This time of year is often one of the busiest for businesses and marketing agencies. Consumers are looking for gift ideas for loved ones and the retail industry in particular generally enjoys a significant boom in sales. Though this can be a great thing, especially if your digital marketing strategies work well, the aftermath of this period of intense spending can sometimes be quite difficult. Overspending during the festive season, the rising cost of living and many other factors mean that consumers often see January and February as, particularly frugal months. This article offers a few tips on how you can make the best of this challenging time of year.
Sales, Discounts and Offers
Many people find that they are short of money during this part of the year, so offering goods and services for a little cheaper than usual makes sense. Though you may feel as if you are losing money initially, offering your customers the chance of a significant saving can often drive more people to spend their money with you. January sales are a common phenomenon all over the world and provide retailers with an opportunity to clear unsold stock while giving consumers with less spending power the opportunity to find the things they need for a price they can afford. Using online deals, Facebook related offers or discount codes is becoming common practice for most established retailers and online businesses. Though it’s not essential for everybody, the vast majority of those who try this technique generally enjoy positive results.
Learn from experience and be realistic
The first couple of months of the year are usually pretty quiet for most industries, though this isn’t always the case. There are obviously some businesses who thrive after the festive period because they specialise in products or services that are in demand. (Gym memberships, solid fuel and motor vehicle products are three examples that do particularly well in January and February.) For most people, these two months will be the lowest earning in the whole year. That means that launching a new product line, experimenting with costly marketing plans or moving locations should be avoided if at all possible. Releasing information about what you have on offer in the coming year is fine, but considering that many of your potential customers will be unable to afford to spend very much, it makes sense to use this time of year for preparation, planning and those essential administration tasks.
Keep in touch with your customers
Even if they don’t buy anything from your online store, whenever a person visits your website, they are helping to boost its rankings and subsequently, bolster your reputation as a business. A well written, entertaining and informative email marketing campaign can be a great way of celebrating your success from the previous year while letting your customers and followers know what you have planned for the future. Social media posts are especially important around this time of year, too. Rather than going for the hard sell, trying to add a little human touch can be extremely effective. Consumers don’t like to feel pressured into buying products they don’t need, especially by companies they have problems connecting with. Content that humanises your business helps to build confidence among your potential clients. Though it may not convert to sales immediately, this kind of campaign can be a great precursor to a more directed, sales driven initiative.
New Year, New Start
Many people think of the post-holiday season as a time to make a new start. From changes in lifestyle and fitness regimes to new approaches to marketing, the end of an old year and the beginning of a new can be a great catalyst for change. This time of year of is ideal for launching new campaigns now approaches and fresh content. Even if you haven’t got any new products or service to provide, updating all of your social media accounts and online digital platforms with positive, seasonal and topical content can be a great way to encourage conversions in the long term. Blog posts thanking your customers or clients for their support in the previous year can be a great start and anything that celebrates your achievements as a business will generally increase customer confidence.
Capitalise on the hype
The period between Christmas and New Year often feels like an unusual, undefined sort of time for a lot of people. This doesn’t mean there aren’t potential business opportunities to be had, though. Running themed promotions such as countdowns, special one off discounts or buy one get one free offer will create a buzz around your online store or website. Though you don’t necessarily have to use traditional Christmas imagery, as the majority of other business will be doing so, it often makes sense to follow suit. Though this can be an expensive time of year for many people, its also a time that many people are prepared to treat themselves a little, so pushing the promotions right through until January can help to maximise sales.
Essentially, it’s important to resist the urge to shut down operations completely when it comes to this time of year. Though most people will be taking a well earned break, having an effective seasonal marketing strategy is always a good plan. Take advantage of the residual Christmas hype if you can and use promotions, discounts and offers to keep your customers interested. Always try to take some time for reflection and planning, too. Though you do want to keep up a constant and coherent stream of communication with your website users and potential customers, assessing your successes and failures is also important. A methodical, balanced approach should allow you to use this time of year to both take stock of your business and continue to give your customers what you want. There’s no doubt this can be a challenging period for many, but it can also be one of the most lucrative.