Now that the kids are back to school and life is starting to get back to normal, it’s time to start thinking about direct marketing for the holidays. Too early? It certainly feels like it, but November and December will be here before you know it. You don’t want to miss out on the most profitable time of the year because you started planning your direct marketing campaigns too late. Whether you have a brick-and-mortar store or have an online business, the holiday season is the perfect time to plan a direct marketing campaign and a great opportunity to generate sales.
Customers are beginning their holiday preparations earlier and earlier every year. Black Friday and Cyber Monday have only encouraged that trend. They have become so mainstream, that what started as 2 days of savings has morphed into a 4-day Cyber Weekend, which in turn, has transformed into a whole Cyber Week. It starts a few days before Black Friday and ending a few days after Cyber Monday.
Even though shoppers are now getting a whole week of savings, Black Friday is still the king of the castle when it comes to pre-holiday shopping. Whether you are planning an email blast or a direct mail campaign, make sure your Black Friday campaigns contain the biggest and best promotions you can offer this holiday season.
Don’t stop at Black Friday and Cyber Monday. They are just the precursor for the main round. After the dust settles from Cyber Week, you can really focus your direct marketing efforts on Christmas.
Many businesses stop their marketing efforts so they can focus on the holidays, deciding to pick things up in the New Year. If you start planning now, you can keep the marketing machine running. Christmas is the perfect time to reach out to current clients and new prospects with a holiday themed mail piece.
A simple card is the perfect way to show your appreciation to your clients, as well as your vendors. Everyone enjoys receiving a traditional holiday card and your small token of thanks will be repaid by having that card displayed for all to see.
It is also the perfect time to introduce yourself to prospective clients. Make a powerful and personal impact this year, with a simple Season Greetings and a business card.
Many print companies provide holiday cards with small company logos printed on them. These are perfect and pretty cost effective. You get the jolliness of the card, so it will be put on display and your logo, so you will be remembered.
Do not make the holiday card a full-on advertisement for your business or services. Then it becomes nothing more than a promotional piece and will go unnoticed amongst the rest of holiday mail. If you have marketing material you want to present, stuff it inside the card. You can include a pamphlet advertising your business or even include a New Year’s promotion. You can take it one step further and include a small gift, like a branded pen or something similar. You may be surprised how far a small gift can go!
After Christmas, start the New Year off with a bang.
The New Year is the perfect time to start thinking about testing new mailing lists. Changing or simply updating your target market will breathe life into your stagnant direct marketing campaign. Try using the intelligence within your current client list to create a description your best customers which you can use to help to identify your ideal prospects. This process will not only provide you with a highly-targeted group of prospects, but also will help you glean valuable insight into the demographic make-up of your current clientele, which is always helpful to know.
Whether it’s an email campaign or a direct mail campaign you plan on sending, remember, colossal amounts of emails and mail get sent out over the holiday season. You don’t want to risk your email or mail piece getting lost in the chaos. The earlier you get it out the more chance you have of it being opened. If possible, try a combination of both direct mail and email. Repetition is so important in direct marketing. The more you can get your offer in front of your prospects, the more successful your direct marketing campaign is going to be.
The holiday season is the perfect opportunity to give one last boost to your annual sales before year end. Though the holidays are still ways away, having a solid direct marketing plan will help you benefit from the entire holiday season.