Whilst Black Friday is originally an American concept, it has recently been adopted by leading European e-retailers within the past three to four years. Following Thanksgiving, Black Friday kick-starts the official sales for the Christmas holiday season and marks a key date in retail calendars. Here are our tips to boost your communications strategy to your customer base and maximize the power of purchasing this Black Friday. The countdown has already begun!
Black Friday Challenges
How do online merchants tackle this giant business challenge? They compete against other merchants by offering increasingly aggressive promotions and discounts. In the USA, Black Friday is a period of extreme sales which kicks off on the Friday following Thanksgiving and finishes the following Monday (also known as Cyber Monday). In Europe, Black Friday commonly refers to a period of several days of promotional sales. Price wars go through the roof and special offers last a whole week, sometimes even a month (take Amazon.com for example).
Black Friday has become the symbol for the start of holiday sales period. Customers can take advantage of the biggest deals of the year from online merchants competing against one another to provide the lowest possible price.
E-retailers cannot afford to miss Black Friday because:
- it’s a chance to offload sizeable volumes of products, including overstocked or older products
- it sets a great pace for holiday sales and gets the season off to a flying start.
E-retailers prepare their ecommerce stores for the rush of online visitors. Many consumers plan ahead and already know which items they want to purchase. Others will be on the lookout for offers online, weighing them up and then parting with their cash. This is a huge challenge for your ecommerce store and you have to pass with flying colors.
Tailor your communications strategy to thrive this Black Friday
Typically, e-retailers use Black Friday to target their entire customer base. They use full base campaigns to send offers and information about sales and discounts to everyone within one standard email. For one weekend (or week), policies regarding commercial pressure, customer fatigue and disengagement are irrelevant. E-Retailers have one aim: ensuring all of their offers are as visible as they can possibly be.
From the customer’s perspective, it’s overwhelming. Very quickly their inbox gets filled up with mass emails, updates and other offers. Customers will then pick out the most relevant emails from this flood and the others will remain unread.
So, how do you stand out?
With a predictive marketing solution based on artificial intelligence algorithms. This technology allows you to identify and select the perfect targets. You can then send individual emails for each of the offers you choose. If you target your campaigns better by sending more relevant content, you can ensure that your emails will win out (and be read!) on Black Friday.
The following is the Black Friday strategy you’ll want to put in place:
- start by launching your full base email campaign to announce your Black Friday deals to all of your customers, just like any other year.
- Follow this by sending additional targeted emails, product by product, telling each member about offers relevant to them. This way, you are still contacting your entire database, but you are only sending relevant offers to the right customers.
This strategy helps you maximize your RPM (revenue per thousand emails sent) from each email and surpass the revenue you would have generated by only sending one email with the same content to everyone.
Black Friday is the ideal time to exceed your pressure policies because consumers expect to be bombarded by offers. So don’t limit yourself to product groups. Send all of the offers that you want to highlight, being safe in the knowledge that you’ll only be targeting the most receptive customers. Your reward? First, your customers will be grateful that you’ve let them know about products they’re interested in (and not just the latest “popular” products). And second, you’re less likely to run out of stock because you’re promoting the full width of your product catalog.
Now it’s over to you marketers’ – start the holiday season off with a bang!
Need more information on how to implement your own targeting strategy during Black Friday? Please contact our Customer Success team at firstname.lastname@example.org.