Retail marketers look forward to the Holiday season with both expectation and trepidation.
After all, most companies make a substantial amount of their profit through holiday sales. In fact, holiday sales often account for majority of a retailers’ yearly profits.
But, if you want to capitalize on the potential of the holiday season, you’ve got to know what you’re doing and be willing to commit the time and resources to take advantage of each holiday in the calendar.
Here are five areas you should have covered long before the holiday in question occurs:
1. Optimize Your Forms
You can capture a lot of leads during the holidays. Make sure your landing page is both welcoming and informative — as well as easy to navigate.
Make sure your marketing team is on top of the following:
- Are your forms brief and easy to use?
- Do you have a clear chain of command as to who can edit forms?
- Are your forms easy to reach?
- Are your subscribers being assigned to the proper list?
Don’t let forms and other apps run on autopilot too long without checking to make sure they are still doing what they were intended to do.
Document each form to share with your team. Documentation helps to make adding more forms easy without creating confusion about how the form will affect other standard processes.
2. Review Your Email Strategy
Keep your email content under control. Here are a few easy ways to improve the quality and performance of your emails:
- Make the email easily scannable so the call-to-action (CTA) is clear and prominent.
- Make sure your emails are mobile friendly.
- Keep the brand name the same on all pages and in all venues.
Again, make those CTAs stand out and don’t be afraid to have more than one CTA in an email.
Use your promotional space smart to suggest holiday-specific gift and supply ideas. Make sure consumers can see your return policy upfront. Buyer’s remorse is much lower when purchasers clearly understand clearly what they can and cannot do about holiday returns.
3. Learn from Last Year
It doesn’t hurt to look over your shoulder to see what worked and what didn’t work last year.
In particular, pay special attention to last year’s designated ‘must have’ products. Did they sell as expected? If so, why? If not, why not? What will you do different this year to boost sales?
Don’t be afraid to examine last year’s flops. You can learn a lot from them, if you’re humble and honest with yourself and your marketing team. Don’t automatically dump the campaign; see if you can’t tweak it into a roaring success for this year’s holiday.
Here are a few other things to consider:
- How was your sending cadence?
- Were there more emails sent than expected?
- What caused the extra sends?
- How did the unsubscribe rate work when you increased sends?
- How long was the holiday promo and how aggressive were the discounts and free gifts offered?
Remember, those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it…
4. Plan Ahead
Planning ahead for holidays is crucial. Fortunately for you, you’re already ahead of the curve simply by reading this article!
Make sure you have a solid plan B. You’ve got to have back up promotions up your sleeve in case the main campaign falls apart. Of course, it never should—but in this universe, at least, ‘never should’ and ‘possibly could’ are kissing cousins.
Have your Plan B carefully laid out and ready to go. You’ll sleep better. And so will your marketing staff.
Broken links and bad promotion codes are all part of the game plan when things are in high gear around the holidays. Your landing page might even go down in flames for a while.
For all those ‘uh-oh’ moments, have customer responses ready. Don’t wait until the last minute to wing it with your clients—they’ll sense the improvisational flavor of your content and respect you and your brand less.
5. Look at Your Results
No matter how well you plan or execute on your marketing initiatives, some things will work…and some won’t.
Since hindsight is always 20-20, you should be looking at results as soon as the holiday marketing is over. What went over big and what was disappointing?
With all the details still fresh in your mind and database you should be able to figure it out quickly so you can make immediate changes in advance of the next holiday.
Although the Holidays present a huge opportunity for retailers, if you don’t handle the Holidays right, you could miss out on a lot of potential business.
Don’t let the Holidays catch you by surprise! Start planning and creating your marketing assets now. That way, when the holidays roll around, you can capitalize on them as efficiently and effectively as possible.
How do you prepare for Holiday marketing? What tactics would you add to this list? Let me know in the comments!
This post was first featured on A2Z SEO’s blog. It is used here with permission. Read the original article here.
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