Promotional Giveaways Require Valuable Insight Into Customer Behavior

Knowledge of customer behaviors and preferences can boost the success of your promotional giveaways.

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Offering promotional giveaways doesn't require a degree in human psychology. Knowing something about what motivates buyers, however, can certainly help your cause.

So what do customers value most in promotional giveaways and other strategies for influencing their buying behavior? To begin, consider these purchasing factors offered by customer retention expert Jim Novo:

  • Half (or more) of your customers are probably one-time buyers, with little likelihood that will change.
  • On average, customers will "buy down" over the lifetime of their relationship with your business. Unless you counteract this tendency, "buyers who 'go cheap' on the first purchase usually have lousy future value."
  • Resending a promotional offer to the same targeted customers may result in as much as a 50 percent response rate, especially if you add a lead-in like "second chance!"


There's a lot of potential in promotional giveaways. But to be most effective, businesses should never embrace a simple scattershot strategy. Take time to develop an approach based on past customer behavior and an understanding of the various aspects that influence a decision to purchase.

Know Your Customers

A discounted offer or product giveaway will be more effective if it's tailored to your target audience. That's why it's crucial to learn all you can about your customers' tastes, incomes and occupations.

Remember, it's not what you might like to get in a free giveaway. It's imperative that the promo product or service you pick is relevant and important to the customer base you're trying to attract and retain, according to Octwelve. You should ensure your offer will actually get attention from your target audience.

Don't Stint on Value

"Free" doesn't have to always mean "cheap." In fact, there's a risk that customers will perceive your giveaway as something of lesser value — a perception that can extend to your overall business.

To avoid this misconception, your company should focus on promoting the most useful products and services that offer real value to consumers. That way, your customer base will begin to associate your company with quality.

Make Clear the Giveaway Is a One-Time Event

The risk of promoting a giveaway product or discounted offer is that customers may come to expect more of the same in the immediate future and thereby hold off making any purchases on their own. Avoid any tactics that cause your product or service to be devalued in the customer's mind.

How and where your customers interact on social media is another key element in any promotional giveaway campaign. According to ReferralCandy, customers are more inclined to seek out brands with engaging, knowledgeable social media. Your giveaway will have more credence (aka value) if it's accompanied by content on your company website and social media platforms that's informative, engaging and trustworthy.

Social media is also a highly effective venue for spreading the word about giveaways. Make it easy for recipients of your campaign to share the news with their own networks, and soon, people will be talking about your business and its exciting offers. Not only do you attract more interest this way, but frequent mentions and "likes" facilitate greater brand awareness and a higher ranking on search engines.

Embarking on a campaign of promotional giveaways can result in significantly greater customer awareness of your business. The key is designing the right strategy — so that awareness centers on value and enthusiasm.