Live From DMA 07: Five Things It’s Not Too Late to Do This Holiday Season
You’ve been planning your holiday season strategy since last spring, but it’s not too late to introduce a few ideas to help you get the most from the so-called fifth quarter. Here are five last-minute initiatives you can implement in time to move the holiday sales needle.
Use new mover data to acquire new customers.
More than 3 million U.S. consumers will relocate between now and Christmas—about 400,000 a week. A recent Epsilon/GfK Group survey finds new movers spend an average of $7,300 on move-related goods and services, including home electronics, appliances, housewares and furnishings. Survey respondents said existing customer relationships exerted little, if any, influence over their purchase decisions; on the other hand, many said direct marketing exerted a strong influence.
Improve your e-mail marketing delivery.
Although marketers often send more e-mail in November and early December than during the rest of the year, spam filters and anti-phishing measures still route a percentage of commercial e-mail to bulk folders. Remind subscribers to add you to their address books and make it easy to unsubscribe. Implementing e-mail authentication solutions can help deliver more of your messages—with images intact—and boost e-mail marketing results.
Integrate paid search with other channels and use it to test copy.
Marketing teams have become adept at using product names and attributes to build keyword lists. But consumers often are led to search by advertising in other channels—direct mail, print ads, TV and radio pitches—especially as holiday marketing spends ramp up. Expand your keyword lists to include phrases and taglines used in your advertising, and test descriptions consumers are using in product review forums. When keywords perform well, use them in your e-mail subject lines, on your landing pages and in your ad copy.
Talk to your loyalty program members and recruit more in multiple channels.
In a Epsilon/GfK survey of 2006 holiday shoppers, loyalty program members outspent nonmembers by 14 percent. They responded to program operators’ e-mails by shopping in stores, online, and through catalogs. And like nonmembers, they pegged their continued loyalty to relevance. Nearly all (97 percent) of those who said they got relevant offers said they’d continue to buy from the senders; fewer than half of those who found offers irrelevant said the same. And while the holiday shopping surge provides a once-a-year opportunity to sign up members at the register, a third of loyalty members in the survey said direct mail influenced their decision to join. A quarter pointed to online channels as key influences. Use your holiday mailings to find more of these valuable customers.