Research on sampling has been going on for several decades and the results remain pretty consistent over time. Giving someone a sample of your product has always had a tremendous return on the investment.
Cindy Johnson was a product sampling expert for CPG brands and now owns a company called Sampling Effectiveness Advisors. During Cindy's career with P&G, she worked with all brands in her role as Corporate Sampling Programs Manager.
According to a report Cindy authored entitled "Why Sampling?" she found that 73% of consumers asked to evaluate eight marketing channels’ influence on their purchasing decisions said a product sample would persuade them to buy a new product, versus 19% for a TV ad.
Based on a report from Sampling Effectiveness Advisor report:
"Most brands will consider product sampling only if they have a new product (or line extension) which affords them the opportunity to include sampling in the marketing plan. However product sampling can deliver strong results behind a number of different objectives. While the only reason for product sampling is to induce trial, sampling has been shown to be successful in delivering various objectives and under many situations. (Each of the examples assumes that trial objectives are met by chosing the right program, target, etc.)."
What Can Product Sampling Do?
Product sampling can:
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