Implement this simple idea now to generate lots of business later.
With online holiday shopping reaching new heights, here’s a simple idea to implement now. It could help you generate a lot of business next year.
First, some eye-opening holiday shopping stats from a study Nielsen conducted for eBay:
In round numbers, that’s around 167 million online gift purchases. If the average person buys two gifts, that’s over 300 million gifts. That’s a lot of online gift ordering! Let’s talk about how to grab your share of that next year.
Chances are, you already have, or can obtain from the gift buyers, the following information:
You want to implement this reminder program now. Customers are likely pleased with the gifts they purchased and open to messaging about next year. Below, three easy steps to set up a program.
Step 1: Send Thank-Yous and Announce a Gift Reminder Service
Right after the holidays, send email to everyone who purchased a gift from you. It should read something like this:Dear Paul,
The link contains the customer’s email address or another identifier, and is tied to all purchases. It pulls up a Web page that may look like this:
|Jennifer||Red glass heart||19.95||12/01/04||Wife||Christmas|
|Tommy||Harry Potter DVD||19.95||12/01/04||--||--|
The customer can fill in any missing info.
Step 2: Create a Gift Relationship Table
Now that you have a database populated with the pertinent information, create a table that connects past gift purchases with likely future gift purchases based on next year’s gift lineup, like this:
|Past Purchase||Recommended |
|SKU 19838: Football clock||Football team blankets |
Football player autographed photos
Football blooper video
|SKU 20938: Red glass heart||Heart Christmas tree ornament |
Scented red heart pillow
Spa gift certificate
Step 3: Craft the Reminder Messages
The final step is to create a reminder message template, like this (boldfaced items are pulled from the database or calculated):Dear Paul,
Pretty nifty, right?
You have plenty of time to implement this system and make it something special. It doesn’t have to just be for holiday gift-giving. As long as you capture gift information, it can be a year-round service. To get ideas for your service, check out what the folks at Personal Shopper are doing.
Next year, you’ll be in a position to recommend relevant gifts and to capture more gift buying! Keep reading...
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Paul Soltoff is the chief executive officer of SendTec, Inc., a direct marketing services company specializing in customer acquisition. SendTec combines extensive direct response experience with proprietary technologies to produce scalable results. Principal services include performance-based online marketing, offline direct response marketing and direct response television. SendTec represents advertising agencies and advertisers such as RealNetworks, AARP, Monster.com, AAA, Punch Software, MyPoints, Grey Worldwide, CosmetÍque Cosmetics, Columbia House, and Euro-Pro. Prior to starting SendTec, Paul was a founder and EVP of Saatchi and Saatchi's DRTV division in New York and has over 25 years of advertising, media and direct marketing experience.
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