July and August are the second busiest shopping months of the year. It's the time when every marketer is promoting to parents, children, teens and college students with their "back to school" campaigns. This is an especially effective marketing promotion since it solves a targeted pain for a specific customer: parents.
Remember that customers only buy when they are in pain and have money to solve it. The biggest pain parents can have is the desire for their children to have a better life. This can translate into buying them “whatever they need” to do well for the new year in school.
This year is the earliest back-to-school shopping season ever, according to Google's Shopping Blog, which explains this is a result of the consumer's “ability to research online at any time, anywhere, on any device." Google's survey found that 60 percent of purchases actually begin online. The average high school student family spends $347, while college students spend more than double that amount. Customers are primed to buy in August for the September school deadline.
Any company can use a “back to school” strategy by following these tips:
- If your business is directly associated with the back-to-school market, this is the time to heavily promote the buying of your products. Backpacks, messenger bags, smartphones and tablets are popular this year. Email marketing can be especially effective as a constant reminder of the looming school deadline.
- Additional content marketing is also critical so your business can be found on the Internet when consumers are searching back to school keywords like "school supplies" or "first day of school." Post videos with advice on what students need and tie that advice to the benefits of using your various "solutions." Add company credibility by encouraging customers to post reviews of your products. Make these campaigns both mom, mobile, and child friendly. Children who are old enough to be online independently are also now influencing the buying decision. Remember, this shopping season extends into September as students see what their peers have when they actually go back to school.
- If your business does not directly provide products for this industry, tie content marketing and promotions to some type of “higher education” or "fresh start" for the consumer. For example, this can be learning a new skill (yoga, Latin dancing or French). September is also typically a time to restart and learn a new way of solving a problem. This can be buying a new car, remodeling the kitchen, changing vendors or planning the next vacation. Any marketing promotion can become relevant by using the traditional grading system like "an A+ deal." Content marketing with targeted landing pages can also be used by your company so buyers searching for back to school keywords will find on your content.
After school starts, any business can promote a "now that school has started" campaign for personal care services or lunch specials to parents. In the fall, teacher-only specials can also be used in a similar way. And don't forget that Christmas promotions start right after Labor Day!
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