This blog post is part of Forrester’s Holiday 2018 retail series.
With Black Friday less than a month away, it’s only a matter of time before holiday promotional activity reaches a fever pitch. But for many consumers, the holiday shopping season brings with it an intense mix of emotions. For some, it’s their favorite time of year. For others, it surfaces emotional baggage that is anything but “merry and bright.”
As such, it’s important to consider the emotional impact of your marketing efforts during this time, especially for your so-called loyal customers. Only 41% of consumers agree that loyalty programs make them feel more loyal to a brand. And over half of US online adults say that getting special treatment (such as preferential customer service) that isn’t available to other consumers is important to them. Regardless of whether or not you have a loyalty program, emotion is a key driving force for retention, enrichment, and advocacy.
What it means for marketers: Take stock of your current holiday marketing plans for loyal customers. How are you delivering flexibility, personalization, or services that make it easier for them to enjoy (or cope) with the season? If they’re a member of your loyalty program, they’re already likely to spend more and consider you than non-members. It’s not too late to balance overly promotional content with reminders about extended return windows, gift-wrapping services, or restocks of popular products to ease gift-giving anxiety. And make sure you dial up your emotional measurement tactics so that you can assess how your efforts impacted customer behavior and emotion once the dust from Holiday 2018 settles.