Covid Response Centre

Motivating consumers to spend on your brand versus your competitors

With nearly 15M Americans claiming aid from the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program (nytimes), it comes as no surprise that consumer budgets will be tighter this year. Especially during the holidays, when consumers are overloaded with marketing championing this brand over that one, how can your brand stand out among the rest?

  1. Construct your marketing efforts on where consumers are most likely to shop

Nearly 47% of Americans plan to do most of their holiday shopping online. The reason?

  • 48% cite safety concerns as the primary reason 
  • 29% state convenience as a motivating factor
  • 21% claim they have come to prefer online shopping thanks to increased usage in recent months.

So what about the folks who plan to shop in-store? 

  • 31% plan to roughly split their holiday shopping between online and in-store 
  • 27% plan to do most holiday shopping in stores.

These stats behoove brands to ramp up digital efforts this holiday season to meet consumers where they are at. However, in-store shoppers can not be left in the dust. With that in mind, an ideal strategy will include a tactic approach that pivots seamlessly between in-store and online. Here are a few means of activating this kind of solution this holiday season: 

  1. Provide Virtual Gifting Options 

We’re already seeing the consumer experience become radically integrated across the physical and virtual environment. However, as it stands today, most marketers are playing block and tackle -- trying to interact with a consumer on specific digital channels, but not actually following that interaction through to the moment of purchase or action in the real world. It’s disjointed and, more importantly, it’s ineffective. What they need to be designing is a marketing approach that follows the consumer through the entire life cycle of their experience of the brand from Awareness to Consideration to Intent, and finally, to Action. While most marketers have not taken full advantage of it, the technology that can facilitate this already exists. 

As marketers and consumers ourselves, we’ve gotten a taste how valuable these technologies can be in simplifying our lives. Bank balance running low? BAM - get an alert to your phone before you get a penalty from the bank. An item is back in stock at your retailer? BOOM -  get a message to pick up that product you’ve been waiting for. . Alert messages are the future of customer satisfaction.Our Sell platform enables marketers to get into the pockets of consumers, leveraging mobile wallet push notifications to deliver valuable messaging at exactly the right time. 

While not all major businesses are taking full advantage of this technology, consumers are growing to like it and will soon expect it at every brand interaction touchpoint. Why? Because it’s valuable to them. It does what technology was intended to do - simplify your life.So, empower your consumers to give the gift of simplicity this holiday season via virtual gift cards for your brand. With consumers largely avoiding stores these days, the most popular gift this year will likely be virtual gift cards.

  • 48% of adults plan to buy or give gift cards this holiday season. 
  • 3x as many shoppers said they will spend most on gift cards versus the next-highest gift type (9% plan to spend most on apparel).

Knowing that gift cards are going to be a big gift giving option this year and that consumers may not be able to be in person with loved ones to give them, consider ways of enabling consumers to give digital gift cards such as mobile wallet cards that will remind them to redeem them via mobile push notifications. This is much easier for a loved one than receiving a plastic card they will likely forget or lose before they are able to redeem it. Not to mention, virtual gift-card giving via mobile wallet technology is contactless (read, safe during a pandemic) and better for the environment as it requires no physical plastic card. This way, you will be able to create a card that can include a discount, QR, or loyalty reward code that will live on Apple users’ Wallet feature or Android users’ Google Pay, both automatically accessible to each phone.

  1. Offer incentives

With financial strain top of mind for consumers, it’s no surprise that getting a deal or feeling that a brand is giving back to them or their community in some way is going to sway consumers. To win over on-demand consumers, you must know them, what they expect, and what works with them, and then have the ability to reach them with the right kind of interaction. Data lies at the heart of efforts to build that understanding—data to define and contextualize trends, data to measure the effectiveness of activities and investments at key points in the consumer decision journey, and data to understand how and why individuals move along those journeys. This followed by the capability to deliver the right message at the right time will be the secret sauce to ROI success this holiday season. Whether it’s a coupon or a charitable cause, give consumers an emotional or financial reason to choose your brand. 

Should you go the coupon route? Mobile wallet couponing has been shown to increase consumer spending by $10-50 among 77% of shoppers.  

Why are digital coupons better? Looking at head-to-head performance, digital does appear to take the lead in some performance metrics. Overall, it attracts a higher volume of customers than print. On average, digital coupons are considered to be 35% better at bringing in new consumers. Plus, digital information is potentially more dynamic than print, so it can work to keep existing consumers engaged.

With consumer budgets tighter than ever and no sign of holiday marketing slowing down, winning with your loyal consumer base and new consumers could be harder than ever before. But it doesn’t have to be. By leveraging efficient technologies such as mobile wallet cards that are currently available to marketers, you’ll not only win over the hearts of consumers making holiday gifts purchases, but also those receiving the gifts. Best of all, you’ll see that consumer love reflected in your bottom line as ROI pours in this holiday season through a much more effective marketing medium. Interested in learning more? Reach out to patricia@thecirqle.com to discuss partnership options that are sure to make your brand win. 


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