What Promo? What a Shame! (1)

Have you ever wondered whether all those promotional contests with fabulous prizes are real? Well, the good news is that Yes, they are real. Or at least those that I have participated and won. But the stories I want to tell are not about the prizes I won, but rather they are Management tales for marketing folks to take note and learn.

The first story may be something that you have also experienced. Here you are at the checkout counter of a large Hypermarket paying for your items and the total bill comes to $29.80.The cashier without so much as a greeting or a thank you, just silently take your money and give you the change and gets on with serving the next customer. What’s wrong with this picture? OK, she’s a miser with greetings, so what? Well, you collect your items and exit the checkout counter….and that’s when you notice a poster promoting an in-store sales campaign. Buy $30.00 worth of goods and you will get a small freebie token as well as be eligible to take part in a simple contest with a $10,0000 prize. Your heart drops…you have just paid $29.80 and you are not qualified for the freebie nor for the contest. You confront the cashier and ask her why didn’t she tell you about the promo…she could have easily persuaded you to pick up an additional item (sweets, batteries, etc) so that your total bill could exceed $30.00. The cashier looks at you unapologetically and cannot understand what the fuss is all about.

So the questions to the Hypermarket Management are:

1. Why are the front-line staff not trained to help make the sales promo a better success instead of making customers feel short-changed and annoyed? After all, most customers will gladly top-up their purchases to make the minimum amount required for the freebie and contest.

2. Why isn’t the sales promo clearly displayed within the Store rather than merely outside the Store? As a Management learning experience, the above story could well be enacted in any otther sales setting and not just in a Hypermarket. So don’t laugh, it could happen in your sales organisation too! Has this happened to you before? As a Customer or as a Marketeer? Tell us about it.

More stories to follow…

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