Be a Product Demonstrator: Education and Career Roadmap

Apr 27, 2020

Research the requirements to become a product demonstrator. Learn about the job description and duties, and explore the step-by-step process to start a career in product demonstrations.

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Become a Product Demonstrator

Product demonstrators teach potential customers about various products including appliances, electronic devices, cosmetics, and food. They make presentations aimed at selling merchandise and improving public awareness of a brand at stores, trade shows, and conventions. They typically set up a display, greet customers, show how the product works, and answer questions. Cleaning up afterwards might be required as well. Demonstrators might actually sell a product or just hand out free samples, discount coupons, or promotional literature. Many hours spent standing might be required.

Degree Level No degree required, but a few employers prefer some college education or a bachelor's degree
Degree Field Sales, marketing, retailing or related fields
Experience Some employers prefer experience in sales, customer service or retail
Key Skills Public speaking, customer service, outgoing personality, knowledge of sales methods and marketing principles
Salary (May 2019)* $30,930 (mean annual wage for demonstrators and product promoters)

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Job postings by employers (September 2012), University websites, O*NET OnLine.

Let's learn how you can become a product demonstrator.

Step 1: Get an Education

A college degree isn't required to work as a product demonstrator. However, some employers favor hiring demonstrators who have earned at least a high school diploma or the equivalent ,and others prefer job candidates with some college education, or even a bachelor's degree in a relevant field.

Aspiring product demonstrators might benefit from certificate or degree programs in fields including sales, marketing, and retail. College programs in cosmetology or culinary arts are other options for prospective demonstrators who want to specialize in those areas.

Here's a Tip for Success

  • Find an internship: Many educational programs at colleges and universities include internship opportunities for students. Working as an intern provides hands-on experience in a particular field as well as references and industry contacts that can help in the search for full-time employment after graduation.

Step 2: Attain Work Experience

Aspiring product demonstrators should find work in sales, customer service, or retail, since some employers seek candidates with experience in these fields. Such employment can build skills in customer satisfaction, sales techniques, and retail practices that can be put to use later during a career as a demonstrator.

Step 3: Receive Job Training

Most beginning product demonstrators learn the necessary skills to promote a product through on-the-job training. The training period can range from several hours for simple merchandise to several days for more complex wares like electronic products. Demonstrators learn about the product and its uses and the company that sells the product. Job training might also teach media relations skills.

Step 4: Consider Specialization

Experienced product demonstrators, particularly those with experience in a particular product area such as cosmetics or electronics, have the highest earning potential. While most entry-level product demonstrators earn hourly wages, more advanced sales positions offer the opportunity to earn commissions on products sold. Gaining expertise in a product area allows a demonstrator to more effectively communicate about their product, which might increase their sales.

In summary, prospective product demonstrators might consider gaining formal education and work experience in sales, marketing, or retail. They're likely to train on the job, and specializing in a particular product area could lead to higher earnings.

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