Last updated on November 9, 2023

Marshall Madsen
Senior Brand Writer @ Yotpo
September 6th, 2022

The final touches to your BFCM plan can make a big impact on your sales and post-holiday retention.

Table Of Contents

Black Friday / Cyber Monday is the ultimate gateway to customer retention. There’s inevitably going to be a spike in traffic and engagement — it’s how your brand handles those interactions that will lead your customers into retention and ultimately loyalty.

The best way to set your brand up for success is to invest in retention strategies long before BFCM hits, but it’s also never too late to tweak your tactics to move the needle a little further. Even during the week itself, there are still quick and easy wins that will help drive repeat purchases, lifelong loyalty, and (ultimately) your BFCM “cha-ching” right to the bank.

Here’s our top ways to squeeze more oomph from the BFCM season.

Send out urgent SMS campaigns

On average, consumers spend more than four hours a day on their phones — that time is often spent engaging with content. 98% of all SMS messages are opened, and more than half of all consumers prefer to share feedback with brands, or even purchase directly through SMS.

For that reason, time-sensitive campaigns are idyllic for creating just the right kind of scarcity and drive to close frantic cyber week and holiday shoppers. These intense responses of FOMO don’t just drive customers to your brand at the moment, they bank a pool of interested browsers — eager to come back for the potential of more discounts, points, and rewards.

This is also a great chance to take advantage of this spike in traffic by capturing new subscribers that you can market to later. Something as simple as sending opt-in texts, or dropping a widget on your homepage could pay huge dividends from this temporary spike in holiday traffic.

Expedite the path to purchase

Since your campaigns are time sensitive, you need to make it easy for buyers to act on impulse before they lose interest or become distracted. Luckily, it’s easy to enable features that shorten the steps between discovery and purchase.

Text-to-Buy, for example, allows a brand to send a product to subscribers who can then buy without leaving the text exchange. Click-to-Buy also shortens the path by letting brands create a personalized link to a pre-filled shopping cart, so a customer goes directly to checkout when they click. The more you make the checkout process as quick and painless as possible, the more likely you’ll improve overall conversion.

Use visual content and images in texts

One of the easiest ways to charm through text is to create succinct, visually appealing images in your text campaigns. Use your Instagram posts, repurpose solid UGC, or drop your studio shots if you got them. It’s easy to turn your SMS into MMS with visuals that help customers emotionally connect with the product — which gives them immediate understanding of exactly how this product incorporates into their day-to-day lives.

Segment by real-time behaviors

Segmentation gives you the opportunity to tell your customers that you’re paying attention, that their business matters, and that their extremely specific wants are valid. This level of hyper-personalization can take place either through your SMS campaigns or email outreach — and can be key in unlocking higher CLTV.

Segmentation, regardless of its channel or trigger (e.g. cart abandonment, page hovering, consecutive discovery, browse abandonment, reply rates, etc.) during BFCM might be the corner in the decision between a single purchase point, and a lifetime loyalist.

Incentivize BFCM rewards with early loyalty sign-ups

The holidays are a season of giving — points, perks, discounts, rewards. Incentivize early loyalty sign-ups so that when BFCM does roll around, you can really pinpoint your loyalty members during the holidays and take advantage of an already captive buyer base.

It’s easy to segment out loyalty members (especially higher tier VIPs) and offer the best rewards — early access, double points for first purchases, bonus points for return shoppers, freebies, free shipping, etc.

But the more unique the reward is (personal discounts to liked products or previously abandoned cart items), the more likely you are to stand out from the crowd and sway that last minute second-guesser. It’s quick and easy, and the CLTV is well worth any additional treats you can dole out.

Give big for referrals

Cost per click is breaking banks, as acquisition gets tougher by the day due to new privacy regulations. Your best bet for new customer acquisition is to let the people that already love you refer your brand to their friends — and then reward them for doing so.

For BFCM, this can be as simple as raising the stakes on rewards for referrals. You’ll get the dual benefit of rewarding your loyal customers, while also getting visibility for your BFCM sales. And the impact is real — 93% of consumers trust recommendations from friends or family over brand advertising — by that same standard, referred customers are 25% more valuable than non-referred customers.

Give exclusive loyalty rewards for Reviews and UGC

This deserves to be noted on its own — away from all the other loyalty perks, since Reviews and UGC are one of the fastest ways to build trust and boost visibility. Customers are almost always willing to voice their opinions and share their experiences — but reviews, content, and recommendations from your buyer base come a little easier with those exclusive perks and point rewards as an incentive.

Emphasize the long-term benefits of subscriptions

Subscriptions have a litany of benefits to both you and your customers — the biggest ones to focus on during BFCM are the long-term savings and rewards. If people are already liking your product or are on the path to purchase, show them just how much more they could be saving as regular subscribers.

List out the discounts and perks that they receive when they subscribe, give them the opportunity to save by subscribing in multiple locations across the buying journey, offer free shipping for subscribers — anything you can do to put the power in the hands of returning, repeat purchasers.

And if you don’t already offer subscriptions, it only takes 10 minutes (actually, yes) to add to your store, just in time for Black Friday.

Offer special BFCM subscription pricing

BFCM can hook a higher percentage of customers into a recurring relationship with your brand, especially for items that are already in high demand. Why not ease that path to purchase by offering an exclusive introductory subscription offer? Especially when primary discounts reach the half-off market, it’s almost impossible to say no to — and pricing will resume to normal after a series of purchases.

Work this offering into a broader campaign and use tools like SMS and email marketing to create, not only, a sense of exclusivity to it, but also a bit of FOMO because this is the best discount they’ll see all year.

Rewarding customers for making purchases they’re already interested in, or have even purchased previously, can be the difference between edging in one more purchase, and hunting for new acquisitions again. Not to mention that this can be a big backend win for products that perhaps have a short shelf life, or even that run a high order volume from the manufacturer.

Combine subscriptions and loyalty by offering rewards for subscribing

We’ve talked about offering subscriptions, and about offering loyalty points for repeat purchases — but you could very well combine the two and offer ultimate loyalty and rewards. It also wouldn’t hurt to build out a visible rewards path for everyone that finishes at checkout, or subscribes. It’s comforting and helpful to see that the new brand they’ve just bought has a vision. List out multiple steps and a timeline that helps them visualize exactly what they’re getting and when.

Get creative on social

Don’t get discouraged if you’re making unplanned last-minute posts, or doubling down on your social or ad rolls — many buyers still don’t know what they’ll buy this Black Friday, and they’re waiting to discover discounts to get excited about. See what your competitors are doing, and more importantly, what they aren’t!

Get creative and fill the gaps — tag loyal customers, offer incentives and participation rewards for social interactions, run giveaways and raffles — whatever you can think of to stay top of mind. The more you post, the more visibility and real estate you maintain, and that wealth of media also helps buyers make much more informed and safe decisions.

Highlight UGC on your social platforms

Building a sense of community goes a long way on your socials. You make your current buyer base feel incredibly special, and you show prospective customers that these business relationships are immensely appreciated when you take their reviews, content, pictures, videos, and highlights and showcase them.

Plaster them on your social feeds in pictures or posts, or host them on your home pages or blogs. Plus — it’s content that’s created for you, so that’s just one less lift your creative team has to worry about.

Quick and easy BFCM wins

While all of these efforts are relatively quick setups, and optimally quick wins — don’t forget to make it personal. Every post, interaction, discount, or DM is a chance to get personal and interactive. While your sales may drop jaws, your service quality and personalization will drown out competition. And it’s only the start to a much more prosperous lifetime with your brand new customer base.

Want to know more, or have a few deeper questions? Visit the BFCM Hub.