← Back to Blog Home
blog-img

Winning spring marketing strategies [Free visuals included]

By Marianna Zvaigzne on April 6th, 2017 - Reading time: 8 minutes

Spring is here along with its many side effects, including sunshine, a renewed sense of elation, and seasonal allergies. Regardless of what this season means for you, we can agree that going into spring kind of feels like putting on a pair of rose-tinted glasses: the world suddenly seems a much better place.

To take this sunlight-induced euphoria to the next level, mankind has chosen spring as the perfect time to celebrate life and change. And when you check your calendar, you’ll notice these concepts are embedded in spring holidays like Easter (16/04) and Mother’s Day (14/05).

Spring can also make a considerable mark on your ecommerce calendar, so you should take this opportunity to roll up your sleeves and see what you can do to help your target audience make their spring as memorable as possible.

So this is what you’ll find in today’s blog post:

  • the most effective ways to get your audience’s attention this spring season
  • specific ideas for launching your very own spring-themed campaign
  • a lovely bouquet of promotional spring visuals – completely free – that you can use to your liking.

First things first, a quick reminder of the the ground rules for creating any marketing/sales campaign. Creating special offers isn’t anything new, so you need ways to get people to find out about them. And one of the ways of doing it is through promotional content.

Amazon always know their way around spring deals (2016)

Amazon always know their way around spring deals (2016)

As for content, the Content Marketing Association (CMA) has rightly observed that the internet is constantly changing, and it’s good practice to ask yourself if the content you’re creating will pay off. Remember, there is TONS of information out there.

So, what can you do to make your tidbit of info noticed? Well, the CMA has distinguished three types of content that will get people’s attention:

  1. Relevant content – delivered at the right time, in the right place and in the right format
  2. Beautiful content – presented in high quality and appreciated for its aesthetic value
  3. Community content – designed to get people involved in a cause and make them feel like a part of something

That means you can decide whether you’re going to inform, excite, or inspire. You can choose one of them or create a concoction of all of these approaches, but the most important thing is that the content you create fulfills a need for your audience.

Whilst devising new and exciting ways to speak to your customers, remember that springtime is a celebration in itself and date-specific events like Mother’s Day don’t need to be the sole motivator to get a sale going. Look out the window and try to make a creative, entrepreneurial connection between what’s going on out there and what you can offer as a business owner.

Let’s go over some of the basic sales tactics you can tailor to your spring sale. You’ll want to evaluate your final choices in terms of timing: will they be part of a lengthier campaign or a limited-time-only event?

  • % or $ discount
  • Sales for certain items/designs/colors
  • Exclusive designs for the occasion
  • Free Shipping
  • Flash Sales
  • Giveaways
  • Gifts related to the occasion that come with a purchase

Any of these 7 tactics can be altered in a way that helps you grow your email list: once your potential customer has visited your site, ask them to leave their email in return for your special offer.

And to get your mental gears grinding, here are 8 spring-related topics you could play with in your campaign:

1. Animal and plant motifs

Yes, we know – in the immortal words of Miranda Priestly, “Florals for spring? Groundbreaking.” But from bears to birds and beyond, nature is waking up. It could be your line of animal-related designs that are coming out of a deep winter slumber with a snow-melting discount, or it could be your entire line coming out of hibernation with a refreshing dose of free shipping.

2. Sunshine showers

If spring is here, that means summer is just around the corner. And what’s the best way to prepare for summer? Stock up on tank tops, t-shirts, skirts, and dresses. And that’s where you come in.

Zazzle's sun-filled sale from last year

Zazzle’s sun-filled sale from last year

White does not equal, as Nasty Gal has pointed out (2016).

White does not equal snow, as Nasty Gal has pointed out (2016).

3. Physical well-being

Another fun way of preparing for summer is regretting every single pizza-related YOLO moment over the past couple of months and making up for it by hitting the gym and spending time outside. And as we all know, awesome workout swag is one of the best external motivators for anyone in need for an extra push towards that runner’s high.

4. Spring cleaning AKA farewell to winter

Lingering in the past might not be so bad in this case. You can use spring as a good reason to create a blow-out sale for your more winter-related items.

5. Colors

This will depend on your designs, but you can play up any of the colors you use and devise a campaign around daffodil yellows, playful pastels and bright blues and greens. After all, these are the colors we’ve all been waiting for.

Isn't spring just an annual celebration of color? Via Ralph Lauren

Isn’t spring just an annual celebration of color? Via Ralph Lauren

6. New season, new you

In a way, spring is like another New Year’s which can be used rather universally. This idea can be treated from almost any angle and can work for any product, because it’s an opportunity for a customer to switch something old in for something new, and it doesn’t have to be anything too big. You can start with something people use every day and don’t mind switching up – phone cases, tote bags, mugs, etc.

Ikea: out with the old, in with the new

Ikea (2016): out with the old, in with the new

7. Fresh, new everything

Maybe spring has got you good too, and there’s a new design you’ve been aching to bring to life? A new product you want to add? A new store feature your customers would appreciate? Seeing that everyone’s a bit more positive and excited by default, now’s the perfect time for the big reveal!

You know you want to click it. Via Kate Spade New York

You know you want to click it. Via Kate Spade New York

8. The birds and the bees

Forget Valentine’s Day, springtime is the REAL celebration of love! Why not transform some of your Valentine’s Day promo ideas into a medley of spring, love, and awesome 2-for-1 deals?

Once you’ve decided on your idea, transfer its components to your copy and visuals. The next step, of course, is to decide where to push this newly created content.

Below are the communication channels you should consider when putting together a campaign, and you must be able to identify which ones are the top priority for your audience. What’s more, whatever elements you pick need to work together, not against one another, that’s why, depending on your goals, you should also decide on their timing and frequency:

  • Email marketing campaigns about upcoming offers
  • Inviting social media posts
  • Blog articles, such as spring-themed gift guides
  • Last but not least, your storefront – think banners, pop-ups, customized side bars

A note on social media – don’t underestimate the role of mobile and always rethink which platforms your audience is most likely to use when browsing the seas of online content and how it’ll affect your content. Facebook still reigns supreme, and is said to have an estimated 30.3 million mobile users in 2016, but keep your eye on Snapchat and Instagram. It’s been predicted that by 2021, they’ll have 18.3 and 18.7 million users respectively.

Now that we’ve gone over ways of contemplating spring, let’s look at some of the main spring holidays from an ecommerce point of view. You don’t have to make an ecommerce event out of everything and you don’t need to target everyone, so do a bit of planning beforehand.

Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is a special holiday that revolves around motherhood, childhood, love, acceptance, and everything in between, including you thanking your mom for being so awesome.

If for you this holiday isn’t about making sales, use it as an opportunity to get a dialogue going with your audience. Share your own thoughts and experiences on social media, perhaps add a snapshot of your mom, get a new hashtag going or participate in one. Activities of this sort may not get you extra online sales, but they’re likely to increase your social media engagement stats and get people to go visit your store.

Sharing your personal insights is a wonderful way of celebrating Mother’s Day without going directly to sales, but you can also evaluate your range of products and see if there’s anything you could do to help or empower moms. For example, you could set up a sale where part of the revenue is donated to a charity that helps mothers and children.

But do keep one thing in mind: according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), Mother’s Day is the second biggest sales event of the year in the U.S., and one you might not want to miss. And as for sales ideas, if your audience is up for it, there are several things you can do, for example:

  • A showcase of products with inspirational messages

    Etsy knows that there every mom is unique

    Etsy knows that every mom is unique

  • Special discounts/offers for items that moms would particularly appreciate
  • Free shipping for a limited time

    A cool text-themed layout for the Kate Spade New York campaign

    A cool text-themed layout for the Kate Spade New York campaign

  • A special 2-for-1 offer for all moms and their moms

People are already starting to search the internet for Mother’s Day gifts, so if you’re thinking of setting up a campaign around this holiday, you should also look over your SEO strategy and keyword use to check that your store and products are easier to find.

And to have every mom get her gift on time, make sure your customers are informed about these order-by dates for this year’s Mother’s Day:

USA
24/04 – USPS Parcel Select
25/04 – FedEx Smart Post
27/04 – FedEx Ground
27/04 – USPS First Class Mail
01/05 – USPS Priority Mail
02/05 – FedEx 2Day
03/05 – FedEx Standard Overnight

Canada 
18/04 – Int’l Economy without tracking 
18/04 – USPS First Class Package International Mail 
24/04 – Int’l Economy with tracking 
25/04 – FedEx International Ground 
27/04 – Int’l Priority with tracking 
01/05 – FedEx International Economy 
03/05 – FedEx International Priority 

Europe / Asia / Pacific Rim / Australia / New Zealand / Caribbean
12/04 – Int’l Economy with tracking 
21/04 – Int’l Priority with tracking 
27/04 – FedEx International Economy 
01/05 – FedEx International Priority 

Africa / Central & South America / Middle East
12/04 – Int’l Economy with tracking 
21/04 – Int’l Priority with tracking 
27/04 – FedEx International Economy 
01/05 – FedEx International Priority 

Easter

If you take a step back to look at this holiday in its entirety, you’ll see that Easter can be rather puzzling. On the one hand, it’s one of the most sacred Christian holidays, on the other hand, it’s chocolate bunnies, Easter egg hunts and brightly-colored Peeps.

Again, you have to figure out what your audience will make of this. As in the case of Mother’s Day, you can use this time to build your brand’s social media presence. You don’t have to set up any elaborate offers, but you can talk about what celebrating Easter means to you.

If you happen to sell designs related to scripture, you can come up with ways to introduce a special discount to your customers, perhaps unveil it as a special Easter gift. If you know your customers won’t mind the ambiguity of Easter, you can format your campaigns around non-Christian Easter symbols.

A contemporary Easter delight from Williams Sonoma

A contemporary Easter delight from Williams Sonoma

Memorial Day

Here, although you have a choice like in the two holidays mentioned above – either to go with a well-crafted sale or to work on your social media presence – you might want to think twice or even thrice before going with the sale.

After all, it’s the day of remembrance for those who have died while serving in the U.S. armed forces, and there aren’t too many clever marketing spins one would like to or should put to use for this. If it’s a meaningful day for you and your followers, a personal, respectful social media post would be the safer option.

One last thing 

We’ve given you the facts and the examples, now you can grab our jumbo pack of free visuals and be on your way! Download the images, then use tools like Photoshop or Canva to add your texts and other finishing touches, and post them on social media. Here’s a quick taste of what you’ll get:

Sample Twitter post

Some final words on devising your upcoming spring campaigns: much has been seen before, so the success of a campaign boils down to the-right-place-at-the-right-time content, sincerity, and some creative zest.

People may be easy to trick, but they trust their gut instincts, meaning they’ll appreciate a genuine, positive dialogue rather than a run-of-the-mill sales tactic. Don’t forget that the way you communicate with your audience will pay off in the long run – sometimes slow and steady wins the race.

If you enjoyed this post, subscribe to updates

Get actionable drop shipping advice in your inbox

You can unsubscribe at any time with a single click
  1. Casey Schad

    Great read! I’m new to the Printful blog, so I might just not know where to look or I might have completely missed it, but where do we download the jumbo pack of free visuals from?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published