This is part one of our monthly series Winning the Holiday Season with Video. You can download our full holiday guide here.
It’s almost October, and the holiday season is officially upon us.
The holidays can make or break a retailer’s whole year. And to be successful, your brand needs to beat out the competition to be top-of-mind for your audience when they go to purchase gifts for friends and family.
To do this, research shows that it’s necessary to be in front of your consumers at the outset for actual purchases later in the season. According to a recent report from McKinsey & Co., about 70 percent of shoppers do not purchase a brand’s product if that brand wasn’t a part of the consumer’s initial consideration set.
So how do you become a part of that set early on and remain there throughout the holiday season? Here, we take a look at why building awareness in the early months is important and how exactly you can do it with video.
Holiday Marketing Early On—But Without the Messaging
When thinking about the holiday season, the bulk of the holiday-centric messaging will start in November, but the actual strategy and tactics that will make your November and December successful need to start in September and October.
You can’t rely on lifelong loyalty from customers anymore. The same McKinsey & Co. report mentioned previously shows how elusive customer loyalty is in today’s market:
Only 13 percent of consumers today remain loyalists to a single brand, and 58 percent switch brands on a regular basis. The 29 percent that are “vulnerable repurchasers” do end up coming back to the original brand, but they are definitely shopping around and need reassurance to purchase from their brand again. Today’s consumers require your brand to bring relevant, timely information and products to them exactly when they need it; otherwise, they may go to a competitor.
All of this is important when considering your holiday marketing strategy. Realistically, you need more than the loyalists and vulnerable repurchasers to make holiday sales targets. How are you going to connect with all categories of shoppers early on so you can stay top-of-mind with them when it comes time to actually buy in November and December?
Early Season Awareness Tactics for Late-Season Sales
The key in this early period is to talk to your entire customer base and new consumers in some way. It doesn’t need to be about the holiday messaging quite yet, but you need a reason to reach out, such as smaller holidays or events leading up to the holiday season, and continually communicate with them in ways that are relevant for their entire holiday gift list. As a retail brand, you need to get your audience thinking about your business for their holiday purchasing early on.
Tactically, this results in building up your consumer database and cookie pools. This is a critical period for data collection where you gather names, numbers, email addresses and other contact information to access more information about this group later in the season.
Why Use Digital Video?
You know video is a powerful, broad awareness tool where everyone sees the same creative execution, but with today’s technology, it can do a whole lot more for your brand.
We’ve seen a rise in the importance of personalized advertising; according to a report from Accenture, 75 percent of consumers are more likely to buy from a retailer that recognizes them by name or recommends products to them based on their past purchase history. This data point is incredibly important when considering the issues with loyalty in today’s market.
With video, brands can now use the power of sight, sound and motion (which can’t easily be ignored on a screen) to deliver personalized, one-to-one creative to their target audiences throughout the holiday season.
To that end, here is how you can use personalized digital video to ensure you’re top-of-mind with key prospects at the beginning of the season through to the key shopping days later in the season.
Split messaging between new and existing customers
- It’s important to maximize one-time or lapsed buyers during this period. Everyone is a potential customer during this time, not just your core base.
- Remind your existing customers of who you are and stay top-of-mind with people who already know and like you.
Use strong CTAs to get people to your site, shopping around and browsing
- In-store and online sales are the ultimate goal, but you need to direct people to your website at this time to collect the proper data