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December 14, 2021

Star Digital’s Guide to Digital Marketing at Christmas

Christmas. It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Especially if you’re an ecommerce store. Every year, shoppers get swept up with festive fever. They show up in their droves – in store and online.  

Of course, with anywhere between 12 to 24 million online stores available to choose from, competition is tougher than ever before. Whilst it’s always better to be the early bird, you can still maximise your Christmas conversions and outsell your competitors with some quick fixes. 

There’s one we want to talk to you about. Digital marketing.

Hang on, what’s digital marketing?

If you’re new to the world of ecommerce, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered.

Digital marketing is the advertising and promotion of products and services using digital devices.

Using a range of channels and technologies, digital marketing not only allows for more effective marketing, but also lets you gather in-depth data on the performance of your campaigns. As a result, your content strategy can be adjusted accordingly for maximum returns.

Whether it’s email marketing, PPC (that’s pay-per-click), social media or SEO (search engine optimisation, if you didn’t know), you can learn all about how we can help you use these tools to strategically achieve your long and short-term goals here.

But why does digital marketing matter at Christmas?

With Covid-19 keeping us all on our toes, online stores like yours are set to reap the rewards.

According to Statista (2021), over 75% of shoppers in the UK alone plan to buy their Christmas gifts online. And 42% of them (Voucher Codes, 2021) are planning on spending more than usual.

Why? Because:

  1. 66% of UK consumers want to make this Christmas feel more special than last year
  2. 44% of UK consumers want to make this Christmas a real family event to make up for the isolation of lockdown

It’s no surprise the nation is using the holidays as an escape from the pandemic. Retail therapy is no myth, which is why Christmas sales are set to rise by 4.7% compared to 2020.

Don’t get caught out by your competitors this Christmas. Read up on our Christmas digital marketing guide below.

Email Marketing

Emails. We get them all day every day, don’t we? In a world of 7.6 billion people, 4.03 billion of us regularly use them. 91% of those check their emails daily, and 59% of them believe their emails affect their purchasing decisions. 

So, when it comes to getting your customers in the Christmas spirit – you’ll want to start with your email marketing. Just like writing those Christmas lists to Santa, email campaigns need careful planning.  

You’ll want to split your campaign into three phases: 

  1. Pre-Christmas: a few weeks before Christmas, anytime from Black Friday onwards!
  2. Christmas Week – Christmas and the days around it.
  3. Post-Christmas – A few weeks after Christmas, because the fun doesn’t stop straight away.

Pre-Christmas Campaigns

For your pre-Christmas campaigns, wish lists and gift guides are your new best friends. Use the data you’re collecting from your audience all-year-round to offer personalised product suggestions and wrap them up in curated bows.

Remember, this doesn’t have to be difficult. Keep it simple with festive colours and on-brand messaging like this gift guide email from Society6.

Christmas Week Campaigns

Christmas shopping boosts sales. Double up and offer out discounts to truly top your competitors. Even better, if you’ve been running pre-Christmas campaigns, you’ll have a good idea of what your customers really want so you can offer them personalised bargains to bring it home.

Or strip it back even more and simply grab them with spirit like Yankee Candle. At the beginning of Christmas week, hit them with the products you want to promote and give them a countdown to Christmas to remember.

Post-Christmas Campaigns

Don’t listen to season-shamers - Christmas is for life, not just for December. This one’s the easiest of them all. You simply send out some appreciation and show your customers some love. You can even get them excited for the New Year ahead with any exciting news you can share or product reveals to give a sneak peak of.

Want to learn how to master your email marketing all year round? Check out our tips and tricks here.

Social Media

Here’s one for you: did you know 70% of Christmas shoppers this year are doing it all online. And did you also know that 80% of them are influenced by the internet before making a purchase. (SquareMedia, 2020).

Social media can spread word of mouth about brilliant brands (like yours!) like wildfire. At Christmas, over 50% of the UK’s 45 million active social media users will post about their Christmas purchases. Don’t lose out on easy wins and quick conversions.

Create shareable content

At Christmas, shareable content is what sells you to your audience. They want things they can tag friends and family in. Whether it’s heart-warming, funny, or just plain random – they want it.

Here’s a few ideas you can post on pretty much any social media platform this festive season to get your audience engaging more:

  1. Christmas Video Campaigns - We humans buy with our eyes. In fact, we do everything with our eyes. So why not play to our strengths?

    Christmas video campaigns can take time and effort to put together, but they’ll have you building a community, increasing engagement, and earning conversions quicker than you can stuff a Turkey.

    Think about your business – what you believe in, the brand you want to be, and what you’re trying to say – and wrap that up in a warm Christmas tale. You don’t need big budgets to get people sharing, just heaps of imagination and an iPhone.
  2. User-Generated Content - Promoting Christmas on a budget this year? That’s fine, this idea needs next to nothing. User-generated content is becoming increasingly more popular with users. Why? Because it’s putting your customers at the heart of it, and at the end of the day, we all love being the main character.

    We might be obsessed with coffee, but we’re not biased when we say Starbucks nail this every year. As soon as they launch their in-store Christmas cup campaigns, they take to their socials to ask customers to send in their photos. Now, that’s social media marketing made easy.

You might think you’re ready for the big day with family and friends, but have you got your business in the Christmas spirit yet? If the answer’s no, brush up on some more of our social media marketing tips to maximise your Christmas 2021 conversions here.

PPC (Pay Per Click)

Mince pies. Gingerbread. Christmas puddings. They’re all treats we look forward to each year that really top up our festive spirit and get us in the Christmas mood. Well, PPC is the same thing around the holiday season.

Of course, as it’s pay-per-click advertising, you need a strategy so strong even Santa would fly his sleigh using it. Here’s a few tips and tricks you can take with you for your PPC strategies.

  1. Don’t be afraid to bid aggressively - As Christmas shopping hits full swing, traffic drives up.But so does competition, too. Cost-per-clicks will rise during the holiday season, so you’ll need to make sure you’re on top of your bidding.

    If you’re manually bidding, keep an eye on your search impression share. If you spot drops in your rankings, optimise your bids to boost them again. And if you’ve opted for automated, amp up the aggressiveness to maintain your positions.
  2. Keep up with your seasonal keywords - We love keywords. We wrote a whole blog about them. When it comes to PPC at Christmas time, you’ll want to make the most of your keywords.

    As you’re creating holiday-specific ads, look for seasonal opportunities. If you’re a bakery, double-down on keywords associated to Christmas baking and the kind of products you’ll be promoting.  

    Think about how you’re phrasing things, too. Play around with different words – gifts, toys, presents; Christmas, holiday, festive.

December is just one month, Christmas is just one holiday. There’s a whole year to cater for and capitalise on. Don’t get caught short by your competitors – get in touch to level up your digital marketing today!

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