The Do’s & Don’ts of Coupon Marketing
Mark Hale ‐ January 31, 2014
Businesses have always sent out and people have always liked and used coupons, today even more so than ever. One of the biggest shows on TV is about couponing. People, your customers among them, are interested in saving money or simply getting more for their money.
Have you ever used coupons or coupon books to promote your services? Would you like to?
If you have not done so already, you should take advantage of the couponing craze. When used effectively, coupons, more specifically coupon books, will help you increase sales by improving customer retention and frequency of purchase.
The following is a short list of do’s and don’ts for coupon books:
- Coupon booklets can be used as a self-mailer to existing customers or to generate leads to prospects. Coupon booklets are also a good handout at trade shows. We have created coupon books for auto dealerships to heating and air contractors to restaurants. The coupon booklet concept works for most business models. Lawyers, dentists and chiropractors can use coupon books as a sort of client referral program.
- Clearly define your offer. Coupons that are vague don’t get used. Use wording like $10 off a specific item. Include the normal price of the item so they can easily see the value.
- Make sure the offer is a real value and has value. The better the value, the more bite the coupon will have and the more business you will generate.
- Call to action: Also known as an expiration date. Make sure the date is not too far out, but also that it is also not so close they cannot take advantage of it.
- Include special limits. Example: one per customer.
- Market items or services that are timely or seasonal. The viewpoint here is strike while the iron is hot. If people buy a product at a specific time of the year, give them a reason to call you and not your competitor by putting a special offer in their hands.
- Promote new products or services.
- All standard rules for ads and postcards apply to coupons such as use of compelling headlines, promoting benefits and call to action. A coupon is, in essence, an ad message and you still have 2 to 3 seconds to get their attention and create interest.
- Include QR codes to drive traffic to your website. The best idea is to have them register for some sort of give-away or promotional offer. If the landing page is set up correctly you can capture contact information.
- Include a promotional code to allow you to track response.
- Never honor a coupon that has expired. The reason is that it trains your customers and prospects that your coupon and offer expirations are meaningless and that they can get the deal anytime. This is one of the reasons advertising response rates decrease.
- A coupon book mailer is an excellent way to promote multiple products, increase and track sales. If you would like more information on how much the costs are for designing, printing and mailing coupon books for your business please give us a call.
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