That time of year is approaching fast… the time of year when shoppers are writing out their mile-long Christmas lists. Whether they brave the cold and head out to crowded malls or scout their favourite eCommerce websites looking for the latest trendy gifts, holiday shopping presents an excellent opportunity for businesses to connect with their customers and boost their revenue.
And, of course, seasonal marketing isn’t only for Christmas time. Any season or holiday offers tremendous opportunities to drive sales to your business. So, how can you tap into this increased sales potential? You need to create a seasonal marketing strategy that is both useful and relevant to your target market throughout the upcoming months.
Seasonal marketing campaigns are a topic of much debate. If the campaign isn’t executed correctly, the company might come off as desperate, outdated, or even cheesy and spammy. On the other hand, an innovative seasonal marketing approach puts your company’s service or product in front of your target audience and establishes an emotional connection between you and your customer.
Here’s why every business should take advantage of seasonal marketing, as well as some tips for creating a seasonal marketing campaign that really works.
Three Reasons Every Business Should Take Advantage of Seasonal Marketing
Seasonal Marketing Is Extremely Adaptable
Seasonal marketing campaigns can be extremely flexible. They can be adapted for any type of business or budget, large or small. Whether your company has continuous sales flow all year long, or it’s mostly seasonal already, there are so many ways to take advantage of seasonal marketing, from running a sale to launching a new service or product.
Seasonal Marketing Offers an Opportunity to Emotionally Connect with Consumers
Successful marketing campaigns are all about forming an emotional connection with consumers. Seasonal campaigns offer an excellent opportunity to provoke powerful emotions in your customers. You can help consumers relive special holiday memories or help them imagine making new ones with their loved ones. Campaigns that connect with their customers emotionally receive three times more word-of-mouth and social media referrals from their customers.
Seasonal Marketing Makes Your Brand More “Likable”
A cleverly executed seasonal campaign shows consumers that you care and makes your brand more “likable.” Customer loyalty is invaluable to any business, and studies show that customers are much more likely to purchase a product when it’s offered by a brand they like. Being a loved brand gives you huge ROI, encouraging your customers to become advocates for your product or service and supporting your other marketing efforts, such as email campaigns and social media marketing.
Tips for Creating a Seasonal Marketing Campaign That Really Works
Be Ahead of the Crowd
Avoid fighting all the seasonal noise by starting your campaign a little early. For example, if you’re doing a summer campaign, start running your promotions in the spring. This technique puts you ahead of the crowd so that your product or service is in the front of the consumer’s mind when they’re ready to make a purchase.
Change Up Your Web Design and Log for the Season
Changing up your logo and website to celebrate the season or holiday is a great way to promote seasonal events and products. Google is well known for leveraging this technique by changing its logo to celebrate everything from the lives of famous people to notable anniversaries, and of course holiday celebrations. Promote the season by adding fall colors, outdoor themes, snowflakes, or some other design element that symbolizes that season or holiday.
Customise Your Service Offerings
If the needs of your target customer are likely to change with the new season, be sure to customise your services to reflect what they need most. You might even want to consider offering an a la carte service that’s not something you usually do. For example, business tends to slow down for lawn care companies when summer comes to a close, but by offering leaf raking in the fall, or hanging Christmas lights in the winter, they can take advantage of the season and stay busy all year long.
Learn from Your Competition
Market research is an essential aspect of any successful campaign, including a seasonal one. Explore your competitors’ seasonal campaigns to see what has worked for them and what hasn’t, so that you can incorporate the information when you design your own campaigns. Obviously, you don’t want to do exactly what they did. Adapt their strategy with your individual differentiation points and messaging to help you stand out during your seasonal campaigns. Companies like Softway Digital, who specializes in business transformation, use this technique to achieve phenomenal results for their clients during a brand rehaul.
Find Creative Ways to Connect
Find creative ways to connect with your customers to keep your product or service in the front of their minds. Send an exclusive holiday email or post a funny seasonal video on your social media. Dollar Shave Club used this technique with their Holiday Shave Set: The Gift That Other Gifts Can’t Handle campaign. The hilarious video was shared far and wide on social media and is the perfect example of combining familiar holiday traditions with useful products to get attention. Using the holiday or season to make repeat impressions on your target market ensures that you don’t fall off their radar.
Add a Charitable Element to Your Seasonal Campaign
Adding a charitable element to your seasonal campaign is a great way to get noticed and get consumers to interact with your brand. A great example of this is REI’s #OptOutside campaign. Last year, the company announced that it would close down on Black Friday and encouraged people to take a break from shopping and head outdoors. This step alone got them all kinds of attention from some huge names, including the National Parks Foundation. Some major brands even offered to donate $10 to Paradox Sports for Instagram posts featuring the #OptOutside hashtag.
At the end of the day, it’s going to take some smart planning, strategic timing, and a whole lot of creativity to create a successful seasonal marketing strategy. For any business, large or small, a seasonal marketing campaign can increase brand awareness and bring in additional revenue. If you’ve tried seasonal marketing in the past and been unsuccessful, consider incorporating some of the tips above to help you get the best return on your investment.