How To Make Season Clients Year-Round Buyers
Sales will start booming for many businesses during the holidays. With Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the busiest holiday of the year (Christmas) approaching, it’s becoming a crazy and unusual time of year. Shoppers buy busloads of stuff without giving any attention to your brand, they become just seasonal clients.
Seasonal clients are different than your year-round ones–holiday shoppers have different motives. They go to your website because they saw a seasonal promotion ad. You have what they need at that moment and they’ll purchase from you and move on.
It’s easy to get excited about the increase in sales during the holidays, but remember that these numbers will slow down as fast as they flooded in. That holiday spike won’t be sustainable if holiday customers don’t recognize or remember your brand later on.
Smart companies have strategies in place to encourage continued success and recognition with new customers. Because these shoppers tend to breeze right over your brand and have little to no interest in diving any deeper, you have to later encourage brand recognition after their first purchase. Increase the incentive for buyers to come and boost your year-long customer lifetime value.
Do you have a seasonal marketing strategy already in place for retaining these impulse customers when the slow season rolls back around? Here are some good places to start.
Some Ground Rules
The first purchase is only the beginning of the relationship. You got lucky with an impulse holiday buy, but now you need to nurture the relationship and earn their loyalty. It’s not a scheme to get more out of a customer than they had originally planned. It’s more about a relationship building, seasonal marketing strategy.
In any instance, you get out of a relationship what you put in, plain and simple. So focusing on retargeting and getting in front of seasonal clients that don’t exactly know your brand gets that relationship going. And hopefully, this will get them interested in diving into your brand a little further.
Developing a customer’s lifetime value starts with a strategy, one that makes a one-time customer feel as if you want them to stick around because you care about them and the connection you want to build with them.
Here’s how you can begin to build these relationships during and after the busy holiday season.
Nurture New Customer Relationships
Customers, no matter what industry they’re buying in, want simplicity, ease, and direct information. Paying attention to nurturing these relationships with ease will take you far and incline customers to become interested in purchasing from you again.
So what do we mean when we say nurture new customers? New customer marketing has to begin with clear information and straightforward buying capabilities. Have plenty of direct CTAs so website visitors always have a place to go and a way to purchase no matter what page they find themselves on.
Gather as many email addresses as possible and provide seasonal clients with the information they need to learn more about your products and become interested in making further purchasing decisions.
Stay top of mind as often as possible by getting in front and center with personalized promotions. A great way to this is by placing products that are compatible with what they already purchased directly in front of them.
This is critical for a customer’s lifetime value and building a connection that keeps them around longer than a single purchase.
Blow Them Away
Chances are, many of the customers you get during the busy holidays are buying products impulsively. They’ve never purchased from you before and may not have even heard about your brand, but they saw your holiday promotion, were targeted with an ad or are buying something for a family member. Your product may not be something they would typically purchase for themselves so you have to find ways to become noticed again.
Impulse buyers probably know nothing about your brand. They’ve done no digging, haven’t visited your ‘About’ page, and have maybe scrolled through your social media once just to check out your overall brand. What do they expect from you? A seamless transaction and a quick delivery.
In this type of situation, these customers are more likely to notice when something goes wrong than acknowledge when someone goes right–for example, the process is easy (not over the top spectacular) but nothing stuck out because the process wasn’t out of the ordinary.
But there are ways to get their attention, to make them notice your brand and how spectacular you really are–you’ve got to really impress them. WOW those seasonal clients with something special, make them want to come back for more.
Retargeting Seasonal Clients
You made the sale to that new, seasonal client. But it’s nowhere near over now. You can get them to buy again, they just have to be reminded about your brand.
Take advantage of retargeting advertisements. With the speed someone can purchase something these days, they don’t even have to know your brand to be satisfied. Don’t expect them to remember you during the hustle of the holidays.
Retarget them and reach out about your products or service via seasonal email marketing. Maybe you’re offering something completely new that you think they’ll be interested in. Get that news in front of them.
Retargeting during the holidays and again once the season has come to an end makes customers feel that you paid attention to their purchase and appreciate their business. It makes them feel special and taken care of when you offer them items that may go well with their original purchase.
For example, upsell BBQ utensils to a customer that purchased a new grill from you.
You can even keep track of their timely purchases and anticipate when they will run out of the product that you sold to them (if this is relevant, like makeup for example). Send automated reminder emails to purchase again.
WOW Your Customers By Giving Them Something Extra
Send personalized thank-you notes in packages. Let consumers know how much you appreciate them and their purchase. Make them feel special like you specifically notice them for being an awesome customer.
Provide them with free, valuable content. They probably want to know more, they want to learn from you, but they just don’t know it yet. Wow them with informative, quality content that’s free and deliver them with a thing or two about what you know.
How about gifts? These don’t have to be big, expensive, or over the top. Small thoughtful things can make a huge difference. Providing small gifts in packaging or through email after a purchase is something that consumers don’t expect, but when they receive something extra they notice and they appreciate it.
Offer assistance and support to FAQs and remind buyers where they can seek more support. Be proactive about their needs–answer their questions and provide solutions before they even ask.
Quality Customer Service
It’s no secret that customer service is a key factor when it comes to returning customers. The busy seasons cause stress, we’re all guilty of it. Running around trying to buy this and buy that for everyone on our gift-giving list, and hustling to fill the masses of holiday orders that all came in at once as a business takes over.
Even in the hustle and bustle season, customer service should never fail to meet customer demands. Not only do customers expect their packages on time and in a sooner than expected time period (thanks Amazon), but they demand these even more during the holidays–because who wants to deliver Aunt Sally her Christmas present 3 days late because you were waiting on the package to come in the mail? And when there is a hick-up, a question, or any comment to be made, they expect speedy customer support as well.
Good news is that technology has really been helping us through the busy season with AI tools and bots who can take care of many customer needs.
Here are some ways you can keep your customer service up to speed all year long:
- Invest in automated bots and communication tools to answer FAQs and simple questions
- Make sure that FAQs are easy to find on your website
- Use video to explain topics that no one wants to read and to introduce your brand when an actual person isn’t there to do so
- Create strategized processes and workflows to streamline customer support
- Automate seasonal email marketing, confirmation messages, review emails, etc. to make sure these messages are still going out to customers even when you don’t have time to do it yourself
Related Article to Learn More About Upping Customer Service
How to Strategize Social Media to Improve Customer Service
Incentivize Your Customer Loyalty Program
How many loyalty programs are you apart of? One for your favorite coffee shop, one for the grocery, your favorite clothing brand. Discounts for just giving them your name and email? Who wouldn’t sign up?
Customer loyalty programs do wonders in new customer marketing. This is especially true because loyalty programs generally offer the most incentives when a customer first signs up.
Seasonal shoppers are prime candidates for this. If they can earn 500+ points on their first purchase during the holidays, heck yeah they’re going to do it. Then, after the holidays are over and the big orders have been fulfilled, reach out to them again as a reminder of what rewards could be waiting for them if they earn X-amount of points on their next purchase.
Here’s the thing with loyalty reward programs: you have to make it interesting and worthwhile for the customer to stay loyal to your brand. Every consumer out there has seen a loyalty reward program before, there are few brands out there that don’t have one. It’s the same old, same old, especially during the holiday season when people are buying from any brand that can give them the best quality and price for holiday gifts. How can you encourage seasonal shoppers to become loyal to a brand they hardly know?
Be creative, think of out-of-the-box ways you can offer discounts, upgrades, gated content, exclusive offers, and referral promotions.
The Queen of Customer Loyalty Programs
Starbucks does a good job of using creative ways to keep customers around for years with its customer loyalty program. They encourage client retention right by making it fun (and easy) for customers to use their loyalty program, keeping them entertained and around to buy from the brand often.
The Starbucks mobile app allows customers to:
- Keep track of awards,
- Order beverages online
- Keep track and redeem rewards
- Find store locations
- Listen to music
- View notifications about daily and seasonal promotions
- Pay for order
- Even participate in games to earn more rewards.
It’s A Busy Season, Need Help?
There’s no question that the holiday season is a crazy one for small business owners. You know the importance of seasonal promotions, retargeting customers, and making seasonal clients feel that your brand really values their purchase. But how are you supposed to get all of this done while having to fulfill hundreds of orders in a short time period.
Don’t miss out on these opportunities that can really get things moving again when the holiday season comes to an end. These things have to happen now in order to be ready in time to turn impulse customers into long-time loyal brand followers.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help if it’s just something you can’t prioritize at the moment. Buy Us A Beer and let’s talk marketing, retargeting, and building quality relationships with holiday buyers so they can be more than just seasonal clients.