The holidays provide an incredible opportunity each year for small businesses to substantially increase their revenue and finish the year in a strong financial position by capitalizing on the holiday fervor. Small business owners everywhere want to up their holiday marketing game to increase their sales volumes, but many aren't sure where to start. Here are a few holiday marketing tips to follow as you prepare for the most wonderful time of year.
Cater to Your Target Audience
Holiday marketing campaigns perform best when they are catered specifically to your audience. Many large corporations launch massive holiday marketing campaigns meant to reach the largest audience possible. However, few small businesses have enough funds in their marketing budgets to make this strategy work for them.
Instead, small businesses should focus on targeted marketing, which highlights the personal touch your small business brings instead of big box stores. To do this, keep your holiday messaging true to your brand's identity, but tweak it just enough to convey your holiday theme. Take some time to think about or investigate what your current customers like about your business, and bring those aspects to the forefront of your holiday marketing campaign.
For instance, if your customers love that your business engages with them on social media, you can kick that up a notch by having social media holiday giveaways or even asking your followers simple questions like, "What is your favorite holiday tradition?" Or, if your customers gravitate toward your website in larger volumes after you send out a coupon, that may be the best way to grab their attention again.
Focus Your Campaign Around a Theme
When you're just beginning to draft your holiday marketing plans, it's helpful to start by picking a central holiday theme that will be consistent across all marketing channels. Consistency is critical with holiday messaging. A unified message helps with brand recognition and can subtly nudge prospective customers toward your store or website over time, whether they see your ads on social media, hear them on the radio, or get a printed ad in their mailbox.
Having a central theme is also important because it gives you a place to always turn to when creating ads for different marketing mediums. You won't have to start from scratch for every channel, though slight tweaks between other marketing methods can make each ad more effective.
When choosing a theme, try to pick one that you feel excited about, as it will make it much easier for you to be creative and stick with the holiday messaging all season long. At the same time, consider what your target audience would feel excited about, and try to mesh the two together in a logical manner.
Personalize Your Marketing Materials
Small businesses have a unique advantage over large corporations in their personalized touch and authentic voice. Customers want that throughout the year, but this sentiment is even more true during the holiday season. Capture people's attention by creating a marketing campaign that stands out from the large volumes of advertisements they receive by making your marketing efforts as personal as possible.
Personalization isn't always easy, but you can make customers feel more loyal to your brand by engaging with them in meaningful ways on your social media channels or through your email marketing efforts. For example, on social media, you can reply to reviews and comments people leave, and you can respond to stories, tweets, or posts when customers tag your business in them. Email campaigns often see more success when they address recipients by their first name and have clever or heartfelt subject lines.
Create Exclusive Holiday Items
Businesses have created exclusive holiday items for years now, and people continue to flock to buy products offered only for a limited time. You can partake in that phenomenon by adding a special holiday product line or service just through the holidays, which will incentivize your customers to visit your store or site while they are still in stock. The idea of scarcity is a powerful marketing tool, and you might be surprised by just how effective this simple act can be.
Exclusive holiday items can generate a positive buzz, but having holiday promotions along with them can bring your holiday marketing campaign to the next level. If most of your customers prefer one method of promotion, such as in-store deals, online promotions, or coupons in the mail, it might make the most financial sense to stick with the most popular one among your target audience.
Media Partners Can Take the Stress out of Holiday Marketing
If holiday marketing stresses you out, you may want to find a qualified media partner that can help you devise a comprehensive holiday marketing plan and execute it successfully. Many small businesses have found that enlisting the help of a professional marketer works wonders on their company's bottom line, which sets them up for success in the new year and beyond.