The holidays are crunch time. For some retailers, the holiday season can represent as much as 30 percent of annual sales. However, no matter how much business booms, there’s always a slow down once people start their healthy New Year’s resolutions and post-holiday budgeting.
That’s why right now is the most critical time to think about the marketing you’ll do after the holidays. This is the best time to collect customer contact information that will fuel marketing programs when the holiday crush turns into the new year hush.
Of course this is also the time extra projects are least likely to get done. We get it, you’re crazy busy. But it can make a huge difference in the next year’s sales if you take a little bit of time to put together a plan to make the most of the crowds you’ll be serving before the close of the year.
Build a list and check it twice
Thanks to holiday office parties, Black Friday crowds and a host of other seasonal shindigs, businesses will serve lots of new customers during the next couple months.
But, collecting contact info is hard, especially when you’re busy. You have to convince people to share their info, then you have to get it into some system of record. If you use traditional methods, like comment cards, it might be weeks before the contacts are entered.
A good first step is to automate contact collection. You want something that is always on, that anyone can connect to.
WiFi marketing is a great solution for the holidays. It offers guests WiFi in exchange for basic contact information. Just about every customer will have a smartphone on them, and since it’s the holidays, they’ll be Instagramming and Tweeting their ugly Christmas sweaters and meals with abandon. So why not give the gift of data savings?
Deliver your message, automatically
During the holidays, there are endless tasks to complete to make sure customers are having a good time. Decorations have to be hung, employee schedules have to be written, food has to be cooked, drinks need to be poured. Getting emails out to new customers tends to slide down the list of priorities as holiday pressure builds.
WiFi marketing allows messages to be sent automatically in response to customer visits. This is useful for people who are already too busy. For example, welcome messages can be sent out to first-time customers a day after they come in. Holiday offers or event notifications can be sent without having to think about them.
Just getting a simple welcome email to a first-time customer or an offer to enjoy a free cocktail on a birthday can bolster a new relationship and encourage a return visit. This is huge because return customers are among the most valuable. According to BIA Advisory Services, “61% of SMBs report that more than half of their revenue comes from repeat customers, rather than new business.”
Reach your most loyal customers
Customer loyalty programs can have a nice impact on your bottom line because they encourage customer retention. According to Bain & Co., “A five percent increase in customer retention can increase a company’s profitability by 75%.” However, many businesses struggle with getting sign-ups for loyalty programs. Customers either don’t know about them or the benefits of joining aren’t clear. WiFi marketing provides another avenue for communicating the value of signing up.
Businesses can announce their loyalty and rewards programs on the landing page where customers sign up. Then, they can follow up with emails. Since these recipients have already visited at least once, they are primed to join. The same process can be used to promote holiday gift card sales, special events and catering services.
Make marketing part of your holiday tradition
To keep the post-holiday sales dip to a minimum, businesses need to reach the crowds coming in now. The challenge is finding the time to take on this extra work while nearly everyone is deep in the weeds.
WiFi marketing can be your best marketing holiday helper. You don’t have to train it and it doesn’t need time off. Setting it up is fast and there’s almost nothing to learn. If you can plug a router in and write an email, you’re basically set.