Where do your potential customers find inspiration for holiday shopping? And when it’s time to shop for the holidays, will they remember your brand? Get a jump start on holiday sales with October marketing ideas designed to amplify brand awareness.
Fall promotions can increase your brand and business visibility, attracting new customers just in time for Black Friday. Below, we’ll explore why brand awareness campaigns are essential, and strategies for boosting visibility and gathering leads before the holidays hit.
Why Brand Awareness Is a Top Goal Before the Holidays
Last year, holiday sales rose by 8.3%, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). This includes a 23.9% increase in online and non-store sales. For 2021, eMarketer estimates “total US holiday retail sales” will grow by 2.7%, and 18.9% of those sales will occur online.
According to Pinterest, “66% of weekly US Pinners say the “inspiration phase” of shopping influences what they buy.” Therefore, October marketing ideas should introduce your products and services to your audience.
Unlike sales advertisements, brand awareness isn’t about a hard sell. Instead, it involves delivering value and increasing consumer familiarity with your company.
A defined brand awareness strategy helps you:
- Introduce your brand values and mission to newcomers
- Add subscribers to your email or text messaging list
- Gauge your audience’s shopping priorities
- Show consumers why your brand is different
- Attract new social media followers
By increasing brand visibility early in the season, you can gain a competitive advantage. It’ll give you a chance to connect with your audience and build relationships before holiday stress, gatherings, and more consume their lives.
Best October Marketing Ideas and Brand Awareness Strategies
Last year, 56% of consumers planned to shop earlier compared to 42% in 2019. And there’s a good chance that shoppers will hit the stores early again, as many companies report product shortages and shipping delays. So, it’s critical to increase consumer awareness as soon as possible.
The best way to improve visibility is to develop a multi-channel campaign personalized to your target market. High-impact actions should be memorable yet consistent with your brand guidelines.
The goal is to get consumers to interact multiple times with your digital assets and platforms. Use the following strategies and October marketing ideas to boost brand awareness before the holiday season.
1. Engage Your Audience Online
While consistent branding enhances brand recognition, repeated interactions improve brand awareness. Online engagement fosters relationships and gives your company an “in” with your audience. Consequently, digital platforms are an ideal spot to spread the news about your brand.
Take these steps to increase engagement online:
- Develop a holiday hashtag: Create a unique hashtag for the holidays. Keep it simple and give it a purpose. Let fans know you’ll share top-selling items, flash sales, and freebies, and they can find details by searching your hashtag on social media.
- Host a hashtag contest: Boost awareness about your hashtag by hosting a contest. Ask your audience to post a photo or the answer to your question on their social media page. They can add the hashtag to their post to enter the contest.
- Interact with hashtag users: Complete regular searches or set up a social listening tool to determine when people use your hashtag. Leave a comment on their post or ask if you can share their content on your website.
- Collect user-generated content: UGC is a fun way to recognize your audience and recommend products. Once you have permission, display UGC from hashtag campaigns in emails and social media. You can even add testimonials to product pages.
2. Showcase Your Brand Story on Instagram
According to Facebook, “one in three online shoppers say Facebook and Instagram help them to discover new products or services during the holiday season.” In addition, 86% of online shoppers using these platforms ultimately make a purchase.
During the discovery stage, brand stories are particularly important. The art of storytelling builds relationships and generates interest. They help people visualize the experiences discussed.
Devise an Instagram Story, and focus on sharing information about your brand and products. Talk about your values and offer a sneak-peek into your operations. Plus, don’t forget to:
- Put a brand hashtag and geotags to your Instagram Story
- Insert links to informational posts and landing pages
- Use Instagram Stickers to highlight your location or take a poll
- Show your products in action with user-generated content
- Add your Instagram Story to Story Highlights to increase visibility
- Promote your latest Instagram giveaway
3. Increase Email Sign-ups
People check their personal and business emails constantly. But, marketing and sales messages flood their inboxes, and many messages go unopened. Stand out from the crowd with a sharable buyer’s gift guide.
Incorporate the following best practices to ensure fans share your gift guide far and wide:
- Keep it short: At this point, you’re driving brand awareness, not conversions. A lengthy catalog may overwhelm your audience. Identify items of most interest to your customers and use captions to highlight categories.
- Produce a mobile-friendly guide: Many consumers will flip through your buyer’s guide on their cell phones. Double-check that your guide downloads and opens on smartphones, tablets, and desktops.
- Create a dedicated landing page: A landing page is where your audience enters their email address for the download. It’s also a prime spot to sign them up for your email newsletter.
- Design an email sequence: Use an email autoresponder to send an email greeting to new subscribers immediately. Subsequent emails should amplify your brand by emphasizing with your customers and offering solutions.
- Invite subscribers to share your guide: Add call-to-actions in email and social media posts encouraging fans to forward your guide or share the landing page link with their friends. You could even offer a giveaway referral link to reward those with the most shares or sign-ups.
4. Stay Top of Mind With Micro-Holidays
Micro-holidays, also called social media holidays, are dates consumers and brands celebrate or recognize online. Using your brand hashtag and the one associated with the social media holiday can increase brand awareness.
While there are countless monthly micro-holidays, here are seven September and October marketing ideas to prioritize:
- September 12: National Day of Encouragement #DayOfEncouragement
- September 22: First Day of Fall #1stDayOfFall
- September 28: National Good Neighbor Day #GoodNeighborDay
- October: National Cyber Security Awareness Month
- October 10: World Mental Health Day #WorldMentalHeathDay
- October 13: National Train Your Brain Day #TrainYourBrainDay
- October 15: Get to Know Your Customers Day #GetToKnowYourCustomersDay
5. Highlight Value-Added Content in October
Many shoppers aren’t sure what to purchase for family members and friends. They may have a budget and people in various age groups to buy for. Plus, they’re likely concerned about shipping times or if a company is trustworthy.
Use content marketing to give consumers ideas while earning their confidence. Think about your market’s biggest pain points and develop October marketing ideas that support your fans.
Wherever possible, share a customer recommendation or testimonial to bolster consumer trust. Social proof can give readers the extra nudge they need to bookmark your eCommerce site for shopping.
Consider adding assets, such as:
- Video marketing content demonstrating brand values
- Informative blog posts and product comparisons
- Downloadable shopping guides and checklists
- Webinars offering solutions to customer problems
- Website tools for comparing prices or calculating costs
Amplify Your Brand With October Marketing Ideas
Draw attention to your retail business using memorable October marketing ideas. Avoid overly promotional themes. Instead, concentrate on helping your audience plan for the holiday season with video, downloadable content, and at least one post per day on social media. By increasing brand awareness, your products will be at the top of consumer’s minds when it’s time to shop.
Use a Contest or Giveaway as Part of Your Brand Awareness Strategy
Need help creating interactive experiences? A Woobox giveaway or contest improves your outreach efforts and is easy to implement. Bring your October marketing ideas to life with help from Woobox. Our team is available to answer your questions from 9 am to 5 pm PST, Monday through Friday at 1-360-450-5200 and via firstname.lastname@example.org.