August is here, which means back to school season is starting to gain momentum. Today, thousands of parents and students are researching the Internet for the best deals on the latest shoes, fashion, dorm furnishings, devices and more. Back-to-school is an extremely important season, as it generates 17% of annual retail sales – a $75.8 billion retail opportunity in 2016. In order to stay ahead of your competitors, here are some online marketing tips that will boost effectiveness in the back to school season rush.
- Understand what shoppers are looking for
Your first order of business should be determining which of your products has the most appeal to back to school shoppers. Review previous years’ campaigns to see which products sold well and which fell short, and then focus your efforts on your best bets. Consider special deals on high selling products to attract hesitant customers. Identify the terminology shoppers are using to search for products online. Some shoppers may or may not be looking into specific brands. Explore popular search terms and integrate them into your campaigns.
- Target your audience.
Make sure you know what specific college student you are trying to sell to. Go where this audience is spending most of their time shopping or browsing and design campaigns that appeal to that target’s interests. For back to school season, the primary target is usually the parents, as they hold the purse strings. However, they are largely influenced by their children, and some college students may be doing the shopping on their own.
With marketing, there is no set it and forget it approach. The most successful marketers are ones that try a variety of strategies to determine the one that works best for their brand, product and their target market. The first step is to hone in on your goals by focusing on what you want to accomplish. Then, run some tests with different ad campaigns, changing ad copy, wording or length, location, time period and even images. By performing these tests, you will be able to see the optimal route for future campaigns.