The holidays are here and with that, a huge spike in sales: a $138.4 billion online and $691.9 billion in-store spikes, to be exact. This means that if you’re a business owner who hasn’t taken the time to think through your marketing plan for the holidays, you’re missing out. In any case, we’re here to give you some last minute tips to make sure you get your business in front of the people who need it!
1. Develop Email, Social and Web Marketing plans
The first one is fairly obvious, but we’re gonna say it anyway. There are 138.4 billion reasons why you should ensure your business has not only a strategy but assets to support it, ready to go online.
Getting above the noise takes eye-catching and relevant content placed in front of the right people at the right time.
Your email headlines should make it impossible for viewers to not open and should take advantage of Holiday specific copy. Develop content for social and web that puts a holiday or nostalgic spin on your brand identity. This is a time of fierce competition, but also when buyers are most likely to throw a little extra into that shopping cart so pull out all the stops.
2. Consistency is key
With all that competition, the brands that will do best are the ones that have taken the time to make sure they have enough content to be consistently in front of shoppers on the channels that matter. One email probably isn’t enough. A couple of social media posts are not enough. Get out there and make sure your message isn’t forgotten.
3. Optimize for mobile
Of those online sales, about 33% of them happened on mobile. It might seem low, but know that that number will only continue to rise dramatically as more businesses update. This means you need to be making the extra effort to get your website and any content, optimized for mobile!
4. Take advantage of “niche” markets
Maybe you have a particular product or service that does extremely well with a certain market. Maybe you have a product or service that you really wish had more traction. Now is the time to try and get those products or services in front of the eyes that matter.
Use the boost in holiday sales and traffic to try and give new life to areas of your business that need it and capitalize on existing strengths where possible.
5. Set up Holiday specific Lead Captures
What good are all those clever campaigns and strategies to attract customers if you can’t extract value from that traffic? Regardless of whether you make a sale then and there, you are getting more eyes than ever during the holidays and therefore, more visitors who could become potential customers.
It’s important to set up a way to capture customer information for future retargeting and communication and holiday-specific lead captures are a great way to do this. Create specific funnels for your holiday shoppers will help you retarget with greater accuracy and get them the content they need. Now let’s talk about how you’re going to get all that extra traffic.
6. Make the Customer Journey painless.
Holiday shoppers have more incentive to buy than ever, yes, but they are also still looking for the most painless way to do it. Studies show us that the strongest purchasing rates happen within 4-6 clicks of a customer journey. Anything less is unreasonable to implement and anything more means you’re risking losing your visitors patience. It’s the season of giving! Give customers a simple process!
7. Free Shipping
It’s a no-brainer. Studies show us that about 55% of abandoned carts result from the cost of delivery being too high. If there was ever a time to break out all the stops, the holidays are it. With the expectations of large crowds and lines, shoppers are much more eager to find an excuse to stay home.
8. Limited Time Offers
Deals for us, each and every one…if you hurry! Similar to taking advantage of consumers desires to stay home, encourage them to beat that last second rush with limited time offers throughout the month. There’s no better feeling than knowing your shopping affairs are all in order.
9. Highlight the perfect gift
With those offers, make sure you’re also educating visitors about which items would make the perfect gift for everyone in the family!
There are a ton of ways to be strategic with this, but one that we love is sending out a holiday gift guide with your products or services highlighted for different members of the family. Make it a game or challenge and get people pumped!
10. Get the party started in stores (or online)
As business continues to move online, brands that take the time to create experiences, especially in person, can generate huge buzz. It’s the power of experiential marketing.
Leverage your brand to create events that spread holiday cheer. Can you host a tree lighting ceremony? In store holiday celebrations? If you’re online, host drawings, contests or giveaways to expand your reach. Offer 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway or partner with other businesses to offer a major Holiday bundle! Give the people something to cheer about!
The use of video marketing rose 63% from 2017 to 2018. Were you in that wave? The Holidays are a great time to start leveraging video because all it takes is some good old fashioned storytelling.
Use IG stories or FB live to tell stories from your business. Get vulnerable with what you experienced this year. Highlight traditions or celebrations. Interview your team or customers and ask them to share holiday memories. It’s a time to be warm and show your gratitude, no gimmicks necessary.
12. Get on the Nostalgia train
Reboots. Reboots everywhere. The holidays already capitalize on the nostalgia of family gatherings and cherished traditions, but lately, brands are playing on nostalgia year round. Keep nostalgia in mind when it comes to your branding or any promotions, as well as video content.
It’s never too late to put a plan in place to help you reach SMART goals, especially in a season as important as this! Even if you can’t “go big”, go “intentional”. You’ll be on your way to a robust holiday marketing plan and sales to cheer about in no time!