Constant Contact's Speakeasy Marketing Roundtable posted a great conversation about how to promote small businesses during the holidays. Here are some of the highlights:
Don't Re-event the Wheel
What worked well for you in the past? How can it be tailored or re-vamped for this season? There's no need to start from scratch if you've already created a foundation. Your customers will likely be expecting something similar to what you've offered in the past, so capitalize on that loyalty while spicing it up some.
This is where you can blow a lot of the box stores out the water - with that simple extra touch. It takes a task off of your customer, meaning they leave your store extra happy and content, and more likely to come back.
Decorate for the Season
And we don't just mean your physical space. Coordinate mailings, emails, coupons and social media posts to the season.
Sometimes the price margin is too thin to be able to offer discounts, so instead you can add value by pairing items that go together. The customer gets the added convenience and you don't have to cut corners.
Take advantage of all of the platforms you use. Pintrest, Facebook, twitter...and more! Drive to your website for online sales or promote a specific event. Incorporating holiday tips that will make the season easier for your customers will increase traffic and engagement.
Offer of Future Discounts
Whether it's bag-stuffer coupons that are valid in January, free consultations, or "gifts" to the buyer that are redeemable at a later date; you can help to increase future sales by building loyalty and giving customers a reason to come back.
Take Advantage of the Traffic
Holiday shopping season means an overall increase of store traffic. Use this as an opportunity to build email list & social media followers. Have sign-up sheets handy, or have signage posted that encourage customers to "like us on Facebook"
Give Gift Ideas
Promote or display items as great gifts for Moms, Dads, Sisters, Co-workers...etc. Thinking up the right gift can be challenging for some people. You know your products and your market, so give suggestions on what would be great gifts. You can also organize gifts by price-points or as stocking-stuffers. This takes some of the anxiety out of shopping for you customers.
Follow-up with Thank You's
Personalized thank you cards or emails can go a long way to building rapport and loyalty with your customer. Increase their motivation by tucking in a promo or VIP exclusive offer.
Track Your Results
Learn from your experiences - what worked well? What flopped? Why? Consider timing, media, value... and of course, consider your competition. Use what you learn to build future promotions and find your niche.
Want to know more? Listen to the entire podcast.
Ready to apply these tips to your business, but are unsure of where to start? We can help!