Sales Promotion FAIL

Sales promotions are a popular part of the marketing mix. Sales promotions can be a great way to build awareness about your brand, reward loyal customers or just eliminate excess stock.

Except this one. It is a sales promotion fail.

I saw this 5% off book at an otherwise amazing independent bookstore in Columbus, OH. If customers don’t want to read Soul Pancake for $19.99, do you think they would be motivated if the price were $18.99? It would be more than a dollar’s worth of hassle just getting that stubborn sticker off the cover. This paltry sales promotion seems calculated to make customers laugh, not buy the book.

When planning sales promotions, make sure the offer is meaningful to the customer. Consider the customer’s context – in a world where Amazon sells a book for 41% off publisher’s list price, offering a 5% discount simply highlights that this bookstore’s prices are higher. This bookstore should not compete on price – they will lose every time. They need to give customers something that Amazon can’t – an experience, a feeling or a relationship.

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