MARKETING
Free! Use Product Samples to Boost Your Business

“Free” is a powerful small business marketing word. The prospect of getting something for nothing is a surefire attention-getter, something you can use to generate interest in your business, build your brand and grow your customer base.

For a small retail or manufacturing business, giving away free samples is way more effective than a single media advertising exposure. According to studies, more than 50% of shoppers try products they would not ordinarily consider because of a free sample.

There are many other benefits, too. For example, free samples give people something to talk about. A freebie puts your product in the hands of prospects. Free samples are a great way to persuade retailers to add your product to their shelves. Freebies can also drive traffic to your website and boost your search engine rankings.

Free samples are one of the most cost-effective marketing techniques available. If you divide your advertising budget by the number of new customers you expect to generate and then compare the advertising cost per customer with the cost of a free-sample promotion, usually the free-sample promotion is a winner.

You should also consider how you want to distribute your free samples. Focusing on individuals who are most likely to use your product or service will maximize your results. Trade shows and industry events reach broad audiences, while online advertising can reach an unlimited number of potential customers. Street fairs and craft shows can also be good venues for distributing samples. Think about pairing your free sample with coupons or other special offers.

In addition to attracting new business, you can also use samples to thank customers for repeat business or referrals. And if you’re thinking of launching a new product, market test it by offering free samples and soliciting feedback.