How You Can Use Influencers For Your Brand’s Black Friday Promotions
It goes without saying that 2020 has been a year filled with challenges. But challenges present an opportunity for innovation, and we’ve seen a bevy of them since the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic. And though has continued to evolve over the years, it’s going to look much different than anyone could have expected this November, as the world continues to navigate the global health crisis surrounding COVID-19.
Black Friday is officially on Nov. 27th this year, as it traditionally always falls on the day after Thanksgiving. But while the date remains the same as in years past, there’s still much to be determined for this year’s holiday shopping season. Specifically, whether or not people will even be allowed to even shop in person.
While merchants continue to slowly release their plans for the 2020 holiday shopping season, we continue to watch how this year unfolds. What will be different about this year’s biggest shopping event? What changes should we expect in the present and the future? And how can your brand utilize tactics like influencer marketing to be successful with your Black Friday promotions?
How Influencers Can Boost Your Brand’s Black Friday Promotions
Even before the world was hit with COVID-19, the nature of Black Friday has been changing. With the increased use of the internet, foot traffic on Black Friday has actually decreased by 4 percent, even though holiday-related spending has continued to increase. Why is this happening, you ask? Well, consumers are shopping online more than ever. Consumers continue to increase their online shopping frequency, with 64 percent of people foregoing in-store purchases.
Regardless of whether a business operates as a brick-and-mortar storefront or conducts its business solely online, getting a jump on your Black Friday promotions bodes well for the success of your holiday season. It’s crucial that brands start early, as nearly 54 % of consumers in the United States start their holiday shopping before Black Friday.
If your customers are online, that’s where your business needs to be. And when it comes to being online, there’s arguably no one who fits the bill better than an influencer. These online creators have turned their social platforms into a digital podium of sorts, garnering the eyes and attention of their large audiences. For brands looking to get out the message – and spread holiday cheer – influencers may present the best opportunity to reach potential consumers and meet them where they are.
Planning A Black Friday Influencer Campaign
While an influencer campaign is a multi-faceted tactic, there are a few key components to consider when planning an upcoming influencer marketing campaign for Black Friday. What offers is your brand looking to promote? What social platforms are best suited for your product and offering? What type of audience will respond best to these offerings? The answers to these questions make up the foundation of your influencer campaign.
Additionally, you need to think about questions like which influencers would potentially work best for your campaign? What are your KPI’s (key performance indicators) and desired results? And, of course, the age-old question; what is your budget?
It’s quite a bit to take into account. For brands seeking additional guidance, partnering with an influencer marketing platform like Influsoft can help you pull important data and inform your decision making in both the planning and execution stages. But regardless of whether you plan to utilize a software solution or manage your campaign in-house, a well-thought-out plan is the best practice for achieving success with your Black Friday initiatives.
Influencers Can Help Black Friday Promotions That Extend Beyond The Weekend
We all experience it during this time of year.
As the holiday shopping season approaches, your inbox becomes inundated with product ads for all the upcoming deals brands are running in anticipation of the holidays. Black Friday 2020 is unique in many facets. But one unique element of this year’s promotions is that many sales will extend well into Cyber Monday, and some even beyond. While some doorbusters (including the online versions of “doorbusters”) will only be available for a limited time, a number of other offers will be available for the entire weekend and into Cyber Monday.
With this in mind, partnering with an influencer presents brands with a viable opportunity to create both promotions and relationships that extend beyond one-off partnerships. This prolonged sales period in 2020 produces a landscape in which influencers can not only reach desired audiences in the places they spend their time (on social media) but also have multiple days and touchpoints in which to deliver your brand message.
Get Input From The Influencers You Partner With
When a company partners with an influencer who has an authentic connection to their brand, the creative input that the influencer brings to the campaign can prove to be invaluable. And it makes perfect sense, being that influencers understand their target audience better than anyone. They have an inherent gift to use this knowledge in order to create highly-targeted content.
This is one of the many reasons that it’s important to build genuine partnerships with influencers, or partner with an agency that does. Choosing the right influencer is a crucial part of any campaign, but selecting the ideal candidates also brings additional value, as we have begun to highlight. Their ability to take your brand message or Black Friday promotion and tailor their content around it to appeal to their highly-targeted audience is a huge aspect of their general appeal. So if you are partnering with an influencer for the holiday shopping season, ask for their input on how to promote your brand offers.
The best, most effective Black Friday content is that which feels authentic and is a product of a genuine partnership between the brand and the influencer.
Brands Should Focus On Inspirational And Creator-Led Content For Black Friday Promotions
One of the key reasons that influencers are such potent advertising tools is that people follow them for inspiration and assistance with their purchasing decisions. Showcasing your brand’s products will help consumers decide what to buy, and in a sea of offers and endless promotions, the kind of content that breaks through the noise on Black Friday is informative, helpful, and most importantly, authentic.
Influencer content is very effective in alerting customers to Black Friday deals that they may otherwise not be privy to. With this in mind, consider formulating a strategy around creating inspirational content that directs your customer where you want them to go, leading them to your best offers and promotions.
Make The Most Of Purchasing Features On Social Platforms
When Black Friday rolls around every year, people are looking to get their hands on the best deals as soon as they find out about them. In light of this reality, utilizing a platform’s buying features can help make that happen.
In particular, Instagram has a multitude of great buying features that are set up for conversion. If you’re partnering with influencers, utilizing the swipe up and product tag options in posts and Stories helps consumers find the products that they’re seeing in their feed and purchase them without having to leave the app.
Try to plan ahead and focus on understanding which of your brand’s products will be best suited to certain platforms. For example, if your brand sells a product that is targeted at a large demographic, you may want to have a good mix of creators across multiple platforms (like Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok). This allows you to showcase your products and reach a varied audience across multiple channels. Utilizing different platforms – and specifically, the buying features of each – gives brands the opportunity to reach new potential customers and provide their audience with different kinds of content to influence their purchasing decisions.
This Isn’t The End Of Black Friday
While 2020 has been a year filled with trials and tribulations, many of which are a direct result of the Coronavirus pandemic, Black Friday isn’t simply a victim of current circumstances. In fact, analysts have been calling out the death of Black Friday for years now, as foot traffic at brick-and-mortar storefronts has decreased with the growth of online shopping. Retailers’ plans to shift toward digital are more prevalent than ever in 2020, as brands look to stretch the holiday period out and get the most juice for the squeeze.
But rather than just a temporary adjustment to an uncertain economy in the midst of a global health crisis, experts say it’s simply an acceleration of a trend that was happening before.
“It has become less of a physical event and more of a virtual event in the last five to six years,” says Dave Marcotte, a senior vice president at Kantar Retail, adding that the shopping holiday doesn’t possess the same “immediacy” it once did. The reason for this?
“Amazon and other online retailers have used it as a means of reducing the competitiveness of retailers that would have traditionally been in that space. You honestly can’t say Macy’s or Nordstrom have as much to do with Black Friday other than they participate; they don’t drive anything, they don’t drive thinking. That wasn’t true 20 years ago, 20 years ago they set the pace, the tone, and what is going to be sold,” he said.
Black Friday, in both its traditional and current form, isn’t going anywhere. It’s simply changing. We may never see the ravenous crowds breaking down doors and sprinting towards a flat-screen TV, but that doesn’t mean we won’t continue to see huge promotions and growing advertising budgets. By beefing up your brand’s online presence this year, it could help give you a leg up on the competition and put you ahead of the curve heading into 2021. Brands without a strong online presence are going to find it tough to compete on Black Friday this year – and even tougher beyond that.
It’s been a weird year, and Black Friday 2020 is likely going to be no different. But hey, count is in on the action! Regardless of what promotion you are running, influencers can provide a much-needed boost to your advertising efforts, in a time where it’s crucial for brands to close Q4 with a strong finish. Expect big things to come from the tech sector, with a number of truly innovative changes to the shopping world on the horizon. No matter what happens, we’ll continue to monitor the landscape and keep an eye out for the best deals — so keep those credit cards on hand (or fingerprints ready, for you iPhone users), and let’s get shopping, shall we?