For many years we have published Christmas marketing ideas as a resource for others to use and as inspiration for newsagents to think of their own.  While developed initially for small business newsagents, here are thirty easy to implement simple Christmas marketing ideas as inspiration for small business retailers for Christmas 2014. Our advice is to pick what suits you and create your own.

  1. Promote every day items as gifts within your displays.  magazines work in this situation. Too often retailers focus on items they have sourced for Christmas and then wonder why there is little flow on once the season is over. One way to embrace the opportunity is to pitch everyday products as gifts. This could involve packaging them that’d appropriate.
  2. Pitch magazines for different groups. For example: gifts for guys: create an off-location display of magazines for guys so that those buying christmas cards and gifts in your shop can consider magazines as a gift.
  3. Pitch magazine putaways as gifts. You could offer a title put away for three or six months – something different to subscription lengths.
  4. Make sure the front of your shop, the window our the front facing the street or mall has your best offers. This is what the majors do. If you have an amazing deal, put it on show for all to see.
  5. Use a spruiker once a week at your busiest time to shout out about great items you have. If you can’t afford a spruiker, do it yourself. Go to any weekend market and see how it’s done. Have fun!
  6. Connect with a charity. In addition to products you may sell that raise funds for a charity consider a local charity and promote how every purchase in your store supports the charity.
  7. Have a box for collecting items for a local charity.
  8. Send Christmas cards to your customers – maybe invade a voucher for them to spend in-store.
  9. Give retailers nearby a discount card / coupon / voucher for them to do their own shopping. Consider a special buying night for retailers and their employees given the hours they are working.
  10. Have a crazy competition one day. Something like – come in and sing silent night in a completely fresh and crazy way and the best rendition wins, say, $100. Pitch it right and you’ll draw a crowd. Remember the crowd the now closed gaslight records in Melbourne drew for nude day.
  11. Offer a Christmas party flyer copying discount – half price copying of all Christmas party flyers.
  12. Host a colouring competition. Connect it with Christmas. Display all entries. Leverage an emotional connection through your theme such as: something good you have seen this year or your wish for someone else this Christmas.
  13. Keep it simple. While shops fill to overflowing with products this time of the year too often what you want seen can’t be seen because of the explosion of range and colour. Create space to show off your hero products, consider the less is more approach.
  14. Use stickers and or posters on your floor to show customers where you want them to go. Have Christmas themed basket builders at the counter – priced at under $10.00.
  15. Make an entrance. Create something around the entrance to your shop so that those stepping inside feel as if they are stepping into somewhere different, somewhere special.
  16. Have Christmas themed impulse items dotted next to main customer thoroughfares.
  17. Give every customer a flyer promoting your Christmas offers. Ideally you’ll have a couple of flyers through the season.
  18. Move everyday items elsewhere in the shop during the season – disrupt your regular shoppers.
  19. Dress up. Not just once but several times.
  20. Tell stories on your Facebook page about the season, what you’re doing and the fun you’re having.
  21. Have fun with your team and your customers.
  22. Thank your customers for their support.
  23. Setup a customer interaction board and invite them to post their best Christmas story.
  24. Have promotional days: free stamp Tuesday where you give free stamps with each card to people buying two or more cards; free tape Saturday for people buying two or more rolls or packs of wrap; free wrapping week where you offer free wrapping with every gift.
  25. Use your floor, Stickers and or posters on the floor can guide those customers who look down and not up.
  26. Place gifts / Christmas items in magazines. Your magazine department attracts shoppers to categories they love. leverage this with placement of appropriate items in those areas.
  27. Work the floor. At your busiest times have someone on the flor subtly showing off products you sell.
  28. Give your customers a reason to come back – an offer, a promotion, adiscount voucher.
  29. Tell a story. If space permits, show how a feature product is used. For example, if you’re selling jigsaws, have a table with one half done. Getting shoppers interacting gets them more engaged with your business and engagement = sales.
  30. Love the season. This can be challenging with the extreme business of Christmas trading and the challenges that the season presents. But each day when you step into the shop try and love it as if it’s a fresh start.