6 Ways To Turn Around Failed BFCM Campaigns

Jeff Fransen
Partnerships and Alliances Manager
December 13, 2022
min read
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So you worked hard planning for your Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) and had your strategies in place to win big on the weekend, but things didn't go quite as you planned.

Don't worry, this happens to the best of us. You still have time to turn things around as December is the holiday month, and people are in the shopping mood. Several brands rely on influencers to establish a strong presence on social media and reach mass audiences during the holiday season. However, influencers are just one part of a complete marketing campaign.

We spoke with some successful agencies and asked them to share some of the best advice to help you reignite your Black Friday and Cyber Monday campaign and make this holiday season a big success!

Here's what the experts said about what you can do to get your BFCM campaigns back on track!

How to revive your BFCM campaign after it falls flat?

1. Identify factors affecting your performance and make the change

Brian Roisentul on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

Many factors affect the performance of a Black Friday and Cyber Monday campaign. Based on our experience, the most important ones to check are:

1) The offer: do you have something your potential and/or existing customers will be excited about?

2) The channels: how are you reaching your audience? Is it only through paid ads, or email & SMS marketing as well? It's essential to have the proper systems in place.

3) Your website: if it is a leaky bucket, it'll only work if you fix it.

4) Your target audience: is your communication (and offer) for your existing or new clients?

5) Competition: what are they doing? Is your offer competitive compared to theirs?

6) Budget: are you over/underspending?

Once you've figured this out, you'll know which buttons to press to fix it. Although there's little time to change things in the middle of a holiday campaign, BSR Digital will focus on identifying the bottleneck and fixing it, whether in the offer, funnel, audience, or message.

Maurice Rahmey  on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

Try and understand why your campaign didn't work. Did you not reach enough people with the offer? How did your existing customers react? Reach out to your customers and ask. The only way to understand how to improve is by understanding what went wrong with your campaign.

At Disruptive Digital, we'd do a deep dive to help brands understand why people didn't convert on the offer. Was it not compelling enough? Did you reach the wrong target audience? Was the creative not eye-catching? Once we better understand why the offer didn't convert, we would put together recommendations on how to improve performance for the next promotional period.

2. Extend, Remarket, and Advertise your BFCM campaigns

Gianluca Binelli  on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

In the unfortunate event of your push for Black Friday and Cyber Monday not delivering expected and hoped-for results, there are three main things to consider:

1) It's not over until it is over

You've got a fine crowd out there likely to be interested in your products even after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Plus, with many advertisers pushing hard during BFCM and inflating auctions on Google and Meta, it might be interesting from a cost-per-click (CPC) perspective to tackle traffic afterward - when CPC tends to be lower while conversion rates remain quite high as customers need to prepare for the winter holidays and start buying Christmas presents so you can get more sales.

During the Christmas period, immediately follow up on Black Friday and Cyber Monday as impulse buying is still triggered by the Christmas season. So instead of injecting your capital in flat campaigns with unreasonable CPC to drive traffic to your website, bet on the best that is yet to come - the Christmas shopping season.

Related: 5 Influencer Campaigns That Multiplied Christmas And New Year Sales For Brands

2) Trust in the tried-and-true and confide in the spillover effect

There are things that work, typically: Search, Shopping, and Remarketing Campaigns. Starting from the premise that your campaigns during Black Friday and Cyber Monday generated interest and traffic, Search, Shopping, and, particularly, remarketing are your best friends in closing the loop. Thus, making extra sure, you're providing your business with the second wave of buzz.

As a consequence, while you're not monetizing presto with the outcome you were expecting and chasing, you might benefit from a spillover effect and win over the long term.

3) Expand your advertising horizon

Sticking to your media plan is right and just. However, testing new campaigns and channels out would unveil new buckets of traffic, especially when you reach users in different moments of the funnel with Display and Programmatic advertising.

You can engage with users for your product now, but that could be in the decision-making process and thinking about it.

At Booster Box, we're in love with numbers and the scientific method. A lovely line to say that our daily bread is taking millions of metrics and extracting the stuff that matters to make data-driven decisions for accelerating performance.

Therefore, a starting point for us would be running a quick diagnosis to understand the reasons that underlie the campaigns falling flat during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Typically, reasons might be bad targeting, serving the wrong ads, and/or poor pricing - your media plan, from a wider point of view - leading you to allocate your capital to the wrong campaigns. There's always a silver lining behind the struggle in advertising: the valuable learnings in understanding what worked and what didn't, and treasure it for the future.

As a second step and from a practical perspective, we'd implement that handful of quick fixes - basic improvements that, in our experience, proved to work effectively in 90% of the cases, thus rapidly delivering better results to your operations.

3. Use paid media and conduct creative audits

Arjun Jolly  on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

Learn. Use the experience as an opportunity to identify pain points, examine what went wrong (and why), and make a plan to address everything (and get better) next time around - which happens to be right around the corner (holiday season).

Paid media and creative audits would reveal the wins along with any areas of opportunity that were missed during BFCM. Once adQuadrant understands those opportunities, the team lays the groundwork (from media, creative, and personalization to measurement, attribution, and first/zero-party data collection) to support a successful holiday season... and beyond.

4. Understand and improve the customer's journey

Dan Nistor  on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

Don't get depressed! You have another chance to make it - the Holiday Season is approaching. Try to dig in and understand your audience even better. Maybe they are not only looking for discounts but for more value in what they purchase from you. For example: if you sell jewelry or lifestyle products, do you have a 'my order is a gift' feature on your product page? Think outside the box.

The team at Vevol Media would, firstly, perform a heatmap analysis to understand where we can improve the UX/UI and the client's journey. Secondly, we will implement the findings to make sure any barriers between the user and the purchase are fully removed.

5. Dig into your competitor's sales funnel

Daniel Budai  on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

Look back and learn from what you did. Check your hypotheses (this is why it's important to have them), your KPIs, and what you expected to achieve before BFCM. Then, see how things can be improved, learn from other brands, "funnel-hack (investigate your competitors' marketing and sales funnel and use similar versions to boost conversion)," and make a plan on how to execute better on the next holiday sales campaigns.

Budai Media helps e-commerce brands prepare months before major sales events such as BFCM by building up their SMS & email marketing lists, building anticipation, sending great offers once the event comes, and infiltrating scarcity to the offers. Our clients regularly get 30-50% of their BFCM sales from our channels.

6. Refocus the direction of your campaign

Jason Ciment  on how to turn around failed BFCM campaigns

Resend the holiday offer to your customers with a different coupon and present it as an "our campaign broke the website" type of message for better results. It's all about communicating channel relevance. Our goal at Get Visible is to make the client the most obvious choice for their customers. Often that is a matrix of search engine positioning, interruption marketing (For example, Facebook ads), and follow-up emails.

The most obvious thing would be to go back to the drawing board and analyze what didn't work. Talking in terms of email marketing, maybe the offer wasn't strong enough, being the same 10-15% discounts that the brand offers at regular times too. Or perhaps the emails went to the spam folder, meaning deliverability was bad, or the subject lines needed to be more compelling, so open rates were bad.

Once there's some light on what went wrong, fix those and extend the Black Friday sale under a bit of a marketing ploy called "On popular demand, we're extending the sale all the way to November end ."If that doesn't work, focus on the next set of holidays and double down on the pre-holiday campaign with great offers, creatives, and products.

We at Hustler Marketing deal with a lot of clients that do upto 50% of their entire year's business during Black Friday and Cyber Monday and also ones that don't quite set things on fire. If we have a new client on hand to deal with a bad BFCM campaign, we will fix the technical issues like improving deliverability, revising the creatives or doing them from scratch, and applying the industry's best practices to ensure that the client's campaign is on par. We will also help them execute a better holiday campaign in December.

Review your campaign inputs in terms of the audience, campaign type, creative, and landing pages, and look to optimize where the campaign seems to fall flat. For clients at Content Machine, we would help them with strategy and creativity. In my opinion, refocusing the direction of your holiday campaigns and optimizing creative will make an immediate impact.

Wrap Up

There you have it – expert advice on how you can emerge stronger by tweaking your Black Friday and Cyber Monday campaigns to re-engage your target audience this holiday season. Use the information from experts to make your next decision, or let the experts take over so you can reap fruitful benefits.

Here at affable.ai, we believe in a holistic approach to marketing where influencer marketing supports all your other efforts. So if you're looking for more awareness, more website visitors to retarget, or increasing sales directly, book a free trial with our experts to run successful data-driven influencer marketing campaigns.

Get detailed insights: Amplify Your Black Friday and Cyber Monday Influencer Campaigns [5 Effective Tips]

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