How will your retail customers be preparing for the holidays this winter — and how can you reach out to them to get them into your store during the holiday shopping season? A study by Facebook about holiday shopping intentions has some useful insights.
First, Facebook found, holiday preparation is rapidly going mobile. Consumers connecting with friends and family, browsing and buying are increasingly using mobile devices to do so. In addition, social media is also becoming a bigger influence on holiday shopping purchases, the study reports. Here are five ways your store can use social media marketing to drive sales for the holidays.
Holiday Promotion Ideas for Social Media
1. Help Your Customers Celebrate on Social Media
Last year, Facebook users shared 26 percent more posts, photos and videos during the holidays than at other times of the year. In particular, 49 percent more video posts were shared. You can strike a chord with customers by celebrating with mobile-friendly Facebook posts. Share news about seasonal sales, hot products you have in-store and great gift ideas. Create holiday greeting cards and share them on social media. Be sure to include some videos in the mix, such as a salesperson demonstrating a new product or modeling clothing, a 360-degree look around your store with its seasonal decorations in place, or a video of the staff singing holiday songs.
2. Reach Out to Last-minute Shoppers
In August 2015, 55 percent of survey respondents had high hopes of finishing most of their holiday shopping before October 2015. But reality set in, and in December 2015, 54 percent of respondents admitted they were nowhere near being finished and that the bulk of their shopping would happen that month. Use social media to target these last-minute shoppers by sharing last-minute deals. You can also highlight grab-and-go gifts (such as products you’ve packaged together or pre-wrapped), tout your in-store gift-wrapping services, or suggest product ideas for common last-minute gift recipients and occasions (teachers, neighbors, mail carriers, unexpected party invitations).
3. Promote “Self-gifting”
Let’s face it: Lots of us buy presents for ourselves when we’re out holiday shopping. (I know I do!) More than half of consumers in the survey admit they do this. Use social media to remind customers to treat themselves during this busy and stressful time and make them feel less guilty about it. Post pictures of impulse buys or stress-relieving products to spark purchases. You can also offer 2-for-1 deals and encourage customers to come in with a friend.
4. Focus on Millennials
Millennials are 1.5 times more likely than other demographics to use Facebook to research gift ideas, and 3.2 times more likely to use Instagram for that purpose. Since Millennials are huge mobile users of social media, target them with social posts suggesting gift ideas at a range of price points and for a variety of recipients. Make sure those posts are mobile-friendly, since that’s where Millennials are most likely to be checking their social feeds.
5. Encourage Sharing
You can’t really ask customers to share photos of their purchases. After all, that would spoil the surprise for recipients. However, you can remind customers to check in to your store on Facebook while they’re shopping. By sharing news of where they are, they can attract their friends and family to check your store out, too. Offering some type of incentive, such as a small discount or a fancy gift bag, for checking in can help spur participation.