Hi Community! I’m Ashley, one of the Klaviyo Community Champions here. Today, I am going to be sharing a how-to guide on creating a Black Friday Cyber Monday (BFCM) campaign calendar for the upcoming holiday season.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday will be here before you know it, and many marketers have already finished laying the groundwork for a successful BFCM strategy for this year. Read on to learn how you can get started with planning your holiday campaign calendar!
Build a strategy guided by your data
Klaviyo is an excellent, unified data platform that gives marketers and business owners alike a clearer picture of their customer data. Whenever you are considering a new strategy, or looking to build a marketing campaign, it should always be guided by the data you have collected from your customers.
Long before the holiday season, it is important to set yourself up for success by performing the following actions in the months leading up to BFCM:
- Determine your Smart Send Time
- Build customer segments
- Test content and frequency of campaigns
- Enable “early access” sign-ups
- Start collecting SMS subscribers if you haven’t done so already.
Let’s break down each step below.
The best time to send an email campaign is…?
While there may not be a one-size-fits-all answer to this question, you’ll always find your answer in your customer data. Luckily, Klaviyo makes it easy to identify the best time to send email campaigns to your subscribers using Smart Send Time. Klaviyo’s Smart Send Time feature uses your business’ data to tell you the best time to email your customers. If your list has 12k profiles or more, you can use it. With this feature, you can:
- Better understand your customers’ behavior around opening emails
- Maximize your open rates
- Maximize your click-through rates
You can also A/B test sending at different times of day. Please note that you should only test send time for emails that are not time-sensitive. You may want to ensure, for example, that a prominent sale email or SMS reaches all of your recipients at the same time so that they have an equal opportunity to buy. This type of message would not be eligible for a send time test.
Identify and test your most important segments
Highly segmented campaigns return more than 3X the revenue per recipient as unsegmented campaigns. Some examples of how you can use segments to identify different audiences you may want to target for BFCM include:
- Customers who are highly engaged with your campaigns
- New subscribers who recently joined your list
- VIP customers, which include everyone who has purchased at least X number of times before or has spent over Y amount of money
Once your core segments have been identified, you can use the time leading up to BFCM to see what types of campaign content resonate best with each segment. Content types could include:
- Sale and promotional campaigns
- New or featured product announcements
- Blog, educational, and event campaigns
Entice new sign-ups with early access
One of the best ways to generate buzz for your BFCM sales is by revamping your sign-up forms prior to the holidays to advertise “early access” to new subscribers.
Just as different incentives will motivate different people to sign up based on where they are in the customer journey, different sign-up forms will appeal to different people based on where they’ve landed on your site. In the Display Timing section of your sign-up form builder, you are given control over when your forms are triggered and displayed on your site. Use this to your advantage to control who sees what, and when.
If you aren’t doing so already, the holiday season is an excellent time to start collecting SMS subscribers in addition to email. This can be an another channel through which your brand chooses to send early access to BFCM sales. I recommend gathering SMS consent from both new users and from your existing email subscribers. To do so, you’ll need to create a:
- Multi-step form for new subscribers
- Single-step form for your existing email subscribers
Bring it all together!
Okay, now that you’ve identified what types of campaign content you will be sending, who you will be sending it to, the best times to send to those subscribers, and which marketing channels your campaigns will be sent through, it’s time to build your BFCM campaign calendar!
As a general rule of thumb, you can use this structure to plan your strategies:
2 months before BFCM
- Create your holiday segments.
- Launch your SMS sign-up forms.
- Test your send times and days with campaigns.
- Experiment with leading an SMS over email in a flow.
1 month before BFCM
- Engage with SMS subscribers via campaigns and flows.
- Finalize your promotional calendar for BFCM.
- Examine the results of your send times and days.
Weeks leading up to BFCM
- Launch BFCM-specific sign-up form(s).
- Send gift guide campaigns.
- Send exclusive first look teaser campaigns.
- Send personalized campaigns to segments with Smart Send Time.
- Send morning and evening campaigns to advertise sales.
- Create a sense of urgency by sending “last chance” campaigns.
- Review performance.
- Remove holiday updates to flows and forms.
- Follow up with subscribers post-purchase to retain hard-won customers.
- Maintain deliverability with list cleaning.
As you gear up to seize the opportunities of the Black Friday/Cyber Monday frenzy, remember that a well-structured campaign calendar is your secret weapon for a successful and stress-free holiday season. Start planning, get creative, and watch your well-timed emails light up the shopping sprees!
-@Ashley I (Ashley Ismailovski)
Learn more about me on my Champion profile page!
Learn more from Ashley and other resources to keep learning: