Scenario #1

Last-minute decision making.

How to avoid Scenario #1

Planning ahead is instrumental to the success of your Black Friday marketing campaign. It’s best to decide what you’re going to offer your customers a few months in advance. This will allow you plenty of time to create original and engaging content, such as paid ads, email copy and on-page copy, to support your campaign.

Being organised is particularly valuable when it comes to affiliate marketing. Many publishers ask that you book your campaigns well in advance of the festive period, despite the fact that details of the offer don’t need to be finalised until closer to the go-live date. If you’re cornered into a last-minute campaign, ensure you always have publishers and a design team on standby.


Scenario #2

Only targeting one type of customer.

How to avoid Scenario #2

Data from previous years offers interesting insights into Black Friday consumer behaviour. Some shoppers impulse-buy on Black Friday and purchase something simply to take advantage of the offers available. Alternatively, others may be inclined to think about their purchase much earlier, and hold out for Black Friday in order to get the best deal.

For your campaign, consider how your marketing will speak to both types of customers. For example, you may choose to use remarketing, suggested add-ons or re-worked messaging. What’s more, at this time of year, many shoppers are on the hunt for the perfect gifts for their loved ones. This broad demographic is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of lead generation tactics; such as on-site overlays and basket abandonment emails.


Scenario #3

Technical difficulties.

How to avoid Scenario #3

It’s crucial that you prepare your site for large increases in traffic. Problems with adding products to basket, discounts not applying correctly, or the site crashing altogether can quickly discourage a shopper from finishing their purchase. Dodge this issue by carrying out rigorous testing prior to your Black Friday sale live-date. Alternatively, stagger e-shots that announce your Black Friday offer. This ensures a gradual stream of traffic, as opposed to huge numbers landing on the site at one time.

It’s worth recognising that an influx in sales may also lead to postage delays. Highlighting this within your advertisements instills trust in shoppers, whilst ensuring they’re not disappointed when their product arrives later than expected.


Scenario #4

Poor customer feedback.

How to avoid Scenario #4

Social media is an effective marketing platform, but it also opens your business up to public criticism. Regularly check social channels for irked customers, and monitor customer communications across email and review platforms. If not handled correctly, customer communications can lead to bad sentiment and spoil your business’ reputation.

If you haven’t already, liaise with review sites to build customer confidence. This may involve gifting campaigns or utilising blogger outreach. Remember to capitalise on these tactics well in advance of busy periods, to allow time for the content to go live.


Scenario #5

Piggybacking on a campaign or having your campaign hijacked.

How to avoid Scenario #5

Once again, planning your campaign well in advance helps to avoid this Black Friday blunder! In the past, brands with popular campaigns have been hijacked by competitors. This is particularly the case for brands using social media hashtags to generate buzz, as hashtags are easily adopted. Unfortunately, a hijacked campaign can detract from your brand and dilute your messaging. To avoid this, map out and implement your campaign well in advance, and be sure to invest in generating an original campaign that has your stamp on it.


Scenario #6

Ignoring the insights provided by Black Friday visitors.

How to avoid Scenario #6

During the Black Friday period, take the increase in users as an opportunity to test various conversion tactics. Unlike traditional, longer testing periods, you can quickly get an idea of which tactics are the most effective.

It’s important to continually draw lessons from busier times of year, because busy periods expose any issues in your customer journey. For example, your Black Friday campaign may identify that you need more content to educate the customer, or perhaps you need to utilise review/comparison sites to support the user during the selection process. Black Friday is a great opportunity to accelerate sales, but it’s also a chance to learn something new and evaluate the efficiency of your site.