The biggest online shopping weekend of the year is here. We're of course talking about Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which will take place on November 29 and December 2.
If you’re unaware, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are famous for huge deals and steep discounts. While they are North American traditions, the internet and social media have allowed the rest of the world to join in and they’re becoming key times for all online retailers globally. In 2017, from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday, more than 130 million people worldwide joined the conversation on Facebook and Instagram. It’s likely with the growth of Marketplace, this year will have some interesting results.
But whether you’re going to leverage your Facebook Shop or your website, here are some key tips and tricks to leverage it to your brand’s advantage:
1. Start earlier and end later
Most Sales start on Black Friday and end on midnight on Cyber Monday. Instead, get ahead of the pack, and start earlier and end later. You can even offer it to your social media audience the ‘exclusive’ heads-up, making them feel valued.
Swedish clothing brand, and part of the H&M group, ARKET are again running a full "Colour Week" with different offers for each day. This flash sale approach extends the Black Friday frenzy while allowing them to focus on specific offers in parts of the range that perhaps have stock to clear.
2. Create gift guides
Gift guides are a great way to promote your Black Friday sales and showcase your products. Plus they can continue to be used into the holidays.
3. Run limited sales to create urgency
During Black Friday, urgency is of the essence. To maintain a constant stream of traffic, offer changing and limited deals to keep things interesting.
Being constantly on sale is a schoolboy error for e-commerce brands. By running unlimited offers or promotions too often to a broad customer segment, you end up reducing the incentive of reductions at the time of year when it's most competitive.
Amazon take this to the extreme with their "Lightening Deals" which each last for a few hours and have limited availability. They have dedicated an entire section of their site to creating urgency.
4. Ensure you're mobile & e-commerce integrated on social
When you’re trying to drive people to purchase on your website from social media, you know that the majority of people will be on their phones. Ensure your website works seamlessly on mobile and with the platform.
If you are running an e-commerce site then you should first ensure that your product catalogue is added to your social media pages so that products can be tagged and served to website visitors in remarketing ads.
Don't forget to also prepare your Black Friday promotions in dimensions for Instagram / Facebook stories content, as this placement will give you great bang for your buck when it comes to organic reach.
5. Be innovative with video content
According to Facebook research, nearly 1 in 3 mobile shoppers surveyed in the US said that video is the best medium for discovering new products. Keep that in mind when generating content that promotes your products.
Video also gives your content higher engagement and reach in multiple formats, so create for stories, newsfeed and even think about going live!
Engage influencers to create and post content that helps audiences discover cool products like yours. Users can even purchase your products through Shoppable feed posts without ever leaving Instagram.
Product haul videos like this one are a relatively new concept, but can attract traffic on social and through organic search too.
Black Friday sales are a great opportunity for organic search traffic in your niche. To attract those opportunistic Google searches think about keywords related to your industry and compile a listicle of offers including your own.
Searches such as "Black Friday men's fashion" can help to drive potential customers to your site, and while you may not be able to compete with the industry leaders for the short tail terms, a piece of well timed video content can grab a chunk of that traffic at the right time of year.
6. Make the most of hashtags
Ensure you’re on the #BlackFriday and #CyberMonday bandwagon. This may seem straight forward but don't forget that users are searching for deals on social too!
Plus with this hashtag used over 10 million times, you'll surely pick up some new fans and followers in the process.
7. Integrate your newsletter marketing & social media
Saving the best to last, make sure you tie together your social media and newsletter campaigns!
The Cyber Weekend is even more significant for newsletter marketing than it is for social media! Newsletters are renowned for their high conversion rates, due to a very focussed audience that responds extremely well to rewards and special offers.
Your fans will be checking their inbox for deals so make sure you are pushing your fans on social to sign up for your newsletter. Offering exclusives to subscribers at this time of the year can be a great way to build your mailing list.
Software products do this fantastically well, as they can offer valuable discount incentives due to the unlimited nature of the product. However it's essential to value your newsletter subscribers, as they are likely to be your most targeted marketing channel. Make sure your offer is juicy enough to make them feel rewarded, and you'll reap the benefits through their loyalty.
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