Engagement levels with email marketing peak during the holidays. Readers are scouring their inboxes trying to find the best deals and discounts they can. Ecommerce brands dominate in the months leading up to the new year. B2B businesses often mistakenly assume that this makes the holiday season a period to unwind and rest up.
Well, we’re here to tell you that’s not the case.
Incorporating seasonal marketing into your marketing strategy will help you end the year on a high. Keep reading to discover our top tips and sales-generating campaigns for B2B brands during the holiday season.
Top tips to drive B2B sales during the holidays
1. Be prepared
The holidays come and go faster than you think. You must have your campaigns planned in advance to maximize your potential profits.
What’s your objective? Who are you targeting? When will you send your email marketing? Do you have everything you need in place? This includes your lead capturing tools, lead scoring models, and system integrations.
As you’re planning your holiday content you should be thinking about all this and looking at insights from last year’s campaigns. Getting a clear idea about what does and doesn’t work with your audience will help you create lead-generating campaigns.
2. Lead with relevancy
Relevant content is necessary year-round, but, during the holidays, you have new opportunities to win over new customers, earn trust, and strengthen relationships. That’s why relevancy is essential.
Segmenting your audience will ensure you’re targeting the right prospect with the right message. One-size-fits-all email marketing no longer plays a role in your day-to-day marketing. Customers want to be treated as individuals. If you have their data, they expect you to use it to their benefit.
Around the holidays you need to ensure that your messaging reflects the region and culture of the recipient. You don’t want to be sending clients in Australia content about wrapping up and cold nights at the peak of summer.
As well as segmentation, personalization is a fantastic way to drive relevancy and connect with your email recipients.
Personalized marketing is 26% more likely to be opened and generates six times higher transaction rates. Really, what we should be asking is ‘why aren’t you already personalizing’? Personalized subject lines and CTAs generate more engagement and enable you to make your holiday marketing feel a little more special.
4. ‘Use it or lose it’ budgets
As the year draws to an end, many B2B marketing teams will be left with a ‘use it or lose it’ budget. That is unspent funds from your annual budget that will be inaccessible when next year’s budget comes into effect.
Rather than letting money slip through your fingers why not experiment with new channels or campaigns. Retargeting ads and SMS are great channels to adopt during this season as inboxes are often flooded with sale messages.
Holiday marketing campaigns for B2B brands
1. Give thanks
Going in for the hard sell over the holidays doesn’t suit every brand. There’s never a bad time to show some gratitude to your prospects and clients.
Thanksgiving is the holiday that kicks the season off, so incorporating it into your marketing will help you score big points with your clients. Honesty and sincerity go a long way with your audience. Lead scoring can be used to identify hot and cold leads and help you reach segments with targeted messages of thanks. By offering a free ebook or a feature upgrade depending on their lead score can help your clients feel valued.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday aren’t only for ecommerce brands and it doesn’t have to be all about big discounts.
Running alternative promotions on the day, hosting events, or creating a social media competition are great ways to entice audiences without slashing prices. The electronics brand, Apple is a fantastic example of how a brand can utilize the shopping mindset without discounting products or services.
3. Holiday-themed content
The holidays are a great time to get creative with your marketing. Holiday-themed content around the 12 Days of Christmas or Advent can help build anticipation amongst your audience.
Competitions and exclusive giveaways can keep clients and prospects engaged without you having to cut prices. Holiday-themed blogs, guides, and email design are simple ways you can keep the seasonal celebration going and sustain interest for longer.
Remember, the holidays are supposed to be fun, chilled, and relaxing (at least in theory) so don’t feel pressure to be too serious with this content.
4. Get personal
The holidays are the perfect time to show the human side of your company. Many B2B sales and relationships are built on personal connections between your clients and your employees.
Personalizing holiday greetings from your CEO or using customer data to create a unique year in review helps make customers feel valued by your business. As the year draws to a close, clients will be starting to think about renewing contracts or putting new jobs out to tender.
By putting data to use to create one-to-one experiences for the reader, they’re more likely to turn to you as a trustworthy and customer-centric business.
5. Giving back
Another great way to connect with your marketing database is by promoting your charitable activities.
Sponsoring charities, promoting your year-long fundraising activities, or running special holiday-themed campaigns for your chosen charities help a great cause and drive awareness in your brand.
As they say, the holidays are a time for giving, so demonstrating your brand’s humanity through philanthropic activities is a great way to engage clients and prospects. Using social media as well as email in this campaign will encourage your audience to share the message of your works.
When customers know that they’re making a positive impact on society simply by doing business with you, they’ll be more inclined to stay with you for the long term.
6. New year, new resolutions
Finally, our last campaign recommendation centers on the new year. As 2021 draws to a close, businesses will be preparing for the year to come. Running a campaign based on how you can help customers reach and exceed their goals will help set them up just right.
Similarly, outlining your roadmap for the next year at this point will help get readers excited about doing business with you throughout the year. The trick here is to outline the benefits you will be able to bring to their business thanks to your new developments.