How does your business plan on spreading the holiday cheer? As the shopping season approaches and the colder temperatures set in, are you feeling a little “snowed in” figuring out your holiday marketing plan? If you sell tangible products, promo deals seem plentiful – but what if you are in the service industry? What kind of unique holiday incentives can you offer?
We’re here to help change all that. With the right incentive paired with the right timing, you can cut through the noise and make a lasting impression on your customers long after the holiday lights are taken down. Here is our helpful guide to marketing ideas that will give you a successful holiday season.
Make Sure Your Campaign is Timely
Before we start churning out ideas, it’s important to get your timing right. Your marketing incentives should start rolling out no later than Mid October/Early November. With this in mind, try to time your marketing campaign with the high-volume shopping days. You can even start promoting some early teasers to customers of an upcoming event/promotion.
These dates need to be on your marketing calendar every year when planning out your holiday incentives:
- Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving)
- Small Business Saturday (the first Saturday after Thanksgiving)
- Cyber Monday (the first Monday after Thanksgiving)
- Super Saturday (the Saturday before Christmas)
- Boxing Day (the day after Christmas)
Prime shopping days mean people are online or in-store looking for deals. Take advantage of this by promoting special offers that either begin or end on these specific dates or by tying in your special offer with these events (“Black Friday Deals”). You’ll need to develop content, messaging, and graphics for your campaign that speaks with your target audience. Use our step-by-step guide on how to discover your buyer persona so you can build a successful marketing campaign.
Now that you have your timing mapped out let’s talk about some great marketing ideas you can use.
1. Offer an End-of-Year Special
Create a sense of urgency by advertising a special deal or discount for customers who book a service within a specified time frame. This will entice customers to lock in a special rate before prices bump back up in the new year. You can offer specials like:
- Discount on services booked by December 31st
- A bonus gift card to use towards a future service
- Book and Save deal by extending out 3 different offers (25% off, free service add-on deal, or get 1/2 off your next service if you book by Dec 31)
2. “Gift” Your Customers with Their Purchase
With this incentive, you are providing a gift in return for their business. Come up with a particular service or package incentive and offer customers a special gift card if they spend a certain dollar amount. For example, if a customer spends $1000 on a service or signs a 12-month contract, you’ll give them a $200 gift card in return. You can add some creative messaging to your deal with “Let us help you pay for your holiday presents! Sign a 12-month contract with us and you’ll receive a $200 gift card from us to help cover your holiday shopping.”
3. Create Short-Term Hot Deals
Think of the 12 days of Christmas. Each day for 12 days, offer a new, one-day-only discount or gift with a new purchase. Start off small to give your promotion time to build momentum. Each day the deal will get more enticing. Make the final day something significant and exciting and even limit the deal to a shorter window, such as “deal ends by 5 pm today.” Short-term hot deals are great to promote on social media. You can spread the word fast and generate multiple shares and new followers.
4. Target Repeat Customers
The holidays are about giving and spreading joy. Reward your loyal customers with one-time-only deals or VIP access to early specials that are just for them. Use your customer data to create personalized messages based on their special purchase with you. You can then customize your content to include exclusive discounts for that specific service. For example, your dynamic content could say, “Mrs. Smith, thank you for being such a loyal customer since 2019. As a token of our appreciation, we want to offer you an exclusive deal. If you add fertilization to your existing lawn care service, we’ll take 50% off your first treatment.”
5. Create Bundled Deals
Think about your services that are either in the off-season or are items that could help customers during the holiday season. Then create a holiday bundled deal that makes it worth the purchase. For example, if you are an electrician, chances are your customers will be doing some holiday entertaining in their homes. Encourage them to go ahead and spruce up their house before their guests arrive. Offer a holiday installation package that will encourage them to get that lighting project done that they have been putting off. You could offer a “Free Light Fixture (up to $300 value) with the purchase of a 10-light outdoor system.” Or slash a percentage of 3 different lighting package options.
6. Run a Holiday Giveaway on Social Media
Giveaways are very cost-effective methods to help generate more brand awareness about your business. Brands have been using giveaways to help generate interest and sales for years on social media. By using this type of promotion, you can get your target audience easily excited about your business and the upcoming holidays.
Giveaways need a way to spark momentum in the form of shares, so it’s important to think about what users can do to help spread the word and participate. Branded hashtags, photo caption content, and a quiz. To run an effective giveaway campaign you’ll need to advertise how users can enter the contest, what they need to do to participate, how the winner will be announced, and of course, what the winner will receive. Announcing through a live event is another way to get people “tuned in” to your brand.
We hope this gave you some great marketing ideas to help boost sales this holiday season. Don’t be afraid to try more than one promo idea or tweak an existing one along the way. The holidays are the best times to make an investment back into your customers and connect with new ones.
Developing holiday marketing strategies can be tough, but we’re here to help. If you have questions about your current marketing plan or are interested in new ideas to grow your business, contact us for a free digital consultation.