Black Friday and Cyber Monday are fast approaching, and with that comes the busiest pre-Christmas shopping day of the year. With a huge amount of companies and sellers running advertising campaigns and sales in a condensed period of time, it can be difficult to cut through the noise and ensure your campaign is successful, providing good value for investment and reaching the right audiences.
We’ve compiled our top seven tips for making sure your Black Friday campaign gets the attention (and makes the revenue) it deserves.
By now, you’ll have general plans on what you want to do on Black Friday and Cyber Monday – products and services you will be pushing, the sale amounts, and the planned pushes. But why stop there?
A time-limited campaign can work excellently to build urgency and engrain a sense of FOMO in your customers, enticing them to buy your product. However, this is something that should be done carefully. Research from the University of East Anglia has shown that when running limited-time offers, customers are more likely to ‘rebel’ when the time constraint is tight, but are more likely to convert when given time to mull the purchase over slightly. A good example of this is Amazon’s ‘Prime Day’ – while the hourly deals often sell more per hour than the long-running deals, the ones that run for the whole day or even longer get more sales in the long run.
This is something that you need to decide based on your product, audience, and the general buying habits of your customers. But a good general rule of thumb is to keep the time limited, but not so limited that your customers are under pressure to convert. A stressed customer is rarely a happy one!
A safer way to build FOMO and general urgency for purchasing in your customers is tailoring your language to make sure that you’re grabbing their attention as quickly as possible.
A sure-fire way to do this is to use active language that makes your audience engage. This can be something as simple as changing ‘you can get up to 50% off’ to something like ‘Save up to 50%!’. According to Goodfirms research, people engage with 4 social media platforms in a day, and over half will completely ignore posts that are too long, don’t interest them, or aren’t easily digestible., so by dropping the unnecessary connective words, you can get your message across quicker, easier, and more effectively. Furthermore, by using this active language, you entice them to read on and spend more than those 6 seconds on your post.
Be sure to keep the ‘meat’ of your text above the ‘fold’ though. This means anything that is housed before the text cut-off on your platform of choice, where the user has to take an action, pressing the ‘See More’ button, to continue reading your post. This is prone to seeing follower drop-off and general scroll intent, so it’s best to get the most exciting parts of the post (the amount you’re discounting, how long the deal runs until, the name of the products you’re discounting) in the first couple of lines. By doing so, you get the main points across in a couple of seconds, and people are more likely to engage further, whether that be reading the whole post, liking the post, or visiting your website.
It’s widely known nowadays in marketing that by interacting with your followers and ensuring people know there is a human behind the screen, you can build a loyal customer base and ensure free advertising through brand champions.
A prime example of this is Ryanair – known mainly for being a low-cost airline that gained a bad reputation through extreme amounts of secondary costs, Ryanair’s online presence has gone a long way to helping rehabilitate their image. Being timely with news and memes, as well as being unafraid to make fun of not only themselves, but those complaining online about them, they have gained between 7,000 and 37,000 followers per month on Twitter.
Research from AdZooma backs this up – they found that 55.7% of people would follow or unfollow a brand on social media based on their brand voice, and 51.2% of people say the way a brand speaks on social media is a big factor in if they’ll support that brand and buy their products.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are going to be filled with posts that lack personality and ‘soul’ – as many as 62% of people in a TheCustomer survey said they’d feel more trust towards a brand by knowing their beliefs, values and tone of voice. By ensuring your customers know there’s a human on the other side of the screen, you can cut through the noise and reach customers who will be quickly growing fatigued from Black Friday posts from big corporations.
Hashtags are, as we’re sure you’re aware, a brilliant way to manipulate the algorithm of social networking sites to ensure your posts are seen by as many people as possible. We won’t bore you with the descriptions of them and what they can do, but instead we’ll give you a few short tips to ensure your hashtags do the heavy lifting over Black Friday:
Stick to 3 or 4 industry-specific hashtags. By doing this, you ensure your company is showing up in the right circles, which will be populated by people who are actively searching for those things. It can be tempting to see the massive reach of an unrelated hashtag such as #WorldCup, but think realistically; how many people scrolling that hashtag will be interested in your company at this time, let alone convert?
Make use of micro and macro hashtags. If you’re a candlemaker for example, it can be tempting to use massive hashtags like #candle and #designercandle. But these popular hashtags can be a real double-edged sword – while they’re great for algorithm manipulation, your chances of being discovered off those hashtags is low due to the volume of posts nested under it. Pair these macro hashtags with more specific, less-utilised, micro hashtags. A good micro hashtag for this candle example would be something to do with the scent – #vanillacandle or #cinnamoncandle are more niche, but if someone’s searching for that specific hashtag, you’re more likely to convert them as you’re giving them exactly what they want.
Make use of time-limited hashtags! #BlackFriday or #CyberMonday are amazing examples of this, but it’s also likely that around this time there will be pushes on social media for small business promotions as well. Keep an eye out for hashtags like #UKsmallbusiness for example, and you can reach an excellent, engaged audience for free.
Social media is an incredibly powerful tool, but by using it as a tool to support other marketing streams, and vice versa, you can unlock near-limitless possibilities on a small budget.
Email marketing is an excellent customer retention tool, mainly due to the personalisation options available and the accessibility to your audience. Your email list is filled with people who have already made a purchase from you or have at least shown interest in your products by signing up for more information or updates. According to research from email marketing platform Rawww, acquiring a new customer can be anywhere from 5-25 times more expensive than simply retaining an existing customer and having them reconvert. Angling deals to your existing audience should be at the forefront of your thinking no matter your business’ size.
A good way to combine the retention power of email marketing with the customer acquisition power of social media is promoting each stream on the platform in question. By offering a newsletter sign-up, email reminder of sales, or stock notifications to a customer on social media, you have a route into their purchasing intent for a minimal cost. And by promoting your social media platforms on your newsletters, you can begin some light algorithm manipulation by increasing brand awareness and encouraging more people to follow your account – on Twitter for example, accounts can be recommended to a user if a few of the accounts they follow also follow a particular user. This opens up your customer base to the people connected with your customers, who likely share similar interests and purchasing habits by virtue of being friends or family with them.
This period of the year can get incredibly busy when working in marketing, and this is none more true than in organic social media. As the first line of inquiry for many customers, you’re bound to have a lot on your plate, and that’s going to increase in the Black Friday and Cyber Monday period.
In order to save time, increase automation, and avoid burnout, consider using a scheduling tool to automatically upload your posts at times of your choosing, if you’re not using one already. Our personal favourite is Later, but we also recommend platforms such as Sprout Social and Hootsuite as well.
Now that you’ve prepared your marketing strategy, optimised your text, picked the best mix of micro and macro hashtags, and planned collaborative promotions with secondary marketing streams, it’s time to move to being reactive rather than proactive. When running a sale, it’s important that your social media is ready to handle a large volume of customer support enquiries.
Social media by design is much more personable and approachable than other forms of contacting a company or seller. Because of this, you’ll have a lot of customers approaching your business on social media, asking questions about their purchase or raising problems they’re having.
Urgency is key during this period when running a sale, especially on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, because your competitors will be running sales as well. If a potential customer contacts you to ask if you’ll have a certain size or design back in stock during the sale, and you don’t reply, you’ve lost them as a lead; they’ll just move on to buy from someone else. Speed is key – during the period when running a sale, we recommend moving DM replies to higher priority in your workflow. If possible, assign a person in your team to make sure you’re replying to messages and comments as quickly as possible after they come in. By doing so, you not only increase chances of conversions, but your approachability and friendliness will leave lasting impressions on your customers, thus nurturing brand champions.
Best of luck for the Black Friday weekend – we hope these tips can help aid your strategy and push over the weekend to maximise your brand position and sales! Although, if you’d like our award-winning expertise on your side for future campaigns, get in touch with us today to schedule a call.
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