Harness the Christmas Buzz for a Truly Special New Year

“All I want for Christmas is record sales” – said every B2C business owner ever. I don’t need to lecture you on the benefits of Christmas, I do, however, need to lecture you on fully capitalising this festive season.

When it comes to creative Christmas marketing ideas most businesses think only in short-term profits, with seasonal promotions that temporarily boost sales. The problem with this is that bargain hunters are driven by price and price alone, they’ll quickly head to your competitor for a better deal or a shinier sign. Seasonal sales don’t cultivate customer loyalty, which is what will continue benefiting your business all year around.

Executing your Christmas marketing campaign carefully this year could return profits for the whole of 2017, here are my three tips:

Give Vouchers, Don’t Discount this Christmas!

Any store can discount, it’s a simple, easy and straight-forward marketing tactic. Gift giving takes far more thought and bother. Why? Because you have to choose an amount or order an item, and then decide what products will receive a gift; and that’s before beginning regular stuff like debriefing employees, updating tills and organising promotional content.

Did you know that 60% of gift card holders spend more than the total value of the card? You could make use of endowed progress to further increase customer loyalty. Endowed progress: “If you provide some type of artificial advancement toward a goal, a person will be more motivated to complete the goal.”

This means giving your customers a loyalty card with 12 spots, and two already stamped, rather than a 10-spot loyalty card. It reduces the amount of perceived work, which makes them more likely to put in the effort to complete it.

Give Your Customers What They Want (Not What You Want Them to Buy)

While you may have stocked up on Christmas themed merch hoping to shift it all in December, your customers will smell a rat if that’s the only product in your store discounted. If you’re giving away a free product as your Christmas gift, that doesn’t translate to an opportunity to move a product you overstocked earlier in the year. Nor is it acceptable to give away profitless gifts, like branded keyrings or miniature torches – no one wants them!

In every form of gift-giving, it’s the thought that counts; and Christmas B2C marketing is no different.

What’s your most popular product? Or your most expensive? Give one away on a raffle with tickets given exclusively to Christmas shoppers. Show your consumers that you’ve thought about them, and what they really want.

Check out how WestJet executed the perfect example of this in 2013:

Employ the Power of Personal Touch

This will be the third time that I’ve mentioned it, but IT’S THE THOUGHT THAT COUNTS. Have you ever been given a handmade Christmas card from someone close to you… your child or significant other?

The thought and time that went into crafting the card is what makes it truly special, and by simply looking at it you’re reminded of that.

Now think of the generic, pre-printed cards carted out every Christmas by the businesses you signed the mailing list of 10 years ago, the ones that don’t even remember your name and open ‘Dear Customer’. It’s not filling you with the same Christmas cheer, is it?

Show your customers that you truly appreciate them by taking a minute to craft a personal message in your voucher. It can be as simple as the opening line, here are some examples:

  • “To the lady with a beautiful scarf”
  • “To the gentlemen with the well-groomed beard!”
  • “Dear my Monday morning jelly tot buyer”

Christmas is the perfect opportunity to really reward your customers and build loyalty that will allow you to put your best foot forward in the new year.

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