Black Friday Marketing Strategies: How To Plan & Be Profitable In 2023

Black Friday Marketing Strategy 2023
Reading Time: 8 minutes

In 2021, $33.9B was spent by consumers during the Black Friday Cyber Monday week, and this year, even in the mid of an economic decline, there is a lot of money up for grabs.

But, how can you have the shoppers choose you amongst other host of brands? And how would you turn peak traffic into sales this holiday? 

Here, a comprehensively laid out holiday marketing strategy can do the trick. 

With this guide you can design and promote your holiday marketing better and be lucrative!

Work On Your Strategy – Goals, Research, phases

Define BFCM Marketing Goals

Goal-setting is the primary step of creating a strategy. Determine what do you want to achieve with Black Friday Cyber Monday to lay out a better blueprint. 

Though, maximizing sales is a common objective shared by most eCommerce brands, there could be others like: 

  • Acquiring new customers
  • Stocking out inventory
  • Re-connecting with old customers

Once your goal is set, you can start brainstorming on strategies that can help you win big this holiday season. 

Give Time To Research and Prep

Reading the pre-recorded data is non-negotiable to formulate a strategy that overarches your past results. 

  • Analyze the data from your previous Black Friday campaigns to determine what worked for you and what didn’t in terms of subject lines, discount type, ad copy, creatives, etc. 

Check on what other brands related to your niche are doing, if there’s something that you can take inspiration from, and integrate into your strategy. 

  • Determine your highest-selling stocks and hard-to-sell ones as well and create a funnel to maximize sales. 
  • Make sure that your holiday campaign is a mix of micro and macro of your brand – your messaging, and conversation starter. 

Learn about what’s happening in your space including competitors, what can your brand’s take on it, why is it important, and how can you align with it.

This is essential because your people are already bombarded with emails and ads – all about holiday offers and gifting guides. 

Tying your campaign to moment marketing can make your campaign stand out and increase sales while easing out community-building efforts. 

  • Optimization is DTC’s strength. Check load time for your pages, and if inventory and dropshipping are in place. Build strategies that can offer bundles or volume discounts to increase your AOV.

Once your research is in place and you are clear about what had performed well earlier, and the changes that you need to incorporate into your BFCM this year, begin planning. 

Role Out The Holiday Marketing Campaign In Phases

For Best Results, Divide Your Holiday Marketing Campaign Into Different Stages. 

  • Structuring and segmenting your holiday promotions and product releases creatively can help you earn audience engagement and profitability. 
  • Determine ‘what’ and ‘how’ would you move your customers from one stage of the funnel to the next. Stay relevant to the holiday spirit and give your customers a “little something” to make them feel also valued, and inspired. 
  • Create interesting content to stay top-of-mind. This plays a crucial role in influencing purchase decisions. 

Think of marketing campaigns that you could run:

  • Pre Black Friday
  • During Black Friday (BF)
  • Cyber Monday (CM)
  • Christmas

Pro Tip: To build campaigns that actually perform, create 3-5 consumer funnels that can help you pre-determine consumers’ movement from one step of the model to the next. 

  • Align the production of content, ad copies, and creatives beforehand. 
  • Run trails to check what performs the best – which CTA has maximum CTR, what kind of email wins maximum open rates, and what social content inspires people to participate? etc.

Design Your Promotion & Offer

While designing your BFCM offers, keep in mind to be in line with your brand values. Do not offer aggressive discounts, because then people won’t buy from you again until prices are offered at a discount again. 

Pack your offer in a way that can move your low-selling inventory and make you profitable this holiday season. 

Black Friday to Sunday  

The best deal for Black Friday is an all-in-one offer with a high discount and a high AOV.

With a high average order value (AOV), you can afford to give a bigger discount on the product.

For e.g. if you sell a product with a base markup of 200%, you will find that you can easily offer a 40-50% discount on orders above $100. 

You can go a step further by creating new bundles where you include products that need a bit of love selling. 

This can be great for driving trials of new products you launch, or if you want to stop selling certain products and get rid of inventory. 

Cyber Monday  

Cyber Monday offers actually run for the entire week because people have time for online shopping.  

Run Tiered Promos. This is the time for – ‘The More You Spend, The More You Save!’

If your AOV is $40, you can run:

10% off on $49+

20% off on $99+

30% off on  $199+ 

Giving Tuesday  

It’s the day after Cyber Monday. You’d be surprised to see how helping a charity is not just a kind act but will also shoot up your AOV drastically. 

You can use a tool like Donate Mates to select a  cause and done to any charity of your choice.

Other important things to consider:

  • While offering discounts be specific about the shipping date. 
  • Keep your offer simple – ‘what are you selling?’ and ‘what are discounts & offers?
  • Have strategies, tools, and offers that help you in monetizing the audiences that you’ve built throughout the year. Fabletics, too,  focused on their membership exclusives. By bringing into the light Cyber Week promotion offering 80% off on everything only for their important members. 

How Can You Promote Your BFCM Offers To Drive Results?

1. Give Early Bird Discounts

You can also set up an early bird campaign that will run before Black Friday. Once someone purchases from this list, set up a discount ladder for them.

Existing customers or subscribers to this list get 5-10% more than the discount you got the first time.

For thanksgiving Thursday, thank your MVCs (most valued customers) by giving them early access to the Black Friday sale. Your subscribers, members, and others with high lifetime value (LTV). 

Make sure you personalize communication with them through emails, SMS, mobile app, social media, etc.

Moreover, with 48% of Black Friday Cyber Monday sales coming from customers who engage prior to the holiday – and, 75% of CTC clients’ revenue generated from remarketing, the value of existing audiences and loyal customers cannot be overstated.

We can take Steve Madden for an instance here. The brand placed a bonus discount across the site: 40% off for its loyal customers and 30% off for non-members.

2. Paid Advertisements

Pour traffic as much as possible into your campaigns and collect as many emails as possible.

Where? Any channel where you can get cheap traffic from. 

Who? Target your warmer prospecting audiences (1-2% LALs) to drive in new customers or retarget those who have engaged with you but haven’t purchased. 

Try to get as many new people into your funnel as you can through paid media. This will help you have tons of people to remarket to by the time it’s Black Friday.  

Design your creatives and write ad copy that communicates the offer clearly to your target audience – like details of the discount, time remaining, etc. 

How? You can do the following or something similar – 

  • September – Build the strategy around your campaigns and goals
  • October – Start scaling and prospecting from at least a month before
  • November – Refresh your creative, prospect hard, and remarket even harder over BFCM
  • December – Run gifting and shipping-cut-off campaigns, followed by post-holiday offers, and New Year preparation 

In fact, this holiday season, test some channels that are beyond the paid format of advertisements. 

  • Direct Mail
  • Push Notifications
  • Outdoor advertisement 

Influencer Marketing

In order to reach out to your target audience quicker and derive better ROI than ads – collaborate with influencers.

Social media users look upto their favorite influencers to find an inspiration to buy let’s say, gifts for the holiday season. Here, partnering with influencers can create awareness of your brand, alter brand perception, drive traffic, and sales. 

Wallmart’s #UnwrapTheDeals challenge would be a classic example here. In 2021, the multinational retail corporation rolled out a TikTok filter that uncovered different Black Friday deals. Partnering with a diverse group of creators helped the challenge win more than 6 Billion views. 

#UnwrapTheDeal Black Friday Campaign

If you are aiming to launch a product or increase awareness of an existing product, conducting an event and marketing it via influencers, can be a great way to get people involved. 

Amazon Fire TV, for example, collaborated with creators and influencers to promote a five-day #FireTVPopUp event for BFCM. 

The aim was to increase awareness of Amazon Fire TV and its accessories as great gifting options for the holiday season. They were able to drive foot traffic to the event and participation in their on-site challenges and giveaways.  

User-Generated Content(UGC) Marketing

Turning users into marketers, can be the best strategy to build trust, influence purchase decisions and multiply revenue this holiday season. 

Irrespective of your target demographic, user-generated content on social and digital platforms can establish brand identity and authenticity via social proof. 

You can run hashtag campaigns/contests to announce your BFCM deals and inspire audiences to participate by offering them exciting gifts. 

BLack Friday Marketing Strategy - User-generated content

Further, repurposing visual UGC of your on-sale products during Black Friday in galleries across your site, on social media, in ads, or sent as email and SMS – can showcase how your product looks like in real-life to potential customers and help them make confident purchases. 

Many DTC brands have dedicated pages narrating customer stories – testimonials, how-to videos, product visuals, etc., on their online store 

Solution like Tagshop help in collecting and curating all your social content including your Branded and User-Generated Content. 

You can also repurpose the content on your website, emails, and ads to build social proof and earn the trust of your prospects. 

Build Email Lists

On an average, email subscribers spend 138% more than non-subscribers. Hence, an important strategy to prioritize today is establishing a strong audience base. Provided, your list of subscribers is long – chances of building revenue in the holiday season increases. 

Few ideas that can help:

  • Create an appealing eCommerce pop-up – showcasing exciting offers to the BFCM shoppers upon subscribing. However, while offering discounts, remember to not go below 20%. 
  • Design shopping quizzes. Many DTC brands are leveraging this tactic to gain not only email data, but also to establish anticipation in consumers for a product, and to use the procured data for future remarketing. 
  • Asking for email addresses in the buyer’s purchase flow.

BFCM Key Email Strategies!

  • From your past years’ holiday emails, analyze – the subject lines, CTAs, email template, and content. Know which email and what part of it has had the most impact.
  • Run across your competitors’ emails – content, time, offers, and frequency of the emails sent. 
  • Your subscribers’ mailboxes are going to be flooded with other brands’ offers and discounts too, make sure your subject line excites them the most and can drive an optimum open rate. 
  • Differentiate your email marketing flow for – Thursday, Black Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Cyber Monday, & Giving Tuesday.
  • Lastly, create a post-purchase sequence as part of your email marketing as this could be your last chance to increase repeat purchases, LTV or Lifetime Value, and retention rate of your holiday shoppers.

Get Your Website & Mobile App Ready 

Make your landing pages and mobile app ready for the holiday season. Shoppers’ intent to make purchases is higher at this point. Double-check your consumer journey:

  • There are products to upsell on the pages
  • If there is a product up/cross-sell in the cart?
  • The shopper is getting prompted to subscribe in the cart.

In addition to this,

  • Make sure your loading time is under 1 second. 
  • Eliminate any sort of friction from the cart
  • Run server performance maintenance
  • Create copies and creatives that inspire shoppers to make a purchase
  • Create content for push notifications

Over To You

With the holiday season fast approaching, we are getting closer and closer to the busiest shopping period of the year.

This means that your efforts to market your business and products over the coming weeks will be pivotal in determining your success in the coming months.

Planning your Black Friday marketing campaign might seem a little overwhelming – but, with your research and strategies in place, you can escalate your results from BFCM. 

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