The biggest problem with such promotions today is that marketers operate in a reactionary mode. They also undermine the intelligence of customers, often coming up with ridiculous ideas. For instance, how many television ads do we see where they present three choices and ask viewers to sms the correct answer? But what’s the point? The answer is obvious almost all the time (if not, there’s always Wikipedia) and chances of winning are practically nil. And how many times have you seen a company actually declaring a winner? The result is that customers have become indifferent at best to these kinds of promotions which not only lack imagination but also fall short in the credibility department. And since there are so many contests and lucky draws happening all the time, they don’t stand a chance anyway.
There is no doubt that contests and lucky draws have their place in marketing. However, it is important that marketers approach these activities with a responsive mindset, not a reactive one. They must be well planned and executed, with a fair degree of innovation and excitement built into them to pique the curiosity of the customers. Secondly, marketers also need to incorporate credibility into the campaigns. Instead of allowing the campaign to fizzle out after the initial burst of activity, marketers should follow through by publicizing the names of the winners. This not only adds to the publicity but also creates an atmosphere of trust and sets the stage for participation in future such promotional activities. It is very easy to create a contest or a lucky draw, but engineering its success is a whole different ball game.
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