Nicole Kersh, Sales and marketing

How do you wake customers from their January slumber?

Nicole Kersh /

This article first appeared January 30th, 2012.

 

Do you have any marketing tips on how to wake customers from their January slumber? I find I need to offer something exciting in order to get them spending this month.

 

This time of year is tricky because a lot of people are still on leave, while those who are back at work are still recovering from Christmas.

 

That said, there are a few tactics you could try to wake your customers from their festive slumber and entice them to spend.

 

Traditionally, retailers offer bargains at this time of year as a way of luring customers back into stores.

 

However, your marketing strategy should be shaped by the type of business you run.

 

Free shipping

 

If you have an online store, you could offer free shipping until the end of January.

 

It’s important that your promotion has a deadline, as this gives the campaign a sense of urgency and your customers less time to put off purchasing.

 

You obviously don’t want to lose money, so before you start giving away free freight, work out what your average order value is.

 

If your average order is $45, your promotion could be “Free Freight for all orders over $50”. This will encourage your customers to spend slightly more than they would normally to qualify for free freight.

 

Gift certificates

 

Another idea is to promote gift certificates, which work well for both online and traditional retail outlets.

 

This is because when people come back to cash in their gift, they tend to spend more than they usually would because part of it is “free”.

 

You could try offering $10 credit for every $100 spent during the month of January.

 

Get you message out

 

There are plenty of enticing options but dreaming up the promotion is the easy part. The hard part is getting your message out and translating it into sales.

 

Most retailers are in the same boat at this time of year, so consumers are getting marketed at quite fiercely. Your campaign has to stand out.

 

Emailing your customer database is a good starting point.

 

Have a look through your inbox at the campaigns that have been sent to you. See what attracts you, take note of what works, and what it is about the campaign makes you want to know more.

 

If you have access to a graphic designer, work with them to put together a catchy campaign to start the New Year.

 

If you don’t have access to a designer, you could try outsourcing the campaign to DesignCrowd or 99designs. You want your campaign to stand out and give your customers a reason to purchase.

 

If your sales are seasonal then include this in your strategy for next year so you can plan ahead.

 

So if historically the months leading up to Christmas bring you a spike in sales, followed by a dip in January, plan ahead to maximise the spike.

 

Finally, you could always just make the most of the quiet period. It’s a good time of year to plan, put together a strategy for the New Year, get organised and prepare yourself for the year ahead.

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Nicole Kersh

Nicole Kersh runs The Content Folk and consults in the area of e-commerce strategies.

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