The kids are back at school and the nights are drawing in. That can only mean one thing. Christmas is around the corner. But, before you fly into a dread-induced mad panic, stop and consider the promotional opportunity that is: Black Friday.
Black Friday occurs on Friday 29 November this year. Whilst it is dominated by the big brands offering seemingly massive bargains and discounts, small businesses shouldn’t despair. There is still a place for small business, especially as Black Friday runs straight headlong into Small Business Saturday (Top SBS ideas here).
So, if you are after some top Small Business Black Friday ideas, then here are our top 5:
1. Start Planning Now
If you really want to max out your profits during the busiest period of the year, you do need to be prepared – You’ll thank yourself later. Star considering the strategy you’re going to adopt, the products or services you’re going to promote. Whilst it’s just not feasible to offer blanket discounts over all your stock, you should identify a handful of products/services that you will run offers/promotions on.
Decide when you’re going to offer them – will it be a different product/service or promotion all day, perhaps a different one every hour? It’s important that you start your promotion early. Start at least 6 weeks in advance and subtly start building awareness amongst social media followers, email newsletter recipients etc. Then, in the week to 10 days prior to the event, start ramping up the promotion and ensure your copy is as compelling as possible to ensure your audience remember to check you out when the big day arrives. Build suspense and anticipation with a “Coming Soon” type post on social media.
2. Discount old stock
Not sure what to offer? Do you have last year’s stock taking up valuable storage space? Why not offer a discount on this old stock? Use it as a loss-leader against current items using an up-selling or cross-selling strategy.
3. Use Social Media
By offering exclusive deals to your social media followers or email newsletter list, you can make those people feel they are getting something special – Everyone likes feeling part of an exclusive club. Offer a discount code exclusively to those who sign up to your mailing list. If you have a website, install a pop-up on your site, encouraging people to sign up and promoting your Black Friday deals. Encourage customers to share pictures of their purchases from you by offering them a discount code, for example. Create a custom hashtag and ask your audience to use it, whilst tagging you. Not only does this point their audience in your direction but gives you tons of user-generated content to share on your own profiles.
4. Promote your Bestseller
The direct opposite of discounting last year’s stock, identifying and promoting your bestsellers can be a great strategy. Consider offering limited-time discounts, for example.
5. Upselling and Cross-selling
This works well if you have a bricks and mortar establishment, with a member of staff ready to offer customers an add-on at point of purchase. However, if you are an E-commerce business, then ensure that your website product pages include a “You may also like…” section at the bottom. Perhaps offer an item from last season’s stock at a discounted price with every purchase from the current stock. Ensure that any items for which there are accessories or add-ons are displayed together. The fact that your customer has saved money on the “big” item, may encourage them to splash the cash on an accessory or two!
The best piece of advice for any Small Business Black Friday is to “stay in your own lane”. Focus on what you as a small business can offer and don’t get distracted by bigger brands who can offer huge discounts.
As Black Friday precedes Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, why not make a weekend of it?!
If you would like help with your Small Business Black Friday marketing or social media, then get in touch. We can create a strategy, advise on the best promotional activity for your business and get your Small Business Black Friday off to a flying start!