Marketing Ideas for Your Holiday Sales

Image with holiday items and title

When it comes to the holidays, we are all looking for that special offer or bonus to go along with our shopping. As a business this is the best time to pull out all the stops. To reap the benefits of the holiday season, businesses have to pull out all their best offer saving discounts and go total marketing on them.

As a business you’re going to want to take advantage of the holidays. Here are several ways in which you can rock the holiday season and boost your company’s sales.

Once November 1st hits let the holiday marketing begin. We suggest not going full blown Christmas quite yet though. Start out with thanksgiving themed marketing, leading up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales before heading into Christmas.

  1. Offer and Discount Ideas

    • Offer Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales and promotions. Black Friday is huge and for online only businesses and services so is Cyber Monday. Capitalize on this opportunity.
    • Give out holiday-specific discounts or coupon codes such as entering code TURKEY30 to receive 30% off the order.
    • Offer time-limited sales to convey a sense of urgency. Example: Save 40% on Cyber Monday.
    • Offer free or low-cost shipping. Many people are turned away with the added cost of shipping. Close more deals by shipping for free or giving a discounted shipping price.
    • Create holiday gift packages – packages you can’t get any other time. Put together a package that includes items customers usually buy together or different items you offer that customers could then try out.
    • Offer a free holiday themed gift with a purchase. This will give buyers an extra incentive to buy and entice hesitant buyers.
    • Offer 2-for-1 products. The buyer gets to keep one for her/himself and give the other one as a gift.
    • Send out discounts on future purchases for all items bought during the holidays. Set yourself up for post-holiday success.
    • Team up with another business to create Christmas gift bundles. Combine your product and their product into a gift package.
    • FSL + Infofree offer

    • Send small gifts to your loyal customers. An inexpensive gift like a box of chocolates or a bottle of wine can show you care and puts your business at the top of their minds.
    • Offer flash deals and expedited shipping for last-minute shoppers.
    • Run a 12 Days of Christmas holiday promotion. Offer a different sale or discount or promote a different product each day leading up to Christmas.
    • Hold an advent calendar campaign. Offer a discount on one product per day throughout the entire Christmas season.

  1. Promote your holiday offers repeatedly. Don’t be afraid to share your sales and deals more than once. You want to make sure your promotions reach your potential customers.
  1. Content Marketing

    • Provide holiday-themed information to your target market. Direct social media posts and blog posts to holiday-themed information.
    • Create a holiday landing page where you can display gift ideas or discounts.
    • Update your social media covers to show some holiday cheer.
    • Thanksgiving FSL Header

    • Capture the holiday related search engine traffic by publishing content optimized for the season on your website.
    • Make your email template holiday themed.
    • Send holiday promotion emails with all your discounts. Send one right before Christmas too with last-minute gift ideas.
    • Send emails with your holiday offers including one promotion per email. Space these out accordingly.
    • Find gift guides in your industry and ask for your products to be included.
    • Include a holiday countdown ticker on your site. This will let visitors know exactly what day they need to order by to receive their products in time for Christmas.
    • Send your customers Christmas or New Year cards via mail or email.

Start planning and implementing your holiday marketing now! With your extra holiday efforts you’ll be selling like crazy.

Need more inspiration on how you can stand out to customers during the holiday season? Check out Make your business stand out to consumers during the holiday season for ideas!

Thanks to Kim Garst for the holiday themed ideas!

Branding Strategy Options

Companies can succeed or fail based on brand awareness. A company can’t sell its product/service without first getting its name to circulate among consumers. Among awareness is its ability to help companies differentiate their product offerings from those of its competitors. Setting up an effective brand strategy isn’t always easy. Society is constantly evolving, and consumers’ attitudes are always changing. Many brands have been able to stand the test of time through implementing various strategies including, branching out through various branding methods.

To create and manage key brand assets, firms launch a variety of brand-related strategies. Knowing the options you have available is the first step in creating a winning brand strategy.

  1. Brand Ownership

    Brands can be owned by manufacturers, wholesalers, or retailers. Who owns the brand is a deciding factor in how to go about creating a branding strategy.

    Manufacturer brands, which are the majority of brands marketed in America, own their brands and therefore have more control over their marketing strategy. Manufacturers can choose the appropriate market segments and position for the brands and can build the brand themselves, thereby creating their own brand equity.

    Retail/Store brands develop the design and specifications for their brand and use to have to contract with manufacturers to produce the product. More so today though, retail firms are developing private-label merchandise and using this merchandise to establish a distinctive identity. Manufacturers are now more willing to accommodate the needs of retailers and develop co-brands for them.

    Choosing whether to partner with a manufacturer or manufacture your own brand is a tough decision. Both sides have their perks. All we can say is do extensive research into different manufacturing companies to figure out which brand ownership strategy would be best for you.

  2. Naming Brands and Product lines

    Naming a brand and product lines is one of the most crucial parts of the branding strategy. The name you chose should be readable and writable, unique, short, punchy, and memorable, and should evoke an emotion, feeling, or idea. That’s a lot to ask of a name, but they’re all essential factors.

    Organizations must decide whether it wants its business name, brand name, and product name to all be the same or different. The rule we go by for brand and product names is, the more products vary in their usage or performance, the more likely it is that the firm should use individual brands. Organizations choose between family brands and individual brands.

    Family Brands: Using a firm’s corporate name to brand all its product lines and products. When brands are sold under one family brand, the individual brands benefit from the overall brand awareness associated with the family name.

    • Example: Kellogg’s uses its family brand name prominently on its breakfast brands (Kellogg’s Special K bars, Kellogg’s Froot Loops, Kellogg’s Pop Tarts, Kellogg’s Eggo Waffles).

  3. Individual Brands: Using individual brand names for each of its products. This gives products individual identities that are not easily seen as being under one umbrella.

    • Example: Kellogg’s also uses individual branding. Kellogg’s owns and markets Keebler, Cheese-It, Morningstar, and Famous Amos under separate names.

    Tough decisions have to be made. You will never know exactly how a product will perform without first releasing it to the world. There are, once again, advantages to both sides. Through company, competitor, and consumer research, you can get a better idea of which strategy would be best for you.

    Brand Extension

    Companies often use the same brand name in a different product line. This strategy has several advantages.

    Graphic: three brand extension advantages

    Successful Examples:

    • Colgate and Crest started out selling toothpaste but have since started selling toothpaste, toothbrushes, and other dental hygiene products.
    • Kellogg’s has branched out from the cereal company. Its strategy of branding the corporate name into the product name has allowed it to introduce new products quicker and more easily.
    • Trying Neutrogena’s brand extension, Neutrogena Wave power cleanser might encourage consumers to try Neutrogena’s core product lines of cleansers and moisturizing lotions, especially if their first experience with Neutrogena was positive.

    Sometimes companies try too hard to stretch the limits of brand extension and end up creating a major fail. Fortunate for us, those companies fails are valuable lessons for us. Here are some examples of companies that were unsuccessful in their brand extension strategy:

    • Cheetos Lip Balm was based on the idea that if you like Cheetos, you would want to wipe it all over your lips.
    • Colgate Kitchen Entrees were microwavable frozen dinner entrees that shared the name with the famous toothpaste.

    Companies must consider several factors when planning a brand extension strategy.

  4. Graphic: brand extension factors
  5. Co-Branding

    A firm can choose to market two or more brands together on the same package, promotion, or store. Co-branding can enhance consumers’ perceptions of product quality through links between the firm’s brand and a well-known quality brand.

    • Example: Yum! Brands combines two or more of its restaurant chains – A&W and Long John Silvers, Taco Bell and KFC, etc.

    The co-branding strategy is designed to appeal to diverse market segments. Two companies’ markets can, however, be too different. Example: Burger King and Haagen-Dazs found their customers to be vastly different.

  6. Brand Licensing

    Creating a contractual arrangement between firms whereby one firm allows another to use its brand name, logo, symbols, and/or characters in exchange for an agreed upon fee. This practice is common for toys, apparel, accessories, and entertainment products, such as video games. Licensing is an effective form of attracting visibility for the brand and thereby building brand equity while also generating additional revenue. One risk, however, is the dilution of a firm’s brand equity through overexposure of the brand.

  7. Rebranding

    To rebrand, companies will change their brand’s focus to target new markets or realign the brand’s core emphasis with changing market preferences. Companies often have to spend tremendous amounts of money to make tangible changes to the product and packages as well as intangible changes to the brand’s image through various forms of promotion. This strategy has high costs and risks, some of which can remake or break a brand.

Brands add value for both consumers and sellers to use to their advantage. Having a brand helps facilitate purchases, establish loyalty, protect from competition and price competition, and affect market value. Having a strong branding strategy, one that consumers will love gives a company a huge boost.

Information gathered from Grewal, Dhruv, and Michael Levy. Marketing. 5th ed., McGraw Hill Education, 2017.