Holiday Marketing for B2B companies

The holidays are coming up, and businesses that want to tie their merchandise into a B2B marketing strategy should start thinking about Thanksgiving and the winter holidays. Sending out pointed, sharp emails to the people who read your website the most can result in a major opportunity for driving home a message about your products or services. The holiday season is never a bad time to reconnect and show you care.

Armando Roggio, writing in Practical Ecommerce, recently suggested that every customer is different and deserves to be treated uniquely. As such, using the customization options inherent in good email marketing software gives small businesses the opportunity to make messages stand out against the flurry of holiday greetings that will appear around the coming of the winter season. According to Roggio, people respond strongly to personal messages. If possible, sending out a different email to each person would probably be ideal, but even a small amount of customization would help people feel better about a pitch. Just include someone’s name and location, and that alone will make it feel more familiar and friendly than something that is addressed to no one in particular.

Small, personalized messages

Roggio suggests that marketers focus their diversification strategy on customer personas, interests that have been indicated in the past and sales history. Good marketing software stores this information every time someone clicks on a certain keyword in an email. Your biggest clients deserve a written card sent in the mail, along with an email message.

Additionally, keep things small and simple. Don’t send more than one message per person, and make each email short and to the point. Don’t have an overly long, sales-pitchy title, and keep your message basic, advertising your product and wishing season’s greetings. Remember that people will admire a certain sensitivity to the importance of the holiday spirit that causes many businesses to abstain from a heavy-handed approach when they make large marketing gestures. Think of commercials that simply show people having a large Thanksgiving meal or opening presents, followed by a tiny logo and the words “Season’s greetings.” This is the best way to convey a sense of authenticity in your emails. which may attract new customers or improve customer loyalty.

Along these lines, consider Starbucks – each year, the company advertises its pumpkin spice latte. This product is associated with people in a friendly atmosphere. The pitch is not about the flavor so much as the spirit of the season. Associating your product with this seasonal, festive mood may serve to keep your product in people’s minds longer, even if you are selling specialized factory equipment or computer software. If you are a company that fixes certain computer components or provides a niche service, then just show a picture of your office, decorated appropriately, along with the members of your staff together, demonstrating how well they get along. This will be enough for people to remember that your company is like a family. This might generate more empathy for your business. For companies that need particular items, it may not make a huge difference, but just making the effort might give your business a bit more leverage.

KPIs to keep in mind for the holidays

Along with short holiday messages, there are several key performance indicators to follow for effective marketing strategies – both during seasonal advertising campaigns and for every day of the year. Christopher Ratcliff, writing in Econsultancy, has several ideas for watching your KPIs and making sure your strategies for drawing in customers are working.

One of the biggest KPI is probably the spam complaint rate. This is the number of people who simply marked your email as spam. You want this to be very low because advertising now is about communication. People are very wary about what they open in today’s spam-filled world. If you can ensure your potential customers are actually opening and reading your emails, then you have succeeded in getting past the first step to making sure your email marketing strategy is working. Remember to treat your messages as you would a newsletter filled with interesting information.

This brings up the next KPI, which is the open rate, followed by the click-thru rate. The click-thru rate shows how many things people are clicking on. Good marketing software goes a little deeper and actually demonstrates the individual things people are clicking on. This is good because you may want to program your software to send out further emails to people who access certain things through your email. This begins the conversation portion of marketing, in which people ask for and receive information willingly.

Another KPI is the unsubscribe rate. If what you’re sending out isn’t in the field of interest for your clients, than this number will be high, so make sure to focus on relevancy when you write your content.