How to Use Seasons to Drive Sales
Seasonal promotions are a great tool for stores to drive their sales by providing exclusive offers and discounts associated with special events that take place throughout the year. This can be holidays, memorials, and/or certain occasions unique to you or the area your store is located. The target goal for this kind of promotional marketing strategy is to attract attention to your business and the best way to do this is to align your promotions with seasonal events and holidays.
"The target goal for this kind of promotional marketing strategy is to attract attention to your business and the best way to do this is to align your promotions with seasonal events and holidays."
Below are examples of different times of the year that provide perfect promotional opportunities:
Regular Holidays. Recognized holidays like Thanksgiving, Black Friday, or Memorial Day. These don’t necessarily have a fixed date every year, but are regularly celebrated by your customers.
Thanksgiving - Promote products that will help pets cope up with the stress of many people coming in and out of the house.
Black Friday - Offer special discounts since this is regarded as the first day of the traditional Christmas shopping season. This is the best time to be creative with your sales and marketing. Customers are expecting sales, so even if it’s a minor discount, they are more likely to put that item in the cart versus something full price.
Memorial Day - This holiday is centered around those who have served in the country’s armed forces. This is a great opportunity for sales that target a specific audience, such a service members and their families. If you want a sale that will reach a larger audience an example may be “10% off items at the counter if you are wearing red, white, and blue.”
Annual events. These are days where certain events occur at a specific time of the year like Halloween & Christmas. Use these well-known holidays to your advantage and give your customers a reason to drop in your store during these times of the year - buy 1 get 1 promo (BOGO), special discounts, and limited edition items are a great start, but don’t forget to get creative!
Halloween - Campaign for products that will keep pets safe from spooky pranksters and moldy Halloween pumpkins. You can also host an awesome Halloween event in your store, with candies, treats for the pups, and great discounts for anyone who comes in wearing a costume, or have a costume contest for pet parents and their families to take part in!
Christmas - Promote products that prepare your customers’ homes and pets for the long cold season ahead. This could be as simple as putting your dog mannequins in pet parents® washable diapers and a scarf or as complicated as an interactive display that shows how pup’s react to cold weather (and their appreciation for products that keep them indoors, warm by the fire). Also, consider offering special discounts for people to use when they are finishing up their last minute holiday shopping.
Valentines Day - Create a product combination that will make great valentines for pets AND pet parents. You can pair two products together and sell them for a special price when they're purchased together.
Non-traditional holidays. These are days of the year that are not considered “real” holidays but are still being commemorated because they hold significance with the industry your business belongs within (in this case, Pet Holidays).
Pet Holidays - You can try to create limited offers and discounts in honor of all furry friend and pet parents can even get more exciting treats when they drop by your store together with their pets. Some of the pet holidays are:
Jan. 2: National Pet Travel Safety Day
Feb. 20: Love Your Pet Day
March 23: National Puppy Day
April 7-13: Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week
April 11: National Pet Day
Last Sunday in April: National Pet Parents Day
May 5-11: National Pet Week. Always held the first full week of May by the American Veterinary Medical Association
Aug. 26: National Dog Day
Your Own Store Holiday/Anniversary - You can even make up your own type of holiday that your store celebrates every year as a reason to hold promotional events! Why not?! Use this day to share how your brand and store came to be.
UNDERSTAND HOW HOLIDAYS/SEASONS PLAY A ROLE IN YOUR SUCCESS
Not every holiday or event will apply to you, nor should you force them to fit you and your store!
Depending on the types of products you sell (in this case dog diapers, belly bands, pee pads, and antler chews), there are certain times of the year where you get the most revenue, particularly in event/holidays that can greatly affect people’s pets (frequent urination, stress caused by loud noises and new environment) - it is during these times where promotions are most effective!
Choose a seasonal opportunity. When choosing a holiday or an event, make sure you are strategic. That you just don’t pick any or every holiday/event just because you want to or feel like it. The events you choose should apply to and reach your target audience as well as compliment the products you are selling.
Make sure the campaigns you use are personal so that your customers will be able to relate and empathize with it. Touching on the emotions of your audience will often lead to clear response such as: website/social media traffic, more people buying your products, more people coming into your store, etc. In order to reach maximum engagement with your store, you need to reach your target market in a successful way.
Examples of ways to engage your customers include: improving awareness through communication via customer visits, newsletters, emails, campaigns and through all communication channels, This will build trust between you and your customer.
Give focus on your message. It should be about your customers’ personal experiences and concerns about their pets in a particular season. It should consist of the story you want to tell, the solution you want to suggest, the emotions you want your audience to empathize and a call-to-action on the things you want to encourage them to do (in this case, reaching out to you to learn more about your products or purchasing your products and giving it a try).
Schedule well. Timing is everything. Scheduling your seasonal campaign in advance is key. Make sure your promotions are release when customers are thinking about the holiday you are promoting and comparably to your competitors.
It is important to be strategic in your timing so you aren’t releasing your campaign in the midst of everyone else doing the same thing. For example, avoid over sending emails that will be deleted or sent to spam around seasonal times.
Make use of all that you have. Consider all platforms you can think of - email, social media, newsletters, blog articles, guest posts, promotional events at your store, the list goes on.
Use an array of different platforms, this will lead you to a possible increase in reach and customer engagement (because the more awareness you create the more people see you and your store!) This ensures that your campaign will successfully reach your current and potential customers across all platforms.
A strategically planned seasonal promotion will help boost your sales because it increases your visibility to customers and will potentially give you new ones!
"Not every holiday or event will apply to you, nor should you force them to fit you and your store!"