Strategizing for Back-to-College Marketing Season

Back-to-College Marketing
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It’s never too early to start preparing for the back-to-college marketing season

As more retailers take advantage of the shopping frenzy that comes along with back to school season, students are faced with an abundance of promotions and sales. A great way to differentiate your brand from your competitors is to get ahead of the curve. Solidifying your spot as the back to school shopping destination is a great way to do so. However, college students are beginning their back to school shopping earlier than ever. According to a study by the National Retail Federation, nearly 32% of college students are completing their back to school shopping at least two months before the start of school. Meaning, now more than ever, brands need to begin running their back to school promotions earlier and earlier.

Know your audience

Above all else, it’s important to understand your audience. Run promotions on products they’ll need when returning to school. In addition to offering deals on useful items, hosting giveaways is another great option. It’s no secret that college students love freebies, offering them as an incentive will encourage students to choose your brand over competitors.

Choosing the right medium

Selecting the right medium goes hand in hand with knowing your customer base. Running Social Media campaigns led by brand ambassadors has a great success rate among college students. Hiring brand reps to spread awareness on campus is also a surefire way to get students on campus talking about your products. Regardless of whether your medium of choice follows a traditional route or takes a niche approach, resonating and relating to college students should be the ultimate goal.

Get a jump start on back-to-college marketing as many opportunities have early deadlines. Out-of-home units sell out fast. Deadlines for mail-home and orientation print newspapers arrive before the end of the Spring Semester. Brand Ambassador staff should be secured prior to the students leaving for summer break. Don’t let the best back-to-college marketing opportunities pass you by, because you started planning too late.

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