According to Forbes, last year, Black Friday brought in 6.2 billion dollars in online sales, a growth of 23.6% year over year.
Once again, Black Friday wins the “biggest shopping event of the year” award, and this year will be no exception. However, in the past few years, Black Friday has become more than just a full day of big discounts. It’s become a month-long sale, pushing consumers to buy all of their holiday gifts, and more expensive items such as electronics or furniture, in November.
So with just a few weeks left until the busiest time of year, we’ve looked into why consumer behaviour is changing, and what email strategies you can employ to adapt to new spending habits.
Why Black Friday shopping behaviour is changing
Both experience and research demonstrate that almost everyone loves getting a bargain.
Let’s face it, if you want something and know that it will be reduced in price in November, you’re more likely to wait and buy it at a discounted price than buy it immediately, full price. Of course, this might not apply to everyone, but research shows a shift in shopping behaviour and spending habits as people now wait to buy bigger items such as furniture, toys, TVs, phones, tablets and other holiday gifts at Black Friday due to discounts being much bigger than during the rest of the year.
You’ll find toys and electronics at the top of ‘Black Friday’s most popular items’ list. According to IMRG, in the last couple of months, the electronics industry has seen back-to-back declining growth (-17.7% on average). In fact, interestingly, the last positive growth was seen in November 2018 — notably Black Friday month.
Consumer behaviour is slowly starting to change, and experts are starting to wonder if the sector is now so disrupted by the big discount event that shoppers withhold the purchase of large ticket items to just one month of the year.
As many industries are starting to face this issue, it seems like the problem is getting bigger every year. This could affect many retail sectors if not addressed, so to guarantee all-year-round conversions, we asked Hawke Media to help us compile a set of strategies, tips and tactics to help you combat slow growth after Black Friday and the holidays.
How to make the most out of email marketing, all year long
Hawke Media places a heavy emphasis on Black Friday and Cyber Monday for their clients, but they also don’t want them to only thrive one month and falter all of the other months of the year. That’s why Hawke Media marketing gurus implement strategies that will increase success on campaigns — and therefore profit margins as well — throughout the year, not just during the busiest time of year. Email marketing plays a huge role in year-round brand success — here’s how you can use it to climb to the top of your revenue goals, as best demonstrated by Hawke Media client ACME Electronics.
ACME Electronics is an electronics brand, best known for its high-end audio systems and speakers that are so affordably priced they’ve never had to run a sale. The company manufactures all of its own products in the U.S. and puts a particular emphasis on customer service. These are just a few of the reasons why they’ve built a robust and loyal following among consumers, despite being a lesser-known company in an industry of big-name competitors.
There was one missing piece to the puzzle: ACME Electronics wasn’t seeing the revenue growth one might expect with such a strong customer base. With Hawke Media’s help, the brand developed and executed a plan to solve the puzzle. The email marketing strategy they built is a great email model for any company looking to grow their revenue after Black Friday’s sales growth.
The email marketing campaign’s aim was to help them develop a brand voice. Hawke Media found out what made them unique and who their target demographic was to improve messaging around value props to expand that demographic and acquire new customers.
First and foremost, it was essential to start by activating and growing a previously unused email list with an automated nurture and retention email series. Next, ACME Electronics created weekly email campaigns with rich, informative, and entertaining content. If your brand doesn’t have an email list, it’s extremely valuable to create one in order to utilise weekly email campaigns and nurture strategies.
ACME Electronics’ email list was sizeable prior to engaging with Hawke Media, but they had never taken advantage of it. In conjunction with the email plan, they worked on their Facebook advertising, which increased web traffic to the email list. Having an advertising strategy can be very beneficial for growing your email list quickly, and showcasing reviews in your advertising can help you build trust earlier in the funnel.
In terms of advertising strategy, ACME Electronics ran Facebook advertising campaigns that incorporated new messaging, in order to better demonstrate the value that customers get for such a high-quality product at their price point. In doing so, they gave some value beyond their typical customer demographic, which is one way to expand on your current demographic reach.
In addition, Hawke Media’s Facebook advertising experts developed a unique series of 30, 60, and 90-day retargeting campaigns, testing different value props. Three months in, ACME Electronics was earning a whopping 621 percent return on advertising spend, with cost per acquisition steadily decreasing 83 percent in two months.
As ACME Electronics activated the list, it grew rapidly. They then ran automated nurture and retention campaigns, and developed juicy weekly emails that really engaged the audience, open rates and click-through rates shot up roughly three times the industry standard. Within three months, the email sends were consistently generating a return on investment of approximately 500 percent.
ACME Electronics’ email marketing plan ensured sales growth all-year-round, and not just during the holiday season.
To sum up…
These are the 4 easy steps you can take to rock your email marketing plan to boost your sales in the months of declining growth post Black Friday:
Start by building strong email lists
Activate those email lists
Don’t forget to grow the email list via Facebook advertising, which means:
Creating a variety of messaging that communicates your customer value to expand your reach beyond your typical demographic
Developing a series of varied-length retargeting campaigns that test different value props
Finally, developing email content that will not only inform but also entertain your audience and showcase social proof to boost credibility and reduce consumer doubt.
If you’d like to learn more about Hawke Media, check out their website. Alternatively, if you’d like to find out more about the power of social proof and learn how online reviews can have a positive impact on your bottom line all-year-round, download a free copy of our newest consumer research below.