Every year retailers are just coming off their cocktail-by-the-pool summer high when they turn and have to dive deep into the holiday planning ocean. If you are a marketer, you are probably already waist deep in decision making around your holiday plans – thinking about campaign promotions, shipping deadlines, inventory orders, email sends, website design and promos. The list goes on and on.
Certainly there are key dates, important deadlines and revenue-driving strategies you need to pay attention to if you want to stay on top of your holiday-game this season. With all of the hoop-la surrounding the holidays and making this the best and brightest year yet, Magnetic has developed a holiday-inspired calendar to serve as your holiday planner to help you keep track of all of those forget-me-not deadlines.
Here are 30 deadlines, important dates or inspiring ideas to drive revenue this holiday season, all focused around the five strategies we think are most important to consider when planning for this holiday season: how to find new shoppers, engage shoppers, drive repeat business, and focus on late shoppers and post holiday shoppers.
#1 – Inspirational Idea — Now is the time to get in front of early shoppers! 33% of online shoppers search a few months before the holidays.
#2 – Deadline — Think about refreshing your holiday creative ads for Black Friday promos, and get those ideas solidified by the beginning of November.
#3 – Inspirational Idea — Start digital marketing promotions at least a month prior to Black Friday and use search intent to find and reach bargain hunters!
#4 – Inspirational Idea — Get your search retargeting ads up if they aren’t already! 51% of people start looking for holiday deals 2 weeks before Black Friday.
#5 – Deadline — If you plan on using Magnetic services for holiday creative ad refreshes, November 16 is the last day to approve revisions for Black Friday-related creative.
#6 – Inspirational Idea — Advertise you coupon and discounts by mid-November. Coupon and discount searches was 1.5X the monthly average in November 2015.
#7 – Deadline — If you plan on using Magnetic services for holiday creative ad refreshes, November 18 is the last day to have all ad coding requests in for Black Friday-related creative.
#8 – Inspirational Idea — Only 9% of people start looking online for Black Friday deals the day before so don’t wait until the last minute to capture people’s attention online!
#9 – Deadline — Magnetic requires a 10 day turn time for creative ad updates and coding. If you plan on using Magnetic services for holiday creative the week before Christmas, December 2 is the last day for requests to be in.
#10 – Inspirational Idea — Email volume and frequency rise as we get closer to the holidays. Adding triggered emails to your email strategy is the optimal way to hit customers with the most relevant, personalized messages.
#11 – Inspirational Idea — Plan to switch out email banner creative throughout the holidays to ensure your messaging coincides with what shoppers are interested in buying.
#12 – Inspirational Idea — Drive holiday urgency through subject lines that provide connection & consistency. If you’re looking for help, Magnetic is here!
#13 – Inspirational Idea — Think about a tiered email approach – using relevant subject lines at the start of the season and more urgent subject lines as Black Friday approaches.
#14 – Key Date — Black Friday emails reach their highest engagement at noon and maintain engagement into the night.
#15 – Key Date — The highest email engagement on Cyber Monday last year occurred from 1-4pm EST. Keep in mind that in 2015 Cyber Monday had 31% more sales than Black Friday!
#16 – Inspirational Idea — Use abandoned cart emails to drive more revenue. The second week of December had the highest desktop ecommerce sales in 2015.
#17 – Inspirational Idea — Use an abandoned cart email series to drive additional revenue if your customer didn’t convert on the first email in the series.
#18 – Inspirational Idea — In 2015, 56% of people found out about deals through social networks. Use Facebook and Instagram ads to advertise your deals.
#19 – Key Date — If revenues from Black Friday and Cyber Monday missed the mark, launch an alternative campaign on Green Monday.
#20 – Inspirational Idea — Drive new revenue by targeting dormant shoppers from the previous holiday season.
#21 – Inspirational Idea — Make sure you are taking advantage of the highest converting site recommendations zones – homepage, product pages, cart page and category pages.
#22 – Inspirational Idea — Use re-activation ads to drive repeat business from your holiday shoppers from last year.
#23 – Inspirational Idea — Shopper alert triggered emails give shoppers a weekly collection of items curated just for them — a great way to break through the holiday clutter.
#24 – Key Date — Right before Thanksgiving, people are most likely to engage with emails at noon & between 8-11pm.
#25 – Inspirational Idea — Don’t forget to include product recommendations in all of your order confirmations to drive incremental revenue.
#26 – Key Date — Grab late dollars with last minute bargains – the highest share of orders placed between 12/18 – 12/24 in 2015 occurred from 10am-12pm EST.
#27 – Inspirational Idea — Gift cards are the way to go! In 2015 there were 72% more searches for gift cards the week before Christmas than the first week of December.
#28 – Inspirational Idea — Magnetic’s solutions allow you to identify and reach last minute shoppers everywhere they are – across email, ads and your site.
#29 – Inspirational Idea — Use email recommendations to let your shoppers know how to spend their gift cards!
#30 – Inspirational Idea — Don’t forget about post holiday shoppers — use a combination of search intent data and CRM information to understand which shoppers might still be in-market to buy or which ones could turn into more loyal customers.
Magnetic is an artificial intelligence company that uses machine learning to deliver smarter, faster, and more effective advertising. Our powerful AI platform continuously analyzes the attributes of over 350 million live user profiles alongside real-time inventory supply and bid opportunities to deliver highly performant audiences and profitable campaigns for our clients.