Kids are back to school and the summer has come to a close, which means that the holiday shopping season is right around the corner for shoppers and retailers alike. The first of many big shopping days traditionally begins with Black Friday, one of the largest shopping days of the year. According to the National Retail Federation, an estimated 154 million people took part in Black Friday shopping in 2016, and if the trend continues, the number of Black Friday shoppers should grow even larger in 2017. If you are a business owner, attracting these holiday shoppers could make a significant impact on your bottom line. If you’re wondering what you can do differently this year to increase sales, we’ve put together a list that can help. Here are seven tips to help you market to and benefit from this sought-after demographic.
1. Start planning now.
As a business owner, one of the best things you can do to prepare yourself for a profitable fourth quarter is beginning to plan your marketing strategy now. When you plan early, you’re allowing yourself time to think through ideas, make adjustments, and tackle unforeseen projects before it’s too late. If you aren’t sure where to start, you can begin by thinking through high-level concepts; ask yourself questions like:
- What products and services do I want to promote?
- How and where will I advertise my specials?
- Will I offer in-store and online deals?
- When will my marketing campaign begin and end?
2. Follow the eyeballs—Get in the go-to guide
If you want to drive holiday shoppers into your store, you need to place your ads in areas where consumers expect to find Black Friday deals. One of the most effective ways to get your message in front shoppers is to advertise in the Thanksgiving Day paper, also known as the “Black Friday paper.” If you’re a local business owner in Lancaster, taking advantage of LNP’s Black Friday advertising specials will get your business’s message in front of more than 200,000 readers seeking special deals and coupons.
3. Don’t get lost in the shuffle.
Running one ad to promote your big sale will never get you the returns you’re looking for. If you’re serious about having a profitable fourth-quarter, you need to create a marketing plan that involves promoting your message multiple times on several platforms. LNP Media Group offers holiday marketing packages providing you with ad frequency in print, on LancasterOnline, and through mobile devices. These advertising packages include ad design and photography services, making it easy for you to setup a successful ad campaign at an affordable price.
4. Give them an offer they can’t resist.
According to a study by CreditDonkey, “forty-three percent of shoppers agree that clipping coupons is a good investment of time when the discount is worth up to 25 percent off.” When it comes to holiday deals, offering at least 25 percent off is a must for most businesses that use specials for the purpose of attracting shoppers. Consider your industry and competition, and let that be your guide.
5. Don’t forget about shoppers who are buying for themselves.
Admit it. You’ve shopped for yourself when you should’ve been buying for family and friends. According to the National Retail Federation, roughly 58 percent of consumers said they will shop for themselves during the holidays, spending an average of $139.61. If you’re a business owner, it’s important to think about how you can position your products in a way that attracts gift buyers and personal buyers. Consider offering a two for the price of one deal. One for the buyer and one for the person they’re shopping for.
6. Think small, earn big
Thanks to American Express, Small Business Saturday has become the biggest day of the year for small business owners across the country. If you own a business in Lancaster County, you already know that our community has an uncommonly strong commitment to shopping local. To reach this audience, advertise in places where locals will be looking, like LNP’s Small Business Saturday section. This special section provides advertisers with a variety of ad sizes to choose from with rates designed to fit into every budget. Local shoppers are loyal shoppers, making this demographic one you can’t afford to miss out on.
7. Step-up your digital presence on Cyber Monday
It’s official. The 2016 holiday shopping reports revealed that an estimated 108.5 million Americans shopped online during the long holiday weekend, surpassing the number of those who shopped in brick and mortar stores. If you don’t have an online presence yet, expanding your business to include e-commerce sales could help you capture more of the local market share. If an e-commerce website isn’t in the cards, get creative. Consider emailing a coupon on Cyber Monday that’s valid in-store during the following week. You could also run a similar offer using digital ads on LancasterOnline.