Winners are grinners as they say. Shoppers who win from a retail store are happy and they tell their friends. Whether it is a large or small prize, the value to the business of making winners of customers can be considerable.
The best competitions are those where a customer of the retail store is guaranteed to win. That is, there the competition is store specific. While participating in larger national and state wide competitions around products brands and even franchise brands can be good for business, it is the local competitions which provide the best opportunity for local promotion.
Here are some tips on how to use competitions effectively to promote your retail store:
Every competition needs a focus. Promote a specific product or product category or a certain level of spending. Competitions open to anyone without a tactical focus are likely to be less successful.
Make entering easy for everyone. Ensure that the mechanics of the competition – how to enter – are easy and understood. You don’t want to slow down the sales counter or have customers reject entering the competition because of complexity.
Promote well. Promote the competition well in the business from the front window throughout the store.
Encourage participation. Get all employees actively promoting the competition. Offer a reward for the employee who achieves the most entries per hour worked.
Drive impulse purchases. A good competition is one used to drive impulse purchases at the counter. They key here is that the item being sold, the trigger for a competition entry, must be easily understood.
Show off the prize. If possible, show the prize of offer for the competition. This can drive people to engage in the behaviour you are promoting as they more easily understand the opportunity.
Show off entries. If entry in the competition requires shopper activity like drawing or coloring, show off the entries as this will drive more traffic to the store.
Promote winners. Take photos of competition winners, with their permission, and use these in newsletters and on a winners board in-store. This is how you can promote the store as a place where winners shop.
Host and event around the prize draw. Make the drawing of the winner a special event with its own retail hooks to drive sales.
Create a competition calendar. This can provide focus to the competition program throughout the year and ensure that they are a consistent part of the marketing mix.
Engage with suppliers. Call of key suppliers to support the business with prizes for your competitions. This is more easily achieved if the competition connects with specific brands.
Promote externally. Use the competition to promote the business externals in advertising and promotional flyers.
Competitions, regardless of size, can drive excellent results for a retail store. Professional execution is the key from the planning stand right through to the drawing of the winner. Ensure that everyone involved including customers have fun with each competition you run.