Today, and for the next three days, we’re challenging you to take our Holiday Marketing Challenge. We’ll help you take your business to the next level this holiday season by giving you new ways to engage customers, promote products and services, and get in the holiday spirit!
The Christmas season is the busiest of the year for shopping. But that traffic drops drastically after New Year’s. January and February are often the slowest times of the year for business owners. For your Day Twelve challenge, we challenge you to give out coupons in December that are only good in January.
Customers who receive a coupon, or some other incentive, are more likely to come back than customers who are simply told about future sales. Bring customers back with coupons that are good starting January 1st. Give them $5.00 off their purchase or 20% off their next purchase. You can offer this through email campaigns or when customers make a purchase during the holiday season.
People are hard-wired to look for bargains. That’s one of the reasons the JCPenney no-coupon policy failed. Even though things were supposedly marked down–so that no coupons were needed–it was not the same as customers being able to use a coupon and reduce the price of an item. If you give out coupons, customers will be more inclined to return to your store. Some may have seen another item they wish to purchase later or others may come back just to browse. Whatever the reason, the promise of a dollar amount or percentage off tips the odds in your favor.
If you’re concerned customers who make a purchase in early December may forget about the coupon by January, you might want to consider doing two coupons with overlapping dates. For instance, someone makes a purchase the second week in December. Give them two coupons at the register: the first is good up to January 1st and the second is good only in January. The second coupon is what you’re really concerned with but the first coupon acts as a buffer between the busiest time of the year and the slowest. Bath and Bodyworks uses this technique all the time. Next time you get their flyer in the mail, check the dates on the coupons. Odds are one of them is good the day you get it and the other is not good for a few weeks.
Make sure you word the coupon stipulations carefully. For instance, $5.00 off your next purchase is an inexpensive way for businesses to bring back customers…unless of course you have products for $5.00. total. The last thing you want to happen is for customers to use a $5.00 off coupon on a $5.00 item and pay nothing but the sales tax. So, make sure you say something like $5.00 off your next purchase of $25.00 or more. Simple wording can make the difference between lots of profit and none.
Also, if you have a discount, clearance, or some other section of marked-down items, you need to decide if this coupon is applicable towards those products or services. For instance, if you are already offering x number of dollars off a new roof, you may not want someone to apply a 20% off coupon towards it. Some big stores do accept coupons on discounted or clearance items, but the majority do not. As a former retail employee, the last thing a retail clerk wants is to deal with an irate customer. The last thing a customer wants is to get to the counter and be told they can’t make a purchase. So make it clear exactly what the coupon is good for and everyone can avoid a headache all around.
Start off slowly and give them a straightforward coupon and as you gain confidence and business, try adding some mystery to your sales! There are dozens of ways to add fun to discount shopping.
Best of luck to you on Day Twelve. Send us photos or leave comments of how you rise to the #HolidayMarketingChallenge
3V is publishing a series of valuable marketing tips for the holidays called the #HolidayMarketingChallenge, 15 valuable marketing blogs in 15 days! The last day for the holiday marketing challenge will be Friday, November 27th! After that day, 3V will package up all the articles into one easy to download and print holiday marketing tips cheat sheet.
Below is the list of published Holiday Marketing Challenge articles, please do take a minute to read, review and share some of our valuable marketing ideas!