Black Friday is the biggest day of the year for many businesses, whether they are online or offline. Millions of people are out searching for deals that will fulfill their holiday shopping lists. They want to buy, but that doesn’t mean they will necessarily buy from you. In order to bring in the millions you must have a solid Black Friday Marketing plan in place. Today we are going to show you how to do just that in a few easy steps.
Step One: Know Your Customers
The very first thing you must do is know who you are marketing towards. Who does your target audience consist of and what is trending for them right now? Ensure you do an adequate amount of research on this because knowing your target audience is the number one most important thing to your marketing campaign. Aiming your marketing efforts towards people who will have no reason to buy what you are selling is going to instantly fall flat.
Keywords are important because they drive relevant people to your site through the search engines. Create a list of these all-important words once you have identified your target audience. Begin with two or three general keywords, such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and sales. Add some keywords which are relevant to your business niche. Lastly, include keywords tailored towards your specific promotions.
Step Two: Know What You Want To Do
Take time to pour over as much research material as possible. If applicable, look over what your company has done in the past and evaluate what did or did not work during those previous campaigns. Look at information on other company’s Black Friday marketing campaigns. Identify what did or did not work for them as well. Once you have done this, take a look at trending keywords, sales trends, and what the top sites on the search engines have been doing.
Although you should take cues from what has or has not worked for your company and others, this does not mean that you should use the exact same marketing campaigns others have used. Instead, you should avoid marketing strategies which have utterly failed, and use those which have succeeded as ground work. Simply put, there are things which work and things which do not, but originality always increases your chances of a successful campaign. No person wants to see the same type of thing over and over again.
Step Three: Create Your Website
Chances are high you already have a website built and running. That does not mean you can skip this step, however. You will still need to redesign it to better suit (and advertise) your marketing campaign. Remember your website is the base of operations for your entire marketing campaign, and it should reflect this. Here are a few quick, useful tips on designing your website for Black Friday:
- Ensure it is attractive and will appeal to your target audience. (For example, if you are selling something pertaining to men, you would not make your website pink. The design should be relevant to your target audience.)
- All information should be easy to find and understand.
- Customers should be able to easily identify what items are discounted for Black Friday. Creating a custom section for these discounted items is ideal.
- If you are running any freebies or giveaways during this big sale day you should highlight them on the front page of your website.
- Your website should allow for interaction. Polls, freebies, giveaways, contests, rewards, forums, and blog posts are all fantastic ways for customers to interact on your site.
Step Four: Become Active On Social Media
Social media allows for a virtual word of mouth which can and will spread. It may not spread quickly, but if you focus enough time and energy on your efforts it will eventually spread to a considerable amount of people. Remember social media is all about sharing, expanding your reach, and engaging your customers. These things don’t always just naturally happen, but there are things you can do to ensure it does.
Offer an incentive for people sharing a promotional picture. Allowing every person who shares your picture an entry in a drawing to win a free item from your shop has been proven to be the best incentive. The item can be small, but remember that the more impressive the item is the more people who will share.
Expanding Your Reach
Expanding your reach consists of bringing more people in to like or follow your social media accounts. The more fans and followers you have, the more people who will see your content. The sharing method detailed above is a very good way to start. In addition, there are numerous groups you can share your content in to reach a larger audience. Some of those who see your content will more than likely be prompted to like or follow your account. Proper use of relevant hash-tags on sites which use them are also helpful. For this to work effectively you should give people plenty of ways to redirect to your main website from your social media accounts.
Engaging With Customers
Engagement involves giving your fans and followers plenty of ways to interact on your social media accounts. Ask questions, run small giveaways, ask for shares, and offer plenty of valuable information via your posts. Allow them to redirect to your main website, where they should be given more ways to interact. Engaging customers does not end there, however. Although giving your customers the chance to interact with your various sites is important, you must also work at interacting personally with your customers. Giving their comments a like is a good start, but you should also strive to personally respond to at least a portion of them. People like to feel connected, and they enjoy feeling important. Taking the time out of your day to respond helps to feed this need.
Step Five: Emails and Advertisements
Emails are a great way to inform people already connected to your website or business about what you will have going on for Black Friday. The trick is to send appealing emails which will convert just enough to keep your customers informed without spamming them. It’s a great balancing act that takes effort and planning. A good rule is to send out no more than a handful of emails ahead of time so your customers can plan ahead. On Black Friday you can send out two emails. If you send out two make sure they are spaced out by a considerable amount of hours. You could send one out around five or six in the morning and the second a few hours before your sale ends, such as between the hours of eight and ten at night.
In regards to advertisements, a good place to begin is with the search engines. You could also place advertisements on relevant websites, or partner with other companies in the same business niche to drive traffic. Advertising on well used social media sites has also been proven to be fairly effective at driving in traffic on Black Friday. During your phase of research and planning, you should remember to take into account the best places for advertisements revolving around your business niche.
Step Six: Taking It Offline
Although most advertising is done online these days, there are numerous ways to advertise offline to increase your sales, as well as the reach of your Black Friday marketing campaign. Here is a short non-inclusive list containing a few ideas for offline advertisement:
- Create and send out holiday coupons.
- If you have a physical mailing list you can send brief advertisements to those on your mailing list.
- Use billboard advertisements. You can cut the costs of these advertisements by sharing space with other companies.
- Commercials. These can be fairly pricey, but if your company is large enough or successful enough to have the funds these are a great way to reach thousands or even millions of customers at once.
A Few Quick Tips
- Be engaging and informative in everything you do.
- Don’t spam your customers or over promote.
- Brand everything. Everything you do should revolve around the same basic design so your customers can recognize your advertisements and products on sight.
- Use a wide range of promotion techniques to reach the largest audience.
- Begin planning your campaign at least three months ahead of time.
- Begin executing your campaign at least three to four weeks ahead of time. Primarily this applies to your social media, emails, and, if applicable, physical advertisements.
- Don’t forget the importance of top notch customer service.