A guide to holiday promotions | Queensberry



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The holiday season is a great time to run promotions — so your clients can have their  beautiful printed products under the tree for Christmas. The ultimate in personal gifts!

But what's involved?

This is our take on it, but of course it's likely you'll have your own. If so, great —  treat ours as a checklist. Maybe you'll find new ideas here, or a reminder of things you still need to do!

And if you would like to share your approach we'd love to hear from you, so we can make this an ever better resource over time.

First things first, though. The weeks are flying by and there's no time to delay.

Step 1. Decide which promotions, and incentives, you'd like to run with

Here are some ideas…

Contact past clients who've never bought a wedding album
We all procrastinate. We're easily distracted. Don't assume because they never bought they didn't mean to. There may be lots of reasons why a couple never bought their album, but this is the perfect time to remind them of the love in their lives, and tempt them with a special offer. So compile two lists:

  • Couples — those who never bought an album.
  • Parents, friends and family — those who might be interested in a parent album, matted print or frame, as a gift given or received.

Write messages to suit both those groups. Write them in your own voice. Personalise them. Send them individually. Send them however comes naturally to you, whether as an email, Facebook message or whatever. But include a special offer and a deadline (for our 2020 Holiday Guidelines, click here).

Of course this idea applies to any of your clients who've walked away with little or no product to enjoy!

Run a sale on social media
The previous section was based on reaching out personally to people, but why not run promotions on your social media platforms leading up to the holidays? Offer a limited-time discount off some or all your print products. Let anyone take advantage of them, whether past or future clients. Maybe you'll win some new customers.

Sow a few ideas. Anniversary shoots. Babies. Family portraits. Makeovers. Pets. Reunions.

Send out discount coupons for your image galleries
This works for any client you're hosting image galleries for. It's easy to set up discount coupons in Workspace, and you do know all your clients' email addresses. Write to them, including the coupon code, their gallery URL and a reminder that these will be the most personal, and most treasured, of gifts.

Encourage repeat business
So they were good customers — the shoot's over, and they spent well? Don't assume you'll never see them again.

It's great to turn clients into regulars, and there are so many opportunities to do so. Their extended family, their own growing family, pets, activities, accomplishments, celebrations, possessions, makeovers.

There are so many product opportunities too. Honeymoon, anniversary and family albums. Frames and canvases. Folio boxes. Loose and matted prints. Some of them affordable enough for almost any gifting scenario.

Your best clients will love you for reaching out in a personal way, and making them feel looked after and cared about.

There are three ways avenues for repeat business:

  • A new shoot, maybe with an "act now" incentive.
  • Additional purchases from past shoots.
  • Using your professional skills to create beautiful products from their own images.

Sometimes it's important to remind yourself that you have other professional skills besides photography — image editing and album design for example — as well as access to the best products available. Imagine putting those to good use to create a gorgeous photo book of their honeymoon or their first year together, based on their own photos.

Again, this applies to all your past clients, and to any products.

Get your thinking straight about discounts!
Not many of us like discounting. We know "what we're worth" and that's how much we want to be paid.

But one thing we do know is that people — maybe including you? — do respond to discounts. Generally speaking.

So we're not saying you must discount, but here are a few things to think about:

  • Most of the ideas we've listed above target sales that "got away". It's not that you'll earn less if you discount, but that you don't earn anything if you don't make a sale.
  • Our other ideas are aimed at generating new business — gifts, repeat business and so on. The same logic applies.
  • There are other incentives besides discounts. What about "if you buy X I'll throw in Y?" Free, or half price, or…
  • Christmas is the time of giving, and the time of buying. If they're not spending with you they're spending somewhere else. Right now.
  • If the shoot's already over, the profit on product sales is pure cream.
  • You'll find much more about pricing, incentives and discounts in Love's Not Enough

Step 2. Get organised, create a timeline

Getting organised is one of the best things you can ever do for your business, and for yourself.

Getting organised takes the stress out of your workflow.

Getting organised means preparing content before you need it, contacting your clients in good time, and reminding them about approaching deadlines. Reminding yourself as well!

  • Do a brain dump ahead of time — the promotions you're running and the content required (emails, Instagram posts, messages etc).
  • Build a timeline listing everything that needs to be done, and when your messaging needs to go out.
  • Decide what reminders you'll send, and how and when.
  • Understand your suppliers' deadlines. Make sure yours and theirs are in synch!
  • Add everything to your Calendar app. Set up reminders!

Here's an example calendar for an album sale

The promotion: a limited-time special offer to:

  • Past clients who never purchased an album.
  • Future clients who respond to your social media promotion.

Part 1. Running the promotion:

Right now! Create a list of past client to contact. Settle on your offer, set up your timeline and start developing your content (email, messages, social media posts etc). More on this in Step 3, below.

October 14: Launch your album sale.

October 15: Online story telling (promote the benefit of print and point to your sale).

October 18: "Act now" sale reminder (Instagram and Facebook).

October 20: Direct follow up to clients you've emailed or messaged.

October 22: "Final Hours" sale reminder on Instagram and Facebook.  A final nudge to any clients you've contacted personally.

Part 2. Album design and placing orders:

October 25: Deadline for customers to select their images. That and the album size are all you need to start designing. Other decisions can be made a bit later.

Of course you should start work on album design as soon as you receive the order.

Get the first draft to your clients as quickly as possible. Respond to edit requests quickly too, to maintain enthusiasm and ensure you have plenty of time to get their orders in before cut off. Click here for lots more about managing this process.

November 8: Reminder of the deadline coming up in two days!

November 10: Deadline for client sign-off on the design, final album selection (cover material, optional extras etc etc) and pre-payment.

November 11-13: Place your orders with Queensberry.

November 14 - 15: Confirm and pay for albums. The albums will then go into production the following day, giving us plenty of time for holiday delivery.

Step 3. Create your content

Once you've set up your calendar you'll need to create the actual "content". Start by breaking it down into a detailed to-do list showing:

  • What you want to say, and
  • When and how you want to get the message across.

Once you've written a detailed list, you can begin creating the content in chronological order (there's no point working on the reminder emails if you don't get the launch out on time!).

Example: a promotional calendar for a holiday album sale

Date due: October 14
Lauch your promotion
- Create a list of past clients to contact.
- Write and send a direct email to past clients.
- Create and publish Instagram and Facebook posts promoting the sale.

Date due: October 15
Promote the benefits of print — the perfect gift:
- Write copy Instagram and Facebook posts.
- Photograph your sample album(s).
- Film a short Instagram video showing the albums.
- Post to Instagram and Facebook.
- Post Instagram Story.

Date due: October 18
Sale reminder #1 — "act now":
- Write copy for "act now" Instagram and Facebook posts.
- Create graphic, photo, video etc for the posts.
- Post to Instagram and Facebook.
- Post Instagram Story.

Date due: October 20
- Write and send a personal "act now" follow up email to past clients.

Date due: October 22
"Final hours" reminder — "don't miss out!"
- Send a final nudge to people who've expressed interest but not committed.
- Write copy for "don't miss out" Instagram and Facebook posts.
- Create graphic, photo, video etc for the posts.
- Post to Instagram and Facebook.
- Post Instagram Story.

We hope these tips are useful and that you have a great season with your clients.

And Happy Holidays!
The Queensberry Team

This entry was posted in Loves not enough by Alexandria Baugh | Leave a Comment