How to Reach Consumers During COVID-19 Using Product Sampling

Over the past few months, the world as we know it has changed radically, and the shift has been one that was felt widely by both businesses and consumers alike. Due to the demands of this new digital way of living, working and shopping, both businesses and consumers are having to adjust. Contactless product sampling programs have introduced some incredible innovations which are allowing consumers to still access their favorite products without setting a single foot in a store.

How has consumer buying behaviour changed?

During COVID-19, consumer sentiment towards purchasing products has shown a preference for channels of reduced contact when receiving their normal goods and services. So, how has consumer behaviour changed, and what does this mean for contactless product sampling programs? Here are some the of the most noticeable ways in which consumer behaviour has shifted since the outbreak:

1. Hesitancy to purchase products at physical stores 

Many consumers are still wary of the threat crowded shops may pose to their health and safety. With social distancing being the new norm, new buying behaviour shows that a wave of consumers are opting to use e-commerce options and participating in digital product sampling programs instead of visiting physical stores.

2. Consumer optimism 

Many consumers in the US and in Europe express a decline in net optimism about the possibility of economic recovery and being able to resume normal day-to-day activities. Most consumers foresee an immediate need to adapt to a more digital way of accessing products. 

3. Conscious consumption 

Around 49% of consumers are shopping more consciously. Due to the economic downturn of this disturbance, consumers are re-thinking their consumption priorities. That's why there's an even greater need for brands to adopt a smart product sampling strategy and let consumers test sample products pre-purchase. 

4. Acceptance of digital channels 

Industries across the world now function on a digital level, and consumers have had to adapt to this alternative way of accessing products. Digital product sampling solutions and e-commerce platforms are becoming the new norm for consumers, and this has made way for digital product sampling companies to help brand’s reach a whole new class of consumers.

Why digital product sampling programs are the solution

For consumers:

  • Current trends show that an increasing number of potential buyers are apprehensive of shopping in busy stores or crowded malls.
  • Consumers instead prefer to use online options during this time, but these platforms don't typically offer product sampling options to consumers in the way that brands using a strong product sampling program can.
  • Lately, customers are missing out on experiential events which were typically hosted by the brands to offer their consumers a more involved experience of the product. 

Since the coronavirus is transmitted from person-to-person when they are in close contact, digital product sampling allows brands to offer their customers samples while still reducing health risks. Consumers can access products from home while upholding social distancing regulations.

For brands: 

Without warning, brands have had to adapt to a new way of selling and offering sample products. A strong product sampling program is vital for businesses who have lost the ability to provide in-store samples during the quarantine. Here’s why:

  • Currently, there’s a greater need for brands to rethink and redefine how they deliver and present their products since research shows that customer’s spending intent is down roughly 66%. 
  • However, around 49% of the surveyed customers say that they are still open to buying new products - but only if they can do so while still staying at home. 
  • Additionally, 50% of consumers say that sampling products first would be the main factor in choosing to buy the same product later. 
  • A digital product sampling program would allow brands to offer product samples to consumers in a way that is more efficient and accessible than in-store sampling or any other traditional product sampling methods. 
  • Contactless product sampling using a digital product sampling agency would allow brands to reach consumers and increase the chance of conversion as consumers are given the opportunity to experience products without having to leave the comfort of their homes.
product sampling programs

How Peekage can assist?

Peekage can help brands implement their own contactless product sampling marketing campaign through the self-service sampling tool. This allows brands to make their digital catalogue of products available for sampling right on their website or social media page. Brands also have the option to take advantage of the Peekage app, which connects them to Peekage’s broad sampling network of users.

Benefits of Peekage’s contactless product sampling programs:

  • Efficiency and ease: consumers can order samples to be delivered for testing from the comfort of their own home. 
  • Targeting: Peekage allows businesses to target and re-target consumers in order to ensure product samples are only offered to those who show genuine interest in the product.
  • Eliminates the fight for shelf space: Many countries have placed restrictions on the types of products available for retail sales in physical stores during the peak of their coronavirus infections. With Peekage, DirectToConsumer brands can direct their products straight to targeted consumers instead of fighting for the limited shelf space.
  • Access to new consumers: Peekage accelerates your brand’s ability to reach new consumers and establish a strong presence in the market by connecting your business to a broad base of new users through the Peekage app. 
  • Consumer feedback and insight: CPG companies can build a better relationship with consumers by gathering consumer feedback and insight to improve their products and processes. Brands can also effectively target and re-target consumers based on the user reviews and feedback generated.
  • Cost-effective: Not only brand’s can reach new users on Peekage app, but they can also create their own sampling campaign right on their own website or social media page using the affordable Peekage self-service digital sampling tool. Peekage allows brands to leverage their current traffic and convert page viewers and social media followers into loyal customers by offering free samples to pre-screened users.

This hands-off approach towards the delivery and distribution of samples could really help brands reshape their marketing strategy around consumers' new demands. Why not get started with a contactless, insightful product sampling program today? Learn more about how Peekage can help you stay in touch with your loyal customers - no matter what these uncertain times bring. 

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