Sales promotion ideas for service-based businesses
Sales promotion is a tried-and-tested way to increase the number of sales leads, sell more products and services, and generate more revenue.
Whether you are selling to other businesses (B2B) or consumers (B2C), companies of any size or scale; every sector can use it to hit growth targets.
Now could be the time to launch new products or services, sell a backlog of stock to make room for new products, or enter a new market. Either way, sales promotion is one of the most effective ways of increasing the number of sales leads in the funnel and generating more revenue. In this article, we take a look at examples of sales promotion strategies.
Table of contents
What you need to know about Sales Promotions:
Examples of Sales Promotions for different verticals:
Sales Promotion Strategies
Every sales promotion needs to start with a goal in mind.
For example, “We need to increase revenue 20% in the next Quarter.”
Or: “We need to sell 1000 units of X. We normally only sell 700 in March. How can we sell more?”
Next, a marketing manager, CMO or CRO needs to set a date when the sales promotion is going to go live. Whenever possible, aim to give sales and marketing teams some runway, to prepare marketing and sales assets. At the same time, your audience/potential and returning customers need time to consider if they’re interested.
When it comes to sales promotion, time is an essential element. They should only last a limited time. That way, potential customers are actively encouraged to buy and buy quickly.
Have everything ready before launching a sales promotion campaign. For B2B sales teams, this means putting the right solutions in place to handle an influx of new sales leads, such as CrankWheel to provide Instant Demos.
Consumer brands need to have landing pages and discount codes ready at the checkout/basket, and point of sale (POS). So that when potential customers enter the funnel they can purchase straight away.
Sales Promotion: Methods and Techniques
Launching a sales promotion is effectively creating a new sales funnel. It needs specific assets to promote the offer. A marketing budget and the intended profit on selling more products/services usually determine what can be put into creating a sales promotion funnel.
When launching a sales promotion, you need to create the following:
- Landing page(s)
- Email campaigns
- Content marketing
- Social media content
- Online adverts - depending on budget
Once those assets are created, marketing teams need to run and automate a campaign. Focus on your current customers, and aim to reach as many potential new customers as possible.
Once leads start coming in, B2B sales teams can take calls/demos to move them through the funnel. Whereas, consumer brands should start seeing an uptick in online purchases (or in-store), using discount codes. In both scenarios, everything is trackable, with metrics to show that the campaign is working. Revenue should increase at the same time.
How to implement sales promotions when selling services?
Services are different than products. Services usually have a longer lead time, from the point of initial interest to securing a conversion. Often, a sales lead/prospect needs to interact with a salesperson to learn more about a service before deciding to go ahead.
Products are different. Either a customer needs them, or not. Can afford them, at that moment, or not. Hence the shift towards eCommerce. Promotions simply make it easier for consumer brands to sell more products, as they’re usually discounted, so more affordable.
Whereas, with services, a sales promotion usually helps bring in more sales leads. However, at that point, the sales cycle is fairly similar to when a sales promotion isn’t being run. It may take less time, as the price for the services being sold is lower, but it still requires salespeople to have meetings, calls or demos with sales leads to move them through the sales funnel.
Below are several examples of how companies in service-based sectors can run sales promotions.
Examples of Sales Promotions for different verticals
When selling solar panels and installation, one way agents can stay competitive is to generate solar leads by offering discounts on the installation or panels.
- Put an offer to entice customers with government funding (in countries using government incentives); securing that for customers before projects go ahead
- Limited time, 20% off for those ordering solar panels for the first time
- No consultation or inspection fees
- Reduced installation costs, for those ordering before the end of a specific period
Digital Marketing Services
Digital marketing services are often priced on an hourly, retainer, or per-project basis. Digital marketing agencies offering these services can at times discount them. For example:
- Temporary discount during off months such as 20% off work that would commence during the summer months
- Special occasion deals e.g. Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals
- A specific dollar amount off the first project
- Free website audit
Be wary, though, of offering too many deals during the year. Otherwise, potential and current clients may wonder if they are getting value for money.
When the real estate market is competitive, and with new cheaper online competitors, realtors could at times offer reduced fees. Or work with partners such as conveyancers and lawyers to ensure they also offer discounts in return for a larger percentage of a realtor’s customer base.
Real estate agents could try any of the following sales promotional offers:
- A no-obligation free estimate
- Reduced commission for a limited time
- Offer incentives such as travel vouchers for listings
- Waive commission if the property hasn’t been sold within a specified time period.
Insurance brands are always in a competitive market. Especially with price comparison sites putting so much information in the customer’s hands. One of the best ways to bring more leads in is to provide exclusive deals for those that come direct, such as the following:
- Guarantee a minimum percentage of a lower quote on the first year than the competition
- An Amazon gift card with every no-obligation quote, for a limited time only
- Customers, who request a no-obligation quote, get entered into a raffle
Wealth advisors are also in a competitive market. Show clients can get value for money and offer lower fees as a way to bring in more customers. Here are a few ways to pull in new clients:
- Percentage off your advisory services, for a limited time only
- Gift card, for every no-obligation tax and pension review
- Wealth management and investment advice, with a discount during a specific period