Thursday November 29, 2018
The holidays are here! For many entrepreneurs, this is the busiest time of the year. And I’m not just talking about retailers! There is an increased demand for all different kinds of products and services right now.
Marketing can play a big role in your holiday success, or lack thereof. Many business owners start prepping months in advance to make sure everything is perfect. Promotions are designed, ads are created, and parties are planned.
If you don’t have all your ducks in a row just yet, don’t panic. I’ve put together a list of some of my favorite holiday marketing tips below – and none of them takes much time or effort.
- Cross Promote with Other Businesses: Find a business that offers complimentary services (not a competitor!) and exchange coupons. For example, if you run a BYOB restaurant, you might offer your customers a coupon for a local wine or liquor store. In turn, they would offer their customers a discount at your restaurant.
- Offer a Discount with Purchases: People spend a lot of money during the holidays and coupons and discounts are always appreciated. Why not offer a buy-one-get-one deal, or include a coupon for 50% off the next product or service with any purchase?
- Host a 12 Days of Christmas Sale: Every day for 12 days straight in December, offer a sale price or discount on a different product. It’s a great way to encourage repeat buying, and it will keep your customers checking back for more.
- Offer Free Shipping: Studies have shown that consumers will abandon their online shopping cart when asked to pay for shipping. This is true, especially during the holidays. And when you have to compete with sites like Amazon, where shipping is free all the time, this is just one little thing that will help you hold onto your market.
Update Your Online Presence
- Make Your Website Festive: Doing business online doesn’t mean you can’t decorate. Make your site festive with snowflakes and snowmen or twinkling holiday lights. Just one word of caution: stay away from anything overtly religious, unless you know your particular audience won’t be offended.
- Send out Holiday Emails: As we near the year’s end, it’s a great time to say, “Thank you!” Send out a nice little email telling your clients how much you appreciate them and their business (and include a coupon if you feel so inclined).
- Host a Photo Contest on Your Website or Social Media: People love showing off their kids, their pets, and even their holiday decorations! Invite your audience to send in pictures of their best homemade Christmas cookies or a photo of themselves doing something nice for the community.
- Create a Holiday Gift Guide: There is NOTHING people appreciate more during the holidays than a time saver! Why not create an industry-appropriate holiday gift guide for your audience and share it on your blog? For instance, if you're a mommy blogger, you can create a guide like "The 25 Best Toys For Kids Under 10 (That Won't Drive Mommy Nuts).”
- Update Your Profile Picture or Logo: Have a super ugly Christmas sweater that you’re just dying to rock? Or a special Chanukah display that you’d love to show off? Take a photo and update your profile picture for the next few weeks. The holidays are supposed to be fun!
- Host an Event: If you have a client-facing business, it’s always nice to host a little get together for those you always work so closely with. Consider a holiday happy hour or a morning breakfast mixer. Your clients will appreciate the gesture, and it’s a great chance for them to network with each other.
- Send Holiday Cards: If your clients are spread out all over the place, or you run an online-only business, you can still show your appreciation by sending a nice card in the mail. It’s rare these days to receive any sort of personal gesture, and it’s sure to be appreciated.
- Donate to a Cause: In keeping with the holiday spirit, offer to donate a certain percentage of all holiday sales to your favorite charity or run a food drive in your retail location or office.
Often during the holidays, business owners are so overwhelmed with customer-facing activities that their own work gets pushed to the back-burner. If you’re finding yourself in that position, contact me today. I offer several small business services that can help you get through that holiday rush.