Marketing your business for the season…

happythanksmas-001It’s here the glorious or for some dreaded Holiday season and for most of us it comes on quicker each year! The time is upon us to make sure we get the most of our marketing efforts to help insure sales success in the coming months.  

Social Media Contests – Hopefully your business has an established social media presence, as contests on Facebook are often a popular way spotlight your services or products and interact with customers. Remind them during the time when they are being bombarded with over 2,500 ads daily that your product or service exactly what they need and a great gift idea. Remember to keep it simple as you want to when possible gather information on your potential clients but making them jump through to many hoops will discourage most. Using a clever #hashtag so as to be found in more searches like: #Contest, #Free, #Gift, #Giveaway and an incentive such as a prize or discount on a service or product you offer, you can create an intense excitement around your company. 

Holiday Tips – Use your social media, emailed news letters and flyers to offer helpful tips during a stressful holiday season. Consider your industry, product or service and related advice you could offer to make customers’ lives easier. Making yourself seen as a useful resource for the holidays will make your business standout above the rest. Use popular #hashtags that show during the season to help your visibility combined with an original #hashtag to maintain brand awareness across your media platforms – add it to your banners and posts explaining that it will be used during the holiday. EX: #AMIOffer #AMIHolidayTips

Loyalty Rewards – This is the time to make sure your loyal customers feel extra special. Taking care of those clients that have been there throughout the year will generate additional business and referrals. Do this by creating a special offer only for existing customers or providing a sneak preview, free shipping or secret sale that give them the VIP treatment. This will go a long way towards keeping your best customers thinking of your first during this hectic season.

Special Events or Open Houses – Your small business will rise above the convenience ‘brand’ stores when you host an open house or special event at your location. Use it to showcase seasonal gifts, new menu items and merchandise so customers can get a glimpse of your holiday goods in advance. Remember your Loyalty Rewards and offer an early 1 hour VIP access for existing clients. To get them to stay a little longer browsing what you have to offer include light refreshments: cookies, a mug of hot cocoa or a glass of cider to get people in the holiday spirit. On their way out, give a special offer or coupon that invites customers back to make their purchases at a discount. Macy’s, JcPenny, Khol’s all offer these types of incentives with great success.  

Email BlastsAlthough I caution overuse, email remains inexpensive and easy to implement when it comes to maintaining contact with existing customers. Just remember to be effective, email marketing should be used with people you have already done business with or who have expressed an interest in your business and have requested email from you. (Have at your place of business a sign up sheet to help you with your list – offer a discount for anyone signing up) When making the email keep it short as possible while still getting your message across. Offer to partner with other businesses that support your company to share space or links on their emailed newsletters as well. Use clickable links to drive clients to your Facebook page or website for ‘more’ offers. Offer ‘sharing’ discounts for your subscribers. Also, make the title of your email campaign clear like ‘Specials just for you’, ‘Holiday Tips & Treasures’. Lastly use festive designs take care to add the appeal so it is not deleted before your message has a chance to work.  

Remember when creating a marketing campaign think back on last year:
What worked to grab your attention?
What made you choose the stores you shopped at?
What stood out as special or innovative?
Putting yourself in the shoes of a shopper and thinking what would you like to see if you are shopping for yourself or your family and try to implement it in your marketing plan.

Have an Very Merry Holiday – Remember the Reason for all our Seasons – Give Thanks for what we have – and count your blessings daily!

Happy HalloweenThanksgiving BlessingsMerry Christmas
Kristi Kirkland 
Answer Marketing Inc

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