If you want to maximize your profits over the holidays, you need to start thinking about your strategy right now!
In our previous blog post, we talked about the importance of pre-planning and how getting ahead of the game is key to a successful holiday season.
Today, we’re going into detail about how you make that plan a success, and the pitfalls you need to avoid doing, so… Let’s dive in!
Lock and Load: “Big Details” to Getting the Sale and Maximizing Profits
One of the big benefits to working during the holiday season is that clients are willing to spend a bit more on promotional products – everyone is in the giving spirit and wanting to pass that feeling on. Gift sets and multi-product kits, as well as customized packaging, can make a holiday campaign, and fortuitously for you, they’re great items when it comes to your profit margins.
We touched on this point in article number one, but it bears repeating here. Make sure you’re 100% clear on your client’s needs and budget from the get-go, and that you are presenting a product selection that is tailor-made to those needs. If you don’t have this locked in pretty sharpish, you run the risk of losing their attention. But, once you’ve got the foundation laid and have a good feel for how they are leaning, there’s no reason you can’t take the chance to upsell.
To make yourself stand out from the crowd and push the offer you’re presenting over the edge you need to allow your client to experience the product. Showing your clients product photos and virtuals is great, 3D Interactive Virtuals are better but, nothing comes close to a touch-and-feel experience that product samples provide.
Simply put, product samples sell! We recommended you send them out or show them as often as possible. If you deem that big account is “worthwhile” then work with the supplier to make spec samples with your account’s logo and branding on them. Some suppliers will offer free samples of products, and some will provide samples at a minimal price. Whatever your needs, make sure to reach out to the supplier if you have a big opportunity so you can hit it home with spec samples.
The same goes for marketing materials such as e-mailable flyers. Good promotional products suppliers will happily personalize their marketing materials for you, creating marketing flyers that feature your logo, name and contact information (on a related note, if you want to request a custom flyer from Toddy, fill out the custom flyer request form here).
“Little Details” that Make the “Big Difference.”
Plan Your Time
In the previous article, we talked about the importance of getting ahead of the game when it comes to holiday promotions. Reaching out to your customers early with great gift ideas and encouraging them to start thinking about the holiday well in advance is essential for knocking it out of the park without pulling your hair out.
But, once you’ve got that proactivity ball rolling, you need to keep the momentum going throughout your holiday promotional campaign. It’s all too easy to start off strong, get the client on board and then get distracted with other things until crunch time. That’s a recipe for disaster though, especially as the holiday season throws in all kinds of curve balls when it comes to time management.
Once you’ve got your client on-board, draw out your plan of what the next few months are going to look like. When you’re putting this together, you need to consider the crunch dates – the times that your client needs certain products, as well as the date of any promotional event or campaign that they have scheduled for the holiday season.
It’s also vital to factor in that the holiday months have fewer working days – there’s nothing worse than feeling like you’re on track with progress for one or more of your client’s promotional products, only to realize you have an important deadline scheduled for a day when no-one will be in work.
From there, start planning your workload so that you can get things done in advance of those crunch dates with plenty of room to spare. That way, you avoid the stress of working to the wire at the last moment, create a buffer for any complications that might come your way and can keep up good communication with your clients without getting frazzled. Speaking of communication…
A lack of communication with both your client and supplier is a sure-fire way to throw a spanner in the works when it comes to meeting your holiday goals (and maximizing profits in the process). While it’s easy to lose track of people – especially during the busy holiday season – you need to make sure that you’re touching base with both sides to keep things running smoothly.
For clients, being kept in the loop is essential. You might be confident that everything is going to plan with their promotional products and everything might be running like clockwork. But, if they don’t know that, it makes them uneasy. Trust in your abilities gets eroded. And that trust isn’t just key to making your holiday campaign run as smoothly as possible. It’s vital to your long-term strategy for earning repeat business.
Similarly, suppliers need to be kept up-to-date with the goings on so that they can work as efficiently as possible. If there are any changes to dates, if the campaign brief is altered, or if products are needed in greater quantities, they need to know. A great supplier will be able to roll with the punches and work with any challenges that come your way, but only if they’re in the loop and made aware of changes as soon as you know of them.
Oh, and one more thing; don’t be afraid to place some urgency on your client when you’re getting close to “that date” – the day when the order needs to be placed to come in on time for the event. You might feel like you’re pushy, but you’re not. It’s a problem for you and your client if the order doesn’t come in on time, so don’t be afraid to be vocal with your reminders at the crunch date gets closer.