05 Dec Are you marketing over the Christmas break?
Marketing over the Christmas season and new year requires strategic thinking and forward-planning.
Clients and customers have already endured e-commerce campaigns in the leadup, including Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. As Christmas approaches, it can be overwhelming for customers and for marketers who are competing against all the noise.
Below are our tips on how to market your event over the Christmas break.
1. START EARLY
Start planning early! Avoid the November panic and scramble trying to get your campaign up and going and give customers time to prepare to register for your event or buy tickets. Start planning as early as possible, think about key dates that you might ramp up your marketing or perhaps switch advertising off (such as radio ads), including Black Friday when you are competing against thousands of retailers. Consider dates for print, out of home, radio, promotions and plan any paid digital marketing campaigns around these key dates.
2. KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
A key factor in marketing is knowing your audience. What would they be doing at this time of the year, what are they thinking and how are they feeling? If your key audience is families, will they be Christmas shopping and potentially be saving money over this period? Perhaps you should look at advertising in shopping centres or parenting publications to capture their attention while they are shopping.
If your audience is millennials or GenZ, they may be more likely to consider ticket buying at this time of year as they are gearing up for holidays, out and about and feeling more social at this time of year. If they are corporates, they are likely busy in the leadup to Christmas and then taking leave over Christmas and not returning to the office until week 1 or 2 in the new year.
3. THINK STRATEGICALLY
Unless you are in retail marketing, dodge the Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday and New Year’s noise and pause media around these key holiday dates. There is no point competing with e-commerce around this time of the year – unless of course you have the budget to do so.
3. ‘GIVE THE GIFT OF EXPERIENCES’ – MATERIAL VS. MEMORIES
One large factor on why you shouldn’t give up on your marketing during this time is that consumers are seeking gifts of experiences over material items.
According to Momentum Worldwide, 76% of all consumers would rather spend their money on experiences than on material items. From a tourism perspective, the Destination Network Central West NSW Draft Management Plan (DNCW SMP 2202) noted a growing shift in consumer spending towards immersive and transformative experiences, with Gen X in particular seeking travel experiences that include elements of culture and new locations.
5. OFFER SOMETHING SPECIAL
According to the CWI ‘CTD 2023 Global’ report, 31% of users found that special offers/discounts are important when deciding which brands to buy.
Consumer behaviours have changed drastically in a post-Covid landscape. Consumers are more likely to purchase tickets to events closer to the event date rather than earlier in the campaign which can be frustrating and stressful for event owners. One angle to encourage consumers to purchase earlier is to offer a loyalty discount, a value-add inclusion, upgrade or a unique package for purchasing during a particular period.
If budget allows, jump on the e-commerce train and put a ‘Black Friday’ or ‘Cyber Monday’ sale on tickets and encourage your audience to purchase. Consider your audience, your offer and your budget or you could get lost amongst the big sales!
6. FINDING NEW IDEAS OR INSPIRATION
The GWI ‘CTD 2023 Global’ report surveyed 741K users aged between 16-64 and asked them to rank their top reasons for using the internet. From 2018 to 2022 the biggest shift was users’ response to ‘finding new ideas or inspiration’, which jumped from #9 to #6 of importance.
This proves that audience behaviour is shifting from ‘wanting what everyone else has’, to ‘wanting what no one else has’. Consumers are wanting new, exciting and different things in their lives whether it be material items or experiences.
We highly recommend key messaging to reflect this change and highlight your event’s uniqueness.
It is a difficult time of the year to find and sell to your audience but it can be done successfully if you are organised, start early and speak to your audience in the right way. We hope these tips provide you with the confidence to get your event out there during the silly season.
If you would like more information or would like Milestone to support you with your 2023 campaigns, contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org