‘Tis The Season for Marketing!

DIGITAL MARKETING DURING THE HOLIDAYS

 

Marketing during the holidays can be both tricky and exhausting. The holidays seem to be starting earlier each year, and the trends are quick to change. By focusing on the timing and visual aspects of your ad efforts, you can fill your campaigns with cheer instead of stress this holiday season.

Visual

With the continued rise in social media use, Millenials and Gen-Z have one thing on their mind when thinking about their gifts: Instagramability. Younger consumers are more likely to ask for and buy products that fit an aesthetic they want to post or that matches their social persona. This mentality should be taken into account when designing holiday advertisements: make it #goals! Also, consider using some user-generated content (UGC) so your audience can see what your product looks like in the wild.

Speaking of UGC, definitely amp this up around the holidays. Encouraging customers to share their user-generated content should feel organic. Followers want to feel like they are getting something back in return for showing a brand love on their feed. By hosting a giveaway, a contest, or supporting a cause when someone uses your hashtag, consumers feel like they are getting a gift as well.

We’ve been hearing the hype for years, but video is still on its way up. Video offers the ability to tell a story in a more organic way, and the opportunity to illustrate how the product functions. According to Forbes, 64% of consumers look for a video of a product on YouTube before determining whether or not they want to buy it. Incorporating video as a visual element in your holiday marketing increases your visibility in a way that interests consumers.

Most importantly, remain authentic to your brand. Focus on content that highlights the brand’s personality.

Planning and executing holiday campaigns can be difficult and stressful to manage, but well worth the payoff. Plan well, start early, show off that insta-worthy aesthetic, and Christmas-crazed consumers will take care of the rest.

Timing

Holiday shopping now starts as early as October. Black Friday deals start before Thanksgiving is over and Cyber Monday has become Cyber Week. Getting ahead of holiday marketing is more important now than ever.

Early in the holiday cycle, brands utilizing month-long deals have a higher ROI than those with daily or weekly specials or discounts, according to a report by Criteo. Consumers know they still have some time before the season gets crazy, so offering deals that last longer makes them feel less rushed. Nobody likes spam, even if it is a good deal, so remind consumers of the deal throughout the month without beating them over the head with it.

Email is an important part of overall holiday marketing strategies. As the holidays approach, customers begin scanning their inbox hoping for deals on the gifts they have left to buy. Finding the sweet spot for optimal performance is as important here as in any other campaign, and according to Hubspot, Christmas email campaigns perform best when sent out two weeks before the big day! Open rates are significantly higher at this time compared to the few days leading up to Christmas.

As Christmas gets closer, gift card sales increase significantly. In one recent survey from the gift card marketing experts at Blackhawk Network, more than half of the participants were interested in receiving digital gift cards that could be added to a mobile app or digital wallet. And while some view gift cards as impersonal, 62% of those surveyed disagreed, especially if the e-gift was for a brand they like. Offering digital gift cards gives consumers the convenience of buying from home instead of braving the crazy lines.

The week between Christmas and New Year’s (now referred to as Cyber Week II) has boomed in the past few years. Consumers are ready with gift cards, returns, and exchanges from the holiday and ready to spend. Offering end-of-year specials also caters to those in the “new year, new me” mindset and they are likely to buy more than what they originally intended.

Planning and executing holiday campaigns can be difficult and stressful to manage, but well worth the payoff. Plan well, start early, show off that Insta-worthy aesthetic and Christmas-crazed consumers will take care of the rest.

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