What B2B brands can learn from Black Friday 2019
Black Friday and Cyber Monday! The allure these days hold for marketers, salespeople and business owners is substantial. Of course, retailers show significant sales and movement on these critical shopping days, so it’s easy to get caught up in the hype.
But if you operate in the B2B space, you need to think carefully about the impact of these days on your brand and business. Ask yourself these questions:
- Can your customers easily take advantage of your promo? Ease of access is essential. If you are limiting this to only new purchases. Will this upset your existing customers?
- Are you limiting the number of promotions on these bumper shopping days? This might prove to be frustrating to customers. There is a balance of availability that must be met so that it does not damage your customer relationships.
- Does the discount on your product and the spend on your advertising translate into a profit for your business?
- Are you trying to fit a square peg in a round hole? On a consumer retail day, does your brand benefit from this type of activity? Will customers be interested in your product or service with all the noise surrounding the retail or consumer messaging on this day?
What’s worked with our customers
Several of our customers have run these promos over the past five years, and we have discovered that the following is true for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. On average, our customers have spent three times more on Black Friday promotions and advertising on top of the discount they are being offered on a product and service. So the cost of acquisition is almost five times higher than the opportunities or sales generated throughout the year.
But the effects are short-lived. The advertising and lower prices might well create hype over these days, but there is no onus on these individuals to return to your brand or create any relationship with it.
Consumers are swamped by the number of specials and promos around them, and often make purchases during this period that benefit them individually. This means that business products and software take a back seat to consumer products. The impact of running a B2B offering at this time instead of offering it at the end of the tax year or a different promo period for your business is similar.
Reputation and customer relationships
The number of units available for sale under the promo will be limited. But consumers know all too well that if X retailer is out of the iPhone, they can go to five others for the same product. Your business might not be the same and this could upset your existing customers who cannot get your product because of stock limitations or a prohibitive offer price. If you are in a niche industry, you might want to weigh up this issue before taking a promo live.
Getting high on hyper-consumerism
The shopping sprees on these days are mostly centred around physical products that people perceive to have value because of the drop in price. Your brand might suffer on Black Friday or Cyber Monday if you cannot deliver an equally good customer experience to the increased number of once-off customers. Unless you’re a significant retailer, I believe that there’s no long-term benefit to your brand if you participate in these bumper shopping days.