As the holidays are practically upon us, our business-focused minds tend to focus on the same question: what’s the best way to market our products or services during the festive season?
In this post, we’ll take a look at six marketing strategies that different kinds of businesses can utilize to improve their sales while also spreading a bit of seasonal cheer.
Bear in mind that there is no universal blueprint for holiday marketing success. You will need to tailor these tactics to your brand, budget, and resources. With that said, let’s dive right in.
1. Christmas Cards
‘Tis the season to be jolly, is it not? And for businesses, this can be the perfect time to spread some holiday cheer with something as simple as Christmas cards.
You know how families like to send what are essentially branded and personalized holiday cards? You, as a brand, can do the same. You don’t have to organize a Santa and his elves photoshoot in the office (although you can do one remotely, and it could be a complete lark) – you can do a branded card with the company logo and colors.
Video ecards can be another great way to spread some holiday spirit. Just make sure you tailor the message to its unique recipient as much as possible.
The aim of these cards is not only to brighten up someone’s inbox but also to raise a bit of brand awareness. You might just remind someone they haven’t placed an order with you for a while.
2. Personalized Discounts
While we’re on the subject of cards and email – why not also include a personalized discount? You can choose to target your most loyal customers and surprise them with a voucher or code they can spend on some of their favorite items.
The trick is in the personalized touch. For instance, if someone has bought one of your products repeatedly throughout the year, an email saying they can now get it 40% off as a special treat will certainly inspire a conversion.
Give the entire campaign a bit of thought. Think about the discounts or presents that would bring the most joy to your customers and spread them out accordingly.
Of course, don’t forget that you shouldn’t offer discounts that you can’t afford.
3. Encourage Sharing
Even though the holidays will be very different this year, people around the world (and the Brits especially) seem to be embracing the spirit of the festivities even more than before.
You can capitalize on these emotions by encouraging user-generated content and utilizing it in your campaigns on social media, over email, and even on your website. You might take it a step further and choose to partner up with an influencer for this one.
Come up with a hashtag that your followers can use to spread some cheer and set a theme. Make it brand-related if you can. For example, it can be taking the goofiest elf photo with one of your products, or just a simple holiday-themed challenge (sans your branding).
You can also reward the best entries, but, in the spirit of Christmas gift-giving keep the reward a surprise.
4. Don’t Forget about Optimization
Even if your website is well-optimized, you still need to throw some holiday-related keywords into the mix to increase your chances of being found.
You don’t need to rework your entire website for this purpose. A landing page or two will usually be more than enough. Depending on how many products or services you offer, you might want more.
Don’t forget to promote these pages as well. Social media and email are your natural go-to’s, but building some links to them should also be on your list as this helps to drive extra referral traffic and also boost your rankings in search engines.
As these pages will be short-lived, you don’t have to run large-scale campaigns for them. The important thing is to have them and make them obvious from your homepage so that seasonal shoppers can easily access them.
5. Host Online Showrooms
As some form of lockdown is present across the UK and the globe, consumers will be doing most of their holiday shopping online. While this can be more efficient and less time-consuming, the clear downside is that they don’t get to see the products live and in action.
You can circumvent this issue to an extent by hosting online showrooms for some of your products. Instagram or YouTube, for example, would be fantastic platforms for this.
The showroom sessions would involve you presenting products live, from different angles, highlighting different features. Perhaps you’ll choose to use different models and showcase each product’s color, size, and versatility.
6. Streamline Conversions
You want to make it as easy as possible for your customers to convert.
During the holiday season, this can mean shortening the number of steps it takes to get from an initial touchpoint (ad, social media profile, link) to the actual checkout.
Rethink the way you link to different products or services. What is the shortest way to get someone from one page to the checkout? Do you have too many categories, or maybe too few? Is your menu very easy to read?
You can also establish sales and holiday pages that will feature your discounted and popular items. Anything you can do to make it fast and secure for your customers to get to the checkout will be much appreciated. Lastly, consider social media shopping, as well as providing direct links to certain products from your emails.
The 2020 holiday season will certainly be very different from what we’re used to.
For one, there will be much more of a focus on shopping online than in brick-and-mortar stores.
There will also be more shipping and delivery options involved. Friends and family can’t see each other to exchange gifts, so many will choose to send them to each other via currier and the post.
Remember that tensions and stress will still be high (as they often are during the holidays, but for different reasons). Try to remain calm and cheerful in your marketing and spread some joy. Your customers will certainly appreciate it, although they might not verbalize the sentiment.
I'm SEO specialist and certified Adwords consultant. I have been working in Search Engine Marketing for over three year. In addition working in SEO, I love writing about the subject and contributing to forum discussion in forums about various aspects of Search Engine Optimisation from link building to content development. Read more about me here