As the end of the financial year (EOFY) approaches, you may be wondering how you can leverage this seasonality to get more sales and hit your sales budget.

Rewarding consumers with promotions is one of the most powerful and successful ways to strengthen the brand/consumer bond. Leveraging ideas like these help extend the consumer experience, creating a long-term connection with you as a brand.

Here’s why wrapping up the EOFY with a promotion is always a good idea.

1. Expectation

There is a historic expectation in the minds of shoppers that puts them on high alert at this time of year. Customers are already waiting with anticipation to see what you might do, so don’t disappoint.

2. New season stock

As a retailer with large amounts of stock, it’s time to make room for what the new season brings. A big stock turnover not only frees up space, but also finances to bring in fresh new products.

3. Sale goals

You’ll likely have set some big sales goals for the financial year. If you haven’t quite met these goals, now’s your chance to give it one final push. And if you’ve met them already, you’ve got the opportunity to smash them and get ready to set even bigger ones next year.

5 Ideas for EOFY Promotions

1. Live events

Real life experiences shape our preferences and memories and the same rings true when selling products or services. What do you remember more – seeing an ad, reading about something online, or experiencing something in person? Live events are powerful marketing tools, yet they’re often underutilised. Jump on the bandwagon and you won’t regret it.

Example: To celebrate Fantastic Furniture’s 25th birthday, the furniture and bedding store played a giant game of musical chairs in Sydney’s Martin Place. The event, which saw contestants battle it out to find a seat for $250,000, was streamed live and attracted plenty of chat. No doubt they got a sudden rush on chair sales! You can watch it in action here:

2. Competition entries with purchase

Australians love a good competition and there are many consumers out there that enter every competition they can find in the hope of winning something. But if you want to ensure that your competition is linked with an increase in sales, try giving customers ‘codes’ with every purchase. This means you’re rewarding paying customers rather than just fans, and also giving fans a reason to become customers. You can do this through printing unique codes on a product or on a voucher at the point of sale; using generic codes printed on the pack; or using existing barcodes printed on the pack. Allowing customers to enter as many times as they want is a great incentive for them to purchase and become a highly engaged brand advocate.

Example: Arnott’s is running a competition to win ‘1 of 3 moments worth sharing’, where punters can enter with the barcode numbers from two packets of TimTams to be in the chance to win some exciting travel experiences.

3. Personalised gifts

If a customer knows they can receive a limited edition or personalised product for making a purchase during the EOFY period, that’s a great incentive which can push them to purchase sooner rather than later. Plus, with a special gift you get the added bonus of giving the customer an incentive to share a photo of their prize on social media, giving you good publicity and getting more customers to join in with the promotion too. Send a branded hashtag with your gift so customers know how to share their prize, and you’ll get easy access to a bunch of photos of your customers enjoying their personalised products.

Example: When Guinness wanted to connect with their customers in a long-term way, they held a competition that asked participants to purchase ten times before becoming eligible for entry. Once a person had ten unique codes to enter, they’d receive their very own personalised pint glass for use at their local Guiness pub.

4. ‘Everyone’s a winner’ campaigns

A gift with purchase can be made a little more fun with a hint of competition. When customers are given the chance to win a huge prize, but also guaranteed something if they’re not the big winner, it gives them a little more motivation to enter a few more times by making more purchases.

Example: The Tooheys Extra Dry ‘Hit the Button’ campaign encouraged people to go out and buy a specially marked case of Tooheys Extra Dry. Inside these cases were unique codes which could then be typed into a special ‘hit the button’ website. Once the button was hit, participants would be told their prize, which ranged from a hot dog in New York to a suit made entirely of bacon.

5. The slightly controversial campaign

To garner infamy and buzz around your product, you’ve got to think outside of the box. It helps too if you make a bit of a stir. Push the envelope, create a really simple call-to-action, and spread your message far and wide. But remember, shock marketing means being intriguing – not offensive.

Example: Burger King gained a huge amount of exposure for their somewhat controversial “Whopper Sacrifice” app. Users were asked to sacrifice 10 friends from their Facebook list and in return they would be given a free Whopper hamburger. The ‘intriguing’ bit was that once someone took part in a sacrifice it would show up in their activity feed, for example, “Katherine sacrificed Ben Lomas for a free Whopper”. The app lasted just ten days before Facebook shut it down – drawing even more attention to the now infamous campaign.

(Via Michael Jess)