The festive season is just around the corner and holiday shoppers are looking for the best deals on the market. According to the National Retail Security (NRS) holiday survey, this holiday shopping season has great sales potential: retail sales will reach a total of between $727.9 billion and $730.7 billion this year, with consumers planning to spend an average of $1,047.83, and 56% of people say they will shop online.
It’s no wonder that the holiday season is the most profitable period of the entire year for most e-commerce companies. Since the Instagram community has grown to one billion users, many companies plan to make the most out of Instagram shopping, so they promote their seasonal products and services on the platform.
Case in point:
To make the most out of the year-end selling season in 2018, Milton & Goose teamed up with influencers to promote their UGC photos via Instagram Stories ads. As a result, the company got massive exposure on Instagram: the campaign achieved a 2.8X increase in fourth-quarter holiday sales; a 4.6X increase in 2018 Black Friday sales; and 38% of unique website visitors. The founder Shari Raymond also claimed that 50% of customers discovered Milton & Goose on Instagram.
The bottom line? Instagram is a perfect place to boost seasonal sales; check out these nine great Christmas ideas for Instagram that you should try this holiday season:
1. Create a Festive Atmosphere
The Christmas season is about Santa Claus, gingerbread cookies, and the Home Alone movies. This period often reminds us of childhood memories, so people feel more nostalgic during the holidays. The closer the holiday season is, the more people want to get into the Christmas spirit!
Here’s the deal:
Creating content that makes followers feel good evokes an emotional response that affects consumer shopping behaviours. In other words, it encourages followers to buy and spend more.
If you want to leverage the power of nostalgia and appeal to followers’ emotions, create a festive atmosphere on Instagram. From posting Christmas-themed photos to using the Instagram Stories music sticker, there are many ways to get festive.
Here’s an example from Oreo:
Oreo knows that people love animated content, so the company creates short yet fun and delightful videos that help their audience get into the holiday spirit. When your content creates a festive atmosphere, you evoke followers’ emotions. As a result, people are more likely to share your content with their friends and families, which means increasing user engagement, organic reach, and seasonal sales.
If you don’t have the time or budget to create branded animated videos, you can find Christmas stock images and customize these visuals by adding your logo or font. It’s the easiest way to create a festive atmosphere without putting much effort.
2. Share Exclusive Content
No matter what your business niche is, creating engaging content is an important step to hook the attention of followers, interest them in your products, and turn them into customers. And if you want to stay ahead of your competitors during the holiday season, you need to give your followers a sense of belonging that helps to create long-lasting relationships with your potential customers. As a result, it helps to increase organic reach, boost user engagement and spread the word about your product with ease.
Case in point:
To introduce the beginning of the holiday season, Dunkin’ brought back its Peppermint Mocha and announced it on Instagram. In honour of this seasonal offering for the holidays, the company created a private account where Dunkin’ shared exclusive content for its fans.
Since the company announced that only a limited number of follower requests would be accepted, followers were active when discussing the news. Although only 295 followers were able to join the exclusive community, other fans posted 975 comments, sharing their happiness about the beverage relaunch.
If your followers aren’t engaged, it’s nearly impossible to promote your products and therefore boost seasonal sales. Thus, it’s important to make them feel special by sharing exclusive content.
3. Take Followers Behind the Scenes
With a growing variety of products on the market, modern customers are overloaded with choice. For brands, this means it’s getting harder to stand out from your competitors and encourage your target audience to choose your products. However, 81% of customers find brand trust as a deciding factor when they’re considering a purchase, so being authentic on social media is a must.
If you want to increase brand loyalty and trust, take your followers behind the scenes. Just check out how Sarah Patrick, the founder of Kiel James Patrick, did it on her Instagram profile:
When it comes to the festive season, people crave human interactions more than ever. Sharing behind the scenes content on Instagram is an excellent way to you humanize your brand. Since it’s a perfect time for family fun and togetherness, you can learn from Kiel James Patrick and demonstrate a family-like environment that can help to strengthen your bond with customers and encourage them to consider your brand as an option.
4. Provide Social Proof with Christmas UGC
In the era of social shopping, providing your followers with social proof is a must. Today, 93% of customers claim that user-generated content (UGC) helps them make a purchasing decision. Thus, UGC isn’t an option these days. When you implement UGC to your marketing strategy, you kill two birds with one stone as you save time and money on content creation and improve brand loyalty and trust.
Modern people love taking photos, and it’s your perfect chance to get user-generated content with ease. Moreover, if your customers are loyal to your brand, they will be happy to take photos of your product for a chance to be featured on your Instagram profile.
Here’s how Cluse encourages its followers to share seasonal user-generated content that fits the current trends and Christmas mood:
But if you’re not a big brand with an army of loyal followers, you can collaborate with micro-influencers to get Christmas user-generated content. Moreover, it’s an easy way to get your followers into the festive mood, increase brand trust, and encourage them to buy from you.
5. Give Away Branded Products and Gift Cards
The festive season is all about giving and receiving gifts. If you want to reward your loyal followers, think about running a holiday giveaway. People love free stuff, so hosting a contest is a proven way to cause a buzz around your product, increase organic reach, attract new followers, and promote your seasonal products without being too pushy.
When done right, your giveaway can attract potential customers who consider your product as an option. For example, choosing branded products or gift cards as presents for the winners is a great way to attract your target audience who is genuinely interested in your products. Here’s an example of this strategy in action from Forever21:
Giving away branded products is a proven way to attract your potential customers who are interested in your brand and products. Simply put, you attract your target audience. And when you give away or gift cards, you give your participants the freedom to choose the gift whatever they’d like. For brands, this means an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone as you can do market research and increase sales.
6. Create a Holiday Gift Guide
Behind every Christmas gift is a struggle for making the right choice. 75% of Americans admit they did not like a gift they received. People put a lot of time, effort, and creativity into finding the perfect gift for their friends and families. However, thinking about gift ideas is one of the most stressful things for the majority of customers. Thus, you can help your followers solve their problem and offer a holiday gift guide.
J.Crew shared a post to help their followers find gift ideas, featuring their products:
Not only do you help your customers find gift ideas, but you can also promote your products without being too pushy. And if you want to satisfy last-minute shoppers who don’t have much time to pick personalized presents for their dearest and nearest, offer e-gifts and gift cards.
7. Promote Seasonal Products and Collections
The holiday season is all about ugly Christmas sweaters, mugs, and matching family plaid pyjama sets. No matter how good your products are, it’s important to announce seasonal products to satisfy your followers and acquire new customers.
According to the best Shopify experts, offering new seasonal products and collections is a proven way to level up your Instagram store. Why? Since these products are available for a short period, it creates a sense of urgency. It encourages customers to make the purchase decision faster.
Here’s how GAP uses Instagram to promote its holiday top picks:
If you want to go the extra mile to promote your seasonal products, consider using Instagram Stories for your business as this short-lived content also creates a sense of urgency and helps to beat the Instagram algorithm. Just imagine: Over 500 million people create or watch IG Stories daily.
8. Attract Local Customers with Exclusive Offers
If you’re a local business that wants to attract consumers and increase sales in the store, Instagram is a great place to promote your products. Consumers search for information online before visiting your local business. A recent Bright Local report survey claims that 97% of people search for local businesses online, and 86% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase.
To cause a buzz around your holiday marketing campaign, think about sharing exclusive offers that will turn followers into customers. Let’s take Starbucks, for example. To attract local customers and create a reusable-cup habit, the company gave away free reusable red cups when people bought any holiday beverage last year. After announcing this offer on Instagram, the post received almost 475k likes.
The promotion caused a lot of buzz, and some locations ran out of cups early in the morning. If you want to understand whether your business can afford to give your followers something for free in the hope of acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones, get math assistance to calculate whether your promotion can still turn a profit. After all, you want to boost seasonal sales instead of going bankrupt.
9. Share Time-Limited Discounts
Since consumers buy many gifts for their friends and family members, it’s no wonder that almost 60% of people say they plan to take advantage of retailers’ sales and discounts. The bigger your discount is, the more potential customers it can attract. If you want to encourage followers to take action faster, you need to create a sense of urgency – make your sale time-limited.
Just look at how Bali Body did it. To promote its bundles, the company announced the 20% off promo code, “BOXING20” with an eye-catching animated graphic. Bali Body kept a focus on its offer, showing off their bundles. This Instagram post got over 14,000 views in one day.
Source: Bali Body
If you want to create a similar post that hooks the attention of your target audience, consider using Instagram post templates as it helps you keep a clear and consistent branding on Instagram without taking too much time or effort. As a result, your posts grab attention, and you are more likely to turn interested followers into customers.
Everyone enjoys giving and receiving gifts during the holidays; the festive season is the perfect period for companies of all sizes to boost seasonal sales and grow revenue. If you promote your products on Instagram, you can draw inspiration from the ideas mentioned above to find new ways to boost your seasonal sales.
Moreover, Instagram shopping is getting extremely popular among holiday shoppers, so don’t miss your chance to satisfy your customers!
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