Promotional Channels Examples

  • Promotional channels, sometimes referred to as marketing channels, are used by an organization to advertise its products and services and communicate with the target audience.
  • News coverage is one of the most difficult promotional channels to secure, but it is also one of the most valuable. Editors are bombarded with pitches daily, so the brand needs a compelling and ideally topical story to tell.
  • Other promotional channels include guest posting, influencer outreach, advertorial, and native LinkedIn feed advertising.

Understanding promotional channels

Promotional channels, sometimes referred to as marketing channels, are used by an organization to advertise its products and services and communicate with the target audience. 

The expectation today is that most businesses employ an omnichannel strategy that results in a seamless and consistent product or brand experience. Gone are the days when a blog supported by pay-per-click advertising was sufficient.

So which promotional channels are effective today? Let’s find out.

News coverage

News coverage is one of the most difficult promotional channels to establish, but it is also one of the most valuable. To receive coverage for their brand, companies must be able to pitch an idea to the media in the form of a real, authentic news story.

The best way to secure press coverage is to do something that will catch the media’s attention. With 44% of journalists pitched at least 20 times a day, an organization with a compelling story is more likely to be noticed. It’s also important to build rapport with media staff and learn how to successfully close a deal.

Guest posting

Guest posting is a more traditional promotional channel that is nearly as old as the internet itself and comes in many different forms. It can be as simple as writing a blog post on an industry website with a link back to a product or service.

However, guest posting is rather saturated these days and as a result, organizations need to do a little extra work in preparation. For best results, it is important to find a site with related content whose audience is more substantial. The content of each post should reflect an awareness of current trends or at least be useful to the target audience. Ideally, there should also be a link back to a targeted product or landing page.

Influencer outreach

Influencer outreach is another promotional channel that, to some extent, relies on the quality and size of an influencer’s social media following. But there is much more to this promotional channel than knowing who has the most captive audience.

Companies that want to use influencer outreach need to build authentic relationships with social media personalities based on reciprocity, content sharing, and common values.


Advertorial is a less common promotional channel that involves a publication promoting a product or service in the style of a journalistic or editorial piece. Within this form are two relevant sub-types. Image advertorials involve the publication painting a favorable view of the company or its products among readers. Journalism advertorials, on the other hand, are used when an organization wants to attract media attention to a chosen area of interest.

This is a controversial promotional channel and the merits of which are routinely debated by publishers, businesses, and governments alike. However, sites such as Forbes have had success in offering their vast audience to interested brands.

Native LinkedIn feed

A few years back, brands discovered that the less their advertisements looked like, well, advertisements, the more consumers would engage with them. Facebook was one of the first to offer cleverly disguised ads, with LinkedIn following suit thereafter.

LinkedIn’s sponsored content comes in the form of single image, video, carousel, and event ads. Each format is a way for a brand to promote itself by showcasing its products and services or establishing itself as a thought leader. 

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FourWeekMBA Business Toolbox

Business Engineering


Tech Business Model Template

A tech business model is made of four main components: value model (value propositions, missionvision), technological model (R&D management), distribution model (sales and marketing organizational structure), and financial model (revenue modeling, cost structure, profitability and cash generation/management). Those elements coming together can serve as the basis to build a solid tech business model.

Web3 Business Model Template

A Blockchain Business Model according to the FourWeekMBA framework is made of four main components: Value Model (Core Philosophy, Core Values and Value Propositions for the key stakeholders), Blockchain Model (Protocol Rules, Network Shape and Applications Layer/Ecosystem), Distribution Model (the key channels amplifying the protocol and its communities), and the Economic Model (the dynamics/incentives through which protocol players make money). Those elements coming together can serve as the basis to build and analyze a solid Blockchain Business Model.

Asymmetric Business Models

In an asymmetric business model, the organization doesn’t monetize the user directly, but it leverages the data users provide coupled with technology, thus have a key customer pay to sustain the core asset. For example, Google makes money by leveraging users’ data, combined with its algorithms sold to advertisers for visibility.

Business Competition

In a business world driven by technology and digitalization, competition is much more fluid, as innovation becomes a bottom-up approach that can come from anywhere. Thus, making it much harder to define the boundaries of existing markets. Therefore, a proper business competition analysis looks at customer, technology, distribution, and financial model overlaps. While at the same time looking at future potential intersections among industries that in the short-term seem unrelated.

Technological Modeling

Technological modeling is a discipline to provide the basis for companies to sustain innovation, thus developing incremental products. While also looking at breakthrough innovative products that can pave the way for long-term success. In a sort of Barbell Strategy, technological modeling suggests having a two-sided approach, on the one hand, to keep sustaining continuous innovation as a core part of the business model. On the other hand, it places bets on future developments that have the potential to break through and take a leap forward.

Transitional Business Models

A transitional business model is used by companies to enter a market (usually a niche) to gain initial traction and prove the idea is sound. The transitional business model helps the company secure the needed capital while having a reality check. It helps shape the long-term vision and a scalable business model.

Minimum Viable Audience

The minimum viable audience (MVA) represents the smallest possible audience that can sustain your business as you get it started from a microniche (the smallest subset of a market). The main aspect of the MVA is to zoom into existing markets to find those people which needs are unmet by existing players.

Business Scaling

Business scaling is the process of transformation of a business as the product is validated by wider and wider market segments. Business scaling is about creating traction for a product that fits a small market segment. As the product is validated it becomes critical to build a viable business model. And as the product is offered at wider and wider market segments, it’s important to align product, business model, and organizational design, to enable wider and wider scale.

Market Expansion Theory

The market expansion consists in providing a product or service to a broader portion of an existing market or perhaps expanding that market. Or yet, market expansions can be about creating a whole new market. At each step, as a result, a company scales together with the market covered.



Asymmetric Betting


Growth Matrix

In the FourWeekMBA growth matrix, you can apply growth for existing customers by tackling the same problems (gain mode). Or by tackling existing problems, for new customers (expand mode). Or by tackling new problems for existing customers (extend mode). Or perhaps by tackling whole new problems for new customers (reinvent mode).

Revenue Streams Matrix

In the FourWeekMBA Revenue Streams Matrix, revenue streams are classified according to the kind of interactions the business has with its key customers. The first dimension is the “Frequency” of interaction with the key customer. As the second dimension, there is the “Ownership” of the interaction with the key customer.

Revenue Modeling

Revenue model patterns are a way for companies to monetize their business models. A revenue model pattern is a crucial building block of a business model because it informs how the company will generate short-term financial resources to invest back into the business. Thus, the way a company makes money will also influence its overall business model.

Pricing Strategies

A pricing strategy or model helps companies find the pricing formula in fit with their business models. Thus aligning the customer needs with the product type while trying to enable profitability for the company. A good pricing strategy aligns the customer with the company’s long term financial sustainability to build a solid business model.
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