It’s impossible to overstate the importance of 4th Quarter sales for retailers, restaurants, and many other small businesses or multi-location businesses. While operations and other parts of your organization have had the rest of the year mapped out since last year, your digital marketing activities may not even be finalized for back-to-school promotions, let alone holiday shopping.
In the past, too many marketers have waited until the summer was over to gear up for the holidays. But now that’s too late. It’s now Christmas in July or at least planning your digital marketing tactics for Christmas during July.
Also, is 2018 the year your big idea explodes? If next year is your “hockey stick year,” then Q4 better be solid. To get started, here are three questions to ask yourself during July:
1. What are you going to do now to have a great Q4?
What will compel customers to pay you a visit and make a purchase? Do you have a killer promotion ready to roll?
2. How are you getting people into your stores or onto your website?
Facebook (organic) posts? Forget it. Tweets? Unless your name is Donald, forget it.
You’ve got to hit large numbers of people or smaller numbers of the right people using:
- Facebook ads
- Pay Per Click ads
- Display ads
Blog posts and other forms of content marketing are great for awareness and long term branding, but you need to guarantee traffic soon. Find what advertising and promotions work now and pour some fuel on it. And when I say fuel, I mean ad dollars.
3. Are the customers you had last year coming back, or are they buying from Amazon?
This one is very important for retailers – all boutique shops, specialty stores, chains, or franchises. We think we have a loyal base, so why would they not come back in this year
I’ll tell you why … there are an estimated 80 million Amazon Prime customers. Many of your customers are part of that. Use digital ads to reach them and give them a reason to get off their big fat lazy Amazon and come into your store!