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How to measure if your Black Friday Campaign was a success

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Natalie Weaving

In a recent blog, we covered three ways to ruin your brand equity. One of these ways was discounting, which is the whole ethos around any Black Friday campaign. However, as a business, we do understand that Black Friday can have its place, if it is well executed. So, if you’re going to take part, you need to know how to measure whether it was worth it.

First, it is interesting to note that a whopping £1.4bn was spent on online sales in the UK on Black Friday in 2017 – this is an increase of 11.7% on 2016.* In previous blogs on Black Friday, we have covered our top Black Friday marketing tips for getting prepared. That process should have already started behind the scenes. It is important that you know what and how you are going to promote, ensuring you have enough resources to do it well, both on the big day and beyond.

In this blog, we look at the ways you can measure whether your Black Friday campaign worked and if it was truly worth it.

Sales

Seeing an increase in sales during your Black Friday campaign is a marker that you have produced results. But, are they the right ones? Whilst an increase in sales is a great achievement, what was the average spend per customer? Don’t look at those sales figures with rose tinted glasses on. Could you have made fewer sales but the same amount of profits if you hadn’t have discounted using a different marketing campaign? Take a step back, look at the whole time period and see where you can make cost efficiencies. So, if you choose to run another Black Friday campaign, it is with maximum profit in mind.

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TIP. Sales may still trickle in after the event that was triggered by seeing your brand during this time. Make sure you have cookies, pixels and conversions set up and look back as far as you can so you can attribute the real impact of your Black Friday campaign.

Awareness

Black Friday may not just be about sales to your business. You may not even be considering taking part in the usual practices of slashing prices. If you are a new business or one that offers something that no one else can provide, or a company that has something pivotal to say on this day, you may use the heightened online activity to get your message out there. Piggybacking off international and national days is regular everyday practice and can have a positive effect on any business. There is just one rule that you should follow so that you are not perceived as someone that is desperately trying to get involved in something that is not right for them.

Be relevant or, failing that, be controversial.  

We have all seen it when a random business tries to shoe-horn their sales message into a topical moment. It is just embarrassing for all involved, even the customers. Whilst some will laugh at it, may also share it (no PR is bad PR right?) others may get turned off by the desperate marketing attempt. Here is a good and bad example of what we mean:

In this blog, we look at the ways you can measure whether your Black Friday campaign worked and if it was truly worth it. Click to find out more.
In this blog, we look at the ways you can measure whether your Black Friday campaign worked and if it was truly worth it. Click to find out more.

But how to do you measure ‘awareness’?

Whilst this can be seen as a fluffy metric, there are still many ways to gauge the impact of your message. This could include:

  • Surveys, market research & focus groups – you see these pop up on social media asking if the audience remembers seeing certain brands during a time period. Or, you may be asked to take part in a survey in person or online. Focus groups are also a way to gauge what people know about your brand or presence within an industry sector.
  • Online data – new visitors on the website during that time period, impressions and reach on social media, ROI on press coverage plus other metrics could help determine if you increased awareness of your brand during your Black Friday campaign. That said, you may have produced numbers, clicks and even sales, but then do these people remember you or come back? So, don’t stop measuring and try and use (GDPR compliant) cookies to track more extended time periods. 

These options vary in price and reliability but can provide some useful insights for any business.

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TIP. If you have a poignant message that you can link to a Black Friday campaign, then do it. Otherwise, don’t. Your customers are not going to leave you if you don’t get involved and concentrate on doing what you do well while preserving your brand reputation. Why not give them something to escape from the Black Friday madness. You will be amazed at the number of people that are boycotting this day more and more.

Bottom line

Let’s be frank. The main reason businesses get involved with Black Friday is to make money. On the flip side, the only reason consumers take part is to grab a bargain. So, there has to be a balancing act. Whilst an increase in orders and customers can be an exciting prospect, it will be short-lived high if you can’t then convert them into repeat business. Your Black Friday campaign needs to be efficient and cost-effective as possible so to not eat (further) into your bottom line. So, it is crucial to have a plan to keep those new customers interested after the discounts have gone.

Our recommendation is to look at what has historically worked for you. Then, weigh up how many other people are going to be getting involved and are vying for the same audience impression. Then, consider if it is worth ploughing resources into doing anything additional at all.

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TIP. Have a plan that extends beyond Black Friday to encourage those new customers to come back. If you can target yourself to re-attract a percentage to return it will make the small profit margins worth it for the greater gain.  

WILL YOU BE GETTING INVOLVED WITH BLACK FRIDAY THIS YEAR?

Either as a consumer or business, we would love to know.

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