Discounting has its place for any brand within the annual sales promo calendar but it’s hardly a new, creative, and innovative idea to drive consumer spending.

Sure, you could just take the easy and risk-free route and slash a price.

But right now, retailers are competing fiercely for every penny of consumer discretionary spend, so it pays to stand out – and that’s why learning to leverage the Science of Sales Promotion will deliver significant return on investment.

Below are six questions you should ask yourself before launching a new discount-based sales incentive.

And if you like what you read, you can find even more tips by downloading our Science of Sales Promotion report, packed with ways for your brand to profit.

What pays better than discounting?

There are always plenty of variables and unknowns across every single promotion you will offer, but overall, there is evidence to show why smarter incentives win out over discounts.

From the wide range of historic promotions we’ve run for brands at Opia, 40-80% of consumers say the incentive influenced their buying decision with a third to a massive 70% saying they switched brand to take advantage of a promo.

When will the time of year make the biggest impact?

Whether it’s a seasonal promotion or an incentive planned around a sporting tournament such as the Super Bowl, FIFA World Cup, or Six Nations Rugby, there are tonnes of points throughout the year to take advantage of the Science of Sales Promotion.

Cashback during short-term tournaments can cost you 20-40% less than discounting while money-off purchases have proved to work extremely well at times of peak demand, for instance, Back to School.

How will we tempt consumers to trust us without cutting prices?

Offering people the chance to experience your product in their own home can prove extremely effective. It emphasises the faith you have in that product and can be run for a set period such as 30, 60, or 90 days. You can also offer these consumers a gift or cashback if they keep it – a combo that is far more enticing than a discount at point-of-sale.

Conversions are generally very high here with one promo run by Opia showing 34% of buyers wouldn’t have purchased had it not been for this incentive type.

Who will our smarter promos benefit the most?

Dare we say it, but everyone… from the consumer to category managers to shopfloor salespeople at retailers.

Having a clever and carefully designed promo that’s simple to explain and easy to demonstrate will convert increased consumer take-up vs discounts, empower sales staff to confidently push your brand, and save you 20-60% compared to traditional point-of-sale activations.

Where do the main risks come from?

Working with a trusted partner such as Opia can massively mitigate any risks. For instance, we’ve got a dedicated AI team on hand alongside fraud experts to identify threats to your promos and deter those trying to take advantage.

Other common worries might include the risk of costs spiralling out of control if your smarter promo goes extremely well. But at Opia we are experts at securing the right level of insurance – so if product flies off the shelf, the cost to your brand never goes above a certain level.

Why are smarter promos so effective vs discounting?

To put it simply, this comes down to data. Imaginative incentives don’t have to be a risk. They can be powered by historic data and analysis both from your brand and from Opia’s wealth of experience.

Knowledge + insight = inventiveness + predicted engagement – and these types of promotions give you the opportunity to gain even more data points from consumers to use in the future. Discounts don’t and can’t do that!

At Opia, we have a very particular set of skills, developed over a long period of time to reward your customers, and earn you more money.

Creative and innovative campaigns can be deployed with the speed and ease of a discount – and managed with exceptional levels of dedication and meticulous attention to detail.

To find out more, and for loads more tips and advice on the Science of Sales Promotion to boost your brand’s bottom line, download our report right here.