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Father’s Day, Steakhouses, and Getting Your Timing Right

  |  May 29, 2014   |  Comments

When is the best time to capture the audience that's ready to spend money for Father's Day, and what are they looking to buy?

One of the strongest levers you can pull in search marketing is timing - not just what time of day or what day of the week, but what point in the season are you running your ads for the best results? When you take a close look at your data, you can zero in on the timing that makes the most sense based on history, and put more of your budget there.

But what about the broader consumer picture? Sometimes it would help to have greater insight into bigger data that can tell you overall consumer trends - which you can then apply to your own campaign timing. Last year the National Retail Federation predicted Father's Day spending to hit $119.84 per person - but when exactly does this spending happen? Today we're talking about Father's Day, and the best timing for capturing this audience that's ready to spend.

Father's Day = When Is It?

Bing Ads did a study on keyword correlation - which keywords correlate to "Father's Day" in terms of increase in searches at the same time? This can tell us what consumers are looking for - and when. Earlier we did this same study for Valentine's Day and found some interesting results. With Father's Day, the trend that leaped out at us was this:

fathers-day-when-vs-gifts

This chart shows two query categories: "When Is Father's Day" and "Gifts for Father's Day." In 2013, Father's Day fell on June 16, 2013 - and one week prior there appears to be a distinct switch in the consumer mindset. Starting June 9, searchers went from finding out "when" Father's Day occurred to gift ideas. Search is an active medium, hinting what consumers are looking for. So this time window opens up possibilities for marketers.

What's Hot for Father's Day?

Let's dive into one specific category, dining out. Eating out ranks high for Father's Day, and it turns out searches for steakhouses and even lobster climb two to three days before the big day and hit a peak on the actual day of.

fathers-day-steakhouses

Eating out is an easy, relaxing celebration for Father's Day that's quick to organize. The fact that searches for steakhouses hit a high on the actual day of the celebration points to very little advance planning for Father's Day.

What Can We Learn From This?

1. Begin planning your Father's Day campaign weeks before Father's Day, but know that within one week of Father's Day the consumer mindset shifts.

  • Ex: Test inclusion of the date of Father's Day in ad copy, extensions, and landing pages

2. Businesses with last-minute offerings for e-cards and restaurants serving steak would do well to include these terms in ad copy to attract consumers looking for steakhouses. Recipes are also popular last-minute searches.

3. Consider adding "Father's Day gift" and "when is Father's Day" terms in both search and content campaigns.

What's Your Story About Father's Day?

Do you notice specific activity with your pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns around the Father's Day holiday? We'd love to hear about it!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

John Gagnon

John Gagnon is a Bing Ads Evangelist (aka “search nerd”) at Microsoft. He has worked for both Bing Ads and Google AdWords, and is a frequent speaker at digital marketing conferences such as SES, SMX, and others. He has advised hundreds of clients ranging from Microsoft teams like Windows and Internet Explorer to small businesses like local garage door repair shops just getting started.

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