Summer is in full swing but it’s not too late to finalize your back-to-school marketing campaigns. While students are already dreading their return to the classroom, back to school is a competitive season for advertisers – second only to the holiday shopping season – and retailers must plan accordinly in order to see success.
After dismal sales in the first half of 2016, retailers have something to look forward to in the second half of the year. According to eMarketer, back-to-school sales are projected to increase a modest 2.6% to reach nearly $828 billion.
Winning consumers’ share of wallet, however, is no easy feat. To successfully attract shoppers and drive sales this season, advertisers should take the following into account:
Have Promotions In Place When Consumer Research Begins
Similar to the holiday shopping season, back-to-school shopping starts earlier each year. Though many consumers wait until the last minute to make their purchases, shoppers begin researching as early as two months before school begins. Much of this research takes place online, where consumers compare prices and seek the best deals to make their money go further. This means promotions must be in the market months in advance in order to capture the attention of the entire back-to-school segment.
Think Digital – Especially Mobile
While consumer shopping habits continue to shift to digital, mobile is predicted to play a big role this season. According to a survey conducted by global polling firm Penn Schoen Berland, 60% of parents plan to buy at least one item on a mobile device and 30% plan to complete at least a fourth of their back-to-school shopping on mobile. To reach consumers on their mobile devices, advertisers should consider location-based tactics and mobile video placements, in addition to search and banner ads. Reaching consumers with the right message, at the right time and in the right place is critical to winning the attention of this season’s shoppers.
Personalize Your Message
Not only have shoppers come to expect ads that are targeted to their interests, these ads are also more likely to grab their attention, according to survey from video ad platform Eyeview. Their study revealed that 40% of students and 45% of parents notice personalization and agree that it influences their purchasing decisions. Brands who choose to follow suit will have an even better chance of engaging consumers and ultimately increasing sales.
Make a Compelling Offer
With no shortage of options to comparison shop and seek out money saving deals, retailers must give consumers a compelling reason to visit their store – whether it’s virtual or physical. Price will play an ultimate factor in the consumers’ decision-making process, so retailers must provide a winning offer before a competing retailer grabs their attention.
What other winning tactics do you plan to utilize in your back-to-school shopping campaign this season?