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Bazaarvoice 2012 Holiday Guide 3 Tips to Succeed with Social This Holiday Season Best Practices Guide • 2012


Are you optimized for social success this holiday season? It’s well known that social content has been proven to increase traffic, engagement, and sales, but did you know that the holiday season is one of the most crucial times to not only take advantage of existing user-generated content, but to set yourself up for social success in the coming year? In this stepby-step guide, we’ll outline some of the most important things that you can do with social, along with some client examples from the world’s best brands, and proven results. In three easy steps, you’ll learn everything there is to know about successfully marketing with usergenerated content this holiday season.

Overview:

Three tips to ensure success with social over the holidays:

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Take advantage of holiday traffic: Generate significant content volume that will boost ROI all year long

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Enhance holiday marketing: Incorporate the voice of your customers and biggest advocates into your site and marketing materials

Reach customers wherever they shop: Deliver user-generated content across channels, online and off


Tip #1 Take advantage of holiday traffic: Generate significant content volume that will boost ROI all year long. Lots of holiday shoppers means lots of opportunities for you to solicit valuable feedback in the form of customer reviews, questions, answers, stories, and more.

Beyond the holiday season, the high volume of consumer-written content during this time will: • Drive sales by widening your product coverage and increasing reviews per product. • Power SEO with real consumer language. • Decrease returns when shoppers find the right products for their needs. • Uncover actionable insights by increasing the depth of reviews per product.

1 The Limited asks customers to share their fashion point of view with the world through their post-interaction email.

Best practices for increasing consumer content volume during the holidays: If you don’t already, make sure you have a post-interaction email (PIE) or postpurchase email (PPE) in place. This is the number one way to drive ongoing content volume. What is it? PIE is an email automatically sent shortly after a consumer interacts on your site, making it easy for your customers to return to the site to leave their feedback. What results can I expect? Implementing PIE raises daily review volume by 205% on average.

The Home Depot encourages consumers to share their valuable opinions through their post-interaction email.


2 Spur customers to action by launching a contest or sweepstakes across multiple channels to build volume before the holidays. Creating an opportunity to win a prize for submitting content is an extremely effective way to drive a burst of review volume. You can see anywhere between a 75%-500% burst in daily review volume as a result. Be sure to promote the sweepstakes in all your channels – on your site, in email campaigns, on Facebook and Twitter, in the store, etc. And give yourself some runway for the early birds and those prime-time buyers who will be hitting up Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Capture a significant amount of review volume by running a sweepstakes campaign after the holidays to gather content from consumers who received gifts and gift cards, as well as post-holiday bargain hunters.

CB2 sent an email campaign to their customers encouraging them to share their product reviews and make their voices heard.

The Land of Nod ran a shopping spree contest to boost review volume during the holidays.


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Encourage review submission through bag/box stuffers. Remind consumers in-store and after purchase that they can share their opinions online, reinforcing that your brand embraces consumers’ opinions.

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Encourage customers to engage beyond ratings and reviews this holiday season. Capture their questions, answers, and experiences, too. Through questions and answers, you can help close any information gaps and give consumers the information they need in order to buy now. Q&A communities not only drive contributions from customers but also from people who aspire to be customers and have unanswered questions, or are passionate about the topic. Through campaigns, consumers will share stories and associate your brand with powerful, positive experiences. Both will drive additional website traffic, awareness of products and brands, and higher conversion rates.

One retailer promoted consumer Q&A on their home page to encourage stumped and last-minute holiday shoppers to post questions for other shoppers, hear their advice, and share their own.

Origins included this insert with their shipments encouraging consumers to both read and write product reviews.

Idea: Place inserts in shopping bags at checkout or with shipments to encourage customers to give their feedback.

Idea: Encourage your community to share gift ideas with each other by promotion q&a

Idea: Encourage your users to share experiences and stories in coordination with a holiday theme.

James Avery launched a holiday-themed contest asking consumers to share their favorite holiday memories.


Tip #2 Enhance holiday marketing: Incorporate the voice of your customers and biggest advocates into your site and marketing materials.

Cabela’s enables consumers to shop by top-rated categories on their site.

Let your customers’ experiences be a source of inspiration for other shoppers. Promote your top-rated products, highlighting star ratings and authentic review snippets, on your site and in marketing materials. These featured opinions will not only increase click-through rate and on-site engagement, they’ll give your visitors the confidence to make a purchase, be it a gift or otherwise, based on positive feedback from previous owners.

Idea: Do a keyword search through your current reviews to find words that work well with the theme of one of your holiday promotions and incorporate those review snippets into an email.

Garnet Hill featured top-rated gifts and forever favorites in their holiday email campaigns.


Tip #3 Reach customers wherever they shop: Deliver user-generated content across channels, online and off. Today’s consumers shop everywhere and in more than one channel at a time. To capture these consumers, brands must deliver the right information, at the right time, in the right places. Deliver user-generated content across channels, online and off, to give shoppers the confidence to buy wherever they’re doing their holiday shopping.

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Highlight top-rated items using in-store signage, product stickers, hang tags, display necks, etc.

Best practices for incorporating user-generated content across channels during the holidays:

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Display product ratings and total review count on product shelf tags in-store.

Idea: REACH OUT TO THE CONSUMER AT THE POINT-OF-SALE BY DRAWING ATTENTION TO THE FACT THAT THE PRODUCT IS TOP-RATED BY OTHER CONSUMERS.

LEGO® Stores features ratings on shelf tags to promote top-rated toys.

Ricki’s uses product stickers and hang tags to highlight top-rated items in-store.


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Add star ratings and consumer-written feedback to circulars, print and magazine ads, and catalogs.

Best Buy leverages star ratings and customer quotes to promote featured items in a holiday circular.

Sephora features reviews and ratings in their catalog.

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Integrate community Q&A, reviews, consumersubmitted photos and videos, etc. into your mobile sites and apps.

Sephora encourages shoppers to access reviews while shopping in their stores with mobile signage.


Summary: It’s not too late! User-generated content is extremely valuable yearround, but arguably never more important than in the months that lie ahead. Start implementing the tips in this guide today to make sure that your social strategy’s on track and in time for the holidays. A little bit of effort now will go a long way this holiday season and for many years to come. So what are you waiting for? Start figuring out where you can integrate social content into your holiday programming today to guarantee that this season is a successful one for you and your brand!

About Bazaarvoice Bazaarvoice brings the voice of customers to the center of business strategy, transforming business performance for nearly 1,800 clients globally. Bazaarvoice helps clients like Best Buy, Costco, Dell, Macy’s, P&G, Panasonic, QVC, and USAA create social communities on their brand websites and Facebook pages where customers can engage in conversations. These conversations can be syndicated across Bazaarvoice’s global network of client websites and mobile devices, which allows manufacturers to connect directly with customers. The social data derived from online word of mouth translates into actionable insights that improve marketing, sales, customer service, and product development. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Bazaarvoice has offices in Amsterdam, London, Munich, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Stockholm, and Sydney. For more information, visit bazaarvoice.com, read the blog at bazaarvoice.com/blog, and follow on Twitter at twitter.com/bazaarvoice.


Bazaarvoice 2012 Holiday Guide