When you read about marketing in general, you find in front of you a lot of information, and all this knowledge that you acquire makes you ask yourself several questions, and today we will answer one of these questions, which is “What is promotion?”
Before answering this question, I would like to get to know you more, so let me ask you:
Are you a marketer or work in the marketing or advertising department of any company?
Are you a business owner or an entrepreneur?
Do you rely on social media in your work?
If you are one of those or you are curious to know more about what is promotion, I think that you will find here everything you need, and you will be an expert in everything related to promotion, strategies and its relationship to marketing.
In this article you will learn about:
What is promotion?
The goal of promotion.
Various promotion strategies.
This is not all, there are questions that may come to your mind now as you read these lines, questions that you must find the answers to in order to understand what promotion is correctly, questions such as:
What is the difference between marketing and promotion?
What is the difference between promotion and advertising?
How do you choose among the different promotion methods?
All these questions and more will be answered between the lines of this article, and as usual on the Winners website, you will find all the information presented in a simple style with many practical examples.
Promotion is a set of activities aimed at communicating with customers, in order to spread awareness about a specific product or brand, which motivates customers to buy this product and raise the value of the brand in the market and distinguish it from others.
Let me give you some examples of promotion:
The electoral candidate holds conferences with the people of his constituency in order to convince them of himself, so that they can nominate him in the elections.
A new shop owner distributes advertising papers to people on the street in order to tell them about his products and services.
A company that makes discounts on its products in order to increase the percentage of sales.
A friend of yours opens a new law firm, and asks you to tell your friends and acquaintances about him so that he gets new clients.
The Ministry of Tourism is filming videos about the most famous tourist places in Egypt in order to bring tourists to it.
A restaurant that posts information and photos on social media to bring people to it.
I can give you a million examples of promotion, but I think you got the idea, and promotion is just saying “I exist” until everyone interested comes to you.
Promotion is a process of communication with the purpose of achieving a specific goal. Your friend called you to tell you about your new law firm with the goal of getting new clients… and for no other reason.
Therefore, the promotion has a number of images and forms, which we will learn about in detail later, but let us delve into the second part of the definition of promotion… which is the goal.
What is the purpose of promotion? (How to take advantage of promotion)
Promoting it has many goals (or, say, ways to take advantage of it), but let's focus on promoting products and services, I think that's the main reason why you're looking for what promotion is...right?
1- Introducing a new product or service to the market
When a new service like Uber or Careem appeared on the market, a lot of promotion campaigns came with it, it is a new service for the public.
That's why any new product (electric car - new game - website - service app) needs to be promoted so that people know it already exists, and then decide whether to rely on it or not.
2- Educating clients
Why do you see some brands publish videos on how to use products correctly, such as Adobe explaining how to design a professional video.
Or a company like Google that explains all the features and capabilities of the Google Chrome browser (and by the way, the latest updates are more than great, especially if you are a web developer like me?).
And a company like Hubspot, the market leader, is constantly posting new articles and videos, not just about how to use the tools it offers.
Rather, it is about all the topics that interest their customers, such as time management, increasing productivity, or how to make a post on the Instagram platform, all with the aim of educating customers, which leads to their connection with the company and the service more and more.
3- Increasing awareness about the brand
Why does PepsiCo sponsor every year a sports league in schools and other events and occasions, all so that their logo is imprinted in your mind, so that you relate more and more to the rand itself.
This attachment is the reason why when you go to any store to buy soft drinks, you say to the seller, “I want Pepsi,” or at least Pepsi is the first drink that comes to mind.
Increasing awareness about your brand, whatever the type of brand, is the most important goal of promotion, especially in the era of social media that we live in today.
All the different communication tools open many doors for you to build your own brand.
4- Outperform your competitors
In many areas, it is not enough just to let people know about your product or service, especially if you are not introducing a completely new product to them.
That is why you should differentiate between you and the competitors, your customers should know what makes you different from these competitors, and why they should buy from you and not from them.
That is why you find large companies making a comparison between their products and what is available in the market, and they use these comparisons in all possible ways in order to gain the trust of customers.
If you are interested in technology and hardware, then I think you are aware of the war between AMD and Intel, especially in the field of manufacturing new processors, which Intel controlled for years before AMD rose up.
Do you see the amount of comparisons between all the new products of both companies, especially AMD, all for the purpose of promotion, in order to prove its strength against the competitor.
5- Gaining the trust of customers
Promotion, as we mentioned before, is about communicating with the customer to convince him of a certain thing, and the best type of communication is that which is based on mutual trust between the two parties.
This is one of the most important reasons for promoting since ancient times, which is to draw in the mind of your customer that he can trust you, that he can insure you with his money, time, or sometimes even his life.
6- Increase sales
If you think carefully about all of the above, you will find that it revolves around sales, it is true that you want to provide a benefit to people and you want to form relationships with them, but all this is for the purpose of profits in the end.
There are many companies and institutions that rely on promotion through sales directly, so you see them making discounts and offers on their products in order to increase sales, and thus increase profits.
What is the difference between promotion and marketing?
If you read the article “Marketing Mix” in which we explain the concept of 4Ps - I highly recommend you to read this article because it will clarify a lot of concepts for you.
You will find that the marketing process consists of four main stages:
Product: The final product or service that is offered to people, for which they pay money.
Price: The cost of the service or product, which indicates the real value of the product and the extent to which people benefit from it.
Place: The place where the product or service will be sold so that it can be obtained by an interested person.
Promotion: How to promote this good or service to those who are interested in it.
Thus, it becomes clear to you that promotion is part of the marketing process, it is just one of the stages that any marketer goes through when he thinks of launching a new product or additional service.
Perhaps this difference is not clear, especially for the owners of small projects, as these are the ones who do the manufacturing, research, promotion and everything.
As for relatively large organizations and companies that provide complex products and services or target a large segment of people, they need a comprehensive marketing plan, one of which is promotion.
What is the difference between promotion and advertising?
Think carefully about this question... In order to help you answer, let me ask you another question... What is the purpose of advertisements in the first place? If you think about it, you will know the answer to your question easily.
The goal of advertising is almost the same as the goal of the promotion process that we presented earlier, all that is done is that the ads you pay money for, while the promotion may happen for free.
Advertising is one of the different methods of promotion, you target specific people with your ads in order to increase awareness and thus increase sales.
Despite this, advertising is of great importance in the promotion process, as some companies rely almost solely on advertisements for promotion because they achieve the best results.
For this reason, we have created a separate article to talk about advertisements of all kinds and their different strategies, which I advise you to check out, you will find in the following link.
What is advertising (explanation of the concept, types and elements of advertising)
Various strategies for promotion
There are many ideas through which you can promote any new product or service, but no matter how many of these ideas are, they will not deviate from one of the following four strategies:
1- Personal Promotion
Personal promotion is that which depends on the ability of a particular person to promote any product or service. This promotion may take more than one form, such as:
Sales man: who communicates himself with customers and tries to convince them of the product.
Personal Brand: Just as influencers do by promoting themselves by creating content (website - channel on YouTube).
Personal relationships: as in the example of your lawyer friend, which we presented earlier.
A lot of the giant companies today started this kind of promotion until they stood on their own two feet and gained a niche in the market.
There are various images of advertisements such as:
Television and radio advertisements.
Newspaper and newspaper ads.
Publications advertisements (banners - brochures).
Social media ads (Facebook ads - Instagram ads).
Search engine ads (Google ads - YouTube).
Influencer ads (an influencer is anyone who has an audience on any platform, with whom brands collaborate to reach that audience).
All these different images and others are one of the promotion strategies, and as I mentioned earlier, ads are of great importance, especially digital ads because of the ease of tracking their results.
3- Sales Promotion
Sales promotion is intended to make discounts and offers for certain periods or at certain times of the year, or even to distribute discount coupons to customers personally.
Sales promotion is not just discounts, you can promote an additional service such as free delivery in case you buy a certain number of products or purchase with a certain amount of money, or distribute free product samples.
All these ideas and others fall under the sales promotion strategy as long as it directly depends on the cost of the product or service that the customer will get for a certain amount of money.
4- Public Relations
This is one of the most important promotion strategies that almost all people in various fields rely on, whether business owners or even social media influencers.
Promotion through public relations depends on building a relationship with any entity or organization that your audience is interested in, and using this relationship to spread awareness about your services.
Sponsoring a sporting event and providing some products for free to its participants.
Providing some services to companies in exchange for promoting your products or services among their customers.
Carrying out joint promotional campaigns (such as campaigns by telephone companies with soft drink companies - drink and talk for free).
Cooperation with charitable organizations.
Organizing a gathering of influencers in your field.
There are many other examples, even on a smaller scale, such as a YouTube channel owner collaborating with another channel owner in order to promote the channel.
Promotion through public relations is one of the oldest and most effective methods of promotion, because it helps to strengthen the brand in general among all those interested.
It also makes customers trust the brand more because they feel its influence and spread in many activities, and all this leads to an increase in profits in the end.
All people are promoting, even when you are arguing with your father to ask him to buy you something new, you are trying to increase his awareness of a certain idea so that he can make the decision you want.
Therefore, before you think about what promotion is and how to choose the best strategy, you must first determine the goal you want to achieve and the capabilities that you have.
After that, all you have to do is test the results and improve your various promotional campaigns, and remember the importance of personal and public relations, as they are one of the most important keys to success in promoting anything.
I wish you the best of luck from the bottom of my heart, and I hope you achieve impressive results in your upcoming promotional campaigns.