The biggest holiday season for online-shopping is soon upon us, and for many this is a critical time to decide and plan Christmas campaigns and promotions.
Now, first you need to sit down and relax and focus on what is just around the corner. To make it a bit easier for you we decided to help out by giving you 5 fantastic tips that you can use when preparing your digital Christmas campaign strategy. Make this Christmas into something special and boost your online sales or inbound leads.
TIP 1 – Understand Your Objectives
By now you should already have your objectives in place for your Christmas Campaign. For most businesses it will be driving online sales or inbound leads. However, it’s always beneficial to have a numerical target in place e.g. increasing total revenue figures by £1million or to achieve a 5% year on year seasonal growth in sales or leads. The key reason for this is so that you can measure if those objectives have been achieved, more importantly it will help you understand the impact of your marketing campaign from a ROI perspective. By having clearly defined objectives well help you develop a detailed strategy to ensure those objectives are met.
TIP 2 – Have a Clear Message
Communicating your brand identity can be difficult depending on your business sector. For a business focused on driving online sales, the Holiday Season Consumer is looking for the best deals so key messages such as Xmas Sale, Customer Rewards etc can be impactful within the digital space. However, some business focus on an emotional response e.g. John Lewis and the famous Christmas Adverts of the past few years. Therefore, having the right message can help you get through all the other Christmas noise and clutter. You need to stand out, whether using static imagery, gifs or videos, you need to stand out from the competition. Most of all remember it’s Christmas, the season to be jolly, so have some fun with the messaging, add some Christmas flare, encourage the consumer to take part and engage.
TIP 3 – Select the Right Channel
Use what you already know. What channels has been working out well? Use your current learnings and abundance of data you have at your disposal and make decisions on where to focus your efforts. Across the key channels AdWords, Social, Video and Display, ad competition will be high which in turn can impact on bids and cost per click/impression. Despite the abundance of channels available the key emphasis should be on Social Media.
Through Social Media ensure you Inspire your followers with key product offerings, gifts and unique discounts. Sponsor the content that is delivering the best results (such as shares, clicks and likes). Tailor your content and add a Christmas flare and feel to it, and remember, this is the silly season – so have fun doing it! This will help your message stand out as discussed in Tip 2.
TIP 4 – Budgeting
The budget you have depends on the impact your message and channel selection will have on delivering on your objectives. For lower budgets there are elements that you can employ to maximise the impact. For example, Time of Day targeting, look at your data for conversions and highlight key times when most conversions take place, then run your ads at those times to amplify your channel selection to consumers at key decision-making periods.
For businesses with larger budgets, focus on those keywords on ads that are driving the best response and give them a big boost by bidding higher and spending more to increase your reach to your desired audience.
Make sure you plan your budgets early, the last thing you want is to have wasted your budgets early on not leaving much for the key retail season. That’s why you should plan seasonal budgets 6 to 9 months in advance.
TIP 5 – Optimise and Measure
The digital space is a like a snow blizzard, especially around Christmas. Your campaign needs to be as “fresh” and powerful as possible to cut through. Examine the feedback you get from your activities and adjust your strategies accordingly. We know, it’s easier said than done. Having scripts in place and bidding strategies will allow you to make real-time changes in-line with the digital marketplace. Review the results, sales, revenue figures and change and test with your audience targeting to ensure continuous optimisations.
Christmas campaign planning is never easy, you should always start early and have a plan defined before October begins and be ready to implement. However remember, it’s Christmas and despite the snow blizzard of companies all competing together, following these key steps can help you make the most of your activities.