Sure it’s only February, but now is the best time to start thinking about your Internet marketing plan for the 2010 holiday season. Why so early? Here are just a few good reasons:
- The earlier you start the better prepared you will be if other things pop up (which they inevitably do)
- You may find that some of your ideas may take time to come together (Do you have some research to do? Do you need other people to make things happen? How much time will they need to get their part done?)
- If you are optimizing for new products or services, it will take some time for your efforts to show up in the search engines
- If there are changes to your website or marketing message you’ll probably want to test a thing or two to make sure you are getting the most out of your efforts (and test it before the holiday rush of visitors hits your site)
Let’s take a look at each one of these points in a bit more detail.
Things Pop Up
When was the last time your business ran as smooth as you planned for an entire month, let alone an entire year? Probably never. Unexpected things happen that take up your valuable time – the time you may be planning on working on the holiday season. If you are able to map out a plan of attack for your holiday season right now, you will be more likely to stick by it and be able to complete it on time.
Most Online Initiative Take Some Time To Come Together
Some initiatives require other resources like designers and copywriters. The earlier they are involved the more apt they are to meet your deadlines. A PPC campaign is often a powerful revenue driver around the holiday season. And sure, you can pull one together over coffee one afternoon in late November. But to really get the most out of your investment you should start early so you can test different keywords, different ads and different landing pages. That way once the holiday traffic is searching for your product or service you are ready to take advantage of it.
Jumping Up The Search Engines Doesn’t Happen Overnight
As we all know, it takes time for solid SEO efforts to show results in the search engines. So if you start now, you may just be #1 for the terms you want by the time we’re all holiday shopping. But if you start in November there is virtually no shot at that.
It’s Better To Test With A Smaller Sample Size
If you’re testing a new marketing message with an email campaign and / or your website, why wait until the bulk of your customers are coming to buy your product to test it? It make sense to test it out when the stakes are not as high. Test a few landing page designs on a small sample (maybe only part of an email list, maybe a month when traffic to your site isn’t that high). That way you have the kinks out when it’s time for the holiday rush.
Are you still under the impression that it’s too earlier to start thinking about Christmas 2010? Or are you all ready starting to plan for the 2011 season? Let us know your thoughts.