In-store product demonstrations are usually performed at large retail locations. Most commonly, you will see them at grocery stores, department stores and in shopping malls.
Typically, grocery store product demonstrations focus on allowing a consumer to taste a particular product while the scope of demonstrations in department stores and shopping malls include a broader range of products and more diverse demonstrations. When walking through the mall, a representative of a brand may stop you to ask you to sample a hand cream or hair product, for example.
Product demonstrations may involve pre-packaged samples of a product or coupon distribution but, in most cases, will include a live sampling of a product prepared by the demonstrator. How many times have you been in the grocery store and have decided to purchase a product after sampling it at a product demonstration?
The benefits of in-store marketing are immense. More brands are taking a hands-on role in product demonstrations at retail because there is huge ROI in allowing a consumer to try a product while in the midst of shopping. Let’s look at cookies for example. When you visit the grocery store and get to the cookie section, there may be upwards of 100 different brands and types of cookies to choose from. People are creatures of habit and often gravitate towards what they already know they like. An in-store demonstration that enables a consumer who is shopping to try a cookie is likely to see that consumer purchase the cookie, if they like it. Had they not tasted the new cookie they would have purchased a brand of cookie that they know they like and are used to eating often.
Hewlett Packard is an excellent example of a brand who has taken control of its in-store marketing at retail. If you visit Best Buy, the representatives in the computer section who are wearing HP name tag are not Best Buy employees. They are marketers deployed by HP to draw consumers over to HP products and services.
Planned product demonstrations are one of the best ways to introduce a consumer to your product. Product demonstrations should be well planned and include experienced sales staff who are trained to get the attention of passers-by. How many times have you walked right past a product demonstration table where the sales representative is sitting down and not engaging the customers? Product demonstrations are most successful and achieve a higher ROI when the salesperson is trained to stop and engage patrons of the retailer. This is one reason that brands will often hire an in-store marketing provider to facilitate their product demonstrations.
Just like an in-store product demonstration can sway a consumer to try and then buy a particular product; it can also turn a consumer off of a brand entirely. Generally, when a negative outcome occurs it is not the product but rather interaction with the representative that causes the issue. In-store marketing through product demonstrations should be handled with the utmost professionalism. The representatives are a reflection of the brand and it is important that they are professional, personable and knowledgeable about what they are selling.
For more information about in-store marketing and planned product demonstrations please contact Store Support at 905 847 6513 or visit www.storesupport.ca