As the world excitedly succumbs to the approaching holiday frenzy, those of you that run businesses are getting busy preparing actual and web shops for the expected shopping craze and it’s usually the busiest time of the year. Thanksgiving and Christmas are almost here and your customers are perfecting their shopping lists in anticipation of this year’s hot holiday deals.

Do you know how Black Friday got its name?

According to Wikipedia, retailers report some of their highest profits on Black Friday and the word “Black” stands for the accounting practice where businesses record their losses in red and gains in black ink. As accounting software of today still hold on to this practice, the name quickly caught up and spread virally.

Last year, the record-breaking $3 billion were cashed in from 2016 Black Friday online sales, which amounts to 21.6 percent growth from last year, with Mobile share of $1.2 billion and a 33 percent increase.

An even bigger shopping wave is expected to hit online shops this year, so if you’re planning on seeing your numbers pile up in black ink in the coming days, there are some preparations you need to make, competition to outsmart, and most importantly — customers to impress, entertain, and retain!

In addition to the actual planning of promotional deals and discounts that you’re probably already doing, you’re also preparing a marketing strategy to attract your current customers and possible future ones.

Before you start, make sure that your marketing strategy has a clear vision on who your audiences are and how to get as many people as possible on the list. Some basic questions you’d like to answer are:

We will focus on the techniques that will help you find and attract your audience. This is the first step of your marketing campaign and it’s where we can help the most.

Let us start by building up your contact list!

1) Website popup subscription form

There are couple of ways you can get people involved on your website.

Most marketeers speak against website popups but honestly they are the ones that use them the most. Why? Because they’re so effective in building your lists of contacts!

What is your feeling towards popup forms on other websites? I’d say that they are not that annoying and moving them out of our way is usually just one click away. Make sure your popup form offers are attractive enough, or else you’ll waste those precious first 3 seconds of your website visitor’s time.

So, what can go into your popup?

Website Popup Subscribe Form
An example of a quality content popup offer from Smart Insights.

One thing is sure — people are only willing to subscribe to a mailing list when they know what they’re subscribing for.

Be clear about the benefits and offers you’re making. If you already know that you’ll be giving out freebies, gifts, or putting up hot promo deals in the upcoming days, give your website visitors a hint on these together with attractive images of discounted products to make your popup form effective. Fresh quality content and hot deals will usually yield the best results.

Website popup event promotional form
Event promotion popup from Campaign Living.

You can spice up the promise with a bit of urgency saying that only the first x number of subscribers get the chance to win a gift or receive the hottest deals before everyone else.

The best thing about these popup forms is that they provide you with the finest audience selection. These are the people that seriously care about your brand and your offer. They are willing to give your their private addresses so you can post them amazing content whenever you have something great to share. But please only invade them with great content!

Website popup newsletter signup form
Another example of a simple and effective newsletter signup form from Complex.

Here’s our basic free template that you can use as a starting point: Mailing List Form.

2) Launch social media competition

The surprise effect you get on social media is priceless and this is why advertising there tends to be effective. Plus, people really do spend a great deal of time hanging out on social networks.

Why surprise effect?

Because people aren’t usually looking to shop there, they come to hang out and socialize. Yet you can still grab them with an interesting story, product, or service they might actually be interested in (it’s all about those fine-tuned Facebook algorithms).

You can create a photo contest or any other type of contest to engage your social media followers as well as other alike audiences. Even invest a few dollars to boost your campaign during holidays. Ask applicants to share bits of data about themselves and their email addresses. In exchange, you’ll offer gifts, promotional coupons, or some other benefits for the winners.

For this purpose, you might need a competition entry form. Here’s our free template that you can quickly adjust to your needs: Competition Entry Form.

3) Quizzes and Trivia

Have you ever tested the effectiveness of social media quizzes?

You’d be surprised by how much people actually do love them. The inventors of quizzes like “Which Game of Thrones Character are you” or “What will you be in your next life” are millionaires today. You can try to build your own trivia quiz with questions that relate to your business, or some other trivia questions. At the end of the quiz ask for quiz takers’ emails so that you can send them the score.

Here are our free templates:

Trivia Online Quiz Favorite Celebrity Quiz

And the samples showing how good they can look when you add some images and custom css:

Favorite celebrity online quiz form
Build interesting quizzes for your social media pages. Take our Celebrity Quiz.
Geography Trivia Quiz Form
Build interesting quizzes for your social media pages. Take our Geography Quiz to test your geography knowledge.

4) Promo events

Undoubtedly the most magnificent marketing tool in the world. There’s nothing like a warm handshake, delicious food, fancy drinks, and a live band playing in the background.

If your business can afford it — go for it! But, choose your guests wisely. Events are usually reserved for the most loyal customers and promising new leads. Here are our sample event invitation forms to give you some inspiration:

Christmas Fundraiser Dinner Invitation Form
See live example of our Christmas Fundraiser Dinner Invitation.
New Years Eve Party Invitation Form
See live example of our NYE Party Invitation.

Automation with your marketing apps

Remember that email is still by far THE most effective online marketing channel.

The whole point of our contact building strategy was to extract as many contacts for your holiday marketing campaigns and future promotions. Good thing about using EmailMeForm for contact generation is that you can build attractive forms and integrate them with other marketing tools you use to automate data collection and application.

This means that once you connect your form with MailChimp, for example, email addresses you collect via the form will transfer into your MailChimp account and new contacts will be automatically created.

Once you launch your email campaign and the numbers start to roll in, this Email Marketing Statistics 2017 report will show how you stack up against competition.

Let the holiday magic begin!

Author Jovana Milankovic

Jovana Milankovic

Jovana is a content creator and marketing manager at EmailMeForm. Her job is to curate our software to the world and make it more human for our users.

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