The holiday season can mean many things to you and your customers. Along with the usual pressures we also feel a need to capitalise on the last chance before the break to improve your numbers. If you're not in the retail game you can experience a general lag in business.
Whatever the situation, there is always the opportunity to benefit. Consider these seven holiday sales tips:
Use your media outlets and acknowledge the holidays. While you never want to alienate potential customers there is nothing wrong with a simple holiday greeting posted up on your website, in your window or in your monthly newsletter.
Create a holiday promotion. Create a quick and easy email marketing campaign. Offer this discount or deal to all existing customers and reach out to previous customers or prospects. Make it different than usual, offering an exclusive service relevant to the holidays.
Don't underestimate a little holiday cheer. A little goes a long way; a simple update of your web banner, email tagline or newsletter to include festive holiday pieces can create a seasonal mood and perhaps some good cheer - and that never does any harm.
Utilise the holiday party fever. With get-togethers, social gatherings and parties on every agenda, use your networking skills to their greatest advantage. Pack in as much as you can, taking advantage of these easy to hit markets by attending equipped with business cards, flyers or just a friendly soft-pitch. Don't make it all about the business but do not shy away from light marketing during the holidays.
Keep communication fluid. If you plan on adjusting work hours during the holidays or even extending your business hours, let your customers know well in advance. Send an email blast and use word of mouth to ensure that your customers are not caught off guard by your adjusted holiday schedule.
Thank everyone. Take time out to create a sincere thank you agenda; thanking your customers, suppliers and vendors and colleagues. A simple email, a mention in your newsletter and as many verbal encounters as possible go a long way in keeping your relationships solid into the New Year.
Don't get lazy. Set goals to reach during December and January to help prevent slipping. Striving to reach these goals will keep you on your toes during a season of otherwise general, widespread malaise.
Mike Reddy is a Chartered Accountant, business coach and advisor helping businesses in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Gold Coast to easily increase their profits and cash flow. He is currently President of the North Sydney Chamber of Commerce, a Regional Councillor for Sydney North East and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Sydney leadership team. As well as advising businesses, Mike presents business development seminars and webinars and is regularly contacted by the media to comment on small business matters. You can connect with him on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.