Growth, Management, Hints and tips, Small Business
Plan ahead and get your marketing database ready for Christmas
Christmas can be one of the most profitable times of the year for many businesses and the perfect time to grow your customer base – however, it can also be one of the most stressful times of the year too. And although many of you don’t want to think about Christmas until mid-December at the earliest, research shows that as many as 29% of people begin their Christmas shopping in November1 – so it pays to be organised.
The earlier you begin to prepare for Christmas, the longer you will have to plan, implement and reap the benefits. You will also be giving yourself time to react to any circumstances that arise which are out of your control, such as bad weather meaning longer delivery times, etc.
And if you put plans into motion early, who knows, you might be able to take that Christmas break after all – as according to Zurich, 49% of SME decision-makers have worked on Christmas day, with a staggering one in five of these actually going into work.2
Who are your best customers?
Before you think about ‘how’ to attract new customers, think about ‘who’ to attract?
It may seem a daunting task at first, but by scanning through your sales history you will be able to see vital information such as which sector the majority of your customers are in, how much customers spend, your most profitable customer type, etc. Even looking at past marketing campaign results will give an indication of the customers most likely to engage with you.
Once you narrow this information down, you will have a list of customer types that work best for your business – these are the customer types to target. For example, if your top three customers are from the Wholesale sector, target Wholesalers.
Here at Experian Business Assist, we can analyse your existing customer data to help determine the sectors your business performs best in. Contact us today to find out more.
What is the data for?
Before you run out and buy your list of prospects, consider what you will use it for – what is your objective?
The run up to Christmas, as previously mentioned, is an opportune time to begin engaging with prospect customers. You have the perfect excuse to create fun, festive, eye catching campaigns (that you might not get away with the rest of the year!) and have the chance to plan entire marketing campaigns around this theme – seasonal discounts, ‘twelve days of Christmas’ type offers or even VIP Christmas open evenings to meet and greet prospect customers – whatever you plan on using the data for, be sure to keep objectives in mind.
Build your prospect list
Now you know what you want and why you want it, go and get your prospect list.
Build yourself: It is possible to build a good prospect list yourself, however do be cautious of the time and costs involved. Don’t underestimate the task and be sure to look into the legal aspects.
Buy: If you do decide to purchase a list, there are various specialised tools and websites out there that allow you to really zone in on the type of customers you have identified as targets, by filtering by sector, geography, number of employees, etc.
The run up to Christmas is busy, really busy, even more so if you take part in Black Friday or Cyber Monday meaning planning is essential.
Do your customer research well in advance, gather your prospects as early as possible, set objectives and create a schedule. And if all goes well and you drum up new customer interest, planning ahead gives you time to react and adjust accordingly.
Finally, be sure to pay attention to campaign results as anyone who opens and clicks on a link is showing interest, these prospects can be classified as warm-leads to follow up on and if your original campaign goes out early enough…you may have time to send a lead nurture email before Christmas.
Experian B2B Prospector is a quick and easy way to build your targeted list, use selection criteria to find the prospects you want, select the contact details you want and begin your marketing activity immediately.