The holiday season happens to be a favorite time of the year for most people. Aside from it being a sentimental and magical time for families, it also tends to be a profitable time for businesses. According to Shopify, Thanksgiving, and Cyber Monday are said to be two of the biggest online shopping days in the year, while December is expected to outperform November by $7 billion.
These figures suggest that customers are ready to spend money during the holidays if the right products and services are presented to them. This is a golden opportunity for marketers to create more awareness and improve their bottom line in the process. However, to leave an unforgettable impression on customers during the holidays, you’ve got to be adequately prepared.
If you’re a marketer eager to make the most of the coming holidays, here are four tips that should help you effectively market to current and prospective customers during the holidays:
Most businesses are likely going to increase their marketing efforts during the holidays, so as a result, you may have to put in overtime as a marketer. In practical scenarios, this could look like crafting more creative marketing campaigns, increasing social media engagement, and having more customer inquiries. To avoid your marketing team becoming overwhelmed, you could hire extra help in areas like customer service, sales, or social media management. However, it’s crucial that you hire the right talent and do so in a cost-effective way so that you make the best use of your resources.
Seeing as you already have to deal with the pressures that accompany holiday marketing, the last thing you want is to become overwhelmed with the task of hiring new staff. For this reason, take time out to prepare beforehand to make the hiring process less overwhelming. A simple but effective way to do this would be by making sure that when you post ads, your job descriptions are as detailed as possible. Another tip would be to meticulously screen applicants who respond to your ads by eliminating the ones who don’t meet your minimum requirements.
Once you do finally get extra hands-on board, be ready to provide intense training as soon as they start so that they hit the ground running. By offering them training, you’re also providing them with a growth opportunity, which Deloitte’s 2017 Human Capital Trends Report identified as one of the key factors in great employee experience. When you make the employee experience enjoyable for them, you could also see a better overall output. Another tip to improve productivity would be to consider giving your new hires a number of days off to refuel and enjoy the holidays.
Online safety is something that customers are often concerned about which isn’t surprising seeing as identity theft is said to impact at least 60 million Americans. With the holidays being a busy period for online shoppers, it’s a perfect opportunity for you to share online safety tips with customers as a way of making them feel more secure. More specifically, try and find ways to communicate your safe practices with customers and leads so that they’re convinced their data is safe when they shop with you.
If you need content ideas, take a look at your present online security measures and see how you can present it to your audience in an easily digestible way. If you don’t have up-to-date security protocols in place, consider online security measures such as adopting industry standards like PCI DSS to help you achieve compliance and safeguard customer data.
Another way to educate them about online safety would be by sharing short and sweet tips via social media on how they can protect their identities during the holidays. Suggestions could include savvy cyber shopping by legitimizing sites before they make purchases or avoiding making credit card transactions using public Wi-Fi. If you can, garner up genuine reviews from past customers about their experience purchasing your products or services online to help build another layer of trust.
Major attractions for shoppers during the holidays are sales and discounts. Keeping in mind that they will have many tempting offers to choose from, explore ways to make yours irresistible. Often times, the best way to achieve this would be by looking closely at your customer’s needs and also analyzing existing customer data. If you still aren’t sure what the best incentives are, carry out a survey or network with strangers who fit into your marketing personas to get ideas.
Once you’ve come up with incentives for your audience, use your social media platforms to disseminate the information. For instance, you could use your Instagram posts to do giveaways or advertise flash sales. If you’re on Facebook, digital marketing expert Neil Patel suggests you offer your loyal fans an exclusive offer during the holidays.
To show that you’re in the holiday spirit, consider launching seasonal products too. A way to do this could be to take one of your best-selling products or services and give it a holiday spin. Also, if you’ve got a brick and mortar building, an essential this holiday season is extending the holiday spirit to your storefront.
During the holiday season, you may have to up the number of meetings you’re having with your marketing team so that you’re able to meet your targets. You should especially do meetings or brainstorm sessions around compelling holiday-themed brand stories you can tell as these stories could give you a competitive edge.
During your brainstorm sessions, discuss utilizing both Facebook and Instagram stories as a means of helping you share your brand story more effectively. 500 million people are said to use Instagram stories every day which means with the right content, you could capture the attention of a large fraction of your audience.
The Coca Cola Christmas branding story is a primary example of how the holidays can be utilized as an effective marketing tool. They use Santa Clause as an essential part of their brand awareness strategy, so think about what symbol, character, or messaging you could use for yours. Seeing as it’s a busy period, you may have to extend meetings to after work hours so that you have enough time to explore creative ideas and develop a strategy. They could be held at a local cafe if you want a less formal location, but don’t forget to bring your hotspot along with you in case they have a slower internet connection.
Marketing during the holidays is a chance for you to be creative and craft engaging content. By using the right strategies and putting together the right team, you should be able to capitalize on the holidays and help grow your company.
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