Marketers seem to start talking about the holidays a little earlier every year. There is always a sense of urgency relating to the most lucrative sales period of the year. However, the 2022 season looks a little different.
The 2022 holiday season remains the most significant marketing opportunity of the year for many businesses. However, the global cost-of-living crisis and the ever-present hangover from the COVID-19 pandemic will considerably impact consumers’ buying habits and available budget to spend on gifting and celebrations.
The Holidays 2022 — Changing Consumer Habits
Recent press reports suggest that shoppers in the US will dramatically reduce their holiday spending in line with the current squeeze on household finances. Many of those individuals intend to start their holiday shopping early. 30% of consumers have started their festive shopping already, and 75% hope to take advantage of savings afforded by sales events like Black Friday. This means that Thanksgiving weekend is no longer the traditional start of the holiday shopping season. In fact, it could actually be the last opportunity to make those seasonal sales.
It’s not just the cost-of-living crisis that is changing consumer habits. The ongoing supply-chain crisis (a knock-on effect of the COVID-19 pandemic closing factories and creating delays at ports) means some products might not be as readily available as they once were. For example, suppose you are in the market for a new bicycle or anything with a semiconductor (basically everything from a smartphone to a new car). In that case, you probably don’t want to hang around too long waiting for a bargain. Unfortunately, those deals just aren’t going to be available this year.
What Does This Mean for Marketers?
Fortune will favor the organized in 2022. However, for marketing departments with limited resources, being organized for the peak holiday sales season isn’t always so easy.
While previous holiday seasons have seen marketers utilize the summer months to build out and test their MarTech stack and marketing strategies, they may not have the luxury of time this year.
Now may not be the time to build and launch a new and untested eCommerce platform or start messing around with a mission-critical piece of software like your payment gateway. However, there is still time to look at legacy systems and marketing strategies like paid search, email and marketing automation, and social media activities to ensure they are fully optimized to help you meet the demands of the holiday season.
Optimization doesn’t only mean all of your marketing technology and strategies are fully aligned. Your people need to be firing on all cylinders as well, and time is in short supply to ensure they are fully prepared. This is where working with an agency partner like emfluence can help.
How an Agency Partner Can Help
When you work with an agency partner like emfluence, you not only have the benefit of hitting the ground running with best-of-breed technology and expertise. When you consider the limited time between now and the holiday rush, time is of the essence. Whereas it might take you weeks or even months to get your campaign strategy in place, a good agency partner will be able to ramp up your campaigns much more efficiently.
You also have the benefits of a “hive mind” fully versed in delivering fully optimized campaign strategies utilizing the full capabilities of best-in-breed MarTech systems.
A good agency partner will not only provide the expertise you need to manage powerful search campaigns. They will also have the resources available to ensure your paid search activities are fully integrated with all your other marketing channels. This includes highly complementary strategies like email and helping you fill any knowledge gaps in your organization.
It’s Called a Partnership for a Reason
When you work with a good search agency, you are not relinquishing your responsibilities to a third party. Instead, you are entering a partnership that is dedicated to your business’s continued success.
Because every business is different, your search agency will take its time to analyze any previous campaign data and optimize your strategy based on your ongoing marketing objectives.
While your agency partner will be able to help you better define your success, only you will be able to define what your objectives look like. Yes, this will require an investment in time to brief your agency but remember, no agency worth their salt will work with you without a carefully considered brief. This doesn’t mean that your agency won’t help you with your brief. If you know your limitations, you only have to ask.
All Eyes On the Prize
When you work with a dedicated search agency, you can be reassured that your campaigns are constantly being analyzed and optimized by people who know what they are doing. This reduces the risk of campaigns burning through your budget with no promise of return or being prematurely canceled when future profits from customer lifetime value are brought into consideration.
So in answer to the question posed in this article: Is it too late to implement search strategies for the holiday season? — the answer is no. But if you want to work with a serious partner to help you achieve your objectives this season, time is in short supply.
To learn how the search marketing experts at emfluence can help you maximize the opportunities of the holiday season in 2022 and beyond, contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org.