Promotional model

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Models at Games Day 2011 in Kiev

A promotional model is a model hired to drive consumer demand for a product, service, brand, or concept by directly interacting with potential consumers. A vast majority of promotional models typically tend to be conventionally attractive in physical appearance. They serve to provide information about the product or service and make it appealing to consumers. While the length of interaction may be short, the promotional model delivers a live experience that reflects on the product or service he or she is representing.


A model at the 2009 F1 & World Supercar Show, Korea

This form of marketing touches fewer consumers for the cost than traditional advertising media (such as print, radio, and television); however the consumer's perception of a brand, product, service, or company, is often more profoundly affected by a live person-to-person experience. The influence of this type of marketing may be more enduring as well. Promotional models often interact with many people at once to maximize quantitative influence on consumer demand. While each model may not be directly employed by the company they represent, they are trained to answer questions and provide customer feedback regarding products, services and brand appeal.

The responsibilities of the promotional model depend on the particular marketing campaign being carrying out, and may include: increasing product awareness; providing product information; creating an association in the consumer's mind between the product or brand and a particular idea (natural beauty, classic heritage, edgy sex appeal, reliability); handing items to consumers, such as a sample of the product itself, a small gift, or printed information.

Marketing campaigns that make use of promotional models may take place in stores or shopping malls, at tradeshows, special promotional events, clubs, or even at outdoor public spaces. They are often planned at high traffic locations to reach as many consumers as possible, or at venues at which a particular type of target consumer is expected to be present.

Changing social and business standards have resulted in a decrease in the use of promotional models in both the construction industry and automobile trade shows.[1] The motorsports scene refers to promo models as Grid, Paddock, or Pit Girls.


Alison Carroll dressed up as Lara Croft at the Paris Game Festival 2008

"Spokesmodel" is a term used for a model who is employed to be associated with a specific brand in advertisements. A spokesmodel may be a celebrity used only in advertisements (in contrast to a "brand ambassador", who is also expected to represent the company at various events), but more often the term refers to a model who isn't a celebrity in their own right. A classic example of such spokesmodels are the models engaged to be the Marlboro Man between 1954 and 1999, and the Clarion Girl since 1975. Contrary to what the term suggests, a spokesmodel is normally not expected to verbally promote the brand.

Trade show model[edit]

A model at Honda F1 Roadshow 2008, Malaysia

Trade show models work a trade show floorspace or booth, and represent a company to attendees. Trade show models are typically not regular employees of the company, but are freelancers hired by the company renting the booth space. They are hired for several reasons. Trade show models make a company's booth more visibly distinguishable from the hundreds of other booths with which it competes for attendee attention. Also, trade show models are articulate and quickly learn and explain or disseminate information on the company and its product and service, and can assist a company in handling a large number of attendees which the company might otherwise not have enough employees to accommodate, therefore increasing the number of sales or leads resulting from participation in the show. Trade show models can be skilled at drawing attendees into the booth, engaging them in conversation, and at spurring interest in the product, service, or company. Trade show models may be highly skilled at screening the mass of show attendees for target consumers or at obtaining attendee information so that they may be solicited after the show.

"Booth babes" at IgroMir 2011

Attire varies and depends on the nature of the show, and on the image the company would like to portray. They may wear a dress, or simple but flattering business attire. They sometimes wear wardrobe that is particular to the company, product, or service represented. The slang term "booth babe" is often used to refer to a trade show model. The term focuses on physical appearance, or specifically on wardrobe, which, depending on the type of trade show, can be thematic or sexy. For example, at a builder's convention a model may be dressed as a construction worker with cut-offs, tight t-shirt, tool belt, and hard hat.

A convention model is an assistant that works with a company's sales representatives at a trade show exhibit. They are used to draw in attendees and provide them with basic information about product or services. Convention models may be used to distribute marketing materials or gather customer information for future promotions.

Women protesting against the E3 "booth babe ban"

Scantily clad models intended to draw attendees are known as "booth babes" in software industry, and are particularly common in the video game publishing and sales culture of the video game industry. They are typically asked to pose for photographs with convention goers, but inappropriate attendee conduct sometimes occurs. For instance, in 2009, EA offered a reward for photos of contestants committing an "act of lust" with their own booth babes.[2] The company later issued an apology for the unintended message of their contest wording, and revised it.[3] The use of booth babes is increasingly under fire from segments of the gaming community.[4][5] Gamer conventions PAX and PAX East do not allow them, and Eurogamer Expo followed suit in 2013.[6] The largest video gaming business convention, Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), banned booth babes in 2006[7] coinciding with the two year restriction of the convention to a focused business format, but rescinded the ban in 2009.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jean Sorensen (February 21, 2011). ""Booth babes" fading from tradeshow floors". Journal of Commerce (Reed Elsevier inc). Retrieved 19 February 2011. 
  2. ^ Kuchera, Ben (2009-07-24). "EA puts sexual bounty on the heads of its own booth babes". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  3. ^ McElroy, Griffin (2009-07-26). "Dante's Inferno team apologizes for 'Sin to Win' booth babe contest". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  4. ^ Florence, Rab (2012-10-03). "Lost Humanity 15: Booth Babes". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  5. ^ "Eurogamer Expo Begins Booth Babe Ban Next Fall". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  6. ^ "Booth Babes and the Expo". 2012-10-03. Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  7. ^ Lees, Jennie (2006-01-23). "Censorship at E3". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  8. ^ Purchese, Robert (2009-04-28). "E3 Booth babes to return this year". Retrieved 2013-08-26.