If you’re just now thinking of your winter holiday marketing campaigns, you should be feeling a real sense of urgency. Thanksgiving is just around the corner as if this writing. In fact, by the time you read this it may have come and gone! That doesn’t mean it’s too late to reach your customers with great holiday content and offers. But, it’s time to get down to business. Without further adieu, here are nine tips and strategies for Black Friday and beyond.
1. Segment a Holiday Email List
This is one area where customer data and analytics can really help. If you are able to, and haven’t done so already create a specific holiday email list to target customers most likely to purchase your products over the holiday season. This should include customers who have made purchases during previous holidays. You should also reach out to customers who are simply frequent shoppers. Use emails to inform them of upcoming holiday specials, and to give out exclusive coupon or discount offers.
2. Match Your Holiday Messaging With Your Brand
Sincerity in marketing is always key. This doesn’t change with the winter holiday season. The messaging that you use in your holiday marketing efforts must be sincere and reflect your branding. It should be relevant to your products and services, and it should reflect your overall brand tone and personality.
You can do this by demonstrating how your products or services can be useful over the holidays, perhaps as gifts. Also, be wary of changing your tone too much. You don’t want it to appear as if you are entirely changing your brand persona just to exploit the holiday.
3. Share Holiday Relevant Content
It’s the holidays! People are in the spirit. Share and create content that is relevant for the season. Do you have interesting holiday stories to share about your company or your family? What about stories from your employees? Share pictures and videos of holiday office parties, or simply pass along great holiday content from other trusted sources. This will help to balance out your more promotional marketing posts while still maintaining seasonal relevance.
4. Create New Holiday Landing Pages For Special Offers
If you are taking the time to create special holiday sales and offers, take the time to create matching landing pages that continue the holiday theme. Don’t just repurpose your old landing pages with some new information. After all, you’ve made the effort to get your audience excited about the holidays, it only makes sense to continue that messaging on your landing pages.
5. Work With Complementary Brands to Help Meet Customers’ Holiday Needs
Your holiday marketing doesn’t have to be all about you. In fact, you can help your customers out by recommending complementary brands that can enhance your products and services. For example, if you own a travel business, the holiday season is likely very busy for you. One service that your customers may need is document translation, if they are traveling abroad. You can help them by providing information they can use to compare translation features and prices to make their buying decisions easier.
Of course, it’s best if you can work with other brands cooperatively. That way, you could earn mentions and recommendations in turn for giving them. Try reaching out to other brands that have similar target audiences, but aren’t a competitive threat.
6. Don’t Press The Holiday Angle Too Hard
There are two important things to remember. First, your audience has been targeted with winter holiday marketing since stores moved halloween candy to the deep discount bins, sometimes earlier than that. That combined with overall holiday stress might have some people feeling full up on the holidays even before Thanksgiving.
The second is that many shoppers, especially millennials tend to be a bit cynical. Yes, they get excited by the holidays. If not, holiday marketing wouldn’t be a subject of concern at all. However, if you bombard them with constant holiday messaging and marketing, you may begin inducing more eyerolls than enthusiasm.
7. Be Clear About Delivery Dates And Deadlines
This is very important. You will lose any goodwill your holiday marketing campaign creates if your shoppers begin to realize that they will not be receiving products they have purchased in time for the holidays. Be sure to prominently publish the dates by which people must place orders to receive them before Christmas, New Year’s, or other holiday.
8. Get Your Audience Involved
This is a great time of the year for user generated content, contests, and giveaways. Get your audience excited about your brand and engaging with you over the holidays. Encourage them to submit holiday relevant stories, videos, and images that somehow relate to your products or services and the holidays.
Make things competitive by holiday photo contests or hashtag campaigns that tie in with some sort of giveaway or simply recognition. You’ll create lots of engagement, and get your target audience to see your brand as being relevant to their holiday experience.
9. Highlight Charitable Efforts
If doing good is a part of your business model, the holiday season is a perfect time to remind your audience of that. Many people prefer to do business with brands that support good causes, the holiday season often makes that preference even stronger.
Even if charitable work isn’t in your business model, you can still highlight charitable work. Do your employees participate in community charity events? Have they held walkathons or volunteered with charities? This is a great time of year to highlight those things. You’ll paint your company in a good light while also highlighting some important organizations during a time when people are likely to donate time or money.
In 2016, Forrester research correctly predicted that holiday shoppers would spend more than 100 billion dollars. Even if 2017 numbers don’t reach that, it’s very likely that they will come close. The businesses who are most likely to get there share of that are those who conduct successful holiday marketing campaigns. Implement the ten strategies above to reach your customers with meaningful and relevant marketing content.