How B2B Companies Can Get More Out of the Holiday Season


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Maybe not this past year, but we traditionally think of the holiday season as a consumer retailer’s dream come true. But what about the B2B companies?

While it may take a bit more work, this can be a most rewarding time of year for your company as well. While Santa’s helpers are scurrying around looking for the perfect stocking stuffers, your buyers may have a wish list of their own. This is your opportunity to fill it.

Yes, it’s holiday time again, and you need ways to end the year on a high note. Here are a few ideas to help you use the holidays to close sales gaps and start big in the New Year.

Plan Far Enough Ahead

While this bit of advice is a little late for this year, it’s never too late to start planning for next year. It’s best not to let the holidays sneak up on you. Nor should you treat them like any other day, week or month.

Enter into the holidays with your plans in place, including holiday-themed content. Create campaigns for the holidays. Because marketing staff may save their vacation for the holidays, use your CRM and marketing automation solutions to schedule any email or social media rollout that you’ve planned for the holidays.

Reach Out on a Personal Level

Personalized content that’s of interest to prospects is always appreciated. And when you have to compete with the holidays for attention, it’s especially important. You have the data about your customers; use it to the buyer’s advantage. Target your communication to their industry and even the issues they may have raised in the past. Give them something to think about.

You know what products your customers already have. Now could be your opportunity to upsell them. You may be able to tap into their year-end budget spend. You may get them to say “yes” with the help of special discounts, limited-time offers or even “buy now and pay in the New Year” plans.

Better still, sweeten the deal with extra value in the form of free installation, upgrades or priority support. If you have a subscription-based service, give holiday buyers an extra six months for free.

Focus on Key Decision-Makers

As your salespeople well know, it’s tough to reach busy decision-makers throughout the year. But during the holidays, the daily routine tends to slow. Key people are less in demand and have more time to themselves. So much so that they tend to enjoy coming into the office during the holidays to catch up on work. They often have the time to answer their phone.

Have your sales reps reach out to their key accounts and top decision-makers during the holidays. They can target them with some special content that is immediately recognized as relevant — such as a video, white paper or research study that their top buyers will want to review. Then follow up with a phone call.

Take Full Advantage of Your Marketing Automation Tools

Your marketing automation tools can be a great help during the holidays. In addition to holding important buyer data, you can use them to target your message. Scheduling tools also enable you to roll out content throughout the season; customer contact records help you send mobile alerts when people are more on the move. Keep your message short, light and to the point when you alert key buyers to special offers.

Rely on Social Media

Use social media to post about your holiday activities and campaigns. It’s a perfect time of year to talk about charities and special causes that your company supports. You can strengthen relationships with your followers by offering to match their contributions to your special cause.

You can also write about themes of giving, gratitude, celebration and fun. Direct readers to blogs on your website that further the theme and include useful resources and links. It’s a great way to generate website traffic.

Be Authentic

Authenticity is always important, but even more so during the holidays. When it comes to blogs and social media, don’t be cynical; write what you honestly feel. Similarly, campaigns and content should not come across as heavy-handed sales ploys and promotions.

And sales reps should use this time of year to reinforce their relationships and build trust with buyers. When reaching out to key accounts and decision-makers, they need to show appreciation for their business and say “thank you.”

Remember Your Employees

Incentivize and motivate your salespeople to work the holidays by offering special goals and bonuses. Providing little rewards along the way can help them to stay focused.

Jump Start Your 2022

Typically, when January rolls around, it takes companies a few weeks or even a month or two to get moving. But there is a way to go into the New Year with more sales momentum than most of your competition — have a stockpile of leads that are ready for follow-up.

Even while focusing on key accounts and decision-makers, dedicate some time to building up a supply of new leads. You can offer unique content and limited-time offers to encourage new prospects to sign up for more information.

Then assign your BDRs to follow up and qualify the leads. Or, if you want to keep everyone selling, outsource the task to lead generation professionals. The holidays can be the ideal time to contact people. When they’re in the office, they usually have more time to talk.

Armed with qualified leads, you can start January with a bang!

With a little extra focus on key accounts and a lot of pre-holiday planning, your B2B holiday sales can be a most productive time and allow you to ring in the New Year with a smile.

Jeff Kalter
Jeff Kalter is CEO of 3D2B, a global business-to-business telemarketing company that bridges the divide between marketing and sales. He leads customer acquisition programs for Fortune 500 companies, and is passionate about building strong business relationships through professional phone conversations.


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