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Buy One, Give One Away

Posted by Michael Bloch in web marketing (Saturday November 19, 2011 )

If you have a product that might also be useful in developing countries, consider a “buy one, give one away” campaign. Aside from the warm and fuzzy aspect, it may boost sales, generate a bit of buzz and even help your search engine rankings.

I work predominantly in the “green” sector these days and quite a few of the products I’m exposed to have applications in developing countries. Of course, the problem for folks in those countries is they can’t afford the products.

In order to get these products into those countries at no cost to the recipients, some companies and groups offer them for sale in their own country under a “buy one, give one away” approach. This simply means what it says – a consumer pays for 2 of a product, and one of the product goes to the buyer and another is sent to a needy individual, family or village in another nation.

So why would people happily pay more for this product? Because it makes them feel good – they are taking a positive action to help someone else without having to do anything more than clicking “buy now”. Of course, they have already had to work for the money they spend, but that is pain in the past.

Marketing campaigns don’t have to be evil or trick people, they can do a lot of good – and the buy one, give one away ticks all the right boxes.

It’s just a matter of hooking up with a non-profit group that can distribute the product in wherever their project areas are – and there would be many that would be pleased to do so. Your role should only have to be getting the product to the local representation of the group/project and they take it from there.

The buy one, give one away concept doesn’t have to involve a community overseas – it could be for a needy group within your own country, or even apply it to the product being shipped to a friend or family member of the shopper.

With so much community work now being done online rather than out in the field due to constraints on people’s time, this concept may work well for you – but don’t just advertise it on your site. Tell a story, make a bit of a song and dance about it and you may get a bunch of free coverage and inbound links from other sites.


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