While many of us already have visions of turkey with cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie dancing in our heads, others are dreading the inevitable barely-post-dinner marketing bonanza known as Black Friday. With each passing year, it seems sales campaigns inch earlier and earlier into November and emails fill inboxes at an alarming rate. In their email marketing guide, MailChimp points out that while email clicks decline during the holidays, that doesn’t mean you should stop trying to engage your audience. It’s a busy time, so you actually should ramp up your interactions to maintain your holiday presence.
Now that Black Friday mania has become a cultural norm, customers know to look for (or avoid) sales immediately following Thanksgiving dinner. However, several other sales days have cropped up that amass large, social-media-driven followings. So, instead of giving up and embracing Buy Nothing Day, check out these innovative ways to woo holiday gift buyers and to win this shopping weekend:
1. Black Friday – no longer limited to Friday
While Wal-Mart and Best Buy still get most of the media attention, independently-owned businesses can take advantage of the buzz. If you really want to do something out-of-the-box, consider having a sale before or after Black Friday, like this Instagram sale by The Jones Market. Not only will your customers enjoy the surprise, but you will stand out from the crowd.
2. Small Business Saturday – support your local economy
Small Business Saturday brings local businesses into the spotlight. This day is great for shoppers who are looking for a gift that has more personality or that was crafted by a local artisan. This is an awesome campaign by one of my favorite bookstores:
3. Cyber Monday – reward your email list
Poised to attract more sales than Black Friday this year, Cyber Monday is a great way to reach customers who still have not slept off their turkey coma. Reward your email subscribers with extra discounts, bonus deals, or, like this ModCloth email, storewide savings:
4. Giving Tuesday – pay it forward
After the shopping is over, it is nice to balance the commercialism by doing something for the community. Giving Tuesday is a social campaign that works to motivate businesses and communities to celebrate generosity. Whether you choose your favorite charity or gather volunteers to work in your neighborhood, you have plenty of ways to tell your story and show that you care.
With some thoughtful planning and creative marketing, you can cut through the noise and engage with your audience in a meaningful way this holiday season. So work that email list, use those hashtags and then kick back with a cup of eggnog to enjoy the little bit of quiet before you start your Christmas campaigns.
Enjoyed this post? Read more blog posts from Autumn.