The holiday season is steadily approaching and it will soon be time for your business to begin planning this year's holiday marketing strategy.
This time of year, a holiday marketing checklist is your best friend. We have come up with one such checklist for you that will outline some of the most important things to remember before, during, and after this busy season.
Before the decorations go up
- Come up with this year's marketing angle
Before the holiday season gets underway, it will definitely help to sit down and plan your marketing strategy for the next couple of months. Who is your target audience? What is the best communication method to use to reach them? Is there a unique way you can entice new customers this year?
- Develop and send out holiday content with special deals
Once you have your marketing angle laid out, you can use this information to begin creating engaging content including special promotions and deals for both new and returning customers. Easily create a one or two-month long campaign with the help of a marketing automation platform, complete with emails, text messages, and phone calls, and schedule each message to go out at regular intervals so you don't have to worry about remembering to send them out one at a time.
- Send out event invitations and reminders
Same deal here as with the holiday promotions. With an automation platform you are able to create and schedule your event invitations and reminders to send out automatically one or two weeks before your event, and easily determine who is or isn't planning to attend. This way, you have more time to focus on preparing for the actual event rather than the guest list.
During the festivities
- Send out shipping reminders
In the thick of all the holiday cheer, many people tend to forget that the postal service is never fully 100 percent reliable during the busiest sending time of the year. You want to make sure that you remind your customers of the absolute last date when they are all but guaranteed to receive their purchase before the appropriate holiday. Send an email, SMS, or voice campaign to your customers that counts down the safe shipping window and be sure to schedule reminders to post on your social media page as well.
- Spread joy through social media
Rather than simply using your social media accounts to post reminders of shipping dates and product promotion, embrace the spirit of the season by having some fun through these channels. Hold a photo contest over Facebook, ask some holiday trivia over Twitter, or even ask your followers to share their favorite seasonal recipes. This will help engage your followers and hopefully reel in some new customers at the same time.
- Engage last-minute shoppers
Keep your holiday promotions running until the last possible moment. Last-minute shoppers will thank you for it. Engage these procrastinators by offering free expedited shipping to ensure they receive their package in time. Showing your customers that customer service is a high priority for your business will keep you on their "good list," and you will likely gain a new repeat customer in the process!
After the turkey coma
- Promote easy returns/exchanges
Once the gifts have been opened and the excitement wears off, it becomes time for many people to begin returning or exchanging items that they either don't need or want. Help out these customers by ensuring that this process goes as smoothly as possible. Promote your return and exchange policies often and include any tips and tricks you may have to facilitate the exchange.
- Thank customers for their patronage
Be sure to send out a "thank you" marketing campaign to your customers following the holiday season. Your customers will love to know that they are appreciated and this will hopefully persuade them to give you more of their business in the future. Use an automation platform to send the campaign to your customers via their preferred communication method. You can also include a small coupon or offer as a cherry on top.
- Evaluate the success of your holiday marketing strategy
Last but not least, you will want to see how well your marketing campaign succeeded and, with a marketing automation platform, that includes a web tracking component. This is super easy to do! You can include tracking links and pixels in your emails, on your website, and even in your external advertisements that will record who clicked on the link and when, as well as their customer journey right up until their time of purchase. In the web tracking report, you are able to see which ads performed better than others and which links your customers engaged with the most. This will allow you to up your game the next time the holiday season rolls around.
With SimplyCast, you are able to create and execute powerful and sophisticated marketing campaigns across multiple communication channels all in one location. With Sonar, our free web tracking application, you are able to evaluate these campaigns and continue to improve your marketing strategies to reflect the results. Sign up for a free 14-day trial of our platform and also, download a copy of our Holiday Marketing Guide that is full of even more tips and tricks to get you through the most wonderful time of the year!