Hallmark’s favorite holidays are past us now, but that’s not an excuse to stop caring about the holidays or the opportunities they present to marketers. Just because the holidays situated in the months of November through January are gone, doesn’t mean that the rest of the year is bereft of reasons to celebrate - or sell.
The calendar is ripe with holidays that generate major spending from consumers across all markets. Think about it. There’s the traditional Valentine’s Day, Father’s Day, Independence Day...all the way to more recent institutions like Amazon Prime Day. There are so many holidays to choose from - so why limit yourself to the winter season?
Maybe you’re looking to continue riding the wave of success brought on from your winter sales, or maybe you’re interested in expanding your campaign calendar. No matter what’s motivating you to improve your holiday marketing, these tips for success will help you plan and execute year-round holiday marketing campaigns that boost conversions.
Tip #1 - Give Yourself TimeIf you start planning your Valentine’s Day campaign in the middle of January, your results will be disappointing. Don’t convince yourself that a two week “agile” sprint is enough time to plan for success. There’s nothing wrong with a sprint but give yourself time to test and tweak before it’s time to launch. Plan your campaign early, establish goals and deadlines, and ensure that every member of your team knows their role and responsibilities in the campaign’s success. If you don’t know where to start, asking yourself questions that will inform the direction of your campaign. Questions like:
- Will my sale be in-store, online/eCommerce based, or both?
- What is my target audience?
- Should I measure conversions, clicks, sales, etc.?
- Who will help plan and run this campaign?
- Will there be discounts, offers, bundles, coupons?
Once you have these preliminary questions answered, you should have a general idea of what you’re trying to accomplish and how you’ll do it. Get started!
Tip #2 - Focus on Content
This one is a given. Holidays are inherently thematic, which makes it easy for designers to find inspiration while still leveraging their creativity. Brands can put their own unique twist on traditional holiday imagery to generate a sense of familiarity with their audiences. This comes in handy, as your ultimate goal for holiday content creation should be to create engaging, shareable visuals or posts.
Once you develop content that your audience feels compelled to share, you’re allowing them to do a lot of legwork for you. Take a look at content trends for your particular market and target audience before getting your project together. You’ll find that video, as well as interactive posts such as quizzes, polls, and infographics, garner higher engagement rates than standard image or text posts. Create cool content, then sit back, relax, and count the clicks and impressions as they roll in.
Tip #3 - Customers Come FirstYour marketing campaign should feel like a gift to your customers. Maintaining a focus on customer experience will help you accomplish short-term goals like increasing holiday sales and long-term goals like cultivating brand loyalty. There are infinitely many ways to accomplish this, and it will be nearly impossible to address them all during any one campaign. Pick a few different modes of customer experience to focus on for your campaign, monitor results, and re-assess as needed.
The first step is to determine the types of discounts you want to offer if any. Do you intend on offering a substantial one-time discount, or are you bundling products or offering short-term promotions? Discounts are the go-to for brands looking to boost sales, but they’re not the only option. Many companies also offer exclusive, limited run promotions like a curated dining or shopping experience for a fixed fee.
The next phase of your customer-centric holiday campaign is to decide the secondary ways in which you’ll address your audience. The goal isn’t to try and offer everything, but a best practice is to offer a promotion as well as a secondary way to say “thank you” or “happy holiday” to your customers. A few ideas for this are:
- Gift-suggestions or gift-buying guides
- Free shipping or holiday packaging
- Reward points allotments
- Send holiday cards, similar to brands like Chewy
Holiday marketing is fun, and it’s a year-long event. This might make the creation of your marketing plan feel a little bit more intimidating, but don’t sweat it. You’ve got some solid tips to get you started, and you’ve got Roger West just a phone call away. If you’re feeling some post-winter holiday blues, or pre-holiday jitters - we can help.