Competition during the holiday season can be especially fierce, as businesses of all sizes are vying for the attention and spending of holiday shoppers. To stand out and compete effectively, you need to create marketing campaigns that resonate with your target audience and emphasize your holiday offers.
Here are some holiday promotion ideas for small businesses! 🎄
Consumer Behavior and Preferences During the 2023 Holiday Season
Understanding consumer behavior and preferences during the holiday season boosts the success of your small business. When you know what your consumers are looking for, you can tailor your marketing strategies and messages to align with their preferences.
Below are consumer behavior and preferences during the 2023 holiday season:
- According to NielsenIQ, 56% of US consumers are planning to start their holiday shopping earlier this year.
- NielsenIQ also says that 84% of global consumers plan to spend less, the same amount, or zero on holiday celebrations this year.
- Justuno’s consumer trends report stated that email is the most preferred channel by consumers to hear from brands (44.27%) and the next is social media (32.82%).
- The same consumer trends report also found that 20% of US consumers plan to start their holiday shopping before Black Friday. 17% plan to shop in October and 16% will do their shopping on Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
- 55.89 % of Justuno respondents say they plan to do their holiday shopping online, while 33.46% plan to do it in person.
- Gartner marketing survey found that price and free shipping are two of the top factors that affect purchase decisions for holiday shoppers.
With these consumer preferences during the holiday season, you can adjust your pricing strategies, and offer discounts and promotions that resonate with your target audience.
Moreover, you can time your promotions effectively based on when your consumers start their holiday shopping and where they’re likely to make purchases (online or offline). Remember that satisfied customers are more likely to return to your business in the future.
Holiday Promotion Ideas for Small Businesses
As you’ve learned from the stats we shared earlier, promoting your small business during the holiday season is important because, during this time, consumers are willing to spend more money.
But since they’re flooded with marketing messages from other businesses, you need to have promotions that help you effectively stand out from the competition. So, you might be asking yourself, how do I market my business for holidays? 🤔
Here are some tips to successfully promote your business during this festive season:
Tip #1: Offer limited-time discounts and sales
Consumers are planning to save on their shopping this year, so offering limited-time discounts and sales can help you attract more customers to your business.
For consumers, sales offer an excellent opportunity to buy gifts for the holidays while saving on costs.
Many consumers are planning to shop during Black Friday or Cyber Monday, which are two major shopping events that occur in the United States and other countries, typically in late November. (But in recent years, Black Friday sales have been starting earlier, with businesses beginning to offer deals and promotions in the days leading to the day itself.)
These events mark the beginning of the holiday shopping season and are known for significant discounts and deals offered by retailers.
When announcing your limited-time discounts and sales, make sure that your holiday promo captions are attention-grabbing and can create a sense of urgency among consumers. Here are some examples:
- "Stock Up on Savings Before They Melt Away!"
- "Wrap Up Your Shopping List with 15% Off!"
- "Santa's Sleigh is Leaving – Get Your Discounts Now!"
Tip #2: Offer free shipping and delivery
Free shipping is a powerful incentive that can attract more customers to your online store. Many shoppers actively seek out free shipping offers, so they are more likely to choose your business over competitors because of this perk.
This can make your business more competitive, especially when you are promoting similar products during the holiday season! 💪
Moreover, free shipping can encourage customers to make more purchases. The convenience it offers can lead to more holiday shopping and higher sales volume.
Most businesses also require customers to reach a certain amount to qualify for free shipping. If you do the same, you might be able to increase your average order value, leading to higher revenue per transaction.
🤓 Pro Tip: Offer free shipping for a limited time from November 1st to December 24th to encourage more customers to shop. This is a good idea since holiday shoppers plan to shop earlier this year. To make more consumers aware of this promotion, announce it on your social media platforms since it’s one of the channels consumers prefer to hear from brands!
Tip #3: Do a refer-a-friend giveaway
A Refer-a-Friend Giveaway is a referral promotion that is used by businesses to encourage their existing customers to refer new customers to their contest. This referral process typically involves incentives or rewards for both the referrer (the existing customer) and the referee (the new customer). 🎁
These giveaways are an effective method for acquiring new customers through word-of-mouth referrals since people often trust recommendations from friends and family.
The very nature of a giveaway encourages sharing, which makes it easy for the promotion to reach a broader audience. Existing customers who participate in the referral program are also more likely to stay engaged with the brand because they are rewarded for their loyalty.
UpViral is a platform that specializes in viral marketing campaigns, including referral programs and other viral promotions. It is designed to help businesses create and manage campaigns that encourage customers to share offers or promotions with their friends and contacts, leading to viral growth and increased customer acquisition!
Tip #4: Send out holiday email campaigns
Email is still one of the top channels that consumers prefer to hear from brands. That’s why email marketing campaigns during the festive season are a valuable marketing strategy. Consumers are actively looking for gifts and shopping deals during the holidays.
This makes it the perfect time to promote your products, services, and other promotions through email.
You can segment your email list to target specific customer groups, demographics, behaviors, and purchase history. Besides sending holiday greetings, you can provide exclusive holiday offers and discounts to email subscribers, which help motivate them to make purchases.
Moreover, these campaigns can engage your existing customer base and keep your brand at the top of mind. They remind your customers why they chose your brand and products in the first place.
4 Real-Life Case Studies of Successful Holiday Promotions
Now that you know how to promote your business this holiday season, the next step is to learn how others have done it. Here are some of UpViral’s best holiday promotion examples to inspire you!
Saastronautics’ Black Friday Giveaway
Saastronautics is a company that aims to distribute Software as a Service (SaaS) tools to as many businesses as possible. To get new leads and build partnerships with SaaS companies during Black Friday, they ran a giveaway. Their prizes included tech gadgets, discounts, and more!
The main mechanic of the giveaway is for participants to refer as many friends as they can. Completing actions on the share page will earn them more points. There were 10 winners, and they were chosen based on who had the most points. As a bonus, all participants also got a 15% discount coupon.
The giveaway resulted in more than 7,000 leads and almost 100,000 landing page visits.
Saastronautics understood that timing is important when doing promotions. Black Friday is the best time to give away awesome prizes and discounts since consumers are in a festive mood!
Michael Winter’s Christmas Hamper Giveaway
Michael Winter is the founder of Litebulb Media, a digital marketing agency.
During the Christmas season of 2020, he did a giveaway where they offered a Christmas food basket to 1 lucky winner. A smaller prize will also be given to the person who referred the main winner.
The giveaway ended with 3,100 leads, 7,982 landing page visits, and 1,337 social media shares.
One of the reasons for these numbers is that the referrer was also incentivized, which motivated more people to refer their friends. The timing also mattered because the giveaway was done on a special occasion. The prizes were delivered on the 23rd, which is just in time for the winners to enjoy them on Christmas Eve!
Rachel Ollen’s Toddler Giveaway
Rachel Ollen, a stay-at-home mom who just launched her e-commerce business, did a holiday giveaway using UpViral to get more leads and attract people to her Facebook group.
The main prize was an “ultimate prize pack”, which included toys for toddlers. She also offered rewards (exclusive expert video interviews) that can be unlocked by earning points.
Her giveaway ended with 4,552 leads and she also reached her goal of growing her Facebook group!
There are different reasons why her contest was so effective:
First, Rachel knew her target audience, which was mothers of toddlers. This knowledge led her to pick the right prize. Second, her timing was impeccable because she took advantage of the festive mood leading to Christmas, which means that moms were looking for gifts for their children. Lastly, she hyped up the giveaway participants via email every time a milestone was achieved (e.g. someone signed up through the referral link).
Shire Talk’s Kurnell Christmas Market Giveaway
Brett Whipp, who owns a social media agency called Shire Talk, wanted to help Cambridge Markets Sydney promote its special event, which is the Kurnell Christmas Market.
To do this, he decided to launch a giveaway using UpViral. The main prize was 2 Golden Tickets, which included 10 gifts each. 🎁
The Kurnell Christmas Market Giveaway resulted in more than 841 email leads and 777 social media shares. Moreover, 20,000 people visited the event!
Just like the previous giveaways, one of the reasons for the success of the giveaway was the prize. The reward was relevant to the target audience, which were people who were interested in going to the Christmas market to shop. Brett also announced that each ticket was valued at $500, which is perfect for people looking to save money on getting gifts during the holiday season!
Additionally, Brett focused on promoting the giveaway through social media and email campaigns. He also partnered with local influencers to reach a broader audience.
An effective holiday promotion is vital for the success of small businesses because it can help drive sales, expand brand exposure, set them apart from the competition, and build customer loyalty.
If you do it right, it can have a lasting impact on your business — beyond the holiday season. Remember to stay positive and focused because this holiday season is a time for opportunities. 💪🏻
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