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Yes, I know it’s August — but in the marketing world, the holidays are around the corner. As many of us know, advertisers start their campaigns earlier and earlier every year, with Black Friday arriving before Halloween and Christmas campaigns starting as early as July. ‘Tis the season to start thinking about your holiday plans and getting your marketing campaigns together. Don’t miss out — get set for peak holiday season and ensure you maximize your seasonal opportunities.
Would it surprise you to know that nearly half of total online sales are generated in Q4? The ✨golden quarter ✨, which spans Halloween, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas, is the most magical (and profitable) time of the year for marketers. Consumers are actively in the market to buy, seeking out products and services, and weighing their options to bag the best deal.
The trend seen in recent years is consumers planning their holiday ahead of time, with people planning out their shopping lists as early as summer. This means that an early holiday campaign can help your brand tap into this consumer-driven demand, igniting the warm and fuzzy holiday spirit, and the emotionally-driven experiences that come with it.
It’s important when planning a holiday marketing strategy to bear in mind that the path to purchase isn’t always linear. The traditional marketing funnel of awareness > consideration > conversion won’t be applicable to all customers, who might be researching through multiple channels (mobile vs. desktop, in-store vs. online, social media vs. website, the list goes on).
The key is to embrace the messy middle. While an omnichannel strategy requires a bit more thought, you should also see it as an opportunity to reach your customers where they are, whether that’s just browsing or actively looking to buy.
This British health and beauty retailer knows how to build campaign buzz. Look Fantastic started to promote its 2021 advent calendar on social media in mid-August using sneak peeks and good old-fashioned FOMO-inducing copy. Look Fantastic didn’t just build buzz but leveraged it to collect customer data through a waitlist. They also took the opportunity to promote their “Beauty Box” subscription, offering some excited customers early access to purchase their popular advent calendar — maximizing profits from subscriptions and product sales.
First advent calendar teaser encouraging to sign up for a waitlist via link in bio
Second sneak peek
Early access for ‘Beauty Box’ subscribers
Collect that data. Using social media to collect customer data can be a huge win for your business, because you can use this data to enrich internal databases and retarget customers during the holiday season and beyond.
Make it feel special. Enabling exclusive access and limiting stock are great tactics for building premium positioning, as opposed to mass positioning. It’s a win-win: customers feel like they’re getting special treatment and you get to hit or even exceed your bottom line targets.
Build the buzz early. Building buzz early can help you gain market share and stay top of mind. Sharing sneak peeks and teasers is a great way to get your audience hooked and ensure active participation throughout the campaign. Ensuring activations for all campaign stages — tease> launch> sustain — will help you maximize traffic and sales.
Pretty Little Thing, a global fashion brand, launched a $10,000 #PinkFridaywithPLT giveaway on TikTok to raise awareness of their ‘Pink Friday’ campaign, famous for $0 (yes, you read that right) deals. The brand collaborated with a number of influencers to promote the campaign, encouraging viewers to share UGC to enter the competition.
Campaign hashtag that garnered over 28m views
Campaign video with the use of trending sound
Campaign video with PLT mascot
Get to influencing. Working with TikTok influencers during peak season can help you break through the noise and elevate your brand salience by broadening the scope of your audience and creating a sense of community through relatable user-generated content, ultimately increasing your reputation and recognition.
Create a competition. Competitions are also a great way to engage your audience, while at the same time building brand awareness and creating a positive association with your brand. Restricting entry to user-generated content only will limit the number of entries but ensure high quality content from an engaged audience. So, if quality over quantity is your mantra, this could be one you should try next!
Know your audience. Knowing your audience is also key. Gen Z dominates TikTok, which is exactly why Pretty Little Thing targeted them on that platform. You should reach your customers on channels where their presence is prevalent. When choosing influencers for collaboration make sure they’re a good fit for your brand, exude authenticity and align with your brand values.
We’ve covered some important holiday marketing tips for planning your social media strategy this year and looked at two brands who crushed it. But how can you put this plan into action?
First, it’s vital to have great social media management and social listening solutions. This technology is designed to help you build beautiful, rich campaigns and track industry trends and conversation themes over time.
And if you still need some guidance, we’re here to help. Khoros Strategic Services is a best-in-class team of social media experts who can help with every part of your campaign, from planning all the way to measuring success.
If you’re interested in creating a winning holiday strategy, schedule a demo today!