My Best Promotion
Long-time industry speaker and sales coach Rosalie Marcus, the Promo Biz Coach, provided this month's My Best Promotion. Marcus chose a successful safety program she ran for years, an incentive-based gift program for a large national bakery. To make the program work, Marcus explained how she eliminated budget issues, picked items for a slightly unconventional user base, and kept it fresh and repeating for years.
Promo Marketing: Could you briefly describe the promotion?
Rosalie Marcus: This was something I did several years ago, and it repeated for several years. It was a safety program for a large national bakery.
They were having a lot of accidents, and every time they had an accident in the bakery, they would have to shut down their machinery, pay out workman's comp claims, and lose a lot of productivity and a lot of money. So the objective was, "What can we do to get our workers to work more safely?" So we came up with the idea that every month that they could go without an accident, they would get a promotional gift.
For the monthly gift, they were smaller items, generally under $10 a piece. We did things like flashlights, toolkits, commuter mugs, T-shirts, safety calendars, things like that. It had to be a unisex gift, because they were men and women, and they were factory workers, so it wouldn't be something that would sit on the desk. Most of the things were things they could use while commuting to work.
The program worked so well they went for one full year without an accident. At the end of the year, they got a jacket that was about $75 that they loved. It had the name of bakery and something to do with the program going for 365 days without an accident embroidered on its back.
PM: What made this a profitable promotion for you?
RM: What made it profitable was it wasn't costing the bakery money. They were actually saving way more money than the promotion cost. Every year we brought in somewhere between $30,000 and $50,000 in revenue from this program, but the bakery was saving way more than that in not having to pay out workman's comp claims and shut down their machinery and worker productivity. So it was a great program to sell, because they weren't thinking what am I spending, they were thinking what am I going to save by doing this.
PM: Any advice for those who might be running a safety promotion for the first time?
RM: Well, just whenever you're calling on a large company that's a manufacturing facility to ask, "Who is your director of safety? Do you know if you have a safety program in place, and can you help me out by giving me an introduction to the director of safety?" Then, read up on other safety programs. Just read up, learn up as much as possible, and realize this can be a real cash cow for a distributor, because once you get started with it, it repeats year after year after year.
Want to be considered for a future edition of My Best Promotion? Contact Michael Cornnell at firstname.lastname@example.org or (215) 238-5449 for a list of questions and other details.