(Sponsored by Visa Small Business)
The holiday season is a perfect time of year for savvy business owners to capture profits. The “holiday marketing benefits” are staggering in the form of generating new customers, rewarding repeat customers, creating community good will, and increasing public relations! All of which ultimately will increase bottom line profits.
The Black Friday holiday sale is a perfect example of this phenomenon. Consumers will line up in the early hours of the morning just to have first dibs on fabulous deals at brick and mortar storefronts like Walmart, Best Buy, JC Penney, and more. These stores will sell items below wholesale cost, but recoup their money with customers who purchase additional items at regular price while in the store. Free media coverage also increases exposure by highlighting stories of the madhouse rush of consumers.
The online shopping experience utilizes the same philosophy. For example, on Black Friday, one of our clients (a well-known vocal singer) will offer downloads of her newly-released single for 1 cent, coupled with additional deeply discounted rates on other products to increase her popularity and sales.
This same client may also participate in a singing engagement on Thanksgiving where all proceeds go to a local charity to feed hungry children. While this doesn’t bring profits in the form of monetary value to our client, it promotes goodwill and plays a paramount role in her public relations campaign. And behind the scenes, it fulfills her personal passion to help underprivileged children.
If you are a business owner wanting to take advantage of the holiday season to increase year-end revenues, simply follow these steps:
- Plan In Advance – Determine your desired revenues and then devise your plan accordingly.
- Develop Specials Along With Extra Incentives – Create enticing specials at extraordinary prices that will entice new and existing consumers to purchase from you. Throw in “unannounced” specials to further engage them.
- Develop Your Marketing List – Segment out your marketing list, survey those who have never purchased from you before and find out what their “needs” are. Create additional specials and incentives directly related to their purchasing desires.
- Schedule A Holiday Event To Engage Your Customers – An event that brings out the holiday spirit in your customers will endear them to you. You can create a fun online event, or a local “live” event. It doesn’t necessarily need to have monetary value, but if done correctly it will further develop the trust factor between you and your customers. This goes a long way in their future buying decisions.
- Give To Charity – Let your customers know that a portion of their purchase will be donated to a worthy cause. Take it a step further by giving your customers a choice between a few different charities to send their portion to… customers love having a “voice” and this is a golden opportunity to provide it.
- Combine Social Media With Public Relations – Take your holiday sales campaign to both social media and the public relation arenas. Be sure to include appropriate hashtags with your status updates so that consumers can find your events and sales.
You now have the steps to facilitate a profitable holiday season for your online or offline business. It is up to you to begin while there is still time! So roll up your sleeves, put together your holiday sales campaign and begin working your plan. Then watch your revenue, customer base, and goodwill increase.
We are blogging on behalf of Visa Business and received compensation for our time from Visa for sharing our views in this post, but the views expressed here are solely ours, not Visa’s. Visit http://facebook.com/visasmallbiz to take a look at the reinvented Facebook Page: Well Sourced by Visa Business. The Page serves as a space where small business owners can access educational resources, read success stories from other business owners, engage with peers, and find tips to help businesses run more efficiently. Every month, the Page will introduce a new theme that will focus on a topic important to a small business owner’s success. For additional tips and advice, and information about Visa’s small business solutions, follow @VisaSmallBiz and visit http://visa.com/business.