The Consumer Packaged Goods industry recognizes two major Moments of Truth for a consumer when interacting with a brand. These moments form impressions, which can linger a lifetime. Over the years, brand managers and agencies have tried to add moments of truth, linking use of their product to good feelings. If you can manage that, great, but there are two moments guaranteed to happen: When the Consumer first acquires the product, and first uses it.
You can control the environment in which they first acquire the product – even if not when they first use it. In standard non-promotional circumstances, the consumer sees your product on the shelf in a store, surrounded by your competitors products. A new or lesser known product can suffer. Is a “New & Improved” label enough to capture attention?
Sampling promotions achieve three significant goals:
1- Capturing attention
Standing out on the shelf can be as simple as sleeving your product into pairs or adding a bottle hanger. Anytime you can achieve a different look, especially with a complementary product which already gets attention, you win.
A display doesn’t have to be where you expect it – you can sometimes stand out more where it’s unexpected – and benefit from that difference. A sample display stand of lens cleaning wipes at a checkout or beside a rack of sunglasses gets attention.
3- Reduce the risk in purchase decision
Placement of a premium increases chances of selecting your brand over the next. But nothing eliminates the risk altogether more than a free sample. You can’t beat free for getting people to try. It also demonstrates your faith in your brand – knowing that they will move onto the second moment of truth in a positive mindset.