It can be a challenge to stand out among the tidal wave of holiday digital marketing. It seems like every year the competition starts earlier and earlier and gets louder and louder. Thankfully, some aspects of digital marketing are still about being smarter, not necessarily bigger or louder. Here are some of the best seasonal digital marketing trends to help you stand apart from your competitors.
Preparations for your digital marketing during the holiday season should begin with a thorough analysis of last year’s seasonal advertising performance and sales. This is an opportunity to fully review the best way to go about your digital marketing this season. The first thing to review is what worked and what didn’t work What was the most successful campaign you ran? What times? What days? Ask yourself the same questions for your least successful digital marketing effort. Similarly, this is the perfect time to review your assets and content and see what can be updated and what isn’t relevant anymore. During this analysis, you should also take a look at what your competition did the year before. What strategies were they using gave you greif? Bid prices can increase by 140% over their yearly average during the holidays, and analyzing your past holiday data can help make sure you are optimizing your budget and avoiding previously made digital marketing mistakes.
Competition is tough in the holiday season, but one of the best digital marketing tactics to combat this is to try and create a sense of urgency in your marketing. A sense of urgency in your digital marketing shows shoppers the benefits of commiting to a purchase or buying decision right then and there, and reducing the possibility that they will continue their search and find a more desirable product elsewhere. One of the ways to foster this feeling of urgency is to add a countdown timer to your digital marketing. Putting a countdown timer on holiday promotions can help add a small amount of pressure without annoying your customers. Another excellent way to achieve a bit of urgency is to use language that encourages buying immediately in your digital marketing ad copy. Ad copy containing words and phrases like “just 2 days left,” “act now,” “click now” can help increase the numbers of shoppers who click your ads. Beware of using language like this however. It should be used sparingly and only when accompanied by engaging and well-written digital marketing copy, otherwise you can run the risk of turning shoppers off.
Retargeting is always one of the favorite digital marketing tactics, but it can be used with particular efficacy during the holiday season. Shoppers will often check out various sites and options, particularly when shopping for gifts, and leave off making their purchase decision until later. Online shoppers have the luxury of being able to return to a cart or product page hours or days after they first saw it. As we mentioned above, if you want to reduce that, you can use urgency in your ads. On the other hand, if you want to bring more people back to abandoned carts, you can retarget them with return-to-cart promotions or messaging.
Many businesses in industries that have a holiday sales boost can benefit from creating seasonal ad groups for the PPC aspect of their digital marketing. For example, during the holiday season, an aromatherapy business may want to consider promoting their products in a seasonal light, rather than in their normal tone.
Normal PPC Ad:
“Artemis Aromatherapy – Artisan Candles, Scents, and Salves
100% Pure Beeswax Candles – All Natural – All Scents. Our products are made from only the highest quality ingredients.”
Holiday PPC Ad:
“Holiday Candles & Seasonal Gifts – Artemis Aromatherapy
25% DISCOUNT on ALL Holiday Candles & Packages – Our gift to you. Shop artisan candles, scents, and salves. All Natural.”
Seasonal PPC ads can help expand your digital marketing to audiences who are interested in your products for gifts or as part of the holiday. To make sure you are maximizing your PPC efforts during the holiday season, check on various holiday-themes industry keywords to see which might be the best for your needs.
We all like to do research before making a purchase, and with the immense amount of shopping done during the holiday season, you can bet there is an insane amount of research being done as well. This huge uptick in the amount of people gathering information before purchasing means that SEO is incredibly important for your digital marketing in the holiday season. 8 in 10 holiday shoppers are influenced by the internet before making a purchase – with search engines being the most influential. While you should absolutely have an aggressive PPC campaign, don’t let that distract from your SEO work. The holiday season is the perfect time to ramp up your SEO and boost your rankings. Your content and landing pages should be optimized for high performing and seasonal keywords, not to mention 100% responsive and adaptable for any screen size. Search engines on mobile are ideal places to battle your digital marketing competition this holiday season, as 76% of mobile shoppers change their mind about which retailer/brand to buy from after searching online.
During the holiday season, shoppers are usually willing to go out of their way to get the right gift or make the right purchase. Capitalize on this by expanding your geo-targeted areas to include likely communities that are normally just a bit out of the way, or get more ambitious and target some communities further off that would otherwise be perfect. You can also retarget those who were out of your normal digital marketing areas but visited your site with special “out-of-town” or “worth-the-drive” promotions. It’s not all year round that people will make a drive to make a purchase – but if your business doesn’t engage in full ecommerce, this is a fantastic way to get more shoppers through the door this season by using smart digital marketing.
There are a lot of reasons not to make a purchase. Maybe it was too expensive for this occasion, maybe the time just wasn’t right, maybe they needed to discuss it with someone else first, maybe they just weren’t interested. But just because holiday shoppers didn’t make a purchase doesn’t mean they aren’t a potentially valuable audience. You can utilize your holiday shopper data to retarget those shoppers during other seasonal moments – around Valentine’s Day, the beginning of Summer, Back-to-School, and more. Chances are there are some leads in that audience who have been ripening since the holiday.