The last quarter of the year is by far the busiest for most online retailers. With more than 40% of revenue generated between October and December, it’s crucial that marketers plan ahead to get the most out of the holiday season. With Black Friday sales consistently growing, this time of year is essential to the success of most e-commerce businesses (and the affiliates they work with). In this article, we look at how to prepare your online marketing plan for the holiday season.

 

Learn from Previous Years

It’s always helpful to base your plans on previous results. Look at the holiday campaigns you ran last year to identify what worked well and what could be improved. How can you build on previous successes and scale them up to make them even more impactful? Were there any marketing channels or specific affiliates that outperformed the rest? Working out what to leverage can save you a lot of trial and error for future planning.

 

Tap into Trends

One way to super-charge your holiday marketing is by tapping into trends. This allows you to ride a wave and reach audiences that you might not have searched for your products otherwise. Keep an eye on industry blogs and magazines to identify themes that are trending in your business sector. Or use an online tool like Google Trends to work out which ideas are gaining popularity at this time of year.  

 

Partner with Omnichannel Affiliates

If you don’t have a big team or extensive budgets, then tailoring holiday campaigns may seem like a stretch on your resources. Creating custom graphics, promotions, ads, landing pages, and social media posts can seem like a lot of extra work. One way to get around this is to work with affiliates who can do all of the heavy lifting for you. Choose publishers who utilize social media, SEO, mobile ads, and a host of other marketing channels. This will ensure that you’re seen across the entire marketing mix without having to invest time or money upfront.

 

Tailor Your Messaging

The key to any successful marketing campaign is aligning your message with your audience. Holiday promotions are no different so it’s important to segment your target audiences and tailor your messaging accordingly. If you have an email list then use tags or groups to divide them up based on interests or purchasing needs. Most PPC and social advertising platforms also allow you to target specific demographics so that you can run tailored ads to different segments. You can also select affiliate partners based on their audience demographics and allow them to do the customization on your behalf.

 

Take Advantage of Seasonal Marketing

There’s more to seasonal marketing than fall color schemes and festive branding. Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all provide countless opportunities for thinking out of the box and putting a new spin on your usual approach. What seasonal needs can your product or service address? Are there unusual gift guides that you could be featured in? Think beyond the standard promotional ideas and find a way to cut through the noise so you really stand out.  Ensure that your social media strategy aligns with these holidays is also key to providing a well-rounded marketing funnel to speak to audiences from these channels.

 

Get in Early

Give your affiliate partners plenty of warning about the sales or special promotions that you’re planning to run. This will enable them to prepare in advance and create bespoke campaigns to highlight your brand. If you don’t give them enough notice, then they may not be able to fit you into their promotional calendar or only have time for a quick email blast. This means you won’t see the great results that you could have done with a little pre-planning.

Following these tips will help you to prepare for the holiday season with confidence. Learning from previous years and tapping into trends ensures that you set yourself up for success. Partnering with affiliates who are active across multiple channels can maximize your reach and save you work at the same time. Tailoring your messaging to specific segments and taking advantage of seasonal opportunities will also ensure your marketing gets the best possible results.  

 

Looking for Help with Affiliate Management?

At Advertise Purple, our dedicated team of affiliate managers can help you to extend your reach and generate high-quality leads. They can even help you plan your holiday campaigns! We have a network of best-in-class publishers who create engaging content that’s aligned with your strategic objectives. Plus, you’ll benefit from our industry-leading technology which makes tracking and reporting a breeze.

Our experienced team of professionals is always up-to-date with the latest developments in affiliate marketing. We can help you to set up a brand-new affiliate program or manage an existing campaign to maximize results. We can even have one of our affiliate managers do a complementary analysis and strategy session.  Contact us today by calling 424-272-7400, filling out the form below or emailing info@advertisepurple.com.