afresh: Seasonal Marketing: It’s Not Too Early to Start Planning Now
Seasonal Marketing: It’s Not Too Early to Start Planning Now
Oh, no! Not another fruitcake! How many times have you given or received one? Imagine if your products became as ubiquitous as the fruitcake, which is practically synonymous with the holidays. You might not be able to reach those heights, but you can certainly profit from seasonal marketing. And that means targeting opportunities to promote your products or services during every season of the year like Easter, the Fourth of July, and Back-to-School as well as the winter holidays. Most retail businesses already understand the value of seasonal marketing. All it takes is some creativity, planning, preparation, and a budget.
Here are 10 tips that are sure to help you launch a successful marketing campaign for this holiday season and beyond.
- Give yourself plenty of time to prepare your seasonal marketing campaigns. You’ll want to start at least 60 days before the frenzy of any holiday. For example, October is not too early to start for the Christmas holidays. Plan your Halloween promotion in August. This way, you’ll have plenty of time to make sure you have all of your resources in place—personnel, inventory, design agencies, marketing materials, promotional pages on your website, ads, etc. to help you generate your own ideas.
- Create a marketing timeline working backwards. Develop a seasonal marketing calendar with milestones for the completion of your marketing materials and the launch of your promotions. You’ll be able to schedule pre-holiday marketing tasks in advance and have plenty of time to complete them. It’s like doing your Christmas shopping now to avoid the rush. You might even consider mapping out a strategy for the entire year in January, 2006. If you see the big picture, you can determine ways in which you can reuse or adapt a campaign for one holiday over again. This approach will not only save you time but valuable marketing dollars as well.
- Seasonal Marketing: It’s Not Too Early to Start Planning. Now Calculate what you’re willing to spend on your holiday campaigns and estimate your desired return on investment. You may also want to try low-cost marketing strategies that you’ve never tried before like e-mail blasts, leaflet distribution, in-store celebrations and events, and personalized services like gift wrapping or gift consultation.
- Leverage previous successful promotions. If your Fourth of July promotion was successful, put a new spin on it and try it again. If it was profitable once, it may very well be profitable again, but make sure you dress it up appropriately for each holiday.
- Run tests to see what works best. You might want to try several themes or concepts for a commercial or an e-mail blast. Which has greater pull? You’ll find out what works and what doesn’t, which will save you a great deal of time and money in the future.
- Last minute discounts can help you unload inventory and create a sense of urgency in the buyer, especially last-minute shoppers.
- Make sure you’re ready to handle a large influx of orders. Ask yourself whether you have enough inventory or can easily obtain it from your distributors. Is your staff equipped to deal with order processing, shipping, and customer service calls. You might consider an automated system or additional temporary personnel.
- Get Social. Develop a social media marketing plan. People spend an average of 2.8 hours a day on social media. And social media advertisers can be very targeted from the country to the state to the city where you do business. And then get even more targeted by demographic. Make sure you get their information as they enter to keep building your contact list. And, targeting which social media platforms to focus on given your target audience; Facebook, twitter, linkedIn, YouTube, and others. Macdonald Design can help you find your niche.
- Keep an up-to-date database of customers and prospects, and continually add new ones. A mailing list all your own is invaluable. It’s your pot of gold, your equity. Reward the loyal customers on your list with extra discounts or special gifts during the holidays. They’ll remember that and keep coming back for more. And offer promotions to prospects who’ve dipped their big toe in the water more than once. They’re obviously interested and probably just need an extra push.
- Make it easy on customers to buy. Give them choices, suggestions, and a simple purchasing process. Gift-buying can be stressful for some people. Take the heartache and headache out of shopping for someone special by feeding your customers ideas and handholding them through the process. Offering gift certificates is a great way to ease the burden of shopping. And, the cost of preparation is minimal. Not only will harried shoppers buy, they’ll be eternally grateful and loyal.
Seasonal Marketing: How to Prepare Your Campaign Checklist in 2020 by PostFunnel
Get yourself organized for your seasonal marketing campaign.
Social Media Marketing 101: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide by Disruptive Advertising
Learn how social media can get you in front of your target audience.
How to Prepare for Seasonal Marketing by AllBusiness.com
An excellent general article for virtually any business. (an oldie, but goodie)
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