According to eMarketer.com, a survey taken by Google and OTX in May 2010 indicated that “35% of US internet users have already begun their holiday shopping and research as of August. That proportion is equal to the 35% who said they planned to start in November or later.”
And, according to Google’s new site, ThinkHoliday, 73% of consumers have already begun to research their purchases for the holidays, and 89% of those consumers have already started purchasing holiday products online.
With nearly three-fourths of consumers performing holiday purchase research, why would you wait until Black Friday to start promoting your products and services for the holidays? If you haven’t started your holiday online promotion campaign, it’s time to start now—even if you don’t have a website.
Below are a few ways to jump onto the radar of holiday shoppers:
Offer a Contest: The holidays aren’t the most relaxing time of year. With Christmas break, extensive shopping agendas, trip planning, and holiday cooking, it can seem nearly impossible to take time for yourself and relax. Your customers are no different. Provide them with a contest that grabs their interest and works to relieve some of their stress—even if it just gets their minds off holiday obligations.
According to a recent article on eMarketer.com, ad server Unicast performed a study involving female Internet users. The study found that 31% of female Internet users are likely to find interest in an online item that “allows you to create and submit an entry for a chance to win a prize.” Hosting a contest on your blog or website is an excellent way to get in front of these consumers for gift purchasing during the holidays.
Create an Email Marketing Campaign: Use email campaigns to get in front of past customers and provide them with an offer such as a free gift, discount for online purchases, or a spotlight on holiday specials. These intriguing offers not only get more people to visit your website, store, or social media profile, but they also touch customers who might not have made a purchase from you in a while.
Provide Rewards on Facebook: Make use of your business Facebook page by offering weekly rewards and specials to your followers. Send one message to your fans informing them that you will be posting rewards and specials on your Facebook company page every Wednesday at 8 a.m. EST until Wednesday, December 22. This will encourage fans to visit your page every Wednesday to see what the new offer is.
For example, the first Wednesday of your campaign you could offer a coupon code that gives followers 25% off their next online purchase. The following Wednesday you could provide free shipping and gift-wrapping for purchases made within the week. The possibilities are endless, and the more creative you get, the more likely your followers will be intrigued and curious to see what your next offer is.
Give a Free Gift: ‘Tis the season to give, and what better way to give back to your customers and prospects than by offering a free gift. For example, you could offer $50 off for any purchase of $200 or more, or you could provide a free product or service to customers who refer you to others before December 23. If customers are interested in a product you offer but aren’t quite sold on the product yet (perhaps your product might be out of their price range or they want to check out the competition), you might be able to nudge them into the purchase by offering a free gift or discount. The more rewards you give customers for money spent, the more likely they’ll be to make numerous gift purchases from you.
What are you doing this holiday season to get on consumer radars?