Black Friday: How Would You Use Your Advertising Dollars?
By: Kari Hearn
The most competitive day of the year is approaching: Black Friday. It is the beginning of the most profitable season for retailers. Because of this, many retailers are using traditional media as well as newer media strategies and tactics to get the most of this day and holiday season. Retailers have already started earlier this month with the usual promotions such as free shipping and layaway. Also on Thanksgiving, expect to see a plethora of inserts showcasing the best deals like a 50” TV for $500 in your newspaper. (Just make sure you are one of the first 10 people to get there, of course.)
In addition, this year retailers are using new and innovative communication strategies to reach their consumers. Wal-Mart, for example is asking consumers on their website to opt-in to receive special emails regarding the Black Friday deals. This is a win-win for Wal-Mart, not only are they collecting email addresses for possible future initiatives, but also to get their Black Friday deals to the consumer before he or she has planned their night and/or morning.
Also, many retailers are ramping up their Paid Search campaign. Performetrics has been tracking the paid search metrics and Paid Search spend is up 88% vs. 2010 (http://blog.performics.com/Ryan Hornacek, Analyst). More consumers are going to the internet for “sneak peaks” or “cheat sheets” of the deals that used to not be revealed until the last minute.
However, every consumer will not have to get a “sneak peak” for all retailers. Some retailers are using social media strategies to entice consumers. Best Buy, for example, is displaying deals and discounts on their Twitter and Facebook page providing multiple updates to keep the consumer engaged and informed, leading up to Black Friday
With so many different options and the endless possibilities a retailer/business can get caught up in trying to be everywhere and take a chance on every option available. The key is to have a focused strategy and have a purpose for every media outlet used. Outlets that are used without a focus strategy are both wasted time and wasted dollars.