Planning your marketing strategy for the holidays can be daunting, but a little extra time spent on the front end can pay huge dividends. To set yourself up for success, make sure you’re covering all the bases when preparing your Holiday 2015 strategy.

Budgets

Engage new and returning customers with the right ads by increasing your budget caps across all display inventory sources. 

Bump up your frequency caps to capitalize on condensed purchase windows, increase your cost-per-thousand-impressions (CPM) bids to win inventory, and allocate extra budget to prepare for significant traffic increases.

holiday_guide_image_12Inventory Checklist

  • Display – Boost brand awareness by featuring your products on sites where customers are researching and comparing gifts.
  • Mobile – Set your mobile budget to match the volume of holiday research that will be completed this way. If you’re a retailer with a mobile app, make sure you have campaigns for mobile app install.
  • Facebook – Stay engaged with shoppers as they browse on Facebook. Boost visibility with native in-app features like shares, likes, and comments.
  • Twitter – Use Twitter to connect with an active audience on mobile that’s primed for engagement and ready to spread the word.

Timelines

Knowing when to reach consumers is just as important as knowing where to find them. Make sure you reach audiences in time to influence their purchasing decisions.

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Thanksgiving Day: Shoppers have already started looking for Black Friday deals online, so make sure you’re highlighting your best offers and promotions.

  • TIP: Set aside budget to increase CPM bids, helping you stay competitive and win ad inventory during Thanksgiving weekend.

Black Friday: This is a big day for click-and- mortar brands, so focus on capturing on-the-go bargain hunters with a strong mobile push.

  • TIP: Get prepared with ads that are optimized for mobile and have strategic creative elements that match your enticing offers.

Thanksgiving Weekend: Shoppers are still on the hunt for great holiday gifts. Most importantly, they’re getting ready to take advantage of Cyber Monday deals.

  • TIP: Retarget all site visitors with high-level branding campaigns and re-engage past purchasers with special offers and new products.

Cyber Monday: This is the most competitive inventory you’ll see all year. Create ads that blend Cyber Monday creative with time- sensitive promotions and discounts

  • TIP: Use strong calls to action like “Quick—Get it before it’s gone” and “Limited supply!”

Retargeting Tuesday: Shoppers are still on the hunt for a good deal. Get ready to bring back Cyber Monday customers who looked at your products but didn’t make a purchase.

  • TIP: Use dynamic ads to create personalized product recommendations, turning browsers into buyers.

Smart Segmentation

Ad impressions get competitive during the holidays, which means the cost of a bad impression goes up dramatically. Make sure you have all your audience segments set up correctly so you’re engaging audiences with the right messaging.

Every retailer needs a strong performance-marketing strategy for the holiday shopping season. The keys to making your ad dollars count in this competitive landscape are planning early and having a robust campaign mix.

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For more best practices and tips to driving the highest ROI this holiday season, download our free holiday strategy guide!