How to make a strong offer…

that get you better than expected results.

A free offer is the heart of any digital multi-channel marketing program. Let’s define “FREE.”

The offer may cost you pennies on the dollar but when you compare the cost of a lost customer, that gives another meaning to “penny-wise and pound-foolish.”

Some of the free offers we have seen throughout the years:Heart300dpi

  • free brochure,
  • white paper,
  • product sample,
  • information kit,
  • special report,
  • catalog, etc.

The offer can be just about anything, even an item you already have used in the past. However, if it’s a willy-nilly product or service offered that does not reflect well on your brand image, this can do more harm than good. Especially if was produced in the 1980’s.

Today’s free brochures are still printed, but a well-planned one-page web site, depending on your audience can present a variety of offers to get more customer information. Such as email, landing pages, direct mail, just naming the big three which always get results.

Take a look at the contacts in your CRM. How many contacts can you send a personalized message to, using first and last name? People no longer tolerate bad spelling, wrong name, or forwarded mail. So if your answer is I’m not sure, get on the personalization trend, before it’s too late.

Multi-ChannelV3WebGetting back to the big three.

Multi-channel marketing is used a lot with direct mail. If you have a name and address in your CRM, use direct mail to get something else. Maybe email addresses? Why not, that’s the second best channel to use paired with direct mail.

Why should you give away anything? Because the point of this lead generating tactic is to identify prospects, so you need to push them to give up something, such as an email address. Or as a wise old owl commented, “you got to give to get something in return.”

This is FREE today.

By offering something free, you make it easy for people to say, “Yes” and disclose other ways to make your communication more personalized.

In our list above for “free offers” there is really nothing new. Some are tried and true but maybe not for you. I recommend you think of unique ways surprising your customers with an unexpected offer.CustomerService

For example, a salesperson can call a customer and offer 10% more product if they can ship it to them 10 days earlier. If there is a premium product in a line of goods, offer the premium product to customers buying the regular, at the same regular product price. Work closely with the customer in the trial period to measure results.

Why not simply mail the free items directly to your list?

That prevents you from finding out who is interested and pinpointing those who are most worthy of getting a sales call. Remember you’re giving to get something in return.

Try my idea. It has worked extremely well. For a very long time.

I have always believed that any customer should get more than what they expect. This is another form of FREE which has worked quite well for me.

SolutionI’ve always had good luck with a problem solving method of selling. Customers may or may not know if there is a specific problem holding the company back. When you use a problem solving method, and show the value in an offered solution you present, that is many times greater than handing out promotional items. You gain more than just a handshake.

You gain a better “door opener” than a simple company pen or Frisbee. You start to gain trust. If you are into building a better relationship, that is a factor lasting longer than a pen or Frisbee. Try it.

Let me know what you think.

Can you add a free offer that you have tried by giving something extra to a customer at no additional cost? Other examples?

Please share with others, except of course, your competition.

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Need help? Just ask in the comments or email marketingdoc@ live.com.

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About MarketingDoc 389 Articles
30+ years in marketing. 30+ years as a small business owner. Love music, photography, gardening and just about anything outdoors!

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