What Does a Promotional Model Do?

K. Testa

A promotional model is someone who helps sell a product or service by actively engaging potential customers. They often work at trade shows, conventions, and numerous other types of special events. Since they are interacting with others, promotional models are different from print, runway, and other types of models. Their main function, according to many marketers, is to provide both information and entertainment. In the process, they raise awareness of the brands being promoted, with the goal of increasing product sales.

An aspiring promotional model should be outgoing and have good conversational skills.
An aspiring promotional model should be outgoing and have good conversational skills.

In many cases, one of the most important promotional model duties is to attract attention. Promotional model jobs are available at many different types of venues, selling a variety of products. A company might use promotional models at a car show, for example, or at a video game convention. Popular beverages such as beer and energy drinks are also products that they often promote. Typical promotional model requirements can vary, but their assignments often consist of handing out literature or product samples and answering questions.

One promotional model job description might involve much more time and labor than another. For example, while many jobs promote the image of being paid to have fun, there is often tedious work to be done both before and after the actual event. Prior to events, the models may have to help set up by carrying items and assisting in other ways. They then usually mingle and socialize with attendees during the event, presenting information about the product or service and answering questions. Afterward, they might be required to help other staffers clean up and prepare to leave, despite having been on their feet for hours promoting a product.

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In general, a competitive job candidate for a promotional model job is young and physically attractive. The models are typically, but not always, female. Professional modeling experience, while not always necessary, is usually helpful, along with some knowledge of marketing or retail practices. In addition to having physical appeal, promotional models generally need to be outgoing and have good conversational skills as well as the ability to explain a product or service with intelligence and enthusiasm to both small groups and large audiences. For those who succeed at being promotional models, the job can often be a stepping stone to print modeling.

Working conditions as a promotional model can vary depending on several factors, such as the company, audience, and venue. For the most part, aspiring promotional models should be flexible and able to deal with potentially high-pressure marketing situations. Furthermore, some people might take offense to certain practices, such as being referred to as "booth babes" at trade shows. In this case, a person might want to seek modeling work with a different type of company, such as one that does not cater specifically to young men and require dressing suggestively in order to attract attention.

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