Money, Chocolate and Pajamas: The Inside Scoop
Happy October everyone! A new month means a new batch of sales advice articles from yours truly, so today I thought I'd share some of the best info from each of my three stories. Each story I feel is pretty loaded up with good content, but here are some of my favorite points from my three October articles on chocolate, sleepwear and promotions for banks and other financial businesses:
CHOCOLATE: Useful in increasing mail survey response rates
Ida Beth Barner, director of business development for Maggie Lyon Chocolatiers, Norcross, Ga., described an instance where the company's chocolate was used to improve survey response rates.
"One promotion we did for a car dealership had the customer satisfaction survey recreated in chocolate," she said. "Of course, all of the excellent boxes were checked on the chocolate survey so that the customer would be encouraged to fill out the form with excellent responses. This was mailed to customers on a monthly basis who had purchased new cars," explained Barner. "We enclosed a self-addressed paper survey along with the chocolate survey. The customers were thanked for their business and asked to take their time and fill out the survey. The response rate of the surveys that were returned went up dramatically."
SLEEPWEAR: Using robes as a gift for new moms at a birthing center
Shawn Kanak, CAS, vice president of Towel Specialties Inc., Baltimore Md., noted a time where the company's robes were used as a gift for new mothers at a hospital's birthing center.
"In the spring we fulfilled a project for a birthing center," he said. "The director's goal was to put more focus on the mother. The baby traditionally receives all of the hugs, kisses and hospital gifts, while mom generally only receives feelings of self fulfillment and pain meds," said Kanak. "The goal was to have 'moms' leave with a tangible positive experience as well. We packaged a beautiful Turkish robe with our slippers and a nicely fragranced lotion set into one of our lined wicker basket as a 'perfect gift for mom,'" he explained. Kanak stated that each mother who gave birth in the center received the robe gift bundle, and noted overall that the promotion was extremely successful. "They are so confident that the program will be a continued success that they have already ordered again for this fall season," he said.
BANKS: tying special pens into check security programs
Kristie Schnier, national director of sales and marketing for Sanford Business-to-Business, Oak Brook, Ill., described a hypothetical promotion where a pen that uses wash-proof ink, such as Sanford's Uni-ball 207 Gel, could be used in check security demos. The ink in the pen is impervious to a fraud practice known as check-washing, where defrauders seize completed-yet-uncashed checks, chemically wash the ink off the desired fields, and re-enter the information they want. "Institutions across the country are conducting seminars on identity theft prevention," she said. "Each participant [could be] provided with a sample of the pen with the bank's logo and has experienced the impact that this simple promotional item can have on his or her everyday life."
That's all for this week! I hope you found these ideas helpful, and be sure to check back in a few weeks to see the full versions of the stories online.
Until next week!
MONDAY MIKE FACT: I had a sicilian pizza topped with anchovies and onions over the weekend. It was pretty much the most wonderful thing.