Promotion is a form of corporate communication that uses various methods to reach a targeted audience with a certain message in order to achieve specific organizational objectives. Nearly all organizations, whether for-profit or not-for-profit, in all types of industries, must engage in some form of promotion.
Like most marketing decisions, an effective promotional strategy requires the marketer understand how promotion fits with other pieces of the marketing puzzle (e.g., product, distribution, pricing, target markets).
At the time of designing is important to note the following characteristics of a promotional method, as: Intended Audience(Mass vs. Targeted), Payment Model( Paid vs. Non-Paid), Interaction Type( Personal vs. Non-Personal), Message Flow(One-Way vs. Two-Way),Demand Creation( Quick vs. Lagging), Message Control ,Message Credibility, Effective Cost of Promotion, etc.
Marketers have at their disposal four major methods of promotion:
• Advertising – Involves non-personal, mostly paid promotions often using mass media outlets to deliver the marketer’s message. While historically advertising has involved one-way communication with little feedback opportunity for the customer experiencing the advertisement, the advent of computer technology and, in particular, the Internet has increased the options that allow customers to provide quick feedback.
• Sales Promotion – Involves the use of special short-term techniques, often in the form of incentives, to encourage customers to respond or undertake some activity. For instance, the use of retail coupons with expiration dates requires customers to act while the incentive is still valid.
• Public Relations – Also referred to as publicity, this type of promotion uses third-party sources, and particularly the news media, to offer a favorable mention of the marketer’s company or product without direct payment to the publisher of the information.
• Personal Selling – As the name implies, this form of promotion involves personal contact between company representatives and those who have a role in purchase decisions (e.g., make the decision, such as consumers, or have an influence on a decision, such as members of a company buying center). Often this occurs face-to-face or via telephone, though newer technologies allow this to occur online via video conferencing or text chat.
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