There’s no better way to close out this year, and give your sales a boost for next year, than with a festive promotion.
All it takes is a little time and creativity to keep customers excited after all the gift giving. But if you’re low on either of those, we’ve put together nine ideas to get you started.
Now, cue the sound of clinking Champagne glasses for a job well done.
1. Send a New Year’s email.
Lots of businesses send email during the Christmas or Hanukkah season using email marketing software. Set your business apart from the pack by sending something before New Year’s instead. It’s more likely to get noticed then, especially if you’re thoughtful about your messaging and make it worthwhile for customers to open.
Send special offers to select groups of your subscribers, plus email-only deals that you’re not listing on social media or your website.
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2. Get your channels in the holiday spirit.
Social media is the perfect way to get customers excited about 2018. A new, festive avatar or header photo can attract eyeballs in your followers’ timelines, putting your business at the top of their minds.
This is also a great place to promote New Year’s–specific products or services. If Pinterest is part of your social strategy, then put together boards of New Year’s party décor, outfits, or food and drink ideas.
Think of New Year’s–centric promotions that will work best for your business. If you’re a clothing boutique, run a special on apparel, accessories, and beauty products that sparkle. If you have a candy store, package Champagne gummies and edible confetti into cheery bundles ideal to bring as hostess gifts to New Year’s Eve parties.
You can also hand out coupons valid for the new year to help boost slow January sales.
4. Add some curb appeal.
If you’re a brick-and-mortar business, think about decking out your display window with a New Year’s theme featuring a festive party scene using products you sell in the store to catch the eye of everyone passing by.
5. Throw a party.
People look for all sorts of different ways to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Restaurants charge big for special menus and clubs bring in famous DJs, but not everyone wants to drop a lot of cash to celebrate.
If you’re an artisanal spirits distiller, you could invite customers in for a free party that includes a special tasting. Or, if you work in tech or gaming, you could throw a party that would let guests test out the latest gear. You could also join forces with other small business owners in the area to hold a rocking block party.
Just don’t forget to advertise. Events are a big draw, whether you’re a brick-and-mortar shop or have a cool, party-friendly office space, so be sure to spread the word with posters and event invites on social media.
6. Extend the holiday cheer by catering to impulse buys.
Set your business up for success by anticipating an influx of post-holiday returns. If you’re a brick-and-mortar shop, think about everything customers might need during a long day of returns: snack items, lip balm, mittens if it’s cold out. Then, stage all those items (plus any other holiday specials you’re hoping to unload) close to the register. For every return, encourage shoppers to make a purchase. It’s a win-win.
7. Host a “countdown” contest on your social channels.
A few years ago, West Elm ran a “24 Days of Deals” campaign with daily deals and free extras for email subscribers. Consider translating that idea into a creative New Year’s “countdown” contest. Ask your followers to come up with their own version of New York City’s famous ball drop and then give away prizes for the best ideas in the week leading up to January 1.
8. Print a 2018 calendar.
If you have any money left in your marketing budget at the end of the year, consider customizing a 2018 calendar that you can mail to your best customers or offer as an add-on to holiday purchases.
A company called Betabrand, which makes apparel based on crowdsourced and crowdfunded designs, puts out a whimsical pantsuit calendar featuring its best-selling dress-pant yoga pants.
A restaurant could include photos of popular dishes. A dog wash could showcase cute dog breeds. A fun marketing tool like this could keep your business top of mind with customers all year round.
9. Customize your content marketing.
Remember that the general rule for content marketing is to create material that adds value to your customers’ lives.Michael’s craft store, for example, posted a YouTube video demonstrating easy DIY gift-wrapping techniques.
Restaurants can share their chef’s favorite Champagne cocktail recipes, salons can post tips on easy do-it-yourself New Year’s Eve party hairstyles, and gyms can share advice on how to jumpstart a 2018 exercise plan.
Photo credit: “Sparklers!” by Derek Key, Flickr, CC by 2.0