If you own a retail business, no one needs to tell you that the Christmas season is when a big chunk of your yearly money is made and that your competitors are working hard to grow their share of it – which might shrink your earnings in the process.
It’s not too late to get aggressive with your promotion for the gift-giving season because, as the Wall Street Journal points out and most of us know from our own buying habits, shoppers hold onto their cash well into December in hopes of being offered last-minute deals.
Christmas Promotion that Drive Sales
Integrating several of these tips into your holiday marketing plan will create aggressive outreach that doesn’t feel pushy. Mix it up for a very merry selling season!
Engage in email marketing: Consumer data specialist Custora provides a “holidata” recap from 2015 stating that email marketing drove “an impressive 20% of online sales.” Email marketing leader Constant Contact offers “30 Creative Ideas for your Holiday Email Marketing” including:
- Free shipping
- Rewarding buyers with a gift or gift card
- Offering holiday coupons
- Creating a gift guide of your goods
- Including links to your social media
The key is to add value to your emails, and your customers will look forward to opening them to find.
Promote on social media: Have fun and offer deals. The fun part might be asking followers to post pictures of pets in holiday hats or themselves in ugly sweaters. The deal part is coupons, discount codes and the like. Create a Pinterest page for promotion and fun too.
Create promo gifts: Keep this one in mind for next year and beyond. Have promotional gifts with a holiday theme made well ahead of time, and in early November start adding them to packages you ship or hand them to customers at your checkout. Top choices for promo gifts are holiday ornaments, pens, calendars, gift cards, key rings, mugs and cookie plates, all personalized with your information and best wishes for a wonderful season.
Foster the Christmas spirit: Add a bright, festive theme to everything you typically use for promotions such as your website, email templates, gift cards and packaging. It’s important that customers and site visitors get a holiday vibe from you all month because the buying season continues right through New Year’s. Free and premium holiday templates are created by Template Monster and others for WordPress, PrestaShop, Joomla and more.
Throw a business block party: This holiday marketing idea for local rather than online stores comes from Evan Harris, CMO of SD Equity Partners. He says, “Creating a networking event disguised as a block party with your immediate business neighborhood is a fantastic way to increase sales over the holidays.” Can a block party be replicated for online sellers? Probably, and with creativity and ingenuity, you might set a trend that becomes a smashing success.
Optimize content with seasonal keywords: Yes, sprinkle your content with all the obvious options, but did you know that in December there are loads of searches for words like winter, winter storms, travel, ice storms, power outages and snowstorm? Google Trends is where to find a batch of seasonal keywords to incorporate to boost traffic and improve sales in all seasons. If you have a blog, consider creating helpful posts around those keywords in addition to including them in promotional content. For example, a post on preparing for travel in blizzard conditions is useful and will keep people on your site longer than stating that December will bring a blizzard of deals. Try both!
Reward December purchases with a discount for January: The first month of the year can be a slow sales month, as you know. This tip will perk up purchases in the new year.
Energetic Outreach Brings Enthusiastic Response
Are you ready to be aggressive with your marketing? Not like an old-school used car salesman, of course, but like a business owner who is fired up about the quality and value of the products or services they sell? Well, these tips can be put into practice immediately. Which one will you act on today? Which additional two or three will you act on in the next week? Hundreds of billions of dollars will be spent in the next few weeks on holiday buying. Have you got enough already, or are you ready to compete for a bigger share? What you do in the next hour will tell.