The final weeks of 2016 are upon us, ready or not. It’s 9-plus weeks until Christmas, and savvy shoppers are already making plans to take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals.
Even if you don’t have a retail business or sell gifts or holiday-related items, you should be thinking of ways your business can capitalize on holiday activity.
Here are some non-holiday business services that typically benefit from holiday spending:
- Carpet Cleaning
- Chimney Sweeps
- Furnace Checkups
- Car Rental
- Cosmetic Dentistry
- Salons and Spas
- Interior Design
- Pet Groomers
- Home Security
And more – you get the idea!
Here are 7 Tips to help your business cash in on holiday spending this year:
- Update Your Website
You should be adding fresh content to your website regularly, but it’s especially important if you want to target holiday business. Add your holiday specials to your home page AND create individual landing pages for EACH of the services or deals you want to promote. This will help attract organic traffic to your site as users are searching for your services, and it will also provide the place to send traffic from Tips #2 and #3 below. Have a separate page for each pre- and post- holiday service special you offer. Be sure to mention the holiday by name–you can be sure that consumers are searching for “Christmas” specials far more frequently than they search for “holiday” specials. So use the language on your landing pages that your customers actually use when they’re searching online.
- Reach Out via Social Media
Leverage Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest posts plus Tweets. Plan and prepare these in advance, and then start posting them regularly starting now and throughout the holiday season. Use photos to catch attention. It’s okay to promote your business using your social media accounts as long as that’s not the ONLY thing you use social media for. Sprinkle these promotional messages in with other tips and interesting info so you don’t train your followers to ignore you by barraging them with ads.
- Tweak Your Pay Per Click Campaigns
It’s critical to coordinate your organic, social and paid online marketing. (And this applies all year around – not just during holidays!) Make sure your message is clear and you’re targeting the right keywords to the right geographic territory. Zero in on exactly what you are offering and where. This is where it’s really important to have outstanding landing pages on your website (see Tip #1) for each individual promotion you are targeting. Don’t lump everything together on one landing page. That’s lazy, ineffective, and results in a lower quality score which drives up your cost-per-click.
- Coupons, Deals, Special Offers
Give this some thought. What are your most popular services in late fall and winter? What can you promote that will help your customers and potential customers with some holiday-related chore or preparation? Present your offers as solutions to problems. Present yourself as the expert problem solver who can provide a valuable service that will free up your customers to focus on the season. You can turn any service into a holiday-related service if you’re creative. And you can distribute these on your website, through social media, PPC, via email, SMS text and print.
- Email Marketing
This is best used to contact loyal customers. They deserve a “gift” from you for their loyalty, and an email with a truly special offer for a limited audience is far more likely to be opened and acted upon. Be sure you have a clear call-to-action in your email, and link it to – you guessed it – a custom landing page created just for that email. Check out these tips for successful holiday email marketing.
- SMS Text Message Marketing
No matter what kind of services your business provides, your customers are likely moving around with a smartphone in hand. Coordinate Tips #4 and #5 above and send a few short, clear offers to your customer base throughout the holidays.
- Don’t Forget Print!
Remember when it used to be exciting to get an email? And stuff that the mailman left in your mailbox was ordinary, boring and forgettable? Nowadays that attitude is largely reversed. Now we trash most of what lands in our email inboxes and marvel over actual real mail. According to a Pitney Bowes survey, 76% of small businesses say their ideal marketing strategy encompasses a combination of both print and digital communication.
What are your most effective holiday marketing ideas? Share with us in the comments, below.