When launching a new product, sampling is often one of the first tactics considered. But why doesn’t sampling make the consideration list more often when the goal is to keep unique or core items top of mind? Why not use sampling to induce trial, which will ideally lead to repeat purchase?
Seems simple enough, but the truth is that sampling can be scary for many reasons. When sales numbers are declining, it can feel counter-intuitive to hand over free food to consumers coming in the door with money in their pockets to spend.
However, there is no simpler way to put your money where your consumer’s mouth is.
In a recent QSR Magazine article, Ken King, a senior consultant with National Restaurant Consultants Inc., says one of the most efficient and cheap ways to get a customer interested in a product is to hand him a sample. Free food generates warm feelings toward a brand, and it gets customers hungry for more.
If you want your customers to come back, give them another reason. Pique their curiosity for products they haven’t tried, or items that complement what they’ve already ordered. Don’t just suggestive sell on that order, suggest for their next visit by giving them a taste of what else you have to offer.
Now, just be happy I didn’t get started on sampling outside of the restaurant. I hear knees shaking at the mere mention of it.
Photo credit: Jason Lam