What is Promotional Sales?

S What is Promotional Sales

Anyone who is selling something, be it a product, service, or digital resource/tool can benefit from the use of promotional sales. But with the sheer number of options and strategies it can be hard to commit to one with confidence. Let’s start by answering the question “What is Promotional Sales?”

Promotional sales are any effort made by the company to drive sales or promote a new product. It serves as a powerful technique to help persuade any potential clients into buying your product.

The most common techniques used to achieve this is an appeal to a customer’s logic, or the use of urgency/FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). This usually creates a spike in sales and assists greatly in creating a powerful launch for new products. These promotions can also make for a great tool to assist any customer in making a decision to buy.

Why should I start using Promotional Sales?

There are two main reasons why a company uses promotional sales; either to promote sales of their current offers or to assist in the launch of a brand new product. Each of these have very different applications and effects. Therefore we will be looking at them separately to better understand the benefits of each.

Increasing current sales

Most large companies run these kinds of sales promotions during the holiday seasons In order to take advantage of already peeking sales. Nevertheless these techniques can be used during any season. Whether or not a promotion succeeds or fails will be entirely dependent upon its execution. To be honest, the reason why these are so popular is because they’re very hard to mess up. Offer any customer a BOGO sale and whether or not they buy, no one will deny the value of the deal. 

Surveys say that 93% of consumers report having used at least one coupon in the last year and sales increases of over 100% are not unheard of. These increases in profits are heavily affected by the amount of promotion around the actual sale. In almost all cases the more awareness you can generate around a sales promotion the larger the bump in sales you can expect. Business owners also predict and often see a large increase in brand awareness and brand adoption during a short-term promotional sale. So long as your company regularly puts itself in front of new customers you can expect a larger conversion rate when utilising promotional sales.

Launching a new product

Launching a new product is a difficult undertaking that not many companies take with the gravity of deserves. If you’re looking to launch a new product I’d recommend doing your research to make sure you get it done, the right way. A good place to start would be an article made by Altitude Marketing called “launching a new product: seven steps to make sure you’re ready”. 

Promotional sales play a huge role in launching a new product. You usually want to refrain from lowering your prices at launch, but many of the techniques below can be used to boost your initial conversion rate. This will give your launch the power it deserves. The most common techniques used to build hype around a product launch would be giveaways, contests, and sales bundles. These allow you to develop a following of people who are already interested in the product before the launch, giving you the traffic you need to boost the sales without having to offer a discount. You can save the discount for those customers who attend the initial offer event but don’t make a purchase. By following up with them and offering a special deal you can secure sales that wouldn’t have been made otherwise.

How do Promotional Sales work? 

Most marketing appeals to someone’s pathos (Emotion) or ethos (Credibility & Ethics). But promotional sales appeal instead to someone’s logos (Logic and reason). Below are some examples of all three types of marketing.

Pathos marketing:

These kinds of adverts often directly reference an emotion and connect it to their brands.These are not often used by newer companies but can become a staple of well-established brands.

C What is Promotional Sales

Source: Coca-Cola

HNC What is Promotional Sales

Ethos marketing:

The most common type of ethos marketing you’ll find will be through the endorsement of celebrities and people in authority positions. By associating a brand with household names that consumers trust its possible to lend credibility to the company. Though the other side of ethos, ethics, can be a powerful tool in some markets. Dawn is a great example thanks to their companies efforts in marketing themselves as the “Soap of choice for non-profits in their efforts to clean wildlife during oil spills”. Though this can be a risky tool if the claims are not genuine.

SM What is Promotional Sales

Source: Smart Water

D What is Promotional Sales

Source: Dawn

Logos marketing:

Data, research, and price reign supreme when it comes to logos marketing. Either through supporting statistics or incredible deals you can use a customer’s logic to heavily influence the decision-making moment at checkout. This is the basis for promotional sales and is believed to have the most effective and immediate effects of any of the three appeals.

V What is Promotional Sales

Source: Verizon

Source: Target

Common Promotional Sales techniques

Free Gifts

This kind of promotion is most commonly used by those running online businesses. These gifts can range from free ebooks on a topic (hopefully related to a product they sell), or even a free trial you don’t normally offer for a service or tool. The application of this promotional sales technique is best used for lead generation rather than sales. Though it’s up to your company to determine its true usefulness.

Discount Prices

When using discounts to generate revenue and sales spikes during holidays or celebrations most company’s focus on promoting and making the sale as clear as possible. For website owners and ecommerce businesses this technique can be an incredible tool to help drive purchases. By regularly running discounts on featured products or services and using an email list to drive traffic to those sales, extra profits and purchases can be predictably created. You can even save abandoned baskets after a customer has left your website. By using tools to monitor customer activity, targeted emails can be sent after they abandon a basket offering a discounted price on their purchase.

Quick Tip! If you use email marketing tools that can be customized for each different customer you can increase your click to open rate by as much as 30%!


Coupons are everywhere and with good reason. They save consumers money and generate extra sales for companies. Electronic coupons are currently on the rise and 80% of consumers say a coupon received on their phone would influence them to purchase a brand they typically would not buy.


Once upon a time giveaways typically required a purchase to be made with the goal of increasing sales. But recently contests are growing online as both a way to drive traffic and generate leads. By utilising social sharing and marketing you can create semi-viral contests that essentially self-generate new leads/traffic over the course of the campaign. There are many nuances to running a successful giveaway so make sure to do plenty of research. You also need to make sure the prize is something your target audience would want/benefit from.

Loyalty Programs

These are typically reserved for larger companies in the retail business. Loyalty programs revolve around the promise that repeated purchases and brand loyalty (on the customers behalf) will result in rewards often in the form of free products or discounts. Many retailers also require you to sign up for a loyalty program in order to take advantage of regular sale prices.

Sale Bundles

These are great for informational products that are a part of a series. Companies often know when multiple products work together to provide a customer with a much better outcome than just one. They can then use a sale bundle that provides a discount on the purchase of both at once. This increases the average basket value while simultaneously helping the customer get more value from a purchase.


The most common type of rebate used is a mail-in rebate(MIR). This sales tactic works as a promise to a customer for a partial refund of a product they purchased at full price. A form containing various information about the customer must be filled out and mailed in order to receive the rebate. MIR’s are popular for two main reasons. One, they allow retailers and manufacturers valuable information about consumers. And two, redemption rates will never be 100%. This allows businesses to generate extra profit. (The rate of redemption varies wildly depending on the demographic and product so no exact data exists.)

Tripwire Products

Tripwire products is a promotional sales tactic that serves to help create more loyal customers that have an increased likelihood to purchase big ticket items that are difficult to cold sell. They most often take the form of an “Intro or sample” product at a much lower price tag. By making these sales it gives the company a foothold with customers that can lead to warmer sales. 

Final Thoughts

No matter your business I hope you can benefit from one of the tactics discussed above. They have made countless entrepreneurs and companies millions in extra profits and I know they can help you increase your sales as well. Thank you so much for reading “What is Promotional Sales?” I hope you benefit from this and the other articles found here on the Jayd Branding blog.

My name is John Draughon IV. I have worked in graphic design for 4 years and have always had a passion for business and entrepreneurship.