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BizReport : Advertising : December 05, 2014

Top tips to maximize holiday ad budgets

Holiday ad campaigns are in full swing, but there is still time to adjust and optimize for great impact. That's the word from one expert who says cross promotion could be very important for 2014 holiday revenue.

by Kristina Knight

Kristina: Now that we're through the Thanksgiving Weekend hump, what trends are you seeing in the ad space for Q4?

Andy Shore, Content and Social Networking Manager, Benchmark Email: Cross promotional marketing with mobile apps. Also, not necessarily a trend, but something to be aware of is the fact that shoppers are smarter than ever before. They're being marketed to in their inbox, on social media ... everywhere. So, you need to find a way to set yourself apart. To prove your value to them.

Kristina: How can brands better manage their holiday ad budgets?

Andy: Go back and look at what worked and what hasn't at the past. Don't keep beating a dead horse. Review why specific tactics were successful. How can you replicate that success again this year. Is there new technology available that may let you improve upon your plan.

Also, pay attention to what your competitors are doing. Other companies that you admire as well. See what is working for them and how you can do that for your own business.

Kristina: Where should brands focus those holiday budgets?

Andy: If somehow, you're still in the direct mailing game, maybe it's time to take things online. The garbage can next to my building's mail boxes that is full of direct mailing campaigns agrees.

It's time to take things online and make it all mobile friendly. Your email campaigns need to be responsive. Then, the landing pages on your website that the emails direct subscriber to also need to be mobile friendly. It all needs to be easy to navigate from the screen of a smartphone. We can all be impulsive holiday shoppers. Make sure you're not missing out on sales, because your content isn't mobile friendly. You never know if something else will catch their attention before a potential customer makes it back to your email or website.

Kristina: How important is it for brands to be flexible so they can capitalize on social media trending topics?

Andy: To an extent, it is important. The best example I like to give is Oreo's campaign a couple years ago during the Super Bowl blackout. They had their social media team throw up a graphic showing that you could still dunk in the dark. It has more than 15k retweets. However, that worked because they already have a massive social media following. Those real-time marketing situations are like capturing lightening in a bottle. You need to be tasteful, fast and clever. You can be all of those things, and still not have the audience to see it, retweet and share it.

I'm certainly not saying don't do it. Many companies use it effectively. I've sure been known to hop in on a Twitter conversation or two using a TV show hashtag. However, this isn't a basket I'd put all my eggs in.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: 2014 holiday advertising tips, advertising, Benchmark Email, ecommerce

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