The holidays are coming and regardless of where you are or what business you operate, the fact remains that the holidays are a season of frenzy for both customers and businesses alike. The question is, are you ready for the holidays? Have you already come up with out-of-the-box holiday marketing strategies to boost lead conversion and edge out your competitors? Whether you’re a brick-and-mortar or an ecommerce business, we’re going to share these marketing tactics to help guide you in ending your 2019 on a high note.
In this post we’ll cover:
- Popular US holiday shopping days of the year
- The biggest shopping day of the year
- Holiday marketing campaign tips for 2019
ABC News reported that the average American will spend $700 on holiday this year, just on goodies and gifts alone. Position your promotions strategically by taking notes of these popular US holiday events this year:
Popular US Holiday Shopping Days
Play a game, pull out all your spookiest products and put them on sale. Dress up your website forHalloween and don’t forget to change up your profile photo to something Halloween related.
One of the most sacred national holidays originating from the harvest festival. A day of getting together, food and giving thanks, so make sure your promotions and campaigns are aligned with these themes.
Black Friday (11/29/2019)
The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday was birthed from the holiday shopping high, also known to be one of the most marketable days of the year. Plan your campaigns and discounts months early and send your email blast weeks ahead so that your customers can prepare for what you will be offering.Check out the recording of Outbrain’s recent Black Friday digital marketing webinar.
Cyber Monday (12/2/2019)
The Monday after Thanksgiving, and most probably the biggest sales opportunity in 2019. You have to prepare your website for the increased traffic on the day. Be active on social media with sharing contests and come up with one-day promos or free trials.
The eight-day Jewish holiday, also known as the Festival of Lights, celebrates victory over the Greeks two thousand years ago. This is a great time for social media promotions and to team up with a Jewish community to sponsor a cause.
The festive season for every family. Plan as early as August, redesign your website for the season and start posting shareable Christmas-related content on social media early. Organize giveaways, challenges and come up with promotions that will get people talking and sharing.
New Year’s Eve (31/12/2019)
In celebration of the coming year, it’s the time for countdowns, downloadable calendars and new hashtags. Harness this time to boost brand awareness by promoting activities people can do with your product and share on social media.
Martin Luther King Day (20/01/2020)
Celebrate the legacy of the most revered leader in the civil rights movement and promote your brand by coming up with impactful social campaigns and getting people involved through social media.
President’s Day (17/02/2020)
Ideally George Washington’s Birthday, this is now seen as a day for all the Presidents of the U.S. So take this time to hold parties or launch contests whether instore or online.
St. Patrick’s Day (17/03/2020)
A holiday that celebrates Irish culture, this is a great time to pull out everything Irish, from green themed promotions to shamrock shakes.
This is the perfect spring holiday is for engaging children and families. Whether it’s an Easter egg hunt or an online Easter egg design contest, there’s a treasure box of ideas you can develop for kids and grown ups alike.
Mother’s Day (10/05/2020)
Everyone is always in the mood to celebrate motherhood. Harness user-generated content to create brand awareness through social media hashtags. Have people post photos of themselves with mom to either celebrate the occasion or win prizes.
Memorial Day (25/05/2020)
This day is for all the military personnel who sacrificed in the service of country. Celebrate patriotism by giving away vouchers and discounts.
Father’s Day (21/06/2020)
From emails to cards, make everything dad-centric and design promotional materials that are highly shareable. Tickle their funny bones with dad jokes or tug their heartstrings with relatable dad stories.
Fourth of July
Independence Day is a time to go all out in your campaigns because everybody’s celebrating. This is the time for fireworks, food and decorating your digital assets with the American flag!
Tax Free Weekends
Prepare and schedule early so people can save money for this weekend and remember to bundle tax-free items together. Click here to see the tax free weekend dates for various states.
Labor Day (9/7/2020)
Celebrate the achievement of workers by offering raffles and giveaways or holding contests whether it’s online or instore.
Columbus Day (10/12/2020)
Commemorating the landing of Christopher Columbus in America, it’s a great time to promote interactive content, like quizzes, send out infographics and emails. Be creative with your tags and captions and make sure to do short-term discounts for this holiday.
What’s the Biggest Shopping Day of the Year?
For the past two years, Cyber Monday has dethroned Black Friday as the biggest sales day of the year! Black Friday online sales amounted to $6.2 billion, while Cyber Monday earned an increase of 19.3 percent at $7.9 billion, with 54.3 percent coming from mobile devices. In 2018, Amazon claimed that it sold more items on Cyber Monday, breaking its records. This means that consumers are in the highest mood to shop for deals at this time, either to kickstart or wrap up their holiday shopping spree. Keep in mind that in order to stay on top of the game, your business should be highly searchable online and your ecommerce site optimized to handle the surge of web traffic. You don’t have to hire additional staff since these jobs can be simply outsourced.
One trend to look out for when it comes to retail stores is the “Buy online, pick up in store”, or BOPIS orders, which increased sales to 73 percent from Thursday to Friday, meaning that retailers are not showing signs of slowing down either.
You can have all the data from different sources presented to you, but be sure to study your own metrics and not just rely on the hype. Every business is different and what works for one may not work for the other.
Get your free guide by Outbrain: How to Gain (and Retain!) Holiday Customers
Holiday Marketing Campaign Tips for 2020
Here are some holiday marketing strategies and hacks to get you geared up for the holiday season:
Reviewing past data is everything
Come holiday season, the first thing you need to do – whether you’re a B2B, B2C, ecommerce or retail business – is review what you did in previous years, what your competitors did and what the trends were. Take note of how much your holiday marketing spend was and, of course, the ROI of your marketing campaigns.
Review your products and offerings
If you have any new services or products, this is a great time to either promote awareness and build anticipation before launch. For existing products, plan campaigns to boost interest and sales.
Tip: Implement a creative discount strategy. For example, if you’re selling sunglasses, make the first pair full price and then the subsequent set 30 percent off.
Brainstorm possible promotions and offers
This is the part where you apply all your findings from #1. Now it’s time to incorporate all your learnings in brainstorming your campaign ideas for the season.
Devise your marketing plan and strategy
- Set SMART goals: Just because you feel that you know the business like the back of your hand doesn’t mean there’s nothing new to achieve. Switch or come up with new goals, but make sure they are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.
- Set the budget: After outlining all your holiday campaigns, estimate your budget based on how much you spent last year, and what you hope to achieve differently this season. Take into account your ROI to determine what amount is appropriate for this year’s holiday marketing project.
Schedule your calendar
Plan ahead and plan early. This will help you avoid unnecessary costs. By early, it means that your holiday campaign should be good to go by October so those early-bird shoppers can catch your products.
Update your website
Whether you’re a B2B or a B2C industry, your website may be expecting much heavier traffic during the holidays. Aside from making sure your load speed is at optimal performance, here are some more tips on how to prepare your website for the season:
- Prep your website with SEO. Simple as it may seem, prepping a website to make sure it’s visible and dominating on the SERPs is most often overlooked but make sure you check it twice come holiday season!
- Create a tantalizing landing page with these tips.
- Publish blog content for Black Friday or Cyber Monday a month early. This will remind your clients of what’s coming and also promote awareness for your brand.
- Have a timer on your website that counts down to the promo on your store. Put the date and link all over your social media posts.
Make the most out of social media
Update all your social media profiles with your holiday offers and pair it with visuals that visitors won’t be able to resist. Don’t forget to set up your goals and measure your social media performance using tools like Google Analytics.
Email new and old clients
Cyber Monday is the best time to send email blasts and draw attention to your newsletter. This is the time people are scrolling their emails for those deals they might have missed a day or a week before. Don’t forget to reach out to new prospects and reconnect with those whom you lost touch with. Reconnecting with past customers during the holidays is an effective tactic, as they may well be bargain hunting again. Give an update about your latest offerings, or simply remind them of the perks of doing business with you.
There are a ton of things you have to prepare for if you want to ensure a successful holiday marketing campaign. Aside from planning and budget allocation, you have your local SEO efforts to look after. As the holiday season comes to a halt, your work carries on, to measuring and analyzing the performance of your marketing campaign – which is all part of the holiday excitement.
With proper planning and the right process, you’ll be able to take control of your business come the holidays. So, put the fun in your holiday campaigns and shine the entire season!