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Updated 19 November 19
It’s that time of year at which everyone gets into a frenzy about Christmas preparation. In anticipation of wallets opening, stores stock up accordingly, leading to the farcical sight of 'festive aisles' in early November. However it isn’t just brick-and-mortar retail that benefits, what about tech startups?
Regardless of the type of startup you’re trying to promote, SaaS, B2B, B2C, platforms or physical products the festive period is a time when, with the right strategy, you can get excellent results. With people busy, distracted and often with a definite need to 'buy' it's often a great time of year to convert prospects into customers.
So how do you actually accomplish such a feat? Well, in this piece, we’re going to share some ideas on how you can nail your seasonal marketing.
Particularly if you're in a physical product / ecommerce business, you can give your seasonal marketing a huge boost with the right kind of incentive. At this time of year people expect seasonal deals, and even if your prices are already good, most prospective customers will shop around if there’s no deal to be had.
So what kind of deal should you offer? You’re looking for something that’s a solid balance: enough to catch the eye and spark action in those sat in your prospect column, but not so generous that it undermines the value of your company and sets a terrible precedent for future pricing. 10% off is a classic: it’s a round number (always a good sign), but not too hazardous to your bottom line. Free shipping, bonus/premium features, 1 month free, Free trail with no credit card details - all good too. Something enough to push people from consideration to purchase.
Social proof is a powerful thing in general, but it’s even more potent during the holidays. Share a story about a happy customer during August and you might elicit some indifferent shrugs. But create a heartwarming narrative about how people have benefited from using your products / business, and share it during December and you’ve got the greatest chance of people falling in love with your company.
Turn to your happiest customers and ask them if you can tell their stories. Provided they truly are happy with what you do (which is what you should be aiming for), professionally shot video testimonials are ideal, but if time and budget doesn't allow - written endorsements supported with some great imagery is also very powerful.
Every month should be social media month, admittedly, your activity and engagement with your social audiences should really ramp up at this time of year. You've spent time growing these channels over the year so now's the best time to turn those followers into customers.
Create content to push people from awareness to purchase, things like sharing positive customer reviews, award wins, case studies, interactive demo's, pricing and data sheets are all great for this. If you do run a great seasonal offer, why not send it via DM or messenger to all of your followers?
If you’re not much of a social media fan, or struggle to make time to create engaging content. You can make things easier by using some of the following tools:
Hootsuite - schedule and share your social content across numerous platforms simultaneously
Canva - A simplified graphic design tool to create for non graphic designers to create beautiful posts
Unsplash - High quality, free imagery to use in your social posts
FOMO, or fear of missing out, is a core part of the modern sales recipe. Attention is won and lost so quickly that you need something to convert those that keep people looking, but haven't yet bought. If you can apply some time pressure to convince them that they’re on the verge of missing out on something great, now's the time to do it.
Your incentive needs a deadline, and you have to mention it "Offer expires December 24th". Do this alongside sharing posts, reviews and case studies of all of the clever people who have taken advantage of the offer and reminders that anyone doesn’t grab it by then will have to pay the regular price. Forcing some urgency is a great tactic for making your seasonal marketing effective.
Didn’t I just talk about ramping up pressure as Christmas approaches? Why am I now talking about New Year? Well, it’s simple - not everyone is motivated to buy for Christmas, particularly in the business sector. If your operation is primarily or exclusively B2B, your prospective customers will probably be busy thinking about Christmas parties instead of budgeting.
But the New Year is different. It’s a time of year where everyone has sobered up from the celebrations and begun to panic about hitting Q1 targets, and you can anticipate this with your seasonal marketing by getting people to look ahead. Ask them what they want to achieve in the next year, and how they plan to do it. Explain how whatever you’re offering will help them make it happen — you can arrange a deal that doesn’t take effect until January, helping them to be prepared and look productive when the time comes.
Whether your tech startup provides products, services, or something else entirely, seasonal marketing can be a potent arrow in your quiver. You just need to use it correctly, and by following the steps we’ve looked at here, you can give yourself the best possible chance of coming out ahead.
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