Boost response with Premiums and Free Gifts

By Travis Lee

We’re going to start a new series of tips on using premiums and Free Gifts in your marketing.  We briefly went over them a few weeks ago, and based on the responses I got, you guys want more!  So we’ll start with a quote from my mentor, Dan Kennedy:

“Too many marketers deal with premiums almost as an afterthought.  This is a huge mistake.  I know for a fact that premiums can and do drive sales, and that a change of premium, with no other changes, can dramatically alter the results of a promotion.  For this reason, just as much careful thought should be given to the premium as to the |main offer.”  – Dan Kennedy, Power Points #34

Research has shown that a direct mail letter with a premium offer can out pull a sales letter alone by as much as 300%!  Before we get too far into why they work so well, some of you may be thinking, “What is a premium?”

A premium is anything of value your prospect, client, patient receives for taking some action that you want.  Often, the best premiums are not even tied to whatever t is that you’re offering!  It’s often an unrelated item for the personal use of the buyer and not even for their business (if you’re selling
B2B).  The key is that is has perceived high value.  It may not cost a lot, but it should look like it cost a lot.

When offering premiums, a picture is worth a thousand words.  Always include a picture of the item, as this is much more effective than simply describing the item.

There’s a reason why for years Sports Illustrated gave away a sneaker phone.  There’s a reason they now give away your choice of any of the 32 professional football team shirts.  Why?  Because Sports Illustrated knows that premiums work!  They’ve been doing it for decades now.

The Estee Lauder Company set the standard with their “Gift-With-Purchase” strategy that is now rampant in the cosmetics industry, and others.  The allure of ‘something for nothing’ has always enticed consumers.  Doesn’t it make sense to appeal to this very basic, controlling emotion?  Stay tuned for later in the week when we discuss why premium offers improve direct mail response. Have a great week.

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