With shoppers on the prowl for the best gifts and deals, your small business will want to stand out amongst the crowds. The winter season is also the perfect time for your brand to give back to its employees, loyal customers, and the community at large. With this in mind, your business can leave a lasting impression no matter its industry and audiences. These five pointers will guide your small business brand through the holiday season, making it memorable for you, yours, and your following.
No. 1: Start early. Every year, the holiday season seems to start earlier and earlier. Long gone are the days when Black Friday signaled the beginning of winter and holiday cheer. Even Halloween has been rooked into the end-of-year festivities.
With this in mind, your small business ought to prepare as soon as possible. Make sure your brand has a strategy in place, stocks up on popular products, and is well-staffed for the winter. If your business needs extra help, advertise for this in advance.
No. 2: Be sure to target specific holiday events. Although the holiday season appears as a long stretch that builds up to Christmas, the end of the year can actually be broken up into chunks, allowing your small business brand to segment its messaging.
You’ll want to consider the following holidays and hallmarks: the Fall Equinox, the end of autumn, Winter Solstice, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve/Day, and holiday breaks for school. Keeping all of these end-of-year celebrations in mind will help your business customize and personalize its marketing tactics to specific, niche groups of customers.
No. 3: Consider using mobile marketing. Our smartphones have become the cornerstones of our daily routines and communication. If done properly, mobile marketing can actually increase customer loyalty and conversions. Here are a few mobile marketing tactics your business can try out this holiday season:
- Target your brand’s messages. Customers no longer want generic messages about your offering. Instead, your small business ought to target its messages according to the interests and preferences of its audience segments. Do your research via surveys and categorize your customer and client lists accordingly. Customization is key!
- Automate push notifications, coupons and promotions to be sent at optimal times. Keep in mind that geolocation abilities can also remind people of special deals when they’re within a certain radius of your business. This will encourage recipients to make purchases on the fly.
- Craft gift guides that are optimized for mobile phones. This will ensure that your mobile customers can see and browse your holiday offers. The physical products in your gift guide can be categorized and curated to appeal to various customer profiles. Alternatively, your brand can promote it services via gift certificates.
- Expand your audience. As much as you should be reaching out to loyal and established customers, the holiday season also presents the opportunity to reach out to new people. By offering a holiday coupon for text alert signups and/or app downloads, your small business can expand its offering’s reach even just a little further.
No. 4: Do something special for your loyal customers and audience. There are many ways to spread the spirit of giving during the holiday season. Knowing your audience is the key to making them feel appreciated.
Your small business can show its gratitude through free giveaways, holiday-themed contests, as well as special events, offers, and discounts. To go above and beyond, your brand could also collect food items and toys for those in your local community who are in need.
No. 5: Think about how to target your audience during the post-holiday season. While the holiday season technically ends after New Year’s Day, your small business can avoid a huge drop-off in sales by staying focused on your customers’ post-holiday habits and needs.
For example, many buyers now anticipate huge savings at the beginning of the year. What can your brand do to appeal to these bargain-hunters? Also, don’t forget about the segments of your audience that play winter sports, return to school, or have made New Year’s resolutions aligned with self-improvement, health, fitness, etc.