The B2B and Consumer promotions definitive guide 2021

Download the PDF document

Here is the definitive B2B and Consumer promotions guide, build from the experience of having run +100 promotions in the past 10 years., both B2B and B2C companies.

So, if you need an advanced guide with crucial information to get great results in your promotional campaigns, keep reading! However, it may be that you’re looking for a resource with more introductorily information. In that case, you can read this guide from Cleverism and this one from Keep

Promotions can effectively help to generate demand and increase customer satisfaction. As a result of the COVID-19 crisis, according to McKinsey+40% of Italian consumers are more sensitive with price, and 31% of French consumers try to spend less money on unnecessary purchases. In addition, Deloitte shows that 27% of US consumers were worried about making future payments, and 43% were postponing their purchases, In Spain 45% / 42%, Italy 38% / 50%, France 23% / 49%, UK 21% / 39% and Germany 22% / 33%. Promotions are more important than ever to add value to consumers and B2B clients.   

Why this guide?

Check and implement useful information and resources for your promotions.

Launch effective B2B & consumer promotions.

What to expect from the guide?

  • · Relevant information about B2B & B2C promotions types.
  • · Essential tips & tricks and key recommendations related to promotions and how to obtain key results on your promotions.
  • · Free templates & resources on promotions.

1. The most important B2B promotion types 

B2B purchases usually require a longer process and are typically based on metrics, and, in certain cases, brand trust. Some B2B decisions may need approvals from several departments and may have to deal with multiple stakeholders. Promotions can help speeding up the B2B decision making process.

Here are the most common B2B promotion types:

Trade-in or trade-up plans

The main idea is that companies receive an incentive to return the products they are currently using and replace them with brand new promoted products. As a result, you will usually provide them with a discount for this exchange.

Key recommendations

  • · Implement trade-ins for high-cost products: This type of promotion is commonly more attractive and useful with high-cost items.
  • · Be clear on the mechanics
  • · Analyse legal implications
  • · Have a crystal-clear communication

Trade-in plan example

In June 2019, we launched a trade-in program for Epson Italy. They wanted to get resellers to buy their B2B Inkjet’s solutions.

To achieve that, we built an incentive program where resellers give their current printers and buy Inkjet’s solutions with an added incentive. You can visit the promotional website with this link.

B2B cashback

When we think about cashback, the first thing that probably comes to our minds are B2C cashback. But companies also like them! Here, the main difference is that B2B cashback is more focused on SaaS and products. This is an optimal way to increase revenue and sales. The more companies buy, the greater they will be rewarded. Here, if you work with distributors selling your promoted products, include them in the promotional campaign’s terms and conditions.

Key recommendations

  • · Introduce a limited time to apply to your cashback: It’s essential to set a specific time both to buy your products or SaaS and to register the purchase.
  • · Develop a key message to accompany your goals: More and more B2B businesses are developing this strategy. So, to stand out from the competition, build a strong communication that fits with your campaign. The closer and more creative the message is, the better results you will see.
  • · Think about a communication plan: You must make your promotion known. So, consider launching, on the one hand, online using tools like email, social networks, and even opt for paid ads. On the other hand, you can give offline communication elements like wobblers or flyers to your retailers.

B2B Cashback example

Eurofred, an online shop that sells supplements and components for air conditioning, gave us the opportunity to work with them in 2020. Their goal was to increase Aquatermic products sales to installers of aerothermal equipment.

As a result, we launched a B2B cashback. Installers bought one of the promoted products, and they received a specific amount of money. 

Channel loyalty program

Channel loyalty programs are aimed at those companies that need to increase sales or retailers’ engagement. Do you need to get both things? It’s absolutely fine. You should add a specific incentive, which providing money is not always required, you can also give gifts or coupons, for example.

We launched the definitive guide if you need more information about channel loyalty programs. Check it now!

Key recommendations

  • · Set a rational incentive: It’s essential to provide an attractive and useful incentive, but you must be realistic about how much you can offer. Estimate your incentives’ expenses and conclude if you can provide them or not.
  • · Consider offering training: Training is a good investment for both parts; your partners learn about your product, and they will probably improve their sales!
  • Develop an effective communication strategy:It’s important to build a communication plan to determine when and what you are going to tell your partners. It’s important to be direct and constant in order to get a closer relationship with them.

Channel loyalty program example

For Fujifilm, a multinational photography company. They wanted to expand sales and improve engagement with their partners. We offered them to launch a channel loyalty program where distributors and retailers could register their purchases and receive points to be redeemed with gifts.

To see the promotional website, you can visit it with this link.

Try & Buy

Customers can receive free products to try them to after deciding if they make a purchase or not. This is a good way to make your product and its advantages known. However, this option must be thought carefully before launching as it could lead to high costs.

On the other hand, you can provide products related to your customers’ purchases. If you sell office products, it’s a good option to offer a lamp.

Key recommendations

  • · Make sure your buy & try promotion offers value: You need to think about how your campaign can increase the revenue and value. To do this, you can answer this question (we know that is not easy to respond to): What can my company provide at a low cost for free to get customers to make the purchase?
  • · Start with simple products: If you’ve never offered this type of offer before, accessories are a great start to launch.
  • · Include high rating products:To prevent many products’ returning that you cannot sell after, use products with higher ratings.

Analyse first your target audience’s needs to know which promotion type fits better

Try & Buy example

Netgear, a multinational computer networking company,asked us to build a promotion to increase NAS penetration within distributors and retailers. As a solution, we launched a Try & Buy campaign combined with a sweepstakes mechanic.

2. Top consumer promotions types

B2C purchases tend to be more driven by emotionality. Consumers are sometimes driven by:

  • · They feel a closer relationship with the brand.
  • · The campaign’s message identifies with consumers’ thoughts and feelings.
  • · Users find the product attractive, and it meets their needs.

That’s why, in this case, you should not only focus on what you’re going to promote. You must also invest time in creating a compelling naming strategy to make your target audience feel identified. Finally, if you want to know how to avoid the most common mistakes with online promotions, we recommend reading this post.

B2C cashback

Final consumer cashback works in the same way as in B2B. However, as B2C users act differently, the promotion must also be focused on what they need and how they are. If you want to read more information about what cashback means and how it works, you can read this post.

Key recommendations

  • · Accompany your offer with a strong message: According to McKinsey, 59 million people jobs are at risk in Europe. So, the price become in a key factor. Cashback helps to reduce the price received.
  • · Work on psychological prices: You need to set a strategic cashback. A good practice is to offer quantities finished in 0, like 50€, 100€, etc.
  • · Use cashback instead of reducing prices: With this promotion type, you don’t need to reduce prices. In addition, cashback works better than discounts.

B2C Cashback example

Netatmo, a smart home devices company, needed to make the users buy their products in the selected Point of Sales. That’s why we carried out 3 cashback promotions for 6 months in Spain, where 7 retailers participated.

Deferred bundle

In this case, with deferred bundles, consumers buy a promoted product, and they obtain a specific gift, coupons, etc. immediately. Users know if they meet the requirements and follow the promotion’s terms and conditions, they will receive the incentive.

Key recommendations

  • · Offer an incentive aligned to your values and goals: Users must feel identified with your promotion and the gift they will receive. Search for the incentive that best fits your promotion.
  • · Consider creating future strategies with the brand you will work: If you decide to offer a company’s gift and it works, you can think about repeating another collaboration.
  • · Opt for giving a new product or service: If you recently launched a new product or service, you can give it as a gift to make it known.

Deffered bundle example

TomTom needed to increase its navigator devices sales. So, we proposed them to launch a deferred bundle promotion. We offered consumers a free Fujifilm Instax Mini 9 camera for each TomTom device purchase. Check the promotional website through this link.

Instant win

The main idea is consumers register their purchase, and they automatically know if they win or not the incentive.

Key recommendations

  • · Create an omnichannel campaign: In order to let users participate from anywhere, we recommend developing an omnichannel campaign. As a result, you will provide customers an integrated experience from the first step to the last one.
  • · Provide an optimal User Experience: It’s important to offer an effective user experience to your target audience, as they have to feel a connection with the promoted product.
  • · Think about offering discounts or coupons to users who have participated: You can also give discounts or coupons to those consumers who participated but didn’t win. Consequently, they will keep buying your brand.

Instant win example

Esselte, an office solutions company, aimed to expand staplers’ sales in Spain. So, we launched an instant win campaign where users had to buy one of the promotional products to obtain a suitcase.  

The number of winners was limited to 10 per month, so users had uncertain thoughts if they would win or not until they redeemed their code.


This type of promotion is mainly used to increase brands’ awareness and engagement. To communicate raffles, companies usually use their website.

Key recommendations

  • · Raffle a valuable product or service: You must give reasons to users to participate. It has to be an attractive and high-value product or service. Also, it should be focused on something that users would not normally buy.
  • · Align your visibility and engagement objectives with the participation’s conditions: Set the campaign terms according to your goals. However, if you introduce many conditions, the participations’ rate will likely to be reduced.
  • · Include “accept communications” option when the raffle based on a website: As a result, if users agree with this option, you will be able to keep in touch with them.
  • Don’t forget about legal issues: Raffles have some legal connotations that you should take into account. In the section 3, we explain them!

Raffles example

In 2017 we worked with Logitech. We launched a raffle to increase sales. We offered an exclusive trip to the Hilton Abu Dhabi.

After knowing the raffle’s winner, you can also give a special discount for those who participated.


In this case, the main goal is to create packs of two or more products or services and add a discount. You’re giving the opportunity to users buy more things in one purchase.

Key recommendations

  • · Add value: We recommend including products that adds value to the main product. For example, if your company is a cosmetic, add tools to a product to give a better experience.
  • · Pick products or services your target audience wouldn’t intend to buy: By doing this, consumers will try them for the first time. This way, they can consider this new products or services in future purchases.
  • · Make tests: You can test your bundles campaigns by creating different packs of gifts and see which obtains better results.

Bundle example

Pioneer, the digital Japanese multinational company,wanted to introduce its business in the Audio Visuals industry. In this case, we suggested launching a bundle with high-value cross offers for end consumers. The campaign’s naming was Te lo mereces (You deserve it). If users bought a music system, they also received a headphone.

This campaign was launched in 2012 for 4 months in Spain.

Trade-in plans

Trade-in plans are used to exchange old products for new ones. Here, companies add a discount or reimburse a percentage of the purchase.  

Key recommendations

  • · Implement this strategy when launching new products: Whenconsumers need new products, they don’t usually look for new versions. So, it’s a good practice doing this type of promotions when you inaugurate new ones.

Trade-in plan example

In 2011, TomTom launched a campaign with us. In this case, they have the same goal as above, they needed to increase sales. As a result, we developed a trade-in plan in 17 markets around the world.

Consumers who bought the promoted product and gave their older ones, could receive up to 100€.


In this case, people submit to contests related to specific participants’ skills, such as sport, music, among others, to win an incentive.

Key recommendations

  • · Set contests your target audience can participate: It’s important not to carry out very specific and complicated contests, as users won’t be likely to participate. For example, you can develop text, music or photo contests.
  • · Offer additional incentives to all participants: As a thank you message for participating, you can give a small incentive those who have participated.
  • · Develop contests aligned to your company: Your contests need to be aligned to your values. Thus, it will be more likely to be remembered and to build a strong relationship with your customers.

Contests example

In 2014, we built a contest for Pioneer where users had to do a car’s race to obtain Pioneer’s multimedia car audio products.


Usually, end consumers trust in the other customers’ opinion. That’s why this strategy it’s very useful to expand your customers’ portfolio. You need to encourage your current clients to refer their personal network to your company.

Key recommendations

· Send emails to your loyal customers: Write a message directly to the clients who really trust your brand. Through a customised and direct email, they are probably going to accept your request.

· Add a discount for their next purchase or give them an incentive: Also, to ensure your campaign’s goals, offer them a special incentive.

· Think about the legal factor carefully: When your customers’ want to recommend your company to their friends, sometimes they have to introduce friends’ personal data. The point is you don’t have referring users’ permission to get their details. To make this activity legal, you need to send an email explaining why you have their contact email and also mention that they have the option to stop using their information.

Referral example

We worked for Vileda in 2017 in order to launch a referral campaign. They wanted to increase their Windomatic product. So, we offered users 20€ if they recommended this product to one friend.


Quizzes are commonly perceived as a knowledge or personality test, where users have to answer a number of questions. However, you can build any topic quizzes you want.

Key recommendations

· Build quizzes about interesting topics to your target audience: If you want to get users’ information, you must offer an interesting quiz. For example, if your target audience is focused on teenagers, the personality tests will be a good option.

· Provide a cross-offer: When ending the quiz, you can consider adding a cashback or discount for their next purchases. As a result, you will add value to your campaign.

· Use this information for future marketing strategies: The information you collect can be very valuable for your strategies. You may find new customers’ pain points and needs. That’s why you must reflect when asking questions.


Warby Parker, a glasses and sunglasses online retailer, launched a quiz to let users try at home five pairs of glasses for five days. They included questions about colour, shape and fit preferences to give customers the perfect glasses type.

After mentioning all B2B and B2C promotions types, let’s see which ones offer a direct or indirect incentive:

Direct incentive means users who participate in the promotion will receive the gift. On the contrary in indirect incentives not all participants will get the gift, it’s limited for specific number of members.

Before launching a B2B or consumer promotion campaign, you must take into account a few key legal aspects. So, let’s take a look!

General rules:

  • · T&Cs are always mandatory.
  • · In some cases, and countries, the notary service is required.
  • · Establish contact points with users.

B2B promotions

  • · When offered cash or any other incentive type, participants companies must have a way to include the obtained the incentive as an asset in their balance sheets. So, an accounting document such as a negative invoice or credit note is typically required.  
  • · Try & Buy: You need to develop the binding document to set how many days companies have to try the product before they purchase.
  • · Determine who will obtain the incentive: It is necessary to determine if the incentive will be provided to the organisation or the organisation’s employees. Mainly, you need to think about this with small companies.

Consumer promotions

  • · B2C promotions work differently in each European country. For example, for promotions running in Italy, check this post where we explain the key legal procedures.
  • · Raffles: Raffles work in the same way as lotteries, so, where allowed, you’ll have to pay taxes. For example, in Spain, you must pay depending on the incentive total value., ranging from 11% to 12%.

4. The process of creating B2B and consumer promotions

In order to launch a promotional campaign, it requires a number of steps. When planning and developing a promotion, you must make sure that your promotional message fits your target audience’s needs and goals. On the other hand, users must understand what you’re communicating. Finally, thanks to your communication and the offer’s attractiveness, your target audience buys your promoted product or service.

Having said this, let’s see which activities you need to do to build and launch an effective campaign:

1. Set your goals

Any marketing campaign begins with a specific goal, so, it’s essential to determine yours. For example, sales promotions can be focused on a new product launching, to boost sales with current customers, or to increase brand’s awareness.

After developing your goals, you will be able to choose the promotion type that best fits them.

2. Define your promotion target audience and buyer persona

B2B or B2C promotions must have a specific target audience instead of targeting everyone. In fact, the more precise your target audience is, the more effective your promotional campaign will be.

In the case you have more than one audience group, you must define them precisely. Consequently, you will be able to find common points to develop a sales promotion and cover your audience’s needs and goals.

On the other hand, we also recommend developing buyer personas. This strategy can give you more specific information about your audience including their needs, pain points, goals, background, among others. You can build one buyer persona per target audience group. As a result, it will be easier to know which strategy you should develop. If you need more information about how to create a Buyer Persona, we recommend you to read our inbound marketing guide.

To define your target audience as accurately as possible, you can build B2B and B2C Buyer Personas.

3. Build a redemption table

The redemption table is used to estimate the revenue you’re going to obtain with the promotional campaign. To calculate this, you need to do the following steps:

  • · Indicate the total volume sales: The number of units you estimate to sell in one month.
  • · Set the incentive value: The total cost of each incentive
  • · Specify the Average Street Price or Average Selling Price to the end-user (ASP): The initial product sales price. Here, you have to exclude VAT, which varies in each country.
  • · Perceived price: This value is calculated by subtracting the ASP by the incentive value. The formula is as follows:

Perceived price = ASP – Incentive value

  • · Incentive value %: This represents the percentage of the product’s incentive value over its total price. It’s calculated by dividing the incentive value by the ASP and multiply the result by 100, as indicated below:

Incentive value % = (Incentive value / ASP) * 100

  • · Determine the ASP Total Value: Here, you have to multiply the total volume sales by the ASP, as it follows:

ASP Value = Total volume sales * ASP

  • · Estimate % Redemption: This indicates the percentage of sold products you’re going to get with the campaign.
  • · Calculate the total redeemed units: You need to multiply the % redemption by the total volume sales.

Redeemed units = redemption % * Total volume sales

  • · Evaluate the total cash: Multiply the redeemed units by the incentive value.

Total cash = Redeemed units * incentive value

  • · Take the retailer margin and calculate their absolute margin:

Retailer margin = Retailer margin * ASP

  • · Indicate the retailer buying price: subtract the perceived price by the retailer ABS margin, as per below.

Retailer buying price = Perceived price – Retailer ABS margin

  • · Estimate the revenue: multiply the retailer buying price by the total sales volume.

Estimated revenue = Retailer buying price * Total sales volume

  • · Calculate the net revenue: When estimating the revenue, you also have to subtract the incentive total cost. The formula is:

Net revenue = Revenue – Total cash

  • · ROI: Finally, to know the Return of Investment, you need to divide the estimated revenue by the total cash.

ROI = Estimated revenue / total cash

If you prefer, to calculate easier and faster the estimated revenue of your campaign, you can download our free template.

4. Set the promotion budget

You must know what your brand is going to invest in the campaign. This involves developing cost breakdowns to determine the following information:

  • · Percentage of sales: You will obtain this result through the redemption table.
  • · IT: As you are probably going to build a promotional website, you will need to hire IT services.
  • · Legal: In each promotion, it must be developed the Terms and Conditions. So, you will need to hire legal services too to make sure that all is in order.
  • · Software expenses
  • · Etc.

If you have this information, you will know if it makes sense to launch the campaign.

5. Build the Unique Seller Proposition

It’s time to develop the USP. The Unique Seller Proposition is the main benefit your company has that makes your business different from the competition. That’s why you need to invest time thinking about this question: What really makes you different? Why do your customers prefer your brand instead of others?

In addition, the USP needs to convey that you’re going to cover your target audience’s needs through the promotion.

Build the perfect USP for the campaign with brainstorming sessions with your team. Five minds work better than one.

6. Choose the product or service to promote

When you gather all the information mentioned above, it will be easier to decide which products or services you are going to include in the promotion.

7. Write down the Terms and Conditions

It’s essential to define which requirements users must follow to receive the incentive. Here, you should include the following:

  • · The promoter’s name and address.
  • · The promotional period and products or services included.
  • · The gift and how many gifts you are going to provide.
  • · Retailers where users can buy the promoted product or service.
  • · The time buyers have to register their purchase.
  • · Possible restrictions on the number of participations.
  • · How and when winners will be notified.
  • · Any copyright information about participations.
  • · The time buyers have to rectify their possible registration’s incidences.
  • · The time’s margin your company has to give the incentive.
  • · Possible restrictions or limitations.

For more information related to the most important legal factors, you can read the section 3 which we talk about it!

8. Build a promotion website or webpage

Choose between creating a site dedicated only to the promotion or adding a section on your website. In addition, on the website, you must indicate the total number of participations remaining until the end of the promotion.

After deciding this, the steps users and your company will need to do to get the incentive are these:

  • · Consumers take the action you are looking for (typically buying your product).
  • · Then, they refer to the promotional website to fill the form with the required information.
  • · From your side, you will have to accept or reject the participants.
  • · Finally, they will receive the incentive.

9. Hire a software to manage your promotion

In order to manage the promotion’s participation, you must hire a platform. As a result, it will be easier to accept and reject them and control the campaign.

Many platforms help the B2B & Consumer promotions management. But you can consider our complete RunRunPromos software, which we talk about in section 5.

10. Develop a communication plan

In order to make your B2B or consumer promotion known, you need to set a communication plan. First, you need to know where you can find your target audience. You can include offline and online communication elements:

  • · Offline (Point of Sale): If you are going to collaborate with retailers, you can give them wobblers, flyers and A4 to be distributed in their shops.
  • · Online: In this case, you can also consider sending emails to your current customers, create banners, social media posts and launch paid ads. Regarding banners, depending on retailers’ capabilities, it is a good option to include banners on their websites and yours.

If you need more information or help to launch your online promotion, we offer a free 1:1 consultation for free to suggest you an optimal strategy.

5. How to track B2B and consumer promotions results

In order to track your promotion, please:

  • · Take the total participations’ number: Add the total number of participations, and compare the results with the redemption table. Consequently, you will know if you had achieved your previous estimations.

  • · Take your communication plan results:
    • Offline (Point of Sale): To conclude if your offline communication had optimal results, you can add a question in the website’s form to analyse how consumers know your promotion.
    • Online: Take all activities data (emailing, social networks, paid ads, among others) to see how many impressions and clicks you obtained. In addition, if you have already done another B2B or B2C promotional campaign before, compare both results to conclude which worked better. Explicar conversions a landing etc

Tracking will help you finding the gaps and applying improvements in your next campaigns.

  • · Add all your campaign costs: In the previous section, we mentioned you need to estimate the campaign’s expenses. Here, you must know precisely how much your company has invested to after calculating the return. On the other hand, compare these costs with other promotional campaigns you launched to conclude if it required the same investment or more.
  • · Calculate your ROI (Return on Investment): Subtract your sales promotion total cost from your profits. Then, divide it by your expenses to finally multiply it by 100 to get the percentage. The formula is as follows:

ROI (Return on Investment) = ((Profits – Investment) / Investment) * 100

If you get a positive ROI, then, your campaign has been profitable.

To calculate and estimate your B2B or consumer promotion results, you can download or free template to use it before and after their launch.

6. Our software RunRunPromos

When developing B2B or consumer promotions, you need to think about a platform to manage the promotion. With software, it will be easier to control the participations, accepting, rejecting o creating incidents. You can combine many promotion types with their mechanics; there’re more than 100. In this post, we explain them!

You can consider our RunRunPromos Software, which offers the following activities:

· Landing page builder: You can create a customisable landing page to provide the best user experience. In the form, you can also personalise your fields’ type and name, including date, number, bank account numbers, phone numbers, drop-downs with the batch upload, among others.

· Data reporting: In order to know if the campaign is working, you can see updated web analytics, graphics and metrics.

· Email campaigns: Also, you can send easily personalised emails with no graphic designers needed. In the emails, you can schedule them and add images.

· More than 100 promotions combinations: There’re more than 100 available promo combinations. You can incorporate the promo type you prefer with the incentive and pick the way to obtain it.

· Many mechanics and incentives to choose: You can select from many mechanics, which are: text, video or music contests, trivia, polls, buying promos, Trade-in promos, 2-step promos, trials, quizzes, only entry promos, referrals and loyalty. In addition, your incentives can be based in limited or unlimited coupons, gifts and cash.

· Integration with other sites or Facebook: Introduce your landing page on your website or your Facebook corporate page. Also, you can include your landing page in both.

· 20 languages adaptations: The landing page can be adjusted in English, Spain, Catalan, French, German, Italian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Greek, Finish, Hebrew, Flemish, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovak, Slovenian and Turkish.

· 100% responsive: The software automatically creates 100% responsive landing pages.

If you have any doubts about launching your promotional campaign in RunRunPromos software, don’t hesitate to contact us!

7. [Checklist] Steps to create and launch promotional campaigns

To increase companies’ sales and awareness, B2B and consumer promotions are key. That’s why we provide you with all available information through this guide. Hope it was useful for your promotional strategies!

Finally, we’ll recap the most important points of the guide:

  1. Understand which are the best promotion types for B2B and B2C.
  2. Follow the process of creating a promotion strictly. You cannot choose the promotion type without first defining the goals and target audience.
  3. Hire a platform to manage the promotion.
  4. Calculateif the campaign has worked. Consequently, these results will help you with future promotions.
  5. Take care of your partners.

To create and launch an optimal sales promotion, you can download our free checklist! Contact us for any questions or opportunities to develop!