Black Friday 2020 was a huge success, thanks in no small part to various coronavirus restrictions, and this year it is set to be even bigger.  According to research, consumers are expected to set a new record, spending 5% more on Black Friday this year compared to last.

Shopping is moving in an online direction in general, and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Black Friday is expected to be majorly online this year. How does this tie into social media? Well, social media excels at promoting online goods. Good social media posts and ads intrigue consumers to click and buy right then and there.

However, with social media spanning various platforms (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and more), it isn’t easy to know how to utilise them all to your best advantage over Black Friday. Therefore, we’ve compiled some simple tips that can be used across the board to help you get Black Friday social media ready.

Perform a platform health check

Think of your social media platforms as your company’s biggest brand awareness asset. It’s where users will look at your branding, your personality, and the tone of voice that your brand has. To correctly display your brand’s message and visuals, your social media profiles must accurately reflect this. Some quick tips for ensuring your social media platforms look correct include:

  • Using your brand logo as your profile picture on all platforms.
  • Using the same @ handle on Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and TikTok.
  • Update your Instagram and Pinterest shopping to include discounted products in your Black Friday social media campaign.
  • Update all links and fix any that are broken.
  • Pin a tweet to the top of your Twitter feed.

Instagram is great for converting buyers with 70% of ‘shopping enthusiasts’ turning to Instagram for product discovery. So, make sure your shopping links are updated for maximum conversion rates, and showcase your products with beautiful, high-quality imagery to show off your brand!

Optimises your Instagram bio

 In addition to brand awareness, optimising your bios can help with SEO and increase the chances of users finding you. Research your brand and industry keywords, and make sure to use them in your profile.

Use Hashtags

Tons of people search far and wide for Black Friday deals. On social media, hashtags are one of the best ways to let everyone know about your deals. Your followers will see your posts and using popular hashtags will let you strut your stuff to an even wider audience. Search for #BlackFriday and see what other hashtags brands are using.

You should also focus on long-tail keywords and search terms and utilize industry-relevant terms in your product descriptions and on every landing page. Google has some quality tools to help you do this, including Google’s Keyword Planner and Google Trends. You can also track the success of your SEO Strategy using Google Analytics.

Alter your posting schedule

You may have nailed your best times to post throughout the week, with specific hours yielding the best engagement on specific days. However, Black Friday may throw a spanner in the works. With so much social activity happening, your audience may not be sticking to their usual scrolling schedule. If possible, analyse your previous year’s Black Friday social activity and schedule your posts around your audience for these specific dates. If you don’t have access to previous data, put yourself in your buyer’s shoes. Using a byer persona,  run through your day and pinpoint times when your buyer may be most likely to browse online.

Utilize Instagram Shops

Instagram has become a staple for social media advertising. The Instagram Shops feature lets users purchase items without even leaving the Instagram app. It’s easy (and free) to create a Shop, but the review process takes a few days so make sure you start setting up your Instagram Shop a week or so before Black Friday.

User Generated Content

If you’re running low on inspiration for creative things to post on Instagram or any of your other social channels, user-generated content (UGC) is an incredibly valuable marketing tactic that helps boost your social proof and makes you appear more trustworthy.

According to studies, customers are 2 x more likely to view user-generated content as authentic, and 79% claim it influences their purchase decisions.  If you don’t have loads of UGC to share already, starting an influencer marketing strategy could also help boost your social proof levels. In fact, 89% of marketing professionals believe influencer marketing can provide a more effective ROI for brands than other marketing strategies.

If you can’t afford to pay a famous influencer, micro-influencers may be willing to work with you in exchange for complementary products and/or a discount they can share with their followers.

Urgent messaging and social proof

Social proof and urgency messaging (known as ‘FOMO’ messaging) is commonplace in ecommerce nowadays – and like it or not, it’s here to stay.

Consumers trust the buying decisions of other shoppers more than their own. Also, nothing motivates a hesitant shopper more than an urgent nudge that may cause them to miss out on a potentially awesome purchase.

Tactics include displaying how many customers have viewed a particular product on that day or exposing stock levels to encourage urgency to buy.

Sync offers and countdowns across all channels

When advertising across multiple channels it can be easy to fall behind. But for your Black Friday marketing, it’s more important than ever to ensure that every advertisement is promoting the same discount/offer.

You should also be careful to ensure you’re not promoting out-of-stock items.

Offer channel-specific deals

While it’s good practice to keep your advertising consistent across all channels – whether a Facebook ad, email campaign, or website banner – you could also utilize some creative Black Friday marketing ideas by running channel-specific campaigns.

Reactive marketing

Your scheduled content may need some sprucing around this time of year. Schedule your base posts using a scheduling app but be prepared to include reactive marketing if necessary. Situations such as site crashes, updated discounts or last-minute offers will require quick-thinking posts on all social media platforms. Have a designated person on hand to create quick posts when needed, whether informational or entertaining.

Creating contextual memes and responding to trends is a great way to add creativity to your Black Friday social media posts.