It goes without saying that this year’s holiday shopping season and overall seasonal celebrations will be unlike any others we’ve experienced. There is a myriad of things that are going to impact how people shop, when and where they visit stores, and the availability of items they’re looking for. But despite these difficulties, there is still a lot of opportunities for brands as retail holiday sales are expected to reach nearly £120 billion in the UK.
Yes, this year will be challenging for brands and they will need to rethink some of the ways and the channels they use to reach and connect with their consumers. Here are a few smart tips to consider when planning your holiday ad campaigns this year, whether it is to increase in-store visits or traffic to your online e-shop.
Tip #1: Use an omnichannel approach to generate store visits
Time spent with mobile has surged during the past seven months, and it remains the key channel to reach consumers. Brands should focus on this consumption shift and leverage mobile as the primary device in their drive-to-store efforts, although combining multiple channels can help boost foot traffic.
It has been found that brands have seen a 3X higher visit rate when combining mobile with (D)OOH. This year, it will be crucial for brands to reinforce their messaging with their consumers by utilizing a cross-screen approach. Adding OOH or desktop to your media mix will be key to driving in-store visits that can really impact your bottom line by helping you communicate at different times of the day based on users’ habits. For example, if your customers are coming from further away and commute by train, OOH would be the best media to leverage around stations at rush hour. Equally, you could use mobile throughout the day to double down on your messaging and remain top of mind for shoppers on the move.
Tip #2: Leverage location data to maximize store visits on major shopping days
Reaching consumers at the most opportune time is going to be a great way to get them into stores this season. With dynamically optimized creatives, you can drive consumers to stores on the spot by integrating the address of your nearest point of sale. To maximize the chances of visits, you can even guide your potential customer with a store locator.
With hyper-precise location targeting, you can reach shoppers who are near your store, so they choose your brand for their purchases. By using advanced targeting tools like dynamic catchment areas, you can define your location targeting criteria based on real-world mobility patterns to target consumers within a short walking or driving distance to your location, helping limit their public transportation time.
Using these strategies on major shopping days like Black Friday and Boxing Day will help you effectively reach your target consumers at the right time to drive those in-store visits.
Tip #3: Drive traffic to your online store where physical locations are closed
It comes as no surprise that consumers will be turning to online shopping this year. According to eMarketer, UK digital holiday sales will increase to reach nearly £30 billion. Promoting your online store will be an essential part of driving your holiday sales, especially in areas where your physical stores might be closed or at limited capacity.
By developing creatives that drive to your e-shop, you can help supplement the in-store visits that might have been impacted by consumers looking to shop online for gifts. You can also create custom ads that offer convenient shopping experiences like click-and-collect to provide consumers with seamless opportunities to purchase from your brand.
Tip #4: Maximize brand recall with impactful creatives
It’s worth remembering that the format of an ad can be just as important as its actual message, which is why you should leverage diverse and innovative formats. Powerful and tailored creative ad units can have a truly impactful effect on users and can convert them to make a purchase.
An effective way of doing this is to use a format that can generate excitement and a sense of urgency, such as a countdown to a specific day, sale, or product launch. This will help you spark consumers’ interest, which can have a big impact this holiday season. On the day of the event, you can leverage real-time formats to remind your consumers that it’s time to shop, an ideal way to create moment marketing campaigns for timed promotions.
This holiday season is going to be different, and brands will need to be more creative and more attentive to consumers’ needs. By using an omnichannel approach and leveraging location data to help consumers find their nearest store, brands will be able to engage with buyers to drive physical and online visits. Just as consumers will be looking for the perfect gift to spoil their nearest and dearest, make sure to treat them to impactful creatives that will increase brand recall and make them want to visit your stores and buy your wares to enjoy a little Christmas magic.