The holiday season is the busiest time of year for retailers around the world — and it’s just as hectic for marketers, as they focus on new ways to reach customers in the best possible fashion. With so many different communication channels, how can marketers center their marketing campaigns to produce profitable results and keep customers engaged during this time?
We’re happy to have Lalit Chopra, director of strategic partnerships at Silverpop partner Movable Ink, share his industry insights to help boost your holiday sales:
For some, the holiday season may still seem far off. But if you’re an email marketer, visions of holiday email campaigns are already dancing in your head. What steps will you take this year to ensure your emails stand out above the rest in the inbox and help you exceed your sales targets?
If you’re looking for inspiration, look no further. Below, we’ve compiled a few creative ways to make your 2013 holiday email campaigns more engaging, memorable, and profitable.
Drive Urgency for Time-Sensitive Sales
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are two of the biggest shopping days of the year. Encourage shoppers to take action on these limited-time sales, while keeping them informed of current product availability:
- Count down to the last second of a sale: Include a streaming countdown clock in your email that updates in real time to show the hours, minutes and seconds ticking away until the end of a sale. After the sale has ended, automatically replace the clock in the same email message with a new call to action. For example, “You missed it — but you can still get free shipping on orders of $100 or more!”
- Show how many items are left in stock: With limited-time sales, inventory can sell out in a flash. Use agile, real-time email technology to make sure recipients know which sizes remain, or how many items of a particular product are left in stock.
Show Relevant Content Based on Geographic Location
Email marketers hear it all the time — a relevant message is critical for increased customer engagement. Real-time geotargeting is one way to ensure your email messages are always relevant and catch the eye of your shoppers:
- Use a local map to drive in-store sales: Some consumers use email as a way to stay informed of sales and new products, and prefer an in-store shopping experience to online buying. Make it as easy as possible for shoppers to find your store by including a local map that shows the nearest retail locations.
- Change products you promote based on how close users are to specific locations: Shoppers in one geographic region may be more inclined to purchase certain kinds of products than others. By using real-time geotargeting, you can show the most relevant product images based on your customer’s current location. Want to take relevancy to a new level? Pair geotargeting with real-time weather data. For example, an athletic retailer can display skiing gear to recipients in colder climates, and surfing gear to those in warmer ones.
Make the Most Out of Mobile
In the second quarter of 2013, more than 62 percent of emails from leading B2C brands were opened on a smartphone or tablet device. The increasing popularity of using mobile devices for checking email simply can’t be ignored, especially during the holiday season when consumers are even more likely to be on the go than other times of the year. Here are two ways you can take “mobile optimization” to a new level:
- Display a “click-to-call” button: As shopping volume increases during the holiday season, so do customer service inquiries. Use Agile Email Marketing technology to detect in real time if an email is opened on a mobile device. If a mobile environment is detected, a “click-to-call” button can be shown that will directly connect shoppers to a phone number when clicked. Take this one step further by automatically displaying the “click-to-call” button only when an email is read during open customer service or store hours.
- Promote your mobile app: If your company has a mobile app that makes shopping even easier, promote it when your email is opened on a mobile device. Get specific based on the mobile device being used — for example, if opened on an iPhone, the message could read, “Download our iPhone app!” and link directly to the App Store.
While the holiday season itself may be months away, the planning season for email marketers has already begun. We hope the ideas shared here will spark your creativity and result in new and innovative ways to boost your 2013 holiday sales.
Agile Email Marketing technology from Movable Ink enables you to create an actuality-based email experience that recognizes and adapts in real time to each recipient's time, location, device and even the weather. The content of email messages can be changed in the inbox after they've already been sent, maximizing relevancy, engagement and ROI. Learn more about Movable Ink.
More Holiday Marketing Blog Posts:
1) “4 Tips for Fine-Tuning Your Holiday Approach This Year”
2) “’Tis (Almost) the Season: 4 Ways to Evaluate Your Digital Marketing Readiness”
3) “Holiday Quick Tip: Do the Math in Discount Promotions”