Preparing Early Is Key For Retail Marketers' Holiday Success

Marketers that adhere to the Stark family motto and prepare for the holidays in advance are more likely to report successful winter seasons, per a new study released Thursday by Campaigner.

Preparation is key to holiday sales success, according to a survey of 564 retailers polled by j2 Global, Inc.’s email marketing solution. A third of retailers who began preparing for the holiday season before September reported a very successful 2016, compared to 22% of retailers who began preparing after September.

In fact, 62% of retail marketers responded that early preparation of marketing content and promotions was the most helpful resources during the holiday season. Twice as many retailers selected preparation over the second most helpful holiday resource -- having a mobile responsive website.

Email was ranked as the most effective form of advertising with the highest success rate, according to Campaigner, with 66% of respondents selecting email as the best way to reach out to customers. Email outranked social media, online advertising, and print advertising as the best marketing channel.

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The most effective way to boost email marketing during the holiday season is via personalization, with 40% of retailers selecting it as the most effective way to turbocharge their email efforts.

Although email outperformed social media, this does not mean that marketers should not invest in social channels. Eighty-eight percent of respondents plan to invest marketing spend into Facebook during the 2017 holiday season, while 46% plan to invest in the Facebook-owned Instagram. Thirty-seven percent of marketers plan to invest in Twitter, 16% in Pinterest, and only 3% in Snapchat. 

It’s no surprise that 4% more marketers are planning to start holiday preparations before September this year, and many of them will be turning to email marketing.

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