Why product sampling is one of the strongest PR strategies

By October 5, 2017General

Product sampling is a great way of putting something that you sell into the hands of a prospective customer. In terms of PR, it’s an incredibly influential technique for raising brand awareness.

The trick to executing a strong product sampling campaign is to try and weave a bit of creativity into your plan. Take Perrier Water and their recent idea as an example.

Famous for their water, Perrier was launching two new flavours (strawberry and watermelon) and they needed to create some awareness. Product sampling was the obvious call, but questions still surrounded how the sampling campaign should be carried out.

They devised an ingenious interactive pop-up experience in New York, something that got tongues wagging and was of interest to both consumers and the media alike.

The experience was an all-compassing event, with live music, interactive art exhibits and, of course, products for people to sample. Importantly, Perrier’s experience was incredibly shareable, with a heavy digital theme.

They created the hashtag #PerrierFlavors and created a microsite that was full of interesting, engaging content to support the event. They connected and invited social influencers to come to the experience, plus they partnered with a number of popular bloggers and editors to help raise awareness.

And what of the results? Perrier managed to attract more than 5,500 visitors to the pop-up experience and gave out in excess of 10,000 bottles of water. The campaign generated a lot of column inches and numerous mentions across various social media platforms.

Could you achieve similar success? Of course, but the devil is in the detail. Product sampling campaigns need to be thoroughly thought out and that requires skill and experience.

Don’t be afraid that this will be expensive, because it’s possible to create a great sampling campaign on a budget. The key is to follow the principles. In Perrier’s case, we’re talking about identifying a goal, being social, connecting with influencers and focusing on making a stir.

Your product sampling campaign doesn’t have to include VIP music events and 3D art. That’s not the point. What it must be, though, is memorable. And there are a number of ways of doing that.

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 info@hotcow.co.uk.