School is starting soon, which reactivates certain specific consumer needs. From clothing, supplies, even subscriptions or online applications, gadgets, and more, all are part of the wide range of products being sought after.
On the flip side, e-commerce businesses and others are preparing as well. We’ve talked to the experts at Data Revolt about the aspects that guide marketers and entrepreneurs in smart businesses with a strong digital component. As usual, we’ve focused on practical, applicable advice that has already been verified through experience.
Autumn has arrived, cross-check my data with something
What you need to do from your data perspective to prepare for B2S. An essential checklist from the Data & Analytics team:
- Ensure that the Google Ads remarketing Retail script is correctly implemented on the site, and the product IDs sent to Google Ads match the product IDs in Google Merchant Center.
- Ensure that the Facebook Pixel script is correctly implemented on the site and sends ecommerce events to Facebook, and the product IDs sent to Facebook match the product IDs in the Facebook Catalog.
- Verify that the landing pages to be used in the Back 2 school campaigns correctly record the traffic source, have no redirects or errors.
- Verify that GA4 has Google Signals enabled to report unique users. Additionally, it’s important for data retention to be set at 14 months, and “Reset user data on new activity” should be checked.
- It’s important for the Google Ads account to be linked to the GA4 property.
- The purchase event should be implemented in GA4 and used in campaigns for optimization (improves the bidding process).
Back to school: Navigating Market Pressure and Consumer Behavior Changes
In a commercial landscape dominated by increasing competition and additional pressure due to recent inflation, which has made the market highly price-sensitive, it becomes essential for any advertiser to demonstrate the value offered compared to other available options.
Specifics and Structure of Performance Campaigns for B2S – Specific Aspects –
- Timing is crucial. Launch campaigns early! Interest in Back to school starts to rise as early as July. Launching upper-funnel campaigns in July can generate early buzz around back-to-school offers.
- Connect with your core audience – target both students (back to college) and parents.
- Use a complete mix of channels – capture back-to-school demand across all channels. Develop a full-funnel strategy that ensures consumer interest before, during, and even after school starts.
- Monitor search volume. As more people return from vacations, buying behavior picks up again, and advertisers need budgets that can accommodate this surge.
- Focus on “hero” products. While for many types of products, price is the deciding factor, for some (like backpacks), design matters a lot.
- In communication, it’s essential to highlight competitive advantages and specific reasons why a potential customer should choose to buy from you instead of someone else. Static graphics or videos are perfect tools for this purpose.
- Implement A/B testing within the campaign: Using two to four different creative directions or even completely different messages ensures effective testing, eliminating the need for an extended pre-test period.
- Working with prepared, well-segmented audiences ready to engage with campaign messages is very important.
- When the budget is limited, certain channels can be approached using retargeting audiences only. This approach has significant advantages because people on the retargeting list are already familiar with the brand and have shown a certain level of interest, making messages more likely to be received and achieve a higher conversion rate.
Hello, Parent of a Student, we’re ready to help you
Advance preparation for the “Back to School” season through email marketing campaigns starts with establishing a promotional calendar.
It’s important to note that this period represents an excellent shopping opportunity and a chance to reactivate the customer database, even if your business is not in the educational sector.
What you can do:
- Determine the exact timing of the campaign and plan the frequency of newsletters.
- Analyze previous campaigns by competitors and trends from previous years to decide what type of content you want to deliver in your communications.
- Identify specific customer segments to ensure you’re delivering relevant content.
- Focus on automated campaigns to maximize conversion chances, as they allow you to personalize communications to customers at key moments. For example, cart abandonment or browser abandonment after viewing products.
- Include an A/B test on the subject line of manual newsletters, sending the winning variant to 50% of the subscriber list. This will help you optimize campaigns in real time and achieve better results.
- Enhance your strategy with pop-ups and push notifications.
An important aspect of preparing for the “Back to School” period is to ensure that all offers and content delivered to a customer match their specific needs. An essential way to achieve this is by personalizing the message based on their previous behavior in interactions with you and your business.
How can you put this into practice?
- Database segmentation: Use data about users’ behavior over time to create precise segments. For example, you can implement segments of customers who have previously purchased school-related products or those who have viewed specific products in this category.
- Personalized recommendations: Use customers’ order history to suggest the most relevant products for them. If a customer has purchased school supplies in the past, you can recommend similar products or offers for this category of items.
- Personalized automated emails: Create automated email marketing campaigns that trigger based on customer behavior. For example, if a customer abandons their shopping cart with school-related items, they will automatically receive a personalized message with a reminder to complete their order.
- Encouraging reviews/feedback: After placing an order, encouraging customers to leave feedback helps build trust in the brand and, last but not least, creates increasingly valuable content.
Wake me up when the keywords are over
The content ideas with the greatest impact align with consumer needs and guide demand with contextual tips and ideas. See some possibilities below.
- Fashion, Technology, and Accessories – What’s trendy, comfortable, beautiful, etc.
- Tips for Parents – Communicating with teachers, managing children’s stress, creating a conducive learning environment at home.
- Essential School Supplies List for the New Year – Everything students need, from stationery to hygiene items.
- Ideas for School Lunches: Suggestions for healthy meals that students can take to school.
- Innovative Learning Methods – Innovative learning techniques and approaches that can help students.
- Transitioning from Vacation to School – Tips to make the transition from vacation to school schedule easier.
- Guide to Organizing a Home Learning Space – Distraction-free, comfortable, adaptable.
- Interviews with Teachers and Students – Different perspectives on expectations, goals, and other aspects of the school year.
- Tips for Finding Balance Between School and Extracurricular Activities so that students can make the most of both.
GIF me up, before you go, go – social media
First and foremost, social media plays a role in balancing transactional content vs. inspirational content. The content plan for September should be created based on the target audience’s needs, while also following the business objectives.
Example: Teasing campaigns related to seasonal discounts should emphasize the need for new stationery, dietary supplements, supplies, etc., while the actual campaigns should focus on the products. From a tactical perspective, customized solutions exclusively designed for this period are crucial.
Giveaways and Contests
Organizing contests and giveaways are among the most effective ways to attract users’ attention and involve them in a Back to School campaign. A study on the subject revealed a higher conversion rate compared to other types of content with contests. Depending on the brand’s specifics and communication goals, contest mechanisms can vary: to enter the contest, users can be invited to write their school-related experiences in the comments of a post or upload photos with a relevant hashtag; the prizes offered in the giveaway should be useful for school, staying within the interest zone.
Educational Tutorials and Relevant Tips
Distributing educational, useful, and relevant content for students, parents, and teachers helps build trust in brands. From creating reels/short videos (the most successful type of content) to informative carousel posts that offer tips about school preparations, organizing study time, or choosing the most suitable school materials.
Collaborations with Influencers
By identifying influencers relevant to the brand and its objectives and partnering with them to promote your Back to School campaign. Influencers can create authentic and engaging content about their back-to-school experiences, product recommendations, or practical tips. Collaborating with influencers significantly contributes to increasing brand visibility and credibility.
Teasing & Reveals
Special BTS offers: Use social media channels to distribute announcements and special offers related to products and services relevant to the school start. These are ideal during the teasing and reveals phase of the campaign.
Focus on real-time stories or live streams to present discounts or exclusive promotions to followers, encouraging them to stay up to date with what’s happening on social media channels during this period. Crucially: the messages conveyed need to be as concise, visual, and engaging as possible to capture users’ attention in the fast-scrolling world of social media content.
What Kind of Shopper to Expect?
According to data from Google Romania, the target audience with the highest likelihood of making a purchase has the following characteristics:
* 65% women
* Aged between 35-44
* Interests: shopping, family time, deals, educational content
Analyzing last year’s specific back-to-school period (Source: Google Internal Data, Jan-May 2023), we see a range of easily anticipated searches: office furniture, supplies, backpacks, clothing, as well as laptops, tablets, printers, and of course, phones.
Conclusion – Act and Analyze
For defining solutions that lead to results, insights and data extracted from the business’s specifics are essential. The ideal approach for this moment (and beyond) remains the search for omnichannel solutions, utilizing the advantages of each promotion channel. Equally important is the ability to adapt and optimize marketing efforts in real time.
Ultimately, having a results measurement system that provides room for future conclusions and brings learning and insights about the target, the market, and future growth opportunities is vital.
If you need assistance in increasing sales during the Back to School period, reach out to us at email@example.com.