For most Americans, Labor Day is the last hurrah of summer — whether enjoying a barbecue, spending time at the beach or catching up with family, for many people it's the final chance to bask in the dwindling summer sun before the beginning of the Fall season proper.
With its origins in militant labor activism during the Cleveland administration, Labor Day celebrates workers across America, but has also become synonymous with discounts and special offers — especially those aimed at blue collar customers and middle-class families. With a huge number of larger corporate businesses closed for the holiday, it’s also an opportunity for mom ‘n’ pop enterprises to capitalise.
Keeping both the history and the evolution of Labor Day in mind can help you craft a social media and promotion strategy that will ensure your company is placed to win in the Labor Day sales.
Get the most out of your reward programs
How much is spent on Labor Day? Some 45% of American consumers plan to cough up anywhere between $101 to $500. The same survey saw 33% percent of shoppers admit to being a little more thrifty — willing to spend $51 to $100 dollars — and the remaining 10% of respondents said they’d be wiling to spend no more than $50 dollars.
However, 2020 was a down year — relatively — for Labor Day spending, with nearly half (49%) of consumers expecting to spend less on the Labor Day holiday -- with just 6% expecting to spend more. The pandemic hit household incomes in the latter half of 2020, but with consumer sentiment on the rebound (though still at the lower end of historic numbers) we can assume that number will improve.
Another thing to note is that despite the fact consumer spend was down, the total Labor Day ad count was up in 2020. In an analysis of Labor Day ad counts, the number of advertisements containing Labor Day messaging was up 33% from the same period in 2019.
What does that mean for businesses? Labor Day is the perfect time to fine tune your social presence and expand your online customer base. By using our 5 tips for Labor Day social media success, you can ensure you’re using the right promotions, and getting them in front of the maximum number of eyeballs.
Tactically deploy freebies and promotions to expand your reach. You can create Labor Day specific offers to drive interest in your offering — and help improve conversion for those who are on the fence.
Promotions are a great way to improve customer loyalty and drive positive associations with your brand via digital marketing. Creating special promotions themed around Labor Day can range from something as simple as offering discounted shipping to creating complicated individualised campaigns with a Labor Day hook.
In the below example, the Rule Engine automatically gives every user free shipping on Labor Day.
Another good example might be to offer a special discount to frontline workers. Frontline workers have been at the forefront of keeping our economy and society functioning throughout the pandemic, and offering a special discount to reward them for their heroic work is both in keeping with the values of Labor Day and also a good way to build a positive relationship with your customers.
In the above example, customers can redeem a coupon code ‘FRONTLINE’ and benefit from the reward. Since this example campaign is aimed at generating positive buzz around your brand, there’s no check to make sure the person is a frontline employee — so the campaign also checks if the code has already been redeemed by the customer. This allows you to circulate generic coupons, but also protects you from customers redeeming the code multiple times. These coupons can easily be turned into shareable graphics for social media.
Giveaways are also an excellent way to drive interest in your brand. But rather than a plain giveaway, adding the item to a checkout cart or providing it as a bonus to your existing loyalty scheme.
In the above example, anyone who spends over $50 will get a loyalty point for each dollar they spend. But the possibilities are limited only by your imagination. You could, for instance, introduce a buy 3, get the third item free promotion.
Labor Day is a time when friends and family come together, and for you, the more the merrier. With users taking to social media to share how they’re spending their Labor Day weekend, you can harness the power of FOMO (fear of missing out) to get your product in front of your customers’ friends and families. According to Chatter Matters, 83% of Americans are more interested in purchasing a product or service when they’ve received a verbal recommendation from a friend or family member. And social media is the perfect avenue to harness this.
By creating a campaign that rewards users for sharing how they use your product, you can create a buzz that is in keeping with Labor Day’s history while dovetailing with people’s desires to share experiences with their friends.
For instance, you could create a campaign based around barbecue — offering your customers sizzling deals. Customers who share social media photos with your products could receive a coupon that gives them a discount in the future. It’s simple to set up individualised coupons in Talon.One, and each winner could be given a unique coupon so they can unlock their prize. The rewards can be anything that a rule can be generated for: free shipping, loyalty bonuses, free items or discounts — the limit is only your imagination.
South-east Asian eCommerce giant Lazada have gamified this process with their innovative Slash It! Campaign. This allows users to share offers on social media, and by convincing friends to back their campaign to get a discount, they can unlock exclusive deals.
Social media should work hand-in-glove with your wider sales strategy. By echoing promotions you’re running in your physical stores, you can amplify the benefits of any promotional activity. Talon.One can integrate with your POS system, meaning you can create coupons that are valid anywhere.
Let’s add an additional wrinkle to our FRONTLINE campaign from earlier. Imagine we had an outlet in the setting of cult Warner teen drama One Tree Hill.
Anyone who’s resident in TV’s Tree Hill, North Carolina can benefit from an additional 50% off token when they shop in store.
In this example, the Rule Engine checks if the coupon code is valid and that it is redeemed in the correct store. We’ve assigned ‘5208’ to the Tree Hill store. You could complement this campaign by having matching in-store posters and promotional materials. It’s also possible to geofence your promotions, so even if the user doesn’t go into the store, they can avail of local offers.
Using limited time sales is a proven tactic to increase conversion, especially on big-ticket items. By creating time-limited rules in the Rule Engine, and scheduling posts across your social channels to update users on the offers available this hour, you can turn the entire of Labor Day into an anticipated event. The ideal flash sales lasts around 3 hours but you can go shorter if you’re only holding a one day event. The purpose of the approach is to drive buzz, so the limit is the draw.
Figure out what works on different social networking sites. Each social media channel has its own vibe and tone of voice. It's worth taking the time to understand the culture across the most popular social networking platforms. On Twitter, a heavy dose of irony might be a recipe for success, whereas on Facebook, where the audience skews older, you might want to use a more straightforward approach. A good way to work out the correct tone to take is to research what has done well in the past.
You can use tools like Social Bearing to see the most liked tweets from accounts you think are doing a good job on the social media site, and try to build a post around that. On Reddit, find a subreddit that you think is representative of your industry, and click to view posts by ‘Top’ and display by ‘All Time’. By seeing the kind of posts the users in that subreddit respond to, you can craft a message they are likely to resonate with.
For places like Instagram or Pinterest, you’ll need to use a highly image based approach. But humour isn’t foreign to those platforms — meme pages are among the platforms fastest growing. For video sharing sites, spending the time to build quality content can also mean a good ROI.
Preparing in advance is key to success for any timely promotional campaign. But including promotions as an essential part of your growth strategy is a way to ensure you hit your KPIs — and make sure you’re a winner on Labor Day and any other holiday.
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