Are more companies trying their hand at online sampling?

By August 9, 2017General

It seems that increasing numbers of businesses are trying online sampling, because they realise that there’s nothing quite as powerful as putting their product into a consumer’s hands.

Product sampling isn’t anything new. In fact, it has always been a vital marketing strategy. But until the huge advances in technology and the accessibility of customers, online sampling has faced many barriers.

Thankfully for any e-commerce business, online sampling is now easier than ever. Which is a good job, since it’s thought that 73% of consumers said that a product sample would persuade them to purchase the item.

So, why does online sampling work?

Well, we think it works for 3 reasons really.

The first is to combat potential questions and issues. Rather than having to wade through a bunch of FAQs on a website or in a brochure (and still potentially not have a question answered), a product sample allows people to try before they buy.

This is a hugely important psychological step in the sales process and something that even the best salesmen struggle to overcome. Yet by sending a product to a potential customer, you’re handing them the answers they need.

Online sampling also works because it enhances the relationship between the brand and the consumer. A sample means that a brand is leading by example and, as such, there’s an element of trust that is immediately established.

The third reason that online sampling is powerful is because people are just generally bombarded with so much messaging these days. Sales should always revolve around the product or service, not how much you try to communicate with people.

There’s simply too much noise out there and it’s becoming harder for brands to cut through the clutter. Consumers are tuning out to advertising, which gives marketers a problem. However, they still love to try new things, so the opportunities are still there.

Online sampling allows e-commerce companies to tap into that potential. Don’t forget that sampling also lets businesses learn more about their audience. A sample can arrive with a survey or some sort of a digital registration form. In turn, these can often reveal priceless information, both about the customer and the product.

Hotcow is a non-traditional creative agency that specialises in experiential marketing that goes viral. Our campaigns generate buzz through crowd participation, PR and content sharing. Contact us on 0207 5030442 or email us on