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The Marketer’s Guide to Preparing Early for Christmas

By: SmallBizClub

 

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The holiday season is so much more than December 25th. To get the full advantage of the Christmas rush, marketers need to start thinking about and developing holiday campaigns now. As one of the busiest times of the year for businesses, it’s vital to get serious about marketing opportunities and get ahead of competitors as early as possible. Make your brand the top of consumer’s lists this year!

During the holidays, companies have a chance to capture many new clients. Direct traffic boosts 150%, customers are more responsive with a higher conversion rate and ad impressions increase by 50%. With without the proper planning in the lead up to Christmas, your business can miss out. November is the biggest opportunity brands and retailers have each year—but it’s also the most competitive. Here’s what every marketer should start organizing today:

Determine a Marketing Strategy

Tap into the seasonal marketing benefits by developing a solid marketing strategy. Part of your campaign plan needs to determine how you’re going to promote the business brand during the holiday season. Find ways to stand out among other marketing gimmicks and competitors through specific Christmas promotions, email marketing and social media campaigns.

The earlier you start planning marketing campaigns the better. This will ensure there’s maximum potential to reach your target audience and communicate with them in the right way. Create holiday-themed offers and discounts to grab your customer’s attention and promote the campaign. Work with the creative team to help it all come together with CTAs, banners, photos, webpages and social media strategy.

Plan Christmas Gifts for Clients and Suppliers

A vital part of client satisfaction and corporate branding is Christmas gifts. Not only do they offer a way to say thanks to your customers and suppliers for their support, but it gives a great opportunity to incorporate smart business branding. With holiday season shipping always a hectic time, you need to be realistic about shipping times and cutoffs throughout December and January, so getting onto it early is vital. Online gift shopping can save a lot of time and money, with many sites offer bulk quotation requests to keep it cost-effective. Corporate Christmas gift hampers and useful, branded presents are great ideas for clients and suppliers to show your appreciation.

Prepare for an Increase in Media Costs

Advertising costs tend to go up during the holiday season so make sure you’ve prepared for this in the corporate budget. You might want to consider increasing campaign budgets during the holiday season so ads get the right traction. Consumer shopping trends and competitive edges also lead to an increase in media costs over Christmas, so it makes sense to increase exposure and put more funds into advertising.

Design and Book Christmas Ads

Like the shopping lines in the lead up to Christmas, booking advertising space gets busy. So it pays to get on top of it early. Allow adequate time to get the creative work done, book through relevant media outlets to run and run any ad tests (this is especially important for visual mediums like Instagram). Focus on your ad copy and if you’re using something old, make sure to revisit it before launching the holiday campaign. Writing copy that’s unique, relevant and fresh will put your business ahead of its competitors.

Prepare Holiday Opening Hours

Giving your clients and suppliers plenty of notice of seasonal opening hours is essential to great customer service. There’s nothing worse than people trying to reach you or the business office when things have already shut down and they didn’t know about it in advance. Keep everyone in the loop through the corporate newsletter, website updates and via social media. It can be a good idea to change your usual out-of-office greeting to something more festive and wishing your clients, suppliers and prospects are great holiday. Clearly state when business will be back in operation and appoint something to check messages and get back to everyone on quickly on return.

Book Party Event Locations

If you’re planning a corporate end-of-year celebration, then you need to get in early to book a great venue or activity. Set the date so everyone can mark it in their calendars to attend—you want to get staff booked in as soon as possible for social events around this time because it’s so busy. Establish a budget and find a suitable venue for the event. Consider organizing food and drinks early too if you’re not going to a restaurant or bar and set clear boundaries as to the type of Christmas party you’re organizing.

Create a Sense of Urgency on Your Landing Pages

Creating a sense of urgency on your landing pages is a highly effective way to push hesitant prospects over the line and covert. In the lead up to Christmas, it’s essential to leverage the power of the holiday rush and optimizing your website to reflect this is paramount. Include seasonal landing pages or banners promoting specific offers such as free shipping. This technique is especially powerful when combined with enticing ad copy that hook customers in. Create seasonal user-generated content to leverage connections with customers and make sure your website is properly optimized for periodic keywords.

Make Your Customers Feel Extra Special

The holiday season is all about giving; and making your customers feel extra special will encourage them to come back again next year. Offering a small gift or freebie can be a nice way to say thanks to those who have supported your brand. You could organize an event for the bigger supporters and suppliers or a VIP sale night with Christmas drinks. Either way, take the time to make them feel appreciated.

Author: This article is written by Jayde Ferguson, an online blogger and copywriter who recommends the gift and delivery service at Boxt.com.au. Boxt are a leading online provider of hampers and other gift ideas and do delivery throughout Australia. Catch Boxt on Facebook or Pinterest for more ideas.

Published: October 28, 2016
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