It's a word that's used a lot. Gifts that are given away as marketing promotions.
But do they work?
Over the last 7 years I've given away a lot of flowers. Some have gone to promote #britishflowers as a brand, some have been leftovers that I've given to customers as extras, some have been for local charities or groups. They've meant my flowers have been in front of a lot more people than they would have been.
But have they got me more business?
Well what I've found is that if you know exactly how much value's worth of flowers you are giving away, and if the recipient knows how much value's worth they are receiving, then a "freebie" really works. But if they are just "free flowers" then a) no-one knows where they are coming from, and b) if they wanted more, would that be a good sample of what they would get?
Think about it, have you ever been walking through a train station, or a shopping centre, and been given a free sample to eat? Remember what it was?
The chances are, you've no idea what it was, and even if you liked it, and didn't throw away the wrapper, you couldn't find that size sample in a supermarket.
Here’s a flowery example.
For the last 4 years, i’ve provided table flowers for my local “Horsley in Bloom” event. 10 tables of mini posies. It’s an evening in July that celebrates the winners of this local competition, all obviously keen gardeners. It takes part in my village hall which is about 200 metres away from my front door. I was congratulating one of the winners a couple of weeks after the event, and they admitted they didn’t realise the flowers were mine…..
However for exactly the same amount of flowers, For my local school fete, I offered a Silent Auction prize of 3 Subscription buckets of flowers to be delivered in July, August and September. The Value was £90, and the school got a bid of more than half that to put to their funds. The “winner” knew that they’d paid less than full value, they loved the flowers, and realised I had provided flowers and pruned shrubs in their garden for the previous house occupants. They are now on my customer list, waiting for this year’s flowers to start and have told me they are looking forward to a “significant” Birthday as an excuse to get the subscription again.
So before you give away "Free" flowers this year, make sure you know their value, and so does the receipient.