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2020 Holiday Promotions Guide: Pt 2

If you’ve read the Holiday Promotion Guide 2020 Pt 1, you’ll find that everything that you thought you knew of marketing during the Holiday season is out the window when we have retailers like Target launching their holiday deals starting as early as October. 

Don’t worry, you don’t need to do a sudden rush to become competitive. It’s the long game that we are working towards, not the success of one season. 

The key is pacing ourselves through this Holiday marathon and think in phases. There are 4 phases over the next few months to help you implement your holiday strategy and finish the year strong. 

Phase 1: Warm up your audience

Competition is escalating this year because almost everyone is shifting to online retail. Building a trusting relationship with your customers online is now the key to success. Online retail is different from physical retail: the in-the-moment purchasing decision in physical retail goes away and is replaced by a lot of research and a much longer sales cycle. 

Between now through October, your goal is to become the top of mind brand for the holidays. People are shopping beyond just the fall season so it’s time to build trust with them on the smaller holidays. 

How do you build trust? It’s about taking the rapport you usually build in person and creating a visual representation of it. Create common ground and continue the conversation behind the mission that you and your audience are passionate about. Give space for your audience to engage with you in ways beyond a sales transaction like personality quizzes or building user-generated content.

Suggested timeframe: Now till the first official promotion launch.

Phase 2: Plant the seeds

Get on their wishlist. We all have an endless Amazon wish list filled with products that we’ve accumulated over the years and just waiting for that perfect opportunity to bite the bullet. Getting on your customer’s wishlist means you’re in the running to being purchased come the holidays. Consider what PR efforts or ad targeting you are doing to get on the trusted sources that your consumers build their wishlists off of like influencers or Buzzfeed who come out with their holiday guides every year.

Get them on your email list, if you have been focusing on community building all year, the logical next step is to get them to subscribe to your email list so they’re the first to know when something special is going to happen. 

Suggested timeframe: Now till the first official promotion launch.

Phase 3: The Holiday Hustle

As soon as the first set of promotions go live, the marathon to the finish line begins. 

Get your team ready to be customer service champions, it’s not just using the product but also in the customer’s experience buying the product that will make your fans go from loving your product to loving you. You want them to be excited about their online shopping experience as much as they are about the physical shopping experience. It leaves a lasting impression of your brand to help them come back through the door again.

The beauty of virtual shopping is you don’t have to be in lines, but now imagine as a brand, if you can offer customer support in chat rooms on your website that could also upsell the product while giving them a customized 1 to 1 experience? You’ll be able to get the best of both worlds.

Suggested timeframe: First promotional launch (including flash sales) through December 15th. The end date may vary depending on shipping.

Phase 4: Set up for a strong 2021

No matter what you end up doing this holiday season, remember, everything is about the end game. As you incorporate your marketing strategies, always think about how you are building brand loyalty to have a stronger community going into next year. 

Let your analytics tell you where you need to boost the customer experience so that you can grow your business over the whole year. Always make sure you are capturing list growth and engagement so you have a stronger customer base to build off of. This will give you more return sales and word of mouth so that you’re stronger going into the next holiday season. 

Timeline: December 15th-30th

Good luck and may the odds be forever in your favor!

If you’re interested in chatting more about how to have a strong holiday season, I am offering a complimentary initial consulting session to see how I can best help you. Email me at ruoyun@c3nami.com

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