There’s a million holiday marketing campaign ideas out there. But what actually works?
If you sell anything online, you probably know the struggles of marketing in the chaotic holiday season.
You’re swamped with work, half your team’s on vacation (or sick), and the sheer competition for consumer attention is absolutely off the charts.
But success doesn’t depend on a Christmas miracle. Or a fortune’s worth of ad spending.
Stats and experience show that you can do a lot to boost your holiday sales if you use the right kind of data, make proactive moves, and apply some basic (but powerful) marketing psychology.
In this article, we’ll give you 7 of our best holiday marketing campaign ideas ‒ plus 3 essential tips to make sure you rock them.
- Leverage the Christmas Time Crunch
- Win Hearts & Minds With a Holiday Video
- Share the Love with Your Loyal Customers
- Ring In the Season with Holiday SEO Blog Content
- Conquer the Wish List with Price-Specific Landing Pages
- Make Gift-Giving Easy with Gift Card Promotions
- Embrace Holiday Themes Across Your Digital Presence
1. Leverage the Christmas Time Crunch
FOMO is your friend.
As soon as November rolls around, people start stressing about holiday shopping. And it’s not just about gifts, but everything else you need for the perfect holiday: festive decorations, holiday meal prep, plane tickets to Grandma’s, and more.
Time is of the essence, and everyone knows the best stuff is in short supply.
So, you can make fear of missing out (FOMO) and scarcity powerful allies in your holiday marketing campaign.
Now, urgency isn’t something you can just throw around without thinking. The modern consumer is pretty wise to vague statements like “limited time offer” or “while supplies last.”
You need to translate that urgency into something concrete and effective, like:
- Deadline for guaranteed delivery in time for Christmas. Consumers expect lightning-fast shipping these days, but they know things slow down over the holidays. Consider using it as a strength by putting pressure on people to make a purchase by a specific date. It has a very powerful effect.
- Countdown timer until Christmas or another big milestone. Adding a countdown timer to your landing page can boost revenue by as much as 9%. Over the holidays, countdown timers are extra effective since everyone already has “X days until Christmas” in their minds.
- Inventory warnings. “While supplies last” is vague, but it really works if you can give a specific number. This is a very effective strategy used by Amazon to move products in short supply.
It’s not just a holiday marketing trick. You’re giving your customers one last chance to purchase that perfect gift before it’s gone, and they’ll thank you for it. It’s just that a positive side effect of this is that conversions increase as well!
2. Win Hearts & Minds With a Holiday Marketing Video
A 30-second video says a million words.
As a rule, people are more likely to say ‘yes’ to requests from people they already know and like.
We’re all less likely to turn down a request if it’s from a friend or neighbor.
The same goes for you and your loyal customers. People who know and like you are automatically more likely to take advantage of any future offer you make to them.
Since the holidays are such an emotional time of the year, this is the perfect time to cultivate positive brand recognition and relationships that ultimately lead to more revenue.
And there’s no better way to do that than with a holiday video.
You don’t even have to make it long, expensive, or highly choreographed. Simply showing the faces behind your business and being relatable makes a big impact on people.
Basically, all you have to say is, “We’re so excited about the holidays, too, and we wish all of you who celebrate a Merry Christmas. Thank you for being part of our business.”
3. Share the Love with Your Loyal Customers
A little love goes a long way.
Reciprocity is a powerful thing. It is natural to feel obligated to repay someone when you give them something. It’s why free samples remain one of the most effective marketing tactics of all time.
And what better time to give something away than during the peak gift-giving season?
The holidays are a great time to shower your loyal customers with discounts, freebies, and giveaway contests to make them feel extra special.
Especially if you can tie in some urgency and a warm message of gratitude, too.
Leading up to December 25, many brands offer holiday-themed “12 Days of Giveaways” or “12 Days of Discounts” which successfully combine the seasonal spirit with persuasive deadlines.
Plus, you have plenty of options for spreading the word about these promotions:
- Email: You can reach your existing customers and followers through multi-touch email campaigns in the lead up to the holidays.
- Social media: Great for reaching loyal followers and catching the attention of new ones. You just need to make sure you follow Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms’ guidelines if you’re hosting a holiday marketing giveaway, since they can be quite prickly about the rules.
- Remarketing ads: Retargeting helps you re-engage bounced buyers to boost your holiday marketing ROI, and further build relationships with those who have already purchased.
It’s the holidays, after all, and there’s no better time of year to get something for free!
4. Ring In the Season with Holiday SEO Blog Content
Any businesses with a seasonal niche can benefit greatly from blogging.
For example, if you sell Christmas-themed decorations or clothing, a well-optimized SEO blog post will see traffic spike around the winter holidays year after year after year.
But what if your company doesn’t have a seasonal niche?
Putting out holiday-themed blog content is still a great way to increase traffic, sales, and revenue for businesses with no holiday-specific products.
Consider what kind of content people are looking for during the holidays and incorporate it into your holiday marketing ideas! For example:
- Gift ideas for specific customer segments/demographics: like 10 Winning Gift Ideas for Dad, or the Best Office Secret Santa Ideas Under $25.
- Holiday Buying Guides for specific product categories: like High-End Cookware Holiday Buying Guide, or the Holiday Gift Guide to Pens & Journals.
- Gift ideas that solve a specific problem: like the 10 Most Practical Busy Mom Gifts, or Impressive Gifts for a Father-In-Law You Just Met.
Topics like these will attract people who are actually interested in what you sell, and they don’t require you to bend over backwards to fit the holiday theme. It’s just a matter of describing the products that you already have available, with a festive bow tied around it.
Start publishing this year, and by next December, you’ll have plenty of content on your site that will get your visitors excited for the holidays again. Next year, just update your holiday SEO blog content (and your holiday marketing campaign as a whole) with new products or trends. You’re good to go!
5. Conquer the Wish List with Price-Specific Landing Pages
Speaking of gift guides…if you sell online, here’s another way to reach eager holiday shoppers:
A landing page that highlights products within a specific budget range to appeal to gift shoppers.
For example, a landing page featuring “Gift Ideas Under $50” or “Stocking Stuffers.”
These pages make it easy for people to find what they’re looking for, which means more conversions for you. They’re especially a huge hit with last-minute shoppers or Secret Santa participants who don’t have much else to go on.
But this holiday marketing campaign strategy doesn’t only benefit sales of your cheaper products ‒ because a lot of people value not underspending on certain people in their lives.
People shopping for significant others or close friends or relatives might be drawn to a page featuring only more expensive items (even your most expensive items).
All you need to do once you’ve created the pages is get the word out, which is easy to do by:
- Email campaigns with ultra-specific and attractive subject lines are designed to catch the attention of shoppers in a certain price range in search of ideas
- Organic social media posts that encourage your loyal fans and followers to share your posts with their networks for free
- Social media ads, especially when combined with a sense of urgency…save big on your last-minute shopping with these awesome products for under $50!
The price point is the decisive factor for many people when they are shopping online, and this tactic makes them feel like they are getting an exclusive deal just for them!
6. Make Gift-Giving Easy with Gift Card Promotions
For people who are struggling to find the perfect present, gift cards save the day.
But just because you’ve got gift cards, that doesn’t mean shoppers know about them. It will be up to you to spread the word.
Don’t let the holidays pass you by without promoting your gift cards to your target audience. Once the shipping deadline for the holidays has passed, shift your digital advertising efforts to digital or physical gift cards.
Gift cards are also great to include in holiday giveaways and promotions. Providing a free gift card for those who make a minimum purchase, or to the first few purchasers, can be the tipping point that gets people to choose you over your competitors.
7. Embrace Holiday Marketing Themes Across Your Digital Presence
Picture yourself walking downtown on a mid-December afternoon, when the stores are all crowded and Christmas is in the air.
You’re mulling over which of two stores to visit for a must-have gift item. One store is decked with garlands and wreaths, playing holiday music, and scented with gingerbread cookies; the other is sterile, dark, and overall a bit uninviting.
Obviously, most people would go for store number one. The festive ambiance gets them in the mood to shop.
And there is more to it than just warm feelings ‒ we associate holiday designs with holiday savings. You know there’s a deal to be had and you want to learn more.
Why not apply this same idea to your digital presence?
It’s easy, inexpensive, and effective to incorporate holiday-themed graphics, colors, and messages into your website, landing pages, emails, and social media accounts.
It has the same positive impact of putting up Christmas decor, without the hassle of climbing ladders or untangling lights.
3 Tips For a Successful Holiday Marketing Campaign
You can make your holiday campaign as simple or as complex as you like. Regardless of the approach you choose, these tips will help you make your campaign a success!
1. Review Previous Holiday Marketing Campaigns
Don’t let the Ghost of Christmas Campaigns Past come back to haunt you.
Even if your previous campaigns aren’t as relevant now, you can still learn a few things from them. Past performance helps you better understand your audience and what works (and doesn’t work) for them.
Don’t just focus on your performance stats, look at your customer data too. Have you seen a significant change in your customer base? Knowing your customers will help you create holiday messages that will hit home.
2. Get Ahead of the Holidays
Customers can hardly stand the wait; so please, reader, don’t be late!
We’ve got bad news for all the procrastinators out there: most people plan to finish their Christmas shopping before December even starts.
In fact, 58% of shoppers plan to be done their Christmas shopping in November. You’re losing out on tons of potential sales if your holiday marketing campaign isn’t in full swing before December.
By planning ahead, this will allow you more time to focus on other aspects of your business like customer service and inventory when the season is actually in full swing.
3. Put Customer Service First
He knows if you’ve been bad or good. So do your customers.
89% of people have switched to a competitor after experiencing a poor customer experience.
And up to 95% will spread the word about that negative experience with other people.
So no matter how awesome your holiday marketing campaign is, if you don’t back it up with rockstar customer service, you can’t call it a success.
If your customers have any questions or problems, your customer service team needs to be ready to help. If you ship products, you need to make sure they’ll arrive on time.
About your website. Is it able to handle the number of people shopping at once? If there are any technical issues, do you have a team on the ground to deal with them?
Given the mad rush this time of year, it’s not always easy for companies to handle customer’s complaints and requests with the efficiency and dedication they deserve. However, you cannot afford to ignore it.
The answer may be outsourcing your holiday marketing campaign to a professional digital marketing agency.
Outsourcing your holiday marketing campaign will give you more time to focus on customer service and get back control of your business while still reaping the benefits of being active online.
Marketing Your Way to a Merry Christmas
Marketing is an important part of any business, especially around the holidays. It’s a chance to create a lasting impression and to remind your customers what your brand stands for.
We can help you put together a great holiday marketing campaign that will get you in front of your potential buyers and support your sales goals. Get in touch with our digital marketing experts to learn more about our services here at TrafficSoda.
You’ve worked hard to get visitors to your website. Now, you need to convert them into leads.
One of the best ways to do this is with a landing page: a dedicated web page customized for a specific marketing or advertising campaign.
Sounds simple enough, right? But even today, many businesses are still sending traffic to their home page instead of landing pages. Either they’re too worried about the investment to design an effective landing page or are (more likely) just too busy to do it right.
But with a little help you can learn what to look for in an effective landing page and know why your company cannot afford to ignore them when it comes to lead generation.
What’s the Difference Between a Landing Page and the Rest of My Website?
A landing page is a standalone web page specifically created for a marketing or advertising campaign.
It’s where a visitor ‘lands’ after they click on a link, like in an email, a search ad from Google and Bing, or a social post from YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and other platforms.
Now, you might be wondering “why do I need a landing page when I have a perfectly functioning website already?”
Why not just send people to your Home page, your Contact Us page, or one of your product/service pages?
- Most of the pages on your website offer general information about your business. You’re the focus, not your customers. And these pages are all linked together, with a menu that lets people jump around unfocused and unmotivated.
- On the other hand, landing pages are solely dedicated to getting people to take action on one specific offer. It’s all about generating leads or sales. No links, no distractions. Just a single, simple offer.
That singular focus makes landing pages extremely effective when converting leads ‒ and research backs this up. Studies prove that landing pages with just one call to action will get you more conversions than pages with two or more.
And not only does a landing page get you more leads than a home page, but it also:
- delivers a higher ROI and gives you valuable information about your prospects.
- generates leads that you can segment, nurture, or distribute to your sales team with ease.
- lets you track the marketing performance of your offers and how visitors become leads over time.
To put it simply, sending people to a landing page instead of your home page is one of the most effective ways to increase sales, leads, and revenue from all your digital advertising and email campaigns. A successful landing page asks prospects to take a single action, whether it’s making a purchase or signing up for a quote, consultation, or lead magnet.
10 Critical Elements of an Effective Landing Page
So now that you know why your business should use landing pages, what should you do to create a high converting and effective one?
Below are some of the most critical elements of a landing page that every business should be incorporating.
- Don’t Underestimate the Power of a Great Headline
Your headline is the first thing people will read when they land on your landing page. It should sum up exactly what you’re offering and how people will benefit in a few words.
- Write Concise and Compelling Copy
Tell a concise yet compelling story that makes an irresistible offer and nudges people to convert. Focus on the reader, not on yourself. Use short sentences and paragraphs.
- Use Strategic and Natural Keywords
Using commonly searched keywords throughout your landing page (in the headers, body text, and page title) will help to optimize the page for Google search and ads relevancy. Avoid the temptation to keyword stuff.
- Embrace a Mobile First Mindset
Over half of all website traffic is now from mobile devices. Make sure your landing page loads quickly, is responsive and looks good on mobile, tablet and desktop devices.
- Seal the Exits and Hide Navigation
By hiding the top and side navigation, you reduce distractions, minimize friction, and lower bounce rates on your landing page. This means more visitors stay, stay longer and convert more often.
- Use a Lead Capture Mechanism
A landing page isn’t complete without a lead capture mechanism, such as a form. In general, a shorter form will generate more conversions, but from leads of lower quality. Inversely, a longer form will generate fewer conversions, but from leads of higher quality.
- Add Some Social Proof
Fear of missing out is a powerful tool to use when building social proof behind your landing pages. Testimonials and reviews add credibility to your product or service. This demonstrates that customers trust you and that business is in demand.
- Help Explain It with Images
Using images that relate to the copy on the landing page allows people to visualize what it is that you are trying to say about your business, products, and services. If a picture is worth a thousand words, an image is surely worth a few hundred characters of copy.
- Don’t Forget the Thank-you Page
After the visitor has put their information into the lead capture mechanism a thank-you page should pop up to confirm with the visitor that their information was received properly. If the page includes a specific deal, the visitor should receive a message that guides them to their next steps and prepares them to be contacted by the business.
- Follow-Up with an Email Autoresponder
Many thank-you pages are accompanied by email autoresponders. These emails offer more information on what’s next for the visitor after converting on the landing page. Email autoresponders serve as a type of ‘receipt’ for the lead capture mechanism to confirm opt-in consent with the visitor. It also acts as a prompt for your sales team to check-in with your new lead.
Get More Leads at a Lower Cost with Landing Pages
Setting up landing pages is time well spent, and the results from conversion to leads will be all the proof that you need.
Guiding your website visitors to focus on your current business offer will steer them towards action and turn them into customers.
If you’d like to learn more about landing pages and how they can benefit your business, or if you’d like advice from an industry professional about the next steps reach out to us to chat.
There’s a universal truth that persists no matter how good your product or service is, or how much you spend on marketing:
Sometimes, your perfect customer isn’t ready to buy right now.
- Some of your prospects just don’t know you yet.
- Others know you, but aren’t sure they’re ready to trust you.
- Still others are trying to choose between you and your competitor.
- And some people aren’t even aware that they need what you offer at all.
When someone doesn’t know you and doesn’t trust you, the likelihood of them clicking on your ad that says “Buy Now!” is very low (but not impossible).
On the other hand, someone who is ready to buy will respond better to an ad that says “Buy Now!” than a weaker offer like “Click Here to Learn More.”
Both of these kinds of potential customers can be a goldmine of traffic, leads, and sales if you have a strong understanding of customer problem awareness.
Think of customer problem awareness as a “journey” customers take, starting from the point where they aren’t aware they have a problem to the point where they decide your product fits their needs.
If you know where someone is on their problem awareness journey, you can deliver the right message at the right time to create and then capture their demand.
Let’s talk about how and when to capture or create demand based on your customer’s level of problem awareness.
Understanding Demand Creation vs. Demand Capture
Without demand, there can be no sale. Yet demand alone doesn’t translate into sales.
Customers have to know what you can do for them and trust that you’ll deliver.
You need both demand creation and demand capture as part of your marketing mix.
What is Demand Creation?
Demand creation, also called demand generation, is marketing that aims to stimulate demand for a certain product or service in the market.
Creating demand is the first step in the marketing funnel. It involves building awareness, positioning relevance, supporting validation, and more.
The most effective form of demand creation taps into your target audience’s existing interests to build trust with them, while positioning yourself (your product or service) as the answer to their wants and needs.
Once you’ve generated demand for your offer, you can move on to step two: converting that demand into a sale.
What is Demand Capture?
Demand capture is marketing that aims to take the demand for your product or service and convert it into real sales or leads.
Demand capture happens further down your marketing funnel than demand creation, focusing on the part of your audience that already knows they want what you offer. The only thing left to do is give them that final push to convert!
Leveraging 5 Levels of Customer Awareness to Create & Capture Demand
In general, the less knowledgeable a customer is, the lower their demand for your product or service. After all, how can they want something they don’t know exists; how can they yearn to fill a need they haven’t realized yet?
For any business, it is important to balance both demand creation and capture in order to grow. To figure out that balance, you need to know where your customers are right now and ask, “What does my prospect already know?” about their problem and your solution?
To answer those questions you need to understand where your target audience is on the customer problem awareness scale.
In his groundbreaking book Breakthrough Advertising, Eugene Schwartz emphasized the importance of customer problem awareness and identified five different levels. They are:
These people don’t even know they have a problem, let alone one you can solve for them! Of course, this doesn’t mean their lives are perfect ‒ they just don’t realize it can be better. You have to open their eyes.
- Problem Aware
There’s a problem, and they know it, but they may not fully grasp it yet and definitely don’t know the solution(s). You can help them make that connection.
- Solution Aware
Now, you’re getting somewhere. These people already know products or services like yours, so they’re open to learning about what makes yours better.
- Product Aware
Finally, at this stage, people are familiar with your product or service. But they probably know your competitors’, too. Now, you need to persuade them to make the right choice.
- Most Aware
This is where you want people to be: a loyal customer who’s fully aware of what you have to offer, and can be guided towards repeat or new purchases.
Where your target audience falls in this scale will dictate:
- What kind of information you need to give them;
- How you should speak with them; and
- What offer will produce the best results.
Knowing your customer’s problem awareness level is crucial in determining which type of promotion will be most effective for different segments of your target audience.
When to Use Demand Capture vs. Demand Creation
For customers with less problem awareness, you want to entertain, educate, and inspire trust in your business through content like:
- Blog posts
- Social media updates
You have to build trust with your prospects before they’ll be receptive to your offer, especially if your solution or business is brand new, unique, or has never been advertised to them before. Launching right into your products or services without making a connection makes people feel like you don’t care about them (so why should they care about you?).
Demonstrate that you understand their problem and experience their pain through relevant, relatable copy and content.
Near the bottom of your funnel, where customers have greater problem awareness, you want to seal the deal and capture demand with higher-commitment content like:
- Product demos
- Free trials
- Free consultations
- Product details and spec sheets
At this stage, you can ask customers for some contact information in return, which gives you a chance to start that sales conversation.
Bridging the Gap Between Demand Creation and Capture
Rather than dividing customer problem awareness into five neatly-separated shelves, think of it as a spectrum. Many people exist somewhere between two levels. You can’t focus all your attention on one level.
If you concentrate solely on capturing demand, you leave out scores of potential customers who just haven’t been acquainted with you yet.
On the other hand, if you raise awareness without taking steps to capture demand, you’re leaving money on the table.
Plus, as more governments crack down on online data collection and privacy, it’s becoming harder to pinpoint the people in your audience that are actually ready to buy. This makes it more important than ever to layer in both demand creation and capture.
Focusing too much on buyers who are at one point of your sales funnel will mean you miss out on buyers who are coming in at other points.
The ideal marketing funnel is built around generating demand and then capturing it. These two elements are essential for generating more traffic, sales, and leads, especially as new privacy regulations make traditional lead generation more challenging.
TrafficSoda can help you audit your existing marketing materials and develop a strategy to close those content gaps. If you’d like help getting started, reach out for your free strategy proposal now.
A recent survey shows that up to 30% of a typical company’s revenue is generated through marketing.
Yet turning leads into sales remains one of the single most difficult parts of getting your business to grow.
Fact is, most leads who enter your marketing funnel – even many so-called qualified leads – do not end up buying your product or service.
This, right here, is a massive bottleneck for many companies trying to climb the leader.
And all too often, these struggling companies think this can all be fixed with a bigger marketing budget – without setting a useful strategy in place.
The #1 Mistake You’re Making In Marketing Right Now
Leads don’t pay the bills…conversions do.
But whether it’s hitting the “Buy” button, making the phone call, or lining up to check-out, most of your prospective customers just aren’t taking that final step.
You might feel so close to making the sale. Like something somewhere is missing, and all your customers need is one final “push” towards conversion.
This is where many, many companies make a big mistake.
Instead of taking a forensic look at their broken marketing funnel and analyzing where, exactly, their leads are dropping off…
These companies pull out their credit card and expand the campaign, as-is, to an even wider audience.
They fall prey to the all-too-common misconception that you should be marketing your service or product to as many people as you can.
However, this “scattershot” marketing approach won’t bear any fruit if 99% of the people coming across your product or service aren’t buying!
Sure – you’ll be reaching more potential customers overall. It stands to reason that your conversions should increase accordingly.
But that doesn’t actually solve the problem you had in the first place: that too small a portion of your leads were actually buying.
Your conversion rate is still low. You’re still spending too much money per lead.
Put simply, you’re not getting your money’s worth.
What You Should Do Instead: Quality Over Quantity
This is exactly where data driven lead generation is so important.
Rather than focusing on reaching more people, this methodology helps focusing on the right kind of people. Your target market.
Data-driven lead generation focuses on leveraging sales and marketing data to focus on the quality of leads over quantity. This is an extremely important concept.
Data-driven lead generation doesn’t necessarily focus on getting as many leads as possible. Rather, it integrates sales into the mix and focuses on pushing the leads to actually buy a product.
This approach can further amplify the success of any marketing strategy, and constant iterations can serve to work out that strategy’s pains and shortcomings.
Lead Generation & Data Analytics
In order to build the right models for your business that can provide you with the most usable data, it is crucial to gather accurate, relevant marketing and sales data.
This data can then help generate insights and prove or disprove your hypothesis of whether a specific strategy could work.
With data analytics, you can focus on understanding the different attributes of your target market and develop detailed insights – the kind that you can use to produce powerful marketing messages.
Furthermore, this can allow you to find connections between different attributes and data sets that aren’t possible through traditional biased thinking.
For this to happen, you need reliable data which can help drive your analysis.
Good Data Is Unbiased Data
Here’s the real beauty of data driven lead generation:
Data is always unbiased.
The pre-set notions and theories that are followed in “traditional” marketing (some of which are literally over a hundred years old!) are not always relevant in this ever-changing technological environment of ours.
It is important to get unbiased data to help drive analysis and to get results.
Having unbiased data will help you generate those high-quality leads that have a significant chance of turning into a sale.
In order to find reliable, unbiased data, you have to develop an understanding of who you’re targeting and identify the best acquisition channels to collect the most valid data. These can include techniques such as tracking anonymous users visiting your website, gathering feedback from your customers, monitoring trends of loyal customers or using social logins to access a prospect’s profile.
Often, your company’s history is its biggest asset. Using historic behaviour and historic data from older clients can help narrow down your target market and really allow you to focus on generating quality leads. In order to narrow your target market, you need DATA!
Here are some of the key metrics to focus on in your quest to building a data driven strategy:
- How much of your revenue comes from marketing channels such as email, social, PPC, and others?
- How many leads are you generating in a specific time period?
- How many customers actually buy a product or book a service from your website?
- To date, how much actual revenue has your marketing strategy generated (and how does this compare to what you forecasted?)
- How much money have you generated from each lead source?
- How many leads have become opportunities for each of your marketing channels?
Start Putting Data To Work For You Now
To be honest, this only really begins to scratch the surface of what data-driven lead generation strategy can do for your business…but it’s a solid place to start.
And the very best time to start is now.
With all the uncertainty in the world right now, no business can afford to take a “scattershot” approach to its marketing budget.
This is the time to stand out or stand back and get left behind.
Reach out to us when you’re ready to start turning more leads into paying customers.
Connecting to your target audience is a daunting task. But what if I told you it didn’t have to be?
Like any relationship, forging a genuine, meaningful connection with your buyers takes time and effort. But once you do, you will begin to reap the rewards: you’ll be able to promote yourself to an appreciative audience that is clamoring to do business.
So, how do you get there?
First, you must understand the type of pain points your audience aligns themselves with.
Pain points are the specific issues your audience faces that your products or services can solve. Identifying these pain points – and speaking to them in your marketing – is key to bringing new customers into the fold.
Traditionally, there are four different types of pain points:
- Financial Pain Points: Your audience is trying to find a way to save money, as they are currently unsatisfied by how much money is entering or leaving their pockets.
- Productivity Pain Points: Your audience is looking to save time, or rather, to use their time more effectively.
- Process Pain Points: Your audience is in search of a more effective way to solve their problems.
- Support Pain Points: Your audience currently lacks support they need during their customer journey.
Once you identify which pain points resonate with your audience, you can better position your business to appeal to their wants and needs.
Finding Your Audience’s Pain Points
Now that you know what you’re looking for, you can start doing a little investigating.
Depending on the time and resources at hand, there are several ways to go about understanding your audience’s pain points.
Customer interviews are invaluable. Nothing beats talking to your audience one-on-one. But if you’re short on time, or don’t have access to real customers, a good place to start is with customer testimonials and reviews (on Google, Facebook, HomeStars, etc.)
As much as it’s nice to relish in complimentary customer reviews, it’s important to view the negative comments as well. This way, you can identify areas of improvement. If your customers have provided reasoning behind why they are dissatisfied, you’ve found a pain point!
After you’ve reflected on reviews of your product or service, it’s time to turn to your competitors. What are they offering their customers that you are not? What pain points are they addressing?
Look at their reviews, along with their website copy. Doing a Google search will also prompt their ads to pop up, which is a good opportunity to look at how they are appealing to their customers.
Addressing Pain Points
So, you’ve found your pain points. Now you must tailor your copy to suit the needs of your audience. Target your audience based on their pain points, and you will start to build a connection between them and your product or service.
- Financial: Highlight the money your customers will save by switching to your product/service.
- Productivity: Emphasize that by switching to your product/service, customers will also be saving time and their frustrations through user-friendly technology.
- Processes: Discuss how your product/service is the most effective, reliable, and convenient way to solve their issue.
- Support: Be present in every stage of the customer journey by helping your customers, both new and secured. Use inclusive language and emphasize that they are more than just a customer to you.
Add to Your Copy
Now that you know how to address pain points, we have a few extra tips for you to incorporate into your marketing copy to help prospects realize how great your business is.
In this case, qualitative data is much more valuable compared to quantitative. Each customer has an individualized experience, meaning they all have their own different pain points. One customer is not going to share the exact same problem as another, though it can be categorized into larger ideas like the ones discussed above.
At the end of the day, your audience is not going to remember the number of customers served or percentage of satisfaction – they are going to remember the stories behind customer success.
This can easily be found through use of customer testimonials, as it gives prospects confidence to continue their customer journey with you. By seeing displays of trust between your business and customers, prospects will expect to have a similar experience, one where they are supported.
Make a Lasting Connection To Your Audience
Building a connection with your audience is vital to the growth and survival of your business. By no means is it an easy task, but the effort you put into this relationship will pay off in time. Now that you understand how to find your audience pain points and address them, you can get started on nurturing a relationship with your customers.
When in doubt, just ask yourself: what do my customers need and how will I provide it for them? Reach out to us to start connecting to your audience and attracting qualified leads now.
Let’s get right into it. The key word I want you to focus on from the title of this blog is realistic.
Of course you want your business to grow. That’s a given. And a strategic, focused lead generation campaign is the most consistent, reliable way to get new customers through the door.
But “skyrocket my business” isn’t exactly a specific, measurable goal. You need to dig deeper.
Goals give your company something to work towards, but reaching for something unrealistic will knock you off the path to success.
Once you’ve done the research and crunched the numbers, you’ll land on that perfectly balanced goal. From there, your lead generation will improve drastically.
This notion is a universal truth for all businesses. Having a clearly defined objective gives you the focus to achieve what you’re aiming for.
Why Are Realistic Goals Integral to Your Success?
First and foremost, studies show that – out of 3,000-plus marketers – there is a 376% likelier chance for success for those who set goals.
Giving yourself realistic benchmarks lets you plan and budget time and money around those expectations.
You won’t over-commit and experience a catastrophic outcome that sinks you financially. Plus, you invested a reasonable amount of time that hasn’t taken away from the rest of your business.
Whereas an unrealistic goal might act as a financial sinkhole that takes your focus off what brought you to the dance: providing quality services.
Metrics That Will Help You Set Realistic Goals
It’s tricky to improve upon what you can’t measure.
However, what you’re measuring should provide valuable insights that help you generate more leads.
What are some examples of meaningful metrics for lead generation?
- Marketing Qualified Leads: leads that have shown interest in your services but aren’t ready to make a purchase. These individuals have performed an action such as filling out a contact form or clicking on an ad.If you nurture an MQL, they’ll be likelier to convert into a customer or client.
- Conversions Through the Sales Funnel: tracks how leads travel the marketing funnel towards being a customer. If customers are moving down this path successfully, it’s an indication that your methods are working.
- Sales Qualified Leads (SQL): a metric that becomes meaningful deep into the buyer’s journey. A wealth of SQLs means that you’ve performed well in cultivating relationships with MQLs and keeping them interested in your services.
4 Critical Factors to Weigh In Setting Realistic Goals
1. Average Deal Size
- Smaller transactions make it more challenging to get a decent return on your investment.
- If your focus is on smaller deals, you’ll have to convert at a high volume.
- Your deal size dictates the preferred size of your prospect or lead database. If you have a more significantly sized deal size, you don’t need to work with as many leads.
2. Average Sales Cycle
- Knowing how long it takes to convert a lead into a buyer gives you a clearer picture of your potential return on investment (ROI). Plus, it helps you grasp the various steps in your pipeline.
- You must adjust accordingly to these timeframes for the most realistic projections of your ROI.
3. Complexity of Sale
- You need to consider how complicated your message is and how many people will be involved in crafting your goals.
- These factors often dictate the number of call attempts and the number of contacts per account for callers.
- Complex sales bring in more value per deal and often justify a lower response and conversion rates because of the money being brought in.
4. Quality of Data
- If you’re receiving quality data about leads, you’ll be spending your time trying to convert people who are more likely to purchase your products.
Defining and achieving your lead goals could mean exciting things for you and your company: higher profit margins, faster growth, and freedom to try new things. Reach out to us to learn how to start generating more leads online now.
Customers are the most important part of your business. It’s a fact. The ultimate goal of any growing business is to attract and nurture a loyal relationship with its customers.
But customer acquisition and customer retention often compete for attention from your marketing budget.
When faced with the reality that acquiring a new customer can cost five times as much as retaining an existing one, you may be tempted to throw all of your resources to attracting new business.
The reality is that it’s important to dedicate as many resources to retain existing customers as it is selling to new ones. Both are essential and require separate strategies.
Increasing customer retention by just 5% can increase profits from 25% to 95%. In addition, the success rate of selling to a customer that you already have is 60-70%, versus 5-20% for new customers. There is great value in keeping the right customers.
Businesses need to craft a game plan that effectively attracts and retains customers with tactics that can be measured and altered as needed to achieve success in both areas. Here, we look at best practices for marketing strategies that identify and manage new customers differently than returning customers.
Attract Customers and Maintain Contact
Attracting a new customer takes time and patience.
Consumers have more options than ever – not only in terms of where and when they shop, but also how. It only makes sense that retailers have to work harder and smarter to gain customer loyalty.
To realize the benefits downstream, retailers will need to move the battle to the top of the sales funnel. Here lies the “awareness” and “interest” phase of the purchase experience.
Strengthening the top of the funnel also means giving attention to the middle and bottom of the funnel so those initial prospects move forward to conversion.
This is why it is so important to optimize all your digital assets – your website, landing pages, content, SEO, and social media campaigns – to work together as an effective marketing funnel. Talk to us about your business marketing strategies.
When someone moves into the middle of your sales funnel, that means you’ve captured their interest. This is where you want to show why your product is the perfect fit or solution to your customer’s needs.
How well you satisfy your customer’s needs will affect the likelihood that they will return. Returning customers will spend more often and will refer their friends and family.
Know Your Customer
Is a customer someone who has purchased an item from your company within the last six months, or at any point in time? What about a repeat purchaser from several years ago?
Say two customers bought from you yesterday. Today one searches for items from your company using a generic search (i.e. sports cars), the other—a branded search (i.e. Ferrari sports cars). Are they both considered your customers? Or should the one using a generic search have to be “re-acquired”?
You would also want to consider transaction data – at what point in time is it unlikely that your customer will return? Will they still return after a year has passed?
Understand Your Customer’s Purchase Path
Searches typically fall into the realm of new customer acquisition, situated towards the top of the funnel and comes at higher cost.
However, this cost is justified when you understand that you can further nurture your customers to purchase using other channels such as email and direct marketing.
A customer’s journey can be complex, so it is advisable to have a multi-channel strategy. For example, a customer may discover a new product on Instagram, view that product again via display ad retargeting, and later research that product on Amazon – only to finally purchase it after receiving a promotional email.
Create Ad Campaigns for Acquisition and Retention
After defining who your customer is, divide your ad campaigns based on new or returning customers. For example, your ad campaign could target these 3 sets of audiences:
- Completely new visitors to your site.
- Those that have visited your site in the past 3 months but have not purchased.
- Lastly, this group has purchased from you within the last 3 months and would be returning customers.
Set Unique Return Goals for Each Group
With your audiences set, it’s time to determine a unique, specific return goal for each.
Generally, you should be willing to invest more (to a less efficient return) to attract new customers. However, since you have already invested in the returning customer, you should set a more efficient return goal in that case.
Segment Further to Align with Your Customer’s Journey
Once you’ve obtained enough data to analyze, you may be able to segment each ad campaign further. You may be able to target each audience by device, or branded vs. non-branded search terms.
Watch for KPIs of Success
Watch your key performance indicators to see if you are hitting your return goals. Are new customers in line with your new customer profile? Are you gaining new customers while maintaining the same level of profit?
Your growth in search will naturally level off if you aren’t consistently refreshing your ad campaigns. It’s smart to develop a habit of making tweaks every 3 months or so, depending on your data results.
If you would like to learn more about how to improve your customer acquisition and retention, contact us today.
Often defined as a complex state of feeling, emotions result in both physical and psychological changes that influence thought and behaviour. They’re associated with temperament, personality, mood, and motivation.
Emotions also constitute the foundation on which decisions are made.
How Emotions Influence What We Buy
Emotions greatly influence and can even determine our buying decisions.
When confronted with a choice, emotions from previous life events create preferences and patterns that lead to our decision. fMRI imaging has shown that when evaluating brands, consumers primarily use emotions rather than information like brand attributes, features, and facts to make their final decision.
Emotion is one of the reasons why most people prefer brand-name products. Big brands with large advertising budgets that market on a large scale can create an emotional connection with the consumer. Therefore, rich, emotional content results in a loyal user.
How Emotion is Used in Marketing
Human emotion is based on four overarching emotions: happy, sad, afraid/upset, and angry/disgusted.
Positivity has been shown to increase sharing and engagement. Brands have also recognized that sad or inspiring ads are hugely successful.
Fear, on the other hand, is an instinct that helps us to react to threats. Advertisers have found that ‘scare-vertising’ is one way to leverage this. Surprise is a more positive form of fear and can be seen in ads such as this one.
Finally, there’s anger. We often think it’s best to avoid anger, but in some cases, it can wake people up and spur action and change. While negative images are less common in advertising than positive ones, viral success occurs when negative images have an element of anticipation and surprise.
So, how are feelings actually used in marketing? The most shared ads of 2018 relied heavily on emotional content such as friendship, inspiration, warmth and happiness. Although this style of advertising wasn’t always the case: in the 1990s and 2000s, advertisers focused on humour and sarcasm.
The Future of Emotional Marketing
Today, many brands are going beyond simply telling emotionally-driven stories, targeting different ads to specific moods for maximum impact.
In 2016, the USA Today Network began categorizing its content by topic and tone and scored it based on the emotions it was thought to evoke. They then started selling advertising based on that knowledge. This concept represents targeting an audience based on psychographic characteristics rather than demographics.
Recently, the New York Times also rolled out a project called Project Feels that lets advertisers target ads to content based on predicted emotional responses. ESPN has also pitched a tool that would target sports fans on its digital platforms based on their changing emotional state during a game.
Tapping into feelings and emotion is a powerful way for marketers to formulate potent advertising. When used properly, feelings help facilitate consumers’ understanding of an advertising message and motivate them to buy.
Understanding your business’s marketing funnel is key to a successful marketing campaign. Thanks to tools like Google Analytics, it’s easier than ever to see how your customers go from being curious prospects to loyal patrons. Still, there are common beginner mistakes people make when they’re new to the world of marketing funnel strategies.
These mistakes aren’t always fatal. However, fixing them is necessary to unlock your funnel’s full potential.
What Exactly is the Marketing Funnel?
The marketing funnel is a helpful way of visualizing how people make the decision to purchase (or not) a product or service.
The idea is to imagine how customers approach the business at three different stages in the purchase process: the awareness, the consideration, and conversion stages.
- The top of the marketing funnel is the awareness stage. This is the point with the biggest pool of potential customers — that’s why it’s the widest part of the funnel. Here, people are discovering a product or service for the first time. They may not have prior knowledge of the business or its solution. Sometimes, they aren’t even aware they have a problem that needs solving.
- The middle of the marketing funnel is the consideration stage. People in this stage know the business and what it offers, but they aren’t ready to buy. There aren’t as many potential customers here as there is in the top of the funnel, but they’re closer to purchasing.
- The bottom of the marketing funnel is the conversion stage. The bottom represents the potential customers who have already decided to buy — now, they just need to decide who to buy from.
Why visualize customers using the marketing funnel? Because each different stage calls for a different marketing strategy. Customers at the top of the funnel are easier to reach, but they need convincing before they’ll buy. There are fewer customers in the conversion stage, but they’re the ones who are most receptive.
Your marketing efforts will generate better returns when you understand where to find people at each stage in the funnel and what resonates with each of them.
Fixing Common Marketing Funnel Mistakes
A marketing funnel strategy involves tactics to target potential customers at different points of the marketing funnel and move them closer to making a purchase. Data on user activity from platforms like Google Analytics and Facebook Insights can help you understand what’s working (and what’s not) at each step along the way.
However, even a robust strategy backed by good data is susceptible to a few common mistakes.
Keep these points in mind when you’re working on your winning marketing funnel strategy.
1. The Funnel Doesn’t End with Conversion
What happens at the end of the funnel?
Ideally, the person converts, whether that means buying a product, hiring a service, or taking some other action that benefits the business. The prospect becomes a customer.
What next? That customer doesn’t just vanish — they become one of the business’s biggest assets.
Assuming the product or service met their expectations, those customers more receptive than anyone to the business’s other offerings. They can become loyal fans and advocates for the business. Finally, they’re going to spread the word about their experience, so it’s in the businesses interest to keep them happy.
It’s a mistake to forget about customers after the conversion stage. Instead, use what you know about their needs and preferences for effective customer retention.
2. Market at All Points of the Funnel
When potential customers are close to converting, don’t be afraid to give them an extra ‘nudge’.
Many businesses make the mistake of focusing only on acquiring leads at the top of the marketing funnel, since people at the bottom are already close to converting. But conversion is not a guarantee.
It pays to invest in appealing to customers at all points in the funnel, especially the ones who are already eager to buy.
3. Don’t Let Prospects Go
Just because a prospect left without buying doesn’t mean they weren’t interested. There are dozens of reasons why someone might bounce. It could be they forgot what they were doing, wanted to check out competitors, or needed more time to think before making a decision.
With tools like AdWords and Facebook’s Pixel, you can retarget these potential customers and bring them back.
Retargeting is a fundamental marketing funnel strategy. Use what you already know about the customer to deliver a message that reminds them of your business.
4. Integrate the Funnel into Your Content Strategy
Content plays a big role in moving prospects through the marketing funnel. People don’t like ads, but they’re willing to consume content that delivers something of value: humour, entertainment, authenticity, information, empathy.
Blogs are a great example. Blog posts can raise customer awareness at the top of the funnel and provide ongoing value to those who have already converted. For example, an orchard could publish seasonal recipes that get people craving Ambrosia apples; an agency could share insider tips on their areas of expertise.
Don’t think of content strategy and marketing funnel strategy as two worlds. The marketing funnel gives content direction. Content is the current that ferries customers along.
5. Continuously Update Your Marketing Funnel Strategy
Marketing funnel strategy is not a one-time effort.
As technology evolves and customer habits change, your approach should pivot along with them. Ten years ago, mobile e-commerce was an emerging trend. Now, it accounts for $1.4 trillion in annual sales and 58% of e-commerce worldwide. Businesses who caught on to the change and optimized their strategies for mobile devices reeled in the benefits (see: How to Make Sure Your Site is Ready for Mobile).
Keep track of the changing ways customers are discovering and interacting with your business. Otherwise, your funnel won’t be in the right position to catch the stream of potential customers.
Marketing Funnel Strategy
In sum, remember these tips to avoid the common beginner marketing funnel mistakes:
- People who make it through the funnel once already are some of your best prospects. Keep customers coming back after they convert.
- Don’t focus exclusively on the top of the funnel. Prospects in the conversion stage still need that extra push.
- Use retargeting methods to bring prospects back into the funnel if they bounce.
- Treat your content marketing strategy and marketing funnel strategy as one.
- Your marketing funnel strategy is never complete. Keep adapting to consumer habits and buying trends.
Need a hand? Send us a note and we’ll be happy to help you out.
You know that video assets are a powerful way to connect with individuals on social media and beyond. But, what if you’re targeting businesses? While the business-to-business world has yet to embrace video to the same extent as B2C, there are strong reasons why B2B marketers should use video as well.
Research by Google shows that 70% of B2B customers watch videos on their path to purchase. Video tutorials, reviews, and advertisements have become a main source of information for researchers and stakeholders in the purchasing process. Leveraging these channels is a way of leading them towards a purchase at all different points of the B2B buyer’s journey.
Video Supports Long Sales Cycles
One of the significant differences between B2B and B2C marketing is the comparative complexity of the B2B sales cycle. In fact, a report from Marketing Sherpa suggests that over a third of B2B sales occur a full seven months after the initial customer inquiry.
Why is the B2B sales cycle so long? The most common reasons include:
- The purchase is just one of many priorities competing for the customer’s time and attention.
- The decision can affect many people within an organization, thus requiring careful thought and research.
- There are various stakeholders involved over the course of the purchasing process.
In many cases, converting B2B customers requires you to nudge them continuously towards the finish line. Closing the deal can require many more touchpoints than the typical B2C transaction.
Video marketing can support the B2B sales cycle by nurturing potential conversions at different points along the funnel. Initially, a short video can increase a customer’s interest in the product or service; longer videos can then cover the topic in greater depth.
That’s what Microsoft is doing with its new video campaign for Office 365 for Business. The featured video on their YouTube channel serves as an Office 365 elevator pitch. From there, interested customers can find video tutorials and product reviews that give them more reasons to buy in. Microsoft’s channel has something for buyers at all different points in the journey.
Video Boosts Your Other Digital Marketing Efforts
Closing a B2B sale online means hitting the customer on multiple fronts, including SEO (Search Engine Optimization), blog content, and social media. These efforts can all benefit from the addition of a video marketing campaign.
Here are just some of the ways video boosts other forms of digital marketing:
- Social media users are more likely to engage with video than any other kind of content, and on Facebook, video content reaches an average of 135% more people than photos.
- Marketing emails with the subject line “video” can increase clickthrough rate up to 300%.
- Including the word ‘video’ in a blog title can increase the number of people who click.
- Adding video to a web page can significantly increase its search engine ranking.
- Well-optimized YouTube videos can rank at the top of Google search results.
Point is, the reasons why B2B marketers should use video go beyond the returns generated by the video campaign itself. Great video content bolsters your web presence as a whole.
Personalized Videos Can Target Different Buyers
When video marketing was expensive, businesses had to target large swaths of customers at once to get the most out of their budgets. But the decreasing cost of video production gives you room to produce niche video campaigns for specific buyer personas.
Lenovo uses this strategy in the “Users Happen” campaign, which targets a number of relatable pain points in a hilarious, over-the-top way. You don’t have to be an IT manager to recognize a “power user” like Jane or a loveable dope like Chad.
Video Advertising is Growing on LinkedIn
Last year, the primary B2B social network started allowing users to upload native video files. So far, it’s been a success, with people finding expanded reach and greater engagement on LinkedIn through video. Now, LinkedIn is finally expanding the privilege to businesses with options for video ads in LinkedIn sponsored content.
LinkedIn’s deep advertising audience options will make it easier than ever to get your video content in front of your ideal customers. You can target existing email contacts on LinkedIn customers, or discover new potential customers by targeting a job title, industry, skillset, or company name.
Video Can Make Boring Stuff Shine
Face it: a lot of B2B transactions fall into the realm of what most people would deem boring. But that’s only because they haven’t seen it through the right lens. There’s a story behind every B2B transaction, and with video, you can bring those stories to life.
Take Slack, an inter-office messaging platform that means to replace such arduous tasks as ‘sending an email’ and ‘asking the person next to you if they have an iPhone charger.’ To date, this seeming-boring software has generated over a million views with its “So Yeah, We Tried Slack…” video campaign.
Another great example comes from Schneider Electric, a company that makes automated electrical systems. Not only does their imaginative “Butterfly Effect” campaign demonstrate the benefits of their product, it tells a triumphant (and hilarious) tale.
In Short: 5 Reasons Why B2B Marketers Should Use Video
- Video marketing can reach customers at all different points in the B2B sales cycle.
- Video can support your SEO, social media and blogging efforts.
- Video is cheaper than ever to product, allowing you to target niche buyer personas.
- LinkedIn lets you zero-in on specific kinds of customers with video ads.
- Video marketing can bring great stories to life, even in traditionally ‘boring’ industries.