Black Friday lessons for 2015 and beyond

Black Friday is almost upon us, so we rounded up all of the best advice we have around it for this year to get you ready and feeling prepared, whether you’re facing shoppers in-store, online, on social, or on all of the above.

How retailers can learn from past Black Fridays on Twitter to have a better 2015 holiday season

by Jenn Deering Davis for eSeller

The takeaway: Look at past Twitter activity to plan content marketing strategy for the present and future. 

Using historical Twitter data, retailers can learn from holiday seasons past to better prepare for this and future holidays. For example, when should retailers tweet about their Black Friday sales? They don’t want to share too early and miss the excitement, but they don’t want to share too late or they risk getting lost in the noise. The best time to post information about Black Friday sales would be about 10 days before Black Friday, and making sure to repeat it several times over the next week and a half. Shoppers spend the week of Black Friday researching and sharing their favorite deals, culminating on Thursday as they make last-minute preparations.” 

Here’s what the 2014 Black Friday conversation looked like, via Union Metrics Echo:

Black-Friday-2014-Twitter-data-from-Union-Metrics

When should you start your holiday marketing?

by Mike O’Brien for ClickZ

The takeaway: For social media holiday marketing specifically, you don’t want to start too early and irritate your followers, but too late and you’ll get lost in the noise. 

“The best time to start: The second week of November – that way, by the week of Black Friday, consumers won’t be seeing your deals for the first time.”

If you’re too late for this year, at least now you’ll be prepared to have the best holiday marketing ever in 2016.

Tips for rocking this Black Friday on Twitter

by Jenn Deering Davis for iMedia Connection

The takeaway: Make shoppers feel like they’re getting something special from you on Twitter. 

What tweets generate the most engagement?

What sort of products, sales, and brands have consumers tweeted about in the past? What did they like or dislike? What questions did customers ask retailers? Researching these topics from holiday seasons past can help retailers prep more relevant content calendars and assets for the upcoming holiday season. Shoppers love tweets with good deals, previews of in-store sales, and links to products they want most. That’s often deals on electronics and technology, as well as toys and clothes. But they’re also looking for something special, so consider sharing Twitter-only deals with your followers. Tweets with a hashtag or image also perform well, so consider including a photo of the sale item or a special holiday hashtag.” 

Official Black Friday Expected To Be Strong Despite #OptOutside And Early Deals

by Nicole Leinbach-Reyhle for Forbes

The takeaway: Black Friday deals are already happening and stores like REI are encouraging shoppers to #OptOutside, but a lot of people are still planning to shop on Black Friday and they’re talking about it on Twitter. 

“So just what do more tweets really mean? Customers are talking. . .and stores are taking notice. Certainly, REI’s recent announcement to #OptOutside has helped to make this happen, but we can’t neglect other companies – such as Nordstrom – and their efforts to promote keeping their stores closed on Thanksgiving and saving their big holiday push for Black Friday instead.”

To put it in stats (all from the American Express Spending & Saving Tracker),

  • Overall 45% of shoppers plan to shop on Black Friday. Meanwhile, 47% plan to shop on Cyber Monday.
  • It’s estimated that Americans plan to spend $584 on average this year on Black Friday, notably higher than last year’s $501.
  • By the day’s end on Black Friday, six in ten customers expect to have finished about one-half or less of their holiday shopping.

Black Gold?

by Alex Spencer for Mobile Marketing

The takeaway: The future of Black Friday might look more like a Black November.

“But with Black Friday now embedded into the public consciousness and growing every year, what’s the alternative?

Well, it could be as simple as spreading it all out. Offering deals at different times throughout the day can help spread the load. In the UK, Amazon has distributed its ‘lightning’ deals over a 10-day period, though it will still be running Black Friday promotions as usual in the US, where the day coincides with a common holiday.

Black Friday doesn’t necessarily have to be retailers’ biggest sales day, especially in other countries.”


Got a question, comment or concern? Leave it below or find us on Twitter at @UnionMetrics. Thought that Union Metrics Echo screencap above looked pretty cool? Learn more about how Echo works and what it can do for you here