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Promotional marketing is a broad term largely used to describe Experiential marketing efforts used by brands. Brands use various forms of marketing in order to promote their brands however ‘Promo’ differs from typical above the line advertising (TV, RADIO PRINT) by allowing the customer to engage and interact with brands in sensory ways. This makes for a memorable, Personal experience that helps the target market to form a connection to a brand, thus encouraging the consumer to buy their products and become a loyal customer.

When a brand launches a new product, It needs to create a platform to expose the product to its given target market. This is where Creative Agencies come in. These companies formulate exciting, innovative concepts that allow a brand to introduce their product to the public. These ideas are generally based around a number of methods implemented to encourage an end goal (usually sales uplift) such as sampling, capturing data and discounted vouchers/redemption coupons.

Once the creative agency has a brief in place it needs the right staff to make the event a success! This is where a promotional staffing agency comes into the picture to source staff for them.

Promotional Staffing agencies receive hundreds of individual requests from brands and creative agencies per year often calling for staff all over the UK and Ireland with brand specific briefs to match. The staffing agency will then look to shortlist profiles of people who are a suitable match for the brand in question.

This is where Promo Fo’s comes in - a central hub for reliable, reputable and enthusiastic promotional staff all across the UK & Ireland and a place where agencies of all sizes can find the staff they are looking for.

All agencies work to different payment terms so it is important to find out what these are when taking the job so not to be disappointed. Most agencies will pay you straight into your account within 4-6 weeks after you have carried out the work but may require that you invoice them first (explained next). If it is has been longer that 8 weeks and you still haven’t been paid (and the job was one you found on Promo Fo’s) then message us here, in some cases a quiet word from us helps speed the process along - Usually the bigger the agency the more efficient they are at paying. The trick is to get your invoices in (and sometimes expenses) as soon as possible, and then call or email 3-4 days later to check it’s been received. After that all you can do is be patient. Most agencies want you paid as much as you do but some wait to be paid by the client before they can pay staff. If the date you were expecting to be paid has passed, then phone the agency. In this scenario it is good to know the person in accounts; having these people on your side will pay dividends so be nice.

All agencies differ in their Payment procedures and it is important to clarify with the agency how to go about getting paid when you are booked on a job.

Most agencies will require you to register on their database in order to be paid. It is important that you complete the registration with all the correct details and update your details should anything change.

If the agency operates on a PAYE basis a wage claim form or invoice template will usually be sent to you once you have been booked on a job. It is important that you fill this is correctly alongside a P46 (Crucial to ensure you are on the correct tax code) and send it back to the agency within a reasonable time frame to avoid being missed off the payroll.

Students should complete a P38 form, and although still eligible for tax deductions can claim this back at the end of the tax year.

Due to various restrictions from the HMRC many agencies operate on a strictly PAYE basis, which means your tax and NI payments are automatically deducted from your wages.

If however the nature of your work is of a more freelance basis e.g. Event Management, face painting, modelling, costume, acting or dancing and you have a legitimate UTR number most agencies will pay you self-employed. This involves you invoicing the agency using either your own or an agency template. Self-employed invoices are usually paid 30 days after the work is carried out.

If it is has been longer than 8 weeks and you are yet to receive payment (and the job was sourced via Promo Fo’s), then message us here In some cases a quiet word from us helps speed the process along.

Useful Links:

Questions relating to Tax:

You can find a P46 form here

There is lots of different promo work out there. Some more fun than others but that’s what you will learn to love about the job. Sometimes the jobs which seem like the most exciting on paper aren’t so great and the ones which you think will be dull turn out to be the best. The diversity of the job is what makes Promo a great industry to be in.

Here’s a breakdown of all the different types of promo work in order of the popular types of work first:

Core Team Road show – Can be based in or outside, if you have the flexibility these are the jobs everyone loves working. In small to medium sized groups (i.e. you and an Event Manager alone or with a small team) will travel across various cities / towns throughout the UK over a period of time promoting a product. It will usually be some form of sampling or demonstrating but this is where you build friendships, explore different parts of the UK and generally just ‘get away from it all’ at the same time. Only the experienced ones will usually get such jobs but it’s not difficult to gain it and you will need to be available for all dates. A training day will definitely be involved most of the time and all travel and accommodation expenses + over night food allowances are usually paid on top of what will be a competitive day rate.

Promotional Model – Most of the time inside and require girls only. A promotional model will usually be someone with model looks. This type of job will usually be for a high end luxury brand so the agency will require very glamorous girls with natural beauty and 5’7”+ tall.

Sampling – Usually based outside but often inside too, in groups you will target high footfall areas and hand out complimentary (never free) samples to the public. Making sure you are telling everyone the brand messages in the process (very important).

Demonstrating – Usually based inside you will be trained on a product to then demonstrate to the public. This type of work will likely take place at an exhibition or big event. The product can range from a computer game to a smart phone

Costume Work – Fancy dressing up as super Mario? Well this work may involve just that. Usually based inside you will be dressed in costume from head to toe, often interacting with kids etc. This work will most likely require petit people and pay handsomely with lots of breaks.

Rigging – Promotional stands don’t build themselves, sometimes the agency will call upon extra bodies to help. Most of the time based inside and usually for men only, you will be expected to assist with stand builds. Expect to work unsocial hours and some heavy lifting which is usually compensated with good rates of pay. You won’t need to wear a uniform or worry about brand messages either.

Hostess Work – Usually based inside and 90% of the time for girls only. You will likely be front of house, intelligent, very well presented and dressed glamorously (think long black dress, heels etc.). Your job is to perhaps see people to their seats, run a guest list, provide table service and all things hospitality related.

Mystery Shopping – Effectively you are a spy. The person who goes undercover to check on others to make sure people are doing their jobs properly. Usually working alone and can be based in or out side.

Merchandising – Similar to mystery shopping you are checking to make sure things have been done properly. Usually based inside and alone you will be tasked with entering a number of shopping establishments (for example) to check that they have displayed promotional offers or product layout as instructed. Bring a camera, they will want photo evidence.

Data Capture / Lead Generation – Usually based inside you will work adjustment to the team with the sole responsibility of generating email addresses and contact information for the client (to follow up on). These jobs vary, sometimes it can be a hard sell but regardless the agencies tend to know it isn’t an easy job so wouldn’t expect miracles but equally expect people to have what it takes to approach people and give it a real go.

Leafleting – Usually based outside and by yourself or in small groups, you target consumers with literature to hand them which often directs them to the store or details an upcoming event or offers some form of discount. (Look out for the ‘What makes a good Promo Person’ video).

Other – Other jobs include PR Stunts; a flash mob of people required to take part in a huge public stunt. This will usually pay high hourly rates for short hours of work. Market Research; This also pays great rates for short hours of work. Often will involve a group or one to one discussion where you will be asked a number of questions and required to give honest feedback on products etc. Some online based work could be involved too. Ring / Grid Girls; similar to promotional models, agencies look for glamorous girls to hang around the ring in between boxing rounds or on the track during race day events.

A breakdown of the roles and what they involve.

E.M. (Event Manager) – Usually Pays £120 - £185 per day. The EM will be expected to drive so a clean license is a must. You will then be required to collect the van (usually a transit or 3.5 ton Luton van with a tail gate), collect the stock, the uniforms and generally manage the team on the day. A good EM will speak to all the staff the day before so everyone knows where to meet, be a very confident driver, good with people, take lots of photos and report back to the agency with lots of comprehensive feed back...Oh and hit sample quota, get the best out of the team, avoid parking tickets and crashing the van.

A.E.M. (Assistant Event Manager) – £90 - £135 per day. Everything the EM does minus doing the reports, being responsible for van /kit and collecting / dropping the van back. Some driving may be involved.

T.L. (Team Leader) - £70 £140 per day. This is essentially an EM job but running a smaller campaign, driving sometimes not necessary. It can help if you have your own car to collect collateral.

B.A. (Brand Ambassador) – £10 - £12 per hour. The people that make it happen. As part of the team you will be responsible for handing out samples or to carry out any of the above job types whilst representing the brand at all times. A good BA will be confident, great with people, well presented and very good at voicing brand messages clearly. It’s important to be hard working, smile and engage with the public where possible. This level is the starting point for all promo folk. Only those who are well groomed with charisma, personality and a hard working ethic should apply.

Things you may need and where to find them

CRB Check – If the job involves working with kids then you will need a CRB check which certifies you are safe to do so. Essentially a back ground check on your criminal past if at all. Price £12.50 - £45

Food and Hygiene – If the job involves working with food you will need a food and hygiene certificate. To get one you need to complete a short online course which you can do in your own time and pick up from where you left off as many times as you like. £15 - £40

Health and Safety – Sometimes required if you are working somewhere expecting to have lots of visitors such as concerts, festivals etc.

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