The holiday season is fast approaching. Are you ready? How about your B2B company? As we get closer and closer to Thanksgiving, Cyber Monday, Christmas, and New Year’s, it’s important to consider how your company can take advantage of this season. Maybe that’s why you’re looking for tips for B2B holiday email marketing. Perhaps you’re looking to drum up new business with a holiday email marketing campaign.
7 Ideas for a successful B2B holiday email marketing campaign
The holiday season has always represented a massive opportunity for B2C companies, but that doesn’t mean the B2B world can’t enjoy some new business, as well. Use the following tactics to inform a holiday email marketing campaign and you’ll be all set to begin the new year on a high note.
1. Start your B2B holiday email marketing efforts early
If you’ve ever put off your holiday shopping until the last second, you know the dire consequences: long lines, empty shelves, and checking your front step every two minutes to see if any gifts you ordered have finally arrived. Waiting to begin your B2B email marketing campaign is just as bad. Even around the holidays, B2B buyer journeys tend to take a while. In fact, given how busy everyone is, they might even take longer. That’s why it is imperative that you get started on yours right away. It’s not too late to begin your campaign, but you definitely don’t want to put it off much longer either.
2. Try for the “impulse” buy
Now, that doesn’t mean there aren’t B2B buyers that will jump at the prospect of a deal. And what better time to offer a great deal than during the holiday season? If you haven’t already segmented your email marketing list based on where each recipient is in your lead funnel, now would be the time. Specifically, you want to target the leads unlikely to become customers in the near future unless a promising deal is offered. So, it’s not the leads who have been opening all your emails and interacting with your content. Those are most likely nearing the end of your funnel. You can try targeting those who just entered the top of your funnel, but that’s tricky. Some will flat-out ignore your offer because they’re not familiar enough with your company. Others will jump at the opportunity. But they were going to become customers anyway, so you’ll lose profits by giving them a deal. But, again, you have time. Start emailing the top of your funnel and segmenting them right away. Then, between the top and middle funnel, offer deals to all those who have shown some interest but not enough that you’re confident they won’t go to a competitor instead. One of the main reasons most B2B companies don’t try to entice impulse buys is because they don’t think the outcome will be worth it. If anything, it might actually hurt revenues. However, if you only offer a holiday bargain like this one to a select group, it could do just the opposite. It will lock in short-term profits you otherwise wouldn’t have had and might even turn these new customers into long-term business.
3. Stress that your offer is only good for a limited time
Even though it should probably go without saying, it’s still a good idea to stress the fact that any deals you’re offering are only available until the holiday season is over. This is a point you should bring up again and again. Scarcity is a powerful force and there is no better time to use it than during a B2B holiday email marketing campaign when you have a hard deadline approaching. For example, if you sell physical products, mention that you’re clearing out your inventory before the end of this quarter to make room for new merchandise. Therefore, once your current line is all purchased, you’ll be moving on. This sale will never be offered again. If you offer a service, your email marketing campaigns can focus on how you only have limited personnel to support so many purchases. For example, a team of consultants might offer reduced rates for the following year but can only accommodate the first 10 companies that either sign up or renew their contracts at this discounted price. When combined with the right offer, it can also go a long way toward securing an impulse buy, even for B2B companies like yours. Nonetheless, some simply won’t be ready. They may even need several more months before they’re ready to make a purchase. While you can create a separate segment for these types of customers – and try to ramp up your pitch on them – it might also make sense to extend your offers in some cases. Maybe ask for a certain amount of the purchasing price upfront in order to secure this kind of extension.
4. Offer a one-of-a-kind deal
By combining the last two tactics, you can also come up with a unique offer that will be almost impossible to ignore. Come up with a service you will only provide to businesses that make purchases during the holiday season. For example, if you sell office equipment, you could offer a free consultation to each client that orders a certain amount before January 1st. During this consultation, you’ll assess the most efficient way each company can use their office space and/or find ways they can save money on their office supplies. You can even offer different tiers based on when people order. So, those that respond to the emails before Cyber Monday get the best deal whereas those that wait until January 1st will have to settle for far less.
5. Take an ABM approach with current clients
If your company is already using an account-based marketing (ABM) approach with clients, use the segmentation advice outlined earlier. By segmenting, you can home in on clients who are likely to make a purchase with the right amount of attention. The goal is to lock in a cross-sell or upsell before the first of the year. Otherwise, now would be a great time to get hyper-specific about targeting your current list of clients. Go through that last step with your clientele. Create a list of clients likely to upgrade or add services. However, instead of sending each segment the same email, you’ll send each account its own, unique message. Even though the clock is ticking, take some time with this step. It will involve each teammate doing research on all preexisting customers. Your team will want to ensure they understand client needs and past purchases.
6. Consider getting social with your holiday campaign
If you have a sizable social media following, now is the perfect time to cash in on all the hard work you did to build it. Social media and email marketing tend to work very well with each other, even for B2B companies. There are a number of reasons for this. The main reason this will help your B2B holiday email marketing campaign stems from followers. You see, more than one person from your target companies may be following you. This is helpful because, if you introduce great deals solely through email, only one person from a target company may see it. Then, that person may pass on the offer. After that, no one else at the organization will ever hear of the sale you were running. Instead, spread the word through social media. Even if the person on your email list ignores it, someone else from their company may see it and show interest. You may see substantially more responses to your messages. Of course, the other benefit to this strategy is that it’s great for creating leads. Companies that weren’t originally in your funnel may suddenly hand over their email addresses in order to be considered for this deal. Even if they don’t qualify for this holiday offer, you still have that all-important address going forward.
7. Don’t get too carried away with your B2B holiday email marketing efforts
With all that said, it’s possible to get too caught up in the holiday spirit. While a B2B holiday email marketing campaign can produce amazing results, don’t lose sight of what has been working for you so far. The “holiday season” typically stretches from the beginning of November until the first of January. That’s a lot of potential emails. It would be a real shame if you completely ditched what’s engaged your readership thus far for two whole months just so you could chase a holiday theme. By all means, embrace the above advice, but don’t overhaul your campaigns to the point that they become completely unrecognizable. Now is not the time for A/B testing. Use the holiday theme to double-down on what you already know works with your leads and current clients.
Wrap up: using these tips for B2B holiday email marketing
We all have a lot going on this time of year, but that’s no reason to ignore the incredible opportunity that B2B holiday email marketing represents. Act fast by using the above tips for B2B holiday email marketing. By applying these tactics, you can put a strategy together and get to work. Between Thanksgiving, Cyber Monday, Christmas, and New Year’s, you could easily make the last quarter of this year your company’s best.