One of the more unusual approaches to marketing in recent months is described in this BBC article, where Harris Tweed garments can be permanently impregnated with the scent of malt whisky. Obviously, the expectation is that this will appeal to many people and therefore increase sales. It is possible that such a feature may not be universally popular, however, so the traditional Harris Tweed fabrics will continue to be available.
It is almost certainly no coincidence that this whisky-scented fabric was launched in the autumn, with the possibility of unusual or quirky Christmas presents in mind. However, there is every likelihood that this campaign was planned at least a year previously. The opportunity for seasonal promotions is something that every manufacturer has to bear in mind, though some products, such as cakes and confectionery, perhaps lend themselves more easily to seasonal variations. Christmas, Hallowe’en, Valentine’s Day, Easter and summer or winter holidays are all occasions that can offer creative marketing possibilities for a whole range of products.
Creative packaging and labelling
Whilst some items, particularly foods, may actually have slightly different ingredients for seasonal promotions, (more in the way of spices around Christmas, for instance, or greater use of pumpkins at Hallowe’en) modifying the actual packaging and product labels is something which is available to all businesses.
Whether the changes to the printed labels are subtle or significant, the process is always made much easier when a manufacturer has their own, in-house, label printer as they can alter label designs, use different colours or even have a complete revamp of the packaging. Colour label printers can’t yet reproduce the kind of label described in this article. However, with the total compatibility of software and production technology that reliable printers from companies such as QuickLabel Systems can provide, there is a still a great deal of flexibility.
Some thoughts on how to increase sales with creative marketing
Have a brainstorming session to see whether your products lend themselves to seasonal or other promotions. “Royal” occasions always generate a plethora of associated goods, for instance, but it is important to get both the timing and the quantities right, as you don’t want to miss the boat, nor to have large numbers of unwanted goods left after the event.
If you have any products where sales aren’t doing as well as expected, try experimenting with a different label for a short time, to see whether sales figures are affected.
Consider whether the packaging for some items could be more attractive, a different colour, or even a different shape or material.
Investigate the possibility of promoting a unique selling point (USP). Perhaps you could donate to charity with each purchase, or, if your market is fairly localised, you could help with the purchase of books or games equipment at a local school.
There might be a different way of advertising your products – again focussed on the target audience. Posters, leaflet drops and adverts in the local papers are more likely to have favourable results when your market is largely local, whereas an attractive, efficient website is essential for larger companies, especially if most purchases are made online.
The above suggestions may not quite produce the phenomenal response to the latest release of a Band Aid Christmas song, but you may be pleasantly surprised by the outcome.
About the Author
Graham Jackson has recently retired from his role as sales manager at QuickLabel Systems, but continues to keep abreast of developments in the sales and marketing field.
One of the reasons for the retirement was to spend more time with his family, especially his young grandchildren and he is enjoying helping them with their early efforts at painting and drawing.