How to Use Digital Advertising During the Holiday Season

Turkey Trots, Macy Day Parade, Black Friday, Menorahs, Hanukkah, Santa Claus, Tree Lightings, and New Year’s!  Throw in a few other days like Columbus Day and Veterans Day and you have a whole lot of celebrating being done over the months of October – December.

For ideas on Halloween, make sure you read this blog.

It’s true.  No matter how hard we try to ignore it, the holidays have arrived, and that means it’s time to cozy up with your in-laws and it’s also time that people are willing to open their wallets to spend money for others, and for themselves.  While in the spending mentality, what’s the best way to get your message in front of them?

First, let’s look at where a lot of people go to for gift giving of all kinds…Amazon.  If you aren’t selling on Amazon, that’s OK! I promise. You don’t need to be.  Amazon has created an opportunity for you take advantage of their Targeting Data, and use it to reach your potential customers with your digital advertising.

Amazon has several different ways you can target:

Behavioral – Showing your display, video, or OTT ads to specific consumers based on their Amazon purchase history, searches, and browsing, across (display only), Amazon properties and thousands of partner websites and apps.


Product Targeting – We build an audience of consumers who have searched, browsed or purchased specific products on Amazon, and show them your display, video, or OTT ad across (display only), Amazon properties and thousands of partner websites and apps.


Custom Audience – We take your list of customer emails or addresses, match them to Amazon users and show your display, video, or OTT ads across (display only), Amazon properties and thousands of partner websites and apps


Retargeting – Following people after they leave your website and showing them your display, video, or OTT ads across Amazon properties and thousands of partner websites and apps.

If you’re using Behavioral Targeting as a strategy in your marketing, know that with Amazon, you have tens of thousands of categories to choose from.   Whether you’re selling jewelry, furniture, home décor, restaurant gift cards, or tickets to a holiday concert, there’s a targeting category for that.

With Product Targeting, your targeting can be even more specific.  With this strategy, you can pick products that Amazon sells, and we’ll create the audience that you can target.  For example, to reach new parents, the products you might pick are infant car seats, diapers, and baby books.

Using Amazon’s Custom Audience targeting strategy allows you to take advantage of your client database, if you have emails and/or physical addresses (Amazon has these because they deliver to those addresses).  Once we have that database, we upload it to Amazon’s DSP and find out how many of those people we can find with Amazon profiles.  Then, we start serving ads to only those people (or create a lookalike audience) while they’re on (display only), on Amazon owned properties, or within the Amazon Network.   To do the Custom Audience on its own, without the lookalike audience, we would need 7,000 matches.

Retargeting is a great addition to any campaign, and Amazon is no different.  Retargeting allows us to reach the “low hanging fruit.”   What this means is that when people come to your website, it’s most likely because they’re interested in your product or service.  When those people leave your website, we want to stay top of mind and keep your ad in front of them, so they can come back to your site and become a customer.


Next, let’s look at Mobile Conquesting.

During this time of year, your customers are typically out and about more often than they are throughout the rest of the year.  Family comes to town, friends come and visit and it’s all about recreating memories and continuing traditions.  During this time, no matter where they are, you can pretty much bank on the fact that they’ll have their smart phones with them.  And, if you know where your customers are going to be, or where they currently spend time, and you could get your message in front of them, why wouldn’t you?

The plan here is two-fold.  First, we find the behavioral categories that line up with your target audience.   Let’s say you own a jewelry store.  In that case you’d want to target jewelry shoppers, maybe targeting men to buy jewelry for their significant other, or maybe luxury and affluent shoppers.   Once we know who we’re targeting, and what geographic area that you want to target, now comes the fun part.  The 2nd step is using geo-fencing to target specific locations/events where your customers may visit during the holidays.  We can geo-fence your competitors, the airports, shopping centers, and even the drive-through holiday light events.   In my opinion, the best part of this strategy is using the geo-retargeting element.  This allows us to continue to serve ads to the people that were inside of the geo-fences that we established for you.  Meaning, yes, the geo-fencing will target people while they’re at the restaurant, bar, or holiday event.  The geo-retargeting allows us to continue to target those mobile devices when they continue to celebrate throughout the holidays.

Lastly, two more quick ideas.  One, if you’re not already utilizing Facebook and Instagram’s Carousel Ad to promote everything you want your potential customers to see this holiday season, you should be. Let’s face it.  People are on social media all the time, especially during the holidays.  Two, be sure your Google Business Profile is up to date so when your potential customers start looking for you online, they can find all they need to about your business!  Good luck this holiday season and remember that there is a way that your message can be in front of your target audience over the next few months.  You just need to right partner to help you execute.


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How Are You Engaging With Consumers on Your Website?

Let’s play a game where you guess what generation I am classified from clues that I give you. First clue is that I am in bed every night at 8:30pm. Second clue is that I don’t have a TikTok account. Third clue is that I have seen Engelbert Humperdinck live in concert…twice. From those three stats, you might say I would be considered a Baby Boomer, so I’m anywhere from late 50’s to early 70’s. Believe it or not, even though I am an old soul, technically I am a millennial. For the most part, I don’t have the “normal” qualities of a millennial and I act more like a Baby Boomer, however, when it comes to certain things, I certainly am a millennial!

One of the times I am is when it comes to dealing with or interacting with a business. If I want more information on something or even if it’s something customer service related, I want to find the way to interact with them the least; I don’t want to pick up the phone or go to their location. I would much rather go to the website, their Facebook page, text with them, or utilize a Live Chat feature they might have on their website. Live Chat is a great tool for businesses to incorporate into their website because it allows for consumers to interact with a business the way that they want to. Me, being a millennial, would much rather go to a website and use Live Chat to speak with someone and give up my contact information. My parents on the other hand, they are “old school” and feel more comfortable going to a physical location or picking up the phone and speaking with someone. Here is an example of how Amazon is a business that offers various ways for their consumers to interact with their team by having the Live Chat feature, or requesting a phone call:

Having a Live Chat agent on a website is the difference between brands talking at consumers, which is all a traditional website can do, and talking with their consumers. Live Chat is staffed by live humans who are trained agents that have knowledge about the business from their website, and through a series of questions that the business will answer. The other upside to having a Live Chat agent is that it allows for a business to have representation 24/7/365, without paying an employee to be available 24/7/365. With over 50% of consumers saying that a business needs to be available 24/7, Live Chat is a great tool to make that a possibility. Also, by having representation around the clock, this allows for leads to be captured, even when a business isn’t open. If it is late at night and I am just getting around to check out a product or service and I go to a website that has Live Chat and can give them my contact information for them to follow up with me, that is something that I can check off my to-do list, and there is nothing more satisfying to a millennial than crossing off something on their to-do list!


Another reason to consider adding a Live Chat feature to a website is because of the increasing amount of information that someone can receive from a Google Business Profile. This can act almost like a full screen sized mobile ad because it lists the address, hours, phone number, if that business accepts appointments, reviews, service options, updates, directions, menu (if applicable), and more about that business. Because of this, searchers are getting the information they are looking for without even going to the website, resulting in a “zero click search”. Live Chat can integrate with a Google Business Profile so the chat option can appear in Google Maps on a mobile device, and also in Google Search on a mobile device. Sixty five percent of Google searches do NOT result in a click to a website, so even if potential customers don’t visit the website of that business, they can still interact with that company, because of Live Chat.

When it comes to digital advertising, Live Chat isn’t exactly considered a marketing tool, but more of a lead generation tool. The main goal of the live chat agent is to gather four key pieces of information:

The visitors name
The visitors contact information (a phone number or email address)
What that visitor is looking for is something that business offers
The geographic location of that visitor

If the chat agent gathers that information, that is considered a sales lead and the business can then follow up with that lead. Live Chat is also a great way to demonstrate a return on investment because you’re able to the trail that consumers are engaging in. We can show how many people saw an ad, clicked on it, went to the landing page, and then initiated a chat with the Live Chat agent. From there, the business receives the transcript of the chat that look place and can follow up with that person and convert them into a customer. This is a great tool that shows the sales journey from someone seeing an ad because of a targeted campaign, to become a customer.

Now for certain types of businesses, it might make more sense to have a Virtual Assistant type Live Chat on their site, instead of a Live Chat agent. Virtual Assistant is for simple conversions like signing up for a newsletter, collecting emails, or asking for more info, without paying per sales leads that comes through.

Virtual Assistant is an automated bot, so it is not staffed by a live agent, and instead of paying $10 per lead fee, the business pays a flat fee per month. If a business isn’t trying to obtain leads but instead are trying to get more email addresses, or newsletter sign ups, subscriptions, etc., having the Virtual Assistant is the more cost-effective route.  Keep in mind Virtual Assistant does not currently integrate with a Google Business Profile or have the ability to do SMS text messaging, like the Live Chat agent.

With this option, the website visitor is presented with up to four options to choose from. After the visitor clicks one of the options the Virtual Assistant can ask for name, email, phone number, and offer a link to a page of the website.

Here are some example bot options for when the Virtual Assistant asks, “What can I help you with?” to visitors:

Home Improvement

Free Estimates
Contact Information


Free Consultation
Contact Information
Existing Clients


Patient Support
Contact Information


Contact Information


Contact Information
Current Students

As consumers, one thing that we have come to expect when dealing with a business is good customer service, no matter where we go. When helping businesses come up with ideas for their ads, one of the top things I always hear when I ask “what sets you apart from your competitors?” is that they have excellent customer service. That isn’t something that sets you apart from your competitors because that is something that is expected everywhere, but customer service has become a broad term. Does it mean adding a personal touch, responding quickly to questions, not being on hold for long, or maybe offering a discount? To me, the wanna be Baby Boomin’ Millennial, it means all of those, but something else I really enjoy, is being able to interact with a business the way I want to, when I want to.



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How to Create Compelling Online Videos

Video is Hot Hot Hot and stats prove that it is in high demand by digital users.

User-generated and professional videos increase brand engagement by 28%.

Particularly millennials trust user-generated content and video twice as much.

And 80% would rather watch a live video than read a blog.

Hopefully you keep reading this blog to learn more about how to create online videos that will ultimately engage your audience.

First step is to remember the ABC and D’s

Attention, Branding, Connection & Direction.

Let’s talk about them each individually.


Capturing your audiences’ attention from the start is key and keeping their attention. Attention is a top driver of high-performing ads. What does this mean? The first five seconds is crucial, considering all we are exposed to online daily. Consumers love a good story and this can be done with great audio or visuals or both.  You can achieve this with exaggerated reactions, sound effects or voices that cut thru the clutter.

Imagine you are telling a story to a family member or close friend; you need to jump in right from the beginning in order for them to be interested in what you have to say. Focus on what you have to sell whether it be a product or service. Using multiple angles and close-ups are also some nice video tips to keep the user engaged. It is important to pair that with nice  visuals to draw the viewer in. For instance, if I saw this video below, I would wonder why is there a dog and a kid in space and I want to view more.







Many believe videos have to be overproduced, but many user-generated content videos perform just as well as higher quality content as it seems more genuine.







Making sure your video conveys an accurate picture of your business or brand is important. This can be with consistent logo usage, colors and text. Don’t abandon things that would not resonate to the users and are off-brand.  This can also include consistent music, voices and/or jingles. If these standards have not been established, it is important to make some decisions so they can be carried out across all creative messaging. You want them to remember your brand and set the tone for what your brand is.


If you have ever met someone for the first time or even gone on a first date, it is important to connect from the very beginning. First impressions are key. In this case remember after you hook them in the beginning and grab their attention, you want to keep their attention. Make sure your video is not too long and is fluid and follows the flow of a heartbeat, nice highs and lows. You can do this with repeating visuals and make sure the story you are telling is not complicated and continue to use close-ups and visuals to carry it out.








Lastly, direction. What is it you want the consumer to do? Remember a special offer? Call a number? Visit a location? Feel a certain way about your brand? This should be woven into the video and also included at the end as reminder to the user to DO WHAT YOU WANT THEM TO DO. If  you have ever heard the phrase, “Keep it simple stupid!”, this is important so it is clear what you want them to do. Do not overcomplicate things by having them remember too many steps. The call to action should be simple and concise.

Ok, now we have covered the A, B, C and D’s. You are Ready for the Action!

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