You’ve been repeatedly told that getting your Black Friday marketing on a point will be made or broken for your business this BFCM and holiday season. And that’s true to a significant extent.
Here’s what they don’t tell you about Black Friday marketing — it will not only help you get your BFCM weekend sales in order, but it indirectly helps you get ready for the upcoming Christmas shopping season that shortly follows.
Here’s everything you need to know about Black Friday marketing to help you design an effective and efficient strategy that’ll help your business answer the imminent question of how to plan for Black Friday promotions so that you meet its sales goals and end the year on a strong note.
For the uninitiated, though, a quick look at some basics before we begin.
Again, Why is Black Friday Marketing Important?
Here are some data points to re-emphasize the importance of planning well for Black Friday weekend. Black Friday has single-handedly been the busiest shopping day of the year in the United States since 2005.
2022 witnessed an estimated 196.7 million American shoppers from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday. As usual, Black Friday remained significant, recording close to 73 million in-store and 87 million online shoppers on the day alone.
Contrary to what you’ve likely read, your marketing strategy for BFCM (Black Friday Cyber Monday) can be simple and low-budget yet highly impactful.
Black Friday Marketing Ideas for Email and SMS Marketing
You could be a brick-and-mortar retailer focused on offline business, an SMB company (small to medium-sized business) that barely sends out a newsletter, or even an online store looking to scale ahead of this busy sales season.
Regardless, your Black Friday ecommerce strategy needs help. Here are some proven digital marketing strategies and tactics from which your marketing campaigns can derive great inspiration.
Crafting Black Friday Emails
If you’re struggling with Black Friday advertising ideas, remember that you don’t have to do anything fancy. It’s not Christmas or Easter. Customers don’t expect some huge marketing campaign that’s branded according to the holiday.
All you need to do, if you want to keep it short and sweet, is to draft an email that has three pieces of content:
- Your branding and company name;
- An announcement for all the discounts (add a coupon code if needed);
- A call to action (CTA).
While the game plan might seem deceivingly simple, but for the effort required, such a simple email will work wonders. Especially for ecommerce stores and any other online shopping business, since you’re essentially giving the customers what they want in one fell swoop.
Here’s an example:
SMS Strategies for Black Friday
Including SMS marketing in your Black Friday campaign is a surefire way to increase conversions and multiply sales, especially when combined with effective Black Friday email sequences.
If you haven’t optimized your SMS marketing for maximum profits or are new to text marketing, here are a few pointers:
- Optimize signup forms to accept mobile numbers;
- Set up website popups with exclusive discounts for SMS opt-ins;
- Configure SMS automation for post-purchase confirmation, post-buy upsells, cart abandonments, and others;
- Personalize your SMS texts with information specific to your subscribers;
- Avoid salesy phrases or being pushy in your texts since SMSes are an incredibly personal space;
- When it comes to SMS content, prefer being clear and concise over clever or funny;
- Last but not least, include a way for readers to opt out of your SMS messages conveniently;
For best results, intersperse your text messaging with emails, which will also positively influence your email campaign performance. For example, here’s how you can create an automation with SMS complementing it:
If you’re thinking about SMS marketing, now is almost the perfect time to begin preparing the ground for the holiday shopping season.
Teasing Black Friday Deals via Email
While it is sufficient to launch your offer before Black Friday, building some anticipation in a week or two before using email marketing could improve your sales hugely.
Besides, according to a survey by ThinkWithGoogle, shoppers have already completed 42% of their holiday shopping by the Black Friday and Cyber Monday period.
So you want your prospects to hold their purchases till you go live with your Black Friday online sales.
And we need to look no further than Apple to see how to do this correctly with an almost-perfect Black Friday teaser email:
A teaser Black Friday email’s primary job is to create desire, and Apple seems to get this. If the pride of owning a top-notch quality Apple product was not enough, they just threw in an Apple store gift card of up to $200 worth!
You can also create outstanding Black Friday emails! It’s a good thing it’s child play when you have an easy-to-use tool to do that. Check yourself:
The Ideal Black Friday Sales Email
Composing conversion-perfect Black Friday emails is never easy. Truth be told, everyone struggles with finding unique, cinderella-fit campaign ideas, especially when it concerns a mega event like the BFCM.
So, we share one of our favorite Black Friday emails for your inspiration. Freshly is a food startup that offers freshly made, storable meals for working individuals with busy lives. In its Black Friday email newsletter below, the company hits the mark where it counts.
Why do we love it?
- Clear $60 OFF offer made upfront, including breakup;
- Simple CTA that’s in sync with the offer;
- Implicit urgency: this week only!;
- Plenty of whitespace in the explanatory sections below, bringing all attention to text that is kept purposefully concise.
All-in-all, a well-designed email that we are sure raked in plenty of sales!
The Power of a Free Gift Offer
Another simple approach to get the most out of Black Friday and Cyber Monday without working too hard is to create a gift email. You’ve likely seen them – buy at our store for X amount and receive a free product.
Building such an email is the same approach as simple sales. Simply exchange the discounts for a coupon code that grants a free item and set a high enough bar for purchase amounts to avoid bleeding too many of them. That’s it!
Social Promotions for Black Friday
While other digital marketing channels, such as email, are given their fair share of attention, social media platforms often get stepmotherly treatment for BFCM campaigns.
We’re not talking about ‘duh’ things like posting on your timeline about the Black Friday sale. We’re talking about thinking outside the box!
For example, SaaS promotion inside a private Facebook group. How cool is that?
Lifetime deals are great for companies looking to acquire their first lot of users cheaply and fast. A lifetime deal is one where the user gets to use the SaaS software for as long as they want for a one-time fixed price.
One great way to do this is shown from a closed Facebook group named Ken Moo’s SaaS Lifetime Deals Group, boasting nearly 11K group members, most of them very active.
Check the below example of an organic post promoting their Black Friday giveaway. With over 100 likes and 300+ comments, it gave several newly launched products visibility and new user signup traction.
Why do we love it?
- The post headline makes the benefit very clear;
- Asks for clear and low-commitment yet fun engagement actions to enter the giveaway. E.g., posting your favorite GIF;
- Well formatted, making readability very easy;
- The use of emojis keeps things fun to read;
Apart from the fact that it’s a giveaway (who doesn’t love free lifetime SaaS software?), we love how a community-driven approach can help you maximize user engagement and sales and profits on the other.
Black Friday Marketing Ideas for Lead Acquisition
This section includes Black Friday marketing tips rarely spoken about – attracting and nurturing prospects way before sales start. But how do you promote if there aren’t people to promote to?
Trust the approaches below to have eyes on you when the BFCM comes:
Lead Collection With Popups
The best thing about Black Friday is that your market audience already comes in hot. They are ready to buy. So if you have a good product and combine it with a great offer, Black Friday shoppers will likely buy it like hotcakes.
You must begin building your target audience at least a month before (if not even earlier) with the help of Black Friday-specific popups and signup forms. Here are some quick tips for you to get it right:
- Place responsive popups and signup forms on your most visited as well as your most relevant content pieces;
- Create tease and intrigue by telling them just a little about what deals and shopping specials you have lined up while still keeping the details under wraps;
- Offer a special discount for early bird signups.
Once your lead generation is set to work on auto-pilot, it’s literally half the battle won.
Nurturing Leads to Black Friday Success
While the BFCM events barely last under four days, the fact remains that a sizeable majority of the sale happens before it all starts.
Your Black Friday popups and subscription forms are already active and collecting leads on automation. But it is equally important to run at least weekly emails to these new signups so that they stay warm and your brand remains top of mind.
While some attractive marketing tools exist from various vendors, attracting and nurturing Black Friday signups becomes easier when using a hassle-free, set-it-and-forget-it all-in-one marketing platform like Sender.
With tons of premade layouts, your high-converting popups and forms are only a click away, while effortless email automation ensures that your subscribers always get your perfect message at the right time.
Ignite Urgency With Flash Deals
The fear of missing out (FOMO) can be a powerful psychological trigger for humans. Urgency is deep-rooted in our human psyche, and activating this inside your subscribers can allow you to print money at will, literally.
Induce urgency in your emails by allowing a:
- Limited-time discount (e.g., next 2 days only);
- Limited-subscriber discount (e.g., first 100 buyers only);
- Limited-quantity discount (e.g., only for the first 1000 purchases).
At all times, maintain consistency and transparency when using this tactic.
We strongly advise against creating a false sense of urgency or scarcity. It could lead to a few extra trailing sales, but you could lose trust in the eyes of your prospects in the long run.
Pre-Sale Curiosity Building
Curiosity is the art of creating just the right amount of interest and hype in your prospect’s heart to leave behind an obsessed feeling that gets satisfied only when the offer unveils itself or as the purchase is made.
Google’s email below keeps its readers on the edge of their seats as they await the Black Friday offer launch:
Exclusive Early Access Offers
A common challenge that your marketing is likely to face is your competition. And they don’t even have to be selling the same or similar products.
The limited budget your prospect has is likely to be spent on buying other products before your Black Friday launch gets underway.
An easy way to overcome this situation is to go early with your offer launch like Brooklinen:
The headline “Black Friday on a Monday? Yup. Deals start now” makes no apologies about having come early while the attractive product photography and layout hold your attention and interest.
Social Media Contests & Engagement
Social media thrives on engagement with audiences. There’s no better way to get a lot of engagement and attention than holding a contest with a giveaway.
Many brands choose one of two routes when creating a contest:
- Ask followers to create a specific (usually branded) image or photo.
- Engage with content and use a particular hashtag.
Both of the choices are equally as effective. They are better, however, for slightly different goals. For Black Friday marketing, you’ll likely want to choose the second choice to draw as much attention to your ads as possible.
Additionally, the second choice requires less creative practice from your audience. Anything that introduces extra effort is likely to reduce the amount of participants. While it may make for some great content, it’s not as great for Black Friday as it’s not focused on that.
Teasing Early Black Friday Deals
Many consumers look for early discounts, especially those who want to avoid crowded spaces or lagging online stores. You can use social media posts to cater to that audience.
Black Friday Marketing Ideas for Sales Strategy
You know, and we know why we’re all here – to learn how to sell more on Black Friday. Grab some strategies that worked for us time and time again:
Unbeatable Black Friday Exclusives
Part of the attraction that Black Friday offers is the exclusive deals and discounts that wouldn’t otherwise be available throughout the year.
Customers expect a great offer, so if you ever want to get creative with your marketing, now is the time to go crazy. But the question you’ll likely have is what to sell on Black Friday.
Some examples of offers and ideas you can curate from:
- Exclusive Black Friday-only discounts;
- Buy One Get One (BOGO);
- FREE shipping above a threshold checkout value;
- FREE gift;
- FREE smaller product;
- FREE upgrade to a better product;
- Complementary product bundles;
- Early bird discounts;
- Loyalty points and more.
It is the deal they are after, so your product will sell itself if you can produce a great offer.
Perfecting the Abandoned Cart Approach
Black Friday will likely result in a ton of traffic to your landing pages and web assets, but not everyone will buy, and that’s all right since it is not something you can directly control.
However, there’s something that your marketing strategy has to take into account and optimize for – abandoned carts.
A cart abandonment is when someone shops for deals but fails to check out for some reason. Your goal must be to get as many of these interested buyers as possible back to your checkout page and have them finish the transaction.
Here’s what you can try:
- Automated 3-part email sequence that triggers upon cart abandonment at 4, 12, and 24 hrs;
- SMS reminder coaxing them back to complete the checkout;
- FREE shipping or extra discount IF they complete the checkout within a stipulated period.
The best part about monetizing cart abandonment is that winning back some of the lost revenue is straightforward.
Upselling & Cross-Selling Mastery
Another way to approach SMB pricing strategies is to upsell and cross-sell. Instead of dropping prices of items right off the bat, a tiered system is created. After reaching a set sum, a small discount is applied.
For example, an SMB could use a pricing strategy that grants a 2% discount for each $100 spent up to $500. Deals like these work like a small sales pitch each time the customer comes close to the sum where they would get a larger discount, enticing them to add one more final item, thereby increasing the average order value.
Timing Your Black Friday Campaigns
We’ve mentioned the importance of starting early several times in this article. There are a multitude of great reasons why you should do so. However, the primary reason is that you’re preparing your audience for the sales.
You might have heard the old sales adage that it takes 7 or even more touches before you make a sale. The same goes for holiday marketing. You don’t want to drop the discounts, even if they’re expected. Some people will have planned their expenses and won’t be able to participate. Many people will miss your message.
Additionally, you shouldn’t end Black Friday sales on the dot. Many companies choose to extend their Black Friday marketing campaigns with Cyber Monday deals. It’s an effective tactic because it helps those lagging and gives more time for people to find your store.
Black Friday Marketing Ideas for Collaborations
There is a hundred plus one way to market on Black Friday. And some are less visible yet effective than the ones discussed above. That is – collaborations:
Leveraging Affiliate Networks
There is no better sight for affiliate marketers than a hungry market ready to lap up their best offers. And a market filled with people looking for red-hot Black Friday deals in an online shopping frenzy is about as hungry as it gets.
Here are some pointers to nail your Black Friday affiliate marketing campaigns.
- Deploy popups with your best offers early;
- Design custom BFCM resources to improve conversions;
- Optimize landing pages for speed, load, and messaging;
- Nurture your new email newsletter signups with updates and relevant information;
- Use scarcity authentically and urgency without overdoing it;
As a business owner, having a successful Black Friday affiliate campaign is not just about having high stakes and incentives for your affiliate partners but also about your unbeatable offer. Don’t hesitate to say it out loud in your creatives, landing pages, and email campaigns!
Social Selling Techniques
Social selling is the art of using your existing social media handles from Facebook, Instagram, X (Twitter), etc., to engage and connect with interested prospects and lead them through the sales funnel all the way to becoming loyal customers.
Here’s how you can use your social media presence like a landing page to convert interest into currency:
- Fully redo and optimize your social media cover photo, banners, and bio sections for your upcoming Black Friday shopping event;
- Create anticipation and tease with high quality post ideas, slogans, and captions that generate tons of engagement;
- Use platform specific optimizations to draw attention to your sale event further. E.g. pinning your Black Friday-specific post to your profile or using targeted hashtags on Instagram to achieve higher reach for your organic posts;
- Offer a social media special discount for followers;
- Engage with your followers in DMs one to one to create a personal bond.
Social promotions can help complement your overall Black Friday marketing strategy, which likely includes paid ads and SEO, by meeting people where they already are and by softly drawing their attention and interest to your business.
Collaborating with Top Influencers
Unless you already have great engagement on social media, it can be challenging to get traction for your Black Friday campaigns there.
A better way to approach your social media strategy would be to get influencers and creators to support and push your brand in front of their niche audience. Most influencers already have a following that trusts them and enjoys interacting with their content. This can help you cut through the clutter and reach out to ready and willing prospects.
Influencers and creators can impactfully support your efforts to generate awareness, drive traffic, and boost sales for your Black Friday marketing campaigns.
According to Adobe, 20% of people make holiday purchases based on recommendations from social media influencers.
Examples of how you can work together with influencers and creators for your Black Friday promo:
- Influencer-led content such as unboxing videos, product reviews, tutorials, and use guides;
- Share endorsements and social proof;
- Offer outrageous and unique influencer-only discounts;
- Promote curated gift wishlists and guides;
- Put up collaborative posts with them on social media.
22 Black Friday marketing strategies… You must be under sweat! To see you off to your successful holiday shopping journey and give you some ease, we’ve put the main points we’ve discussed in a short, handy list:
- Black Friday marketing is crucial for businesses as it drives sales during the BFCM weekend and indirectly prepares for the upcoming Christmas shopping season.
- Contrary to common belief, Black Friday marketing strategies can be simple and budget-friendly while delivering significant results.
- Email and SMS marketing can be highly effective for Black Friday promotions, focusing on clear branding, discount announcements, and compelling CTAs.
- Building anticipation with teaser emails and exclusive early access offers can maximize sales during the Black Friday period, as many shoppers have already completed a significant portion of their holiday shopping by then.
- Implementing strategies to recover abandoned carts and offering upsell and cross-sell options can significantly boost Black Friday sales.
- Collaborating with affiliates, optimizing social media, and partnering with influencers can help businesses expand their reach and engagement during the Black Friday season.
Also read: 10 Flash Sale Email Examples & Subject Lines