Okay, so it’s November already. And you really were planning to put together something special for the holiday season… Something that would attract new and current clients, and increase overall sales. Maybe even leverage some PR. But then you got busy and nothing happened with your big ideas.
That’s okay. There are still plenty of things any entrepreneur can do to take advantage of the holiday gift giving spirit whether you sell products or services – and regardless of who you sell them to. Best of all, thanks to the power of the Internet even the most last-minute ideas can be promoted rapidly.
To help you get started, below are five ideas you can put together in a flash to land more clients and customers this holiday season, along with a few tips for marketing them.
1. Package it up with a shiny bow
People like to buy both products and services in packages because they get a deal and more value in exchange for a larger up front purchase. You can package almost anything together including services, service hours (great for consultants), books, products or a mix. So bundle some valuable goodies into a package and give it a sassy name. Price it so there’s at least a 20% savings versus buying these same products or services a la carte. Then send a couple emails to all your past clients or customers letting them know about the special holiday promotion. Remember to post about your deal on your blog and social networks too.
You can then have them call or email to buy if you don’t have a shopping cart. Or even better, set up a Web page with PayPal where they can make the purchase.
2. Make it easier to give
Holidays are a time of giving. So make it easy by offering gift certificates. Gift certificates aren’t just for spas, iTunes and big box stores. They work really well for B to B coaches, consultants and other service providers, not just businesses selling to consumers. Set up a Web page for these complete with shopping cart or PayPal. Or simply promote them via email, social networking, your blog – or even direct mail if there’s time – and have folks email you to buy.
3. Give more to get more
Everyone loves to support a worthwhile charity. So consider giving a percentage of sales to one of your favorites during the holiday season. Doing this could be the reason someone chooses to buy from you instead of your competition. And it’s sure to give you a warm fuzzy feeling too.
4. Share the wealth – and the costs
Maybe you only sell one thing, and can’t figure out a good way to package it up into a bundle. No worries. Instead, team up with one or more other businesses offering complementary products or services. Then cross-promote to each other’s email and social media lists and gain more clients or customers more easily.
5. Follow up like crazy
Whether you make a million sales or not, your job isn’t done when the holiday season ends. Because your goal shouldn’t be to run a promotion and make a bunch of sales. It should be to run a promotion and get a bunch of clients who turn into raving fans and keep coming back for more. So send thank you cards. Start a regular newsletter or ezine. Offer more value, and more ways to buy whatever you’re selling. Keep them coming back for more so next year your holiday profits are even bigger.
The most important thing is to do SOMETHING! These ideas don’t cost much and take little time to put together. And they could easily fill your holiday season with the sound of coins a’ jingling.