So you forgot about Cyber Monday. You didn’t prepare any marketing campaigns and your boss is likely going to get mad. “Everyone else is ready, why aren’t we? What have you been doing this whole time?” – You don’t need this right now. Here’s what you can do to get away with some last-minute preparations.
Where you’re at:
OK, so let’s lay it all out. No hiding, no excuses that you have been busy with other stuff or that Black Friday hasn’t been that long ago so you should skip today. Let’s see what we’re at. Cyber Monday is here, and you haven’t:
- Prepared any promotional campaign, i.e. no ads, newsletters, copy, banners
- Ordered any additional stock
- Warmed up your audience with some pre-Cyber Monday campaigns
- Segmented your list for this particular holiday
It sounds pretty terrible, I know. It’s Monday morning and you have got about 8 hours of work left to run a quick campaign to squeeze out some more sales (and get your boss off your back).
Here’s your quick back-up plan:
1. Select your offer
It’s essential to offer something special to your audience on Cyber Monday. Be it 20% off on all or selected products in your online store, a free delivery, or a 15% discount code that users will need to type in during the check-out process.
If you can’t offer anything of value, you might as well skip this holiday and get ready for Super Saturday instead (or go straight to the point 2f of this plan). Hey, there’s nothing wrong in limiting the number of promotional events. As long as the ones you organize, stand out from the rest, you’ll be fine. Although, by Super Saturday, some of your subscribers may have already spent their budget elsewhere.
2. Choose the approach
Ok, you’ve got your offer ready. Now you need to come up with a clever idea on how to play this right. You can simply send out your regular newsletter or make an ad with an adjusted image, and act like nothing happened. That’s one way to do it. Nobody is going to blame you for this, but then again you also won’t stand out.
Or… you could do one of the following:
a) Act like: So you thought we forgot about Cyber Monday? We *invented* Cyber Monday
Making a joke about being late with the offer is a great way to capture your audience’s attention. It’s likely they haven’t made their orders yet (they better not have, they should be at work at this hour) and will do it once they’ve come back home. Who will they think about? Likely the brand that made them laugh.
b) Act like: Cyber Monday blow-out sale – fashionably late
That’s another way of pointing out that you’re running a bit late. But if you’ve ever attended a party, you know being on time isn’t always what’s expected of guests. Just like you wouldn’t want to interrupt your hosts preparations and ring the doorbell when they’re in the shower, you wouldn’t want to send out a promotional campaign when your audience isn’t ready to purchase. Check out the best hours in terms of open rates on your social media channels and email campaigns, and follow that clue.
c) Act like: Better late than never!
Similarly, to the previous one, you need to make sure your offer is plain good. If you can ensure it’s just as cool as Robert Downey Jr. in Ironman, you’re in for a big win.
d) Act like: Hey Cyber Monday, we’re here! [late to the party]
I don’t think anyone expects a Cyber Monday offer to arrive on Tuesday or Wednesday. Why not try that approach? The open-rates are likely going to be high on this one!
e) Act like: Forget Cyber Monday, get ready for Super Saturday!
You’re not going to make it on time? Admit it and accept it. Just send out a pre-Super Saturday teaser and make sure your audience reserve some of their budget for the weekend.
f) Finding it hard to buy something nice this Cyber Monday, donate to a charity instead!
Not everyone may like this approach, but hey, if a charity benefits from this, why shouldn’t you? Don’t force yourself if you can’t make a good Cyber Monday campaign. Perhaps a surprise sale, like the one offered by Sevenly, could be an idea you could follow.
3. Design your own images
So you’ve chosen your approach, now it’s time to get your hands a bit ‘dirty’. This isn’t an ideal solution, since your designers would have most likely done a much better job. But you have to work with what you’ve got.
Your design doesn’t have to be very complex. Just go on one of the free stock websites, such as Unsplash, Pexels, or Startupstockphotos (you’ll find more of these in this article), and choose images that will work well. Otherwise, simply choose a picture of one or more of your products.
Now you’ll need to make some quick adjustment. Something simple like adding a color layer, reducing its transparency, and putting a line of text on top of it will work fine. Free visual marketing apps such as Skitch, Canva, or Pixlr, which we’ve discussed in this post, will be more than enough if you’re not a Photoshop master.
If you need some inspiration regarding choosing the right image or want to learn about the design basics, these posts will be of help. Just remember, on Cyber Monday, you can’t go wrong with showing an image, portraying electronic devices.
Oh, and I hope that don’t need to remind you – no Comic Sans or Lobster.
4. Write a quick blog post
Cyber Monday doesn’t always have to be about selling. Content marketing shouldn’t just be forgotten for a month or two, and then returned to, once the holiday season is over. Be helpful, provide knowledge. Useful and valuable resources such as blog posts, slide decks or podcasts should be in your calendar as per usual.
Think about what types of content your audience could use at this time of the year. Cyber Monday gift ideas? Holiday presents inspirations for your brother/sister or parents? That’s just off the top of my head. I’m sure you’ll figure something out. If you’re struggling though, here’s an article that will help you write more blog posts, more easily, in less time.
5. Segment your audience and click send
It’s time to act. You’ve got your products and designs ready. Now you should work on the ads and newsletters templates. If you’re using a standard email design, just replace the header image with the newly crafted Cyber Monday image. Type up some copy – opening that greets the audience, product descriptions, etc. – and you’re good to go.
The same goes for your social media ads. This article will help you with creating ones that your followers won’t hate. And that’s pretty much what you’re looking for. Ads that will convert, not irritate.
If you’ve got some extra time on your hands, consider segmenting your audience. For your mailing campaign, try presenting different products (e.g. premium vs standard) or design your newsletter focusing on different benefits – based on what is likely to work better on each individual group.
Here are some of segments (and the ways to approach them) you may want to target:
- Loyal customers – exclusive product samples with today’s order
- Inactive subscribers – free delivery, today only
- Subscribers who have never purchased anything – discount coupon for the first order
- Others – regular offer
Similarly, consider using segmentation and retargeting tools on other communication channels. Facebook Custom Audiences, Lookalike Audiences and Google AdWords Customer Match should help you increase the number of customer touch points, placing your brand in front of your users and bringing them back, should they’ve abandoned your website for any reason.
6. Don’t worry and play along
You’ve done what you could, in such short period of time. There’s little you can do right now, so don’t overthink it and stress about the outcome. Heck, people were able to make money selling rocks as pets or virtually nothing. I think the greatest of them all was Cards Against Humanity, who didn’t sell anything, but received something for Black Friday:
Still unsure? Just consider this and relax:
Have you ever had to run a last minute sale or campaign? Share in the comments below!