The holidays are right around the corner, bringing with them two of the most important days of the year for retailers: Black Friday and Cyber Monday. To stay top-of-mind with consumers, brands large and small will be executing on marketing campaigns across email, social media, and direct mail.
Your direct mail strategy may be the most important of all during the holiday season. Direct mail is more personal than email or social -it has a much longer lifespan and it’s proven to be more meaningful to consumers. If you’re looking to take your direct mail campaign to the next level this holiday season, here are 8 ways to use direct mail for Black Friday and Cyber Monday:
1. Be precise about your timing.
The holidays are a busy time for consumers. People are juggling holiday parties, family, travel, shopping, and more. You’ll need to send friendly reminders early and often to make an impression on consumers during this hectic season. Make sure to schedule a direct mail campaign to arrive a few days to a week before your sales events on Black Friday and Cyber Monday to stay fresh in customers’ minds.
2. Make an impact with targeting and personalization.
Using data to target and segment your direct mailing list will help you achieve the best results for Black Friday and Cyber Monday campaigns. For example, try targeting customers who shopped with you recently with offers on products based on their latest purchase. Additionally, you can personalize mailings based on your customers’ shopping preferences. One way to do this is to share Cyber Monday deals specifically with customers who prefer to shop online, while targeting customers who frequently shop in-store with Black Friday mailings.
In the example below, Delta uses a customer’s home airport and traveling habits to provide a personalized Black Friday offer.
3. Leverage creative design to stand out.
While consumers’ mailboxes aren’t nearly as crowded as their inboxes, it can still be a challenge to stand out. By individualizing your direct mail campaigns with unique and creative design, you’ll be more likely to make a memorable impression. Try playing with unusual shapes for postcards and envelopes; have fun with color and embrace the unexpected to make an impact. A few best practices include:
- Highlight your main offer using a large font, but copy that is short and sweet.
- Use color and memorable imagery to stand out and include your logo.
- Avoid confusing recipients by trying to say too much in one postcard — such as offering two deals on the same card.
For some inspiration, take a look at our blog post: 4 Steps to Perfect Postcard Sales.
4. Send out a "Save the Date."
One creative way you could help customers remember to shop with you on Black Friday and Cyber Monday is to send out a "Save the Date" campaign. Unlike an email, print can act as a physical reminder for customers. You could even send customers a holiday-themed postcard that they’ll want to hang on the fridge as a visible reminder.
5. Share a sneak peak with catalogs.
Direct-mail catalogs are a proven holiday-marketing best practice for many retailers. Catalogs are an impactful way to highlight your upcoming Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales. Customers often visit multiple stores throughout both days. By showing them what products you’ll have on sale, they’ll be more likely to prioritize shopping with you. In 2015, on Black Friday, Tommy John sent a postcard with a preview of the clothing going for sale. They saw a huge lift in their Black Friday sales as a result of the postcard.
6. Invite VIP customers to RSVP.
On Black Friday, millions of people all over the U.S. lineup to be the first inside their chosen store. Why not invite your best customers to skip the line by offering them VIP access if they RSVP for your Black Friday event? Sharing an exclusive invite with your top 50 to 100 customers so they can skip the line is a great way to show your best customers how much you appreciate their loyalty.
7. Spread cheer with holiday greeting cards.
With a direct mail campaign, you can be first in sending your customers a holiday greeting card to celebrate the season. So much of the communications we have with customers is transactional. It’s refreshing to send customers a personal message wishing them a happy holiday and thanking them for their business. Insert a subtle call to action for Black Friday by adding a simple sign off, like "P.S. We hope to see you on November 25th for our Black Friday sale."
8. Follow-up to raise awareness.
Your direct mail campaign should be a part of your larger marketing campaign for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Don’t make the mistake of isolating your marketing channels, instead leverage ways to have them work together. For example, you can improve conversions by using email to follow-up with similar creative and messaging that they received over direct mail. This way you’re making a memorable impact across all channels.
Direct mail marketing is a crucial part of any Black Friday and Cyber Monday marketing campaign. As customers juggle the demands of the holidays, you’ll need both print and digital strategies to work together and raise awareness for your sales events. Apply these 8 best practices to end the year with a bang.