Holiday Season Lead Generation Ideas for Small and Local Businesses
Holiday Season is one of those times of the Year when you as a Business Owner have an upper edge; the customer is in the mood to spend money! What can you do to take this rare opportunity and generate more sales? Of course we know it. Running holiday promotions and holiday discount deals are the most common methods. However, many businesses, specially the small and local businesses, still fail to generate outstanding sales during holiday season. The only ones that do generate good sales are the ones that have already built some reputation over the years and are able to take advantage of repeat business during holidays.
In this series of articles we will discuss some of the things that small and local businesses can do to generate more leads during holiday season and thereby increase their probability of generating more sales. Since every business is unique we can’t come up with a “one size fits all” solution. So in this article, I will cover some of the basic and common tactics and ideas that would apply to most (if not all) businesses, and in the next few articles I will touch upon specific businesses. I will try to cover as many local businesses as I can. If you can’t find ideas that are relevant to your business, please do write back and I’ll try to cover them!
Start Your Holiday Promotion At the Right Time
Start too late and you’d probably have very less time for the information to spread. Many people would have already bought what they were looking for. Start too early and either most people will forget about the deal (remember many people wait until the end to do their shopping), or you’ll fall into the risk of your competitors copying your promotion idea! Generally a good time to start a holiday promotion is one month before holidays. This gives the campaign enough time to spread and at the same time gives people just enough time to take advantage of the promotion.
Schedule a New Product Launch during Holiday Season
Many businesses launch products on their predefined time lines that sometimes don’t match with key holiday dates such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. And when the holiday season comes, the only approach they have is to reduce the price of their existing products. That is not the smartest of the moves.
Remember that customers are in the mood to spend. You should leverage this opportunity to release new products and if possible at bare bones discount price. Keep in mind that during holiday season people are in the mood to buy gifts, they want to buy something that’s new and has just arrived at the stores; and many are willing to pay a premium for that one gift that has just hit the market. Why not leverage this rare opportunity and introduce new products instead of reducing price of the old ones?
Give Special Deal to your Existing Customers
This one just makes sense. Getting repeat business from your existing customers is easiest during holiday season. If they are already happy with you, then it’s even more easy! All you have to do is come up with some deal that would make sense for your customer and offer them during holiday season.
This could be a contract renewal with some new added features for free for first three months, 5% extra shipment on the next order, free shipping, or anything that you can do to get repeat business.
Find Your Niche and Remain Focused
Even though there are more people ready to spend money during holidays, there is still more competition. Just like you, your competitors are going to try every single bit to attract attention. The fact is that in some cases your competition is going to outbid you and in some cases you are going to outbid your competition. The best thing to do in this case is to carefully identify your niche and remain focused. For example, you could be selling custom design apparel and as part of this holiday season, you might want to focus on what would work best in your favor instead of running promotions all across the board. For instance, if you have a new line of children clothing ready to hit the shops by around Christmas, then you should focus on running a promotion just for that. The idea is to carefully evaluate what type of promotion you’ll be able to run most successfully and keep focused on that. This will help you limit your competition and get the maximum out of your promotion.
Get Your Customers Involved at the right time and Reward Them for referrals
Holiday season is one of the best time to get new business based on referrals from existing customers. Again, for the same reason – there are many deals going on and customers are in the mood to spend. Your existing customers are the best sales team you can have. They not only pay for your product, they evaluate it for you, give you feedback and if rewarded appropriately they can bring lot of new business to you! However the trick is to get them involved early in the game. Discuss upcoming promotions with your key customers and get them involved. Give them enough time to promote your holiday deal and reward them nicely for their efforts.
So here are five basic things you can do irrespective of what kind of business you are in and generate more leads and sales during holiday season than you had been doing so far! In the next post I will pick up one local business and discuss ideas of how to grow sales during holidays. If you have some business in mind that you’d like to discuss please feel free to let me know!
October 26, 2011 at 12:29 am