every interaction drives to purchase. This should not only be a numbers game. While reach is important you must also ensure meaningful experiences and positive consumer interactions. Think quality over quantity. Challenge your agency to provide strategies to maximise your ROI whether that’s employing gift with purchase incentives, multibuy discounts or partner deals.
  5. Measurement. Use the opportunity to capture data directly from your consumer. Your teams will be making connections with thousands of your consumers. Use the opportunity to find out more about them, what they think of your brand and their key drivers. Ensure you collect the standard quantitative data and that you conduct a full evaluation to understand what works and what doesn’t.

Highjam Marketing is the UK’s leading agency in grocery activation. They work with Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Morrisons, Planet Organic, Wholefoods as well as independent stores. To discuss an in-store activation for your brand call Laura on 020 7407 8913.

Posted on August 10, 2016 in Featured, Highjam Views

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