Marketing

Fall marketing campaign ideas to welcome the new season

Fall is now in full swing, and it comes with a range of opportunities for marketers. In this post, we’ll cover the best consumer shopping events and some marketing campaign ideas to make the most of the season.

Hermes in a forest with a laptop.

Autumn is the perfect time of the year to fall back into the habit of email marketing after those long, hot, dog days of summer. However, fall isn't just an opportunity to ramp up your marketing activities in time for the peak holiday season. Fall is itself jam-packed with so many individual, overlapping, and connected marketing opportunities, you should never be short of a campaign idea.

What makes the fall a great season for new marketing ideas?

There are so many events, festivals, and holidays to celebrate during fall that marketers are spoiled for choice when creating new campaign ideas. However, with so much going on, it can become a little overwhelming. So just in case you are struggling to hit that creative vein after the summer recess, we'll start with one occasion that everyone should be familiar with – and take you back to school.

Back-to-school marketing

There is no clearer dividing line between the summer and fall months than the sudden surge of back-to-school marketing campaigns. Back-to-school reminds us that summer is here for a good time, not a long time – so it's time to get back to work.

According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), the back-to-school market will be worth a staggering $37B to the US economy in 2022, with families spending an average of $864 on equipping their children for the classroom.

Top back-to-school categories include electronics ($13B), clothing ($11B), and shoes ($7B). Make no mistake, there is a hell of a lot of money up for grabs at this time of the year. If, as a marketer, you are unable to find a connection between your business and the back-to-school market, you’ll potentially miss out on a lucrative opportunity.

However, if you thought the back-to-school market was lucrative, just wait until you hear how much money parents spend when sending their kids to college.

Back-to-college marketing

Back-to-college blows the back-to-school market out of the water, with the NRF predicting that families with college students will spend nearly $1,200 on average, with the total market worth $74B.

Electronics top the shopping list again with a predicted spend of $18B, followed by clothing ($10B), and then dorm/apartment furnishing ($10B). This latter category opens up the back-to-college market to a much wider group of marketers than would typically target the back-to-school crowd. Of course, it's not just pens and pencils, laptops and smartphones, and sports apparel and kit. Think pots and pans, kitchen utensils, bedding, towels, and pretty much everything else a young person needs to start their new life away from home.

While the thought of returning to school or college might fill you with dread, consider the horror of missing out on the next big fall marketing opportunity.

Halloween: The start of holiday marketing

Many marketers see Halloween as the start of the holiday marketing season.

In 2021, US consumers spent an average of $102 when celebrating Halloween, with 65% of the population participating in the ghoulish fun and games. This figure leaped to 82% for households with children. But even people without kids cannot resist the opportunity to dress up and have a little fun, with 55% getting into the spirit of the holiday.

We don't want to frighten you, but you'll be having nightmares for the rest of the year if you miss out on this spooktacular occasion. While the cost-of-living crisis may impact spending on more frivolous items this year, as a deeply rooted and much cherished cultural event, the Halloween marketing opportunity will still be significant.

Like the holiday itself, Halloween marketing is all about having fun and breaking a few rules. So why not take the opportunity to show how your brand doesn't always have to take itself so seriously by legitimately inserting a few cliches, memes, and bloodcurdling images in your Halloween email campaigns?

If you need a little inspiration to “spook up” your Halloween campaigns, check out these 21 eye-catching Halloween subject lines for ecommerce and retail, tech, food and beverage, and entertainment businesses.

Connecting with your audience during the fall

The first few weeks of fall and the run-up to Halloween represent an excellent opportunity to stress test all the new Martech systems and strategies you put in place over the summer to power your busy Q4 marketing goals. If anything falls over (other than your tipsy co-worker after too much Halloween high spirits), you've literally got weeks to fix it because, even more frighteningly, the holidays are coming much sooner than you might think.

Holidays are coming

It's never too early for marketers to start thinking about the holidays. While this statement has always been true, in 2022, it comes with a little bit more urgency.

According to recent press reports, consumers will have less money to spend this year and plan to complete their festive shopping earlier than ever. The report suggests that 10% of consumers have already started their holiday shopping, and 80% plan to take advantage of major sales events like Black Friday to hunt for bargains. However, while many consumers will be more than aware of the current cost-of-living crisis, many will not be so aware of the ongoing supply chain crisis.

The early bird really will catch the worm this year if you are in the market for products with legitimate shortages, including bicycles, toys, some foodstuffs, and anything with a semiconductor (practically anything from smartphones and home appliances to automobiles). With the supply chain crisis in mind, FOMO will prove to be a particularly successful holiday marketing strategy.

Want more ideas to boost your holiday marketing? We have some killer email marketing tips to capitalize on the following fall events and maximize your sales.

There’s still time to update your holiday marketing calendar

With time being of the essence, it's essential we get our significant holiday marketing dates marked up on the calendar and start working towards them now.

As marketers, we should have the following traditional holiday marketing dates burned in our subconscious:

  • Thanksgiving: November 24

  • Black Friday: November 25

  • Cyber Monday: November 28

  • Start of Hanukkah: December 18

  • Christmas Eve: December 24

  • Christmas Day: December 25

  • Boxing Day (UK): December 26

  • End of Hanukkah: December 26

  • New Year’s Eve: December 31

But there are also many other events and festivals (both religious and secular) that present a fantastic opportunity to reach out to your audience. These include:

  • Black History Month (UK): October 1

  • Columbus Day: October 10

  • World Mental Health Day: October 10

  • Thanksgiving (Canada): October 10

  • Diwali: October 24

  • Transgender Day of Remembrance: November 20

  • Start of the FIFA World Cup (Men): November 21

  • Small Business Saturday: November 26

  • International Day of Persons with Disabilities: December 3

When you look at the history behind some of these holiday dates, the scope for building marketing campaigns around them becomes so much more compelling. Here are just a couple of examples:

The Festival of Light

Diwali, the Indian festival of light, is celebrated by more than one billion people globally and, like many other religious festivals, includes a significant emphasis on gifting. Many Indians celebrating Diwali traditionally buy gold, silver, and items of jewelry. However, in recent years, Diwali has also been associated with the purchase of other expensive items, including cars and electronics. Smartphones have also become a particularly popular purchase during this holiday.

A Festival of Football (soccer)

On a more secular level (although some would argue it is also a religious experience), the FIFA World Cup is an incredible opportunity to market everything from food and beverages to TV subscription services and consumer electronics.

During the 2018 FIFA World Cup, consumer spending in the UK increased by 5.1% compared to the previous year. Entertainment venues saw the biggest increase, with pubs enjoying a 33% rise in revenues when England played their debut match.

Five fall marketing campaign ideas

So, let's look at some current and historic marketing ideas to inspire your fall marketing activities. The following campaigns come from across the last decade and feature a range of themes and concepts you can quickly adopt and adapt for your brand to distribute across email, social, and other content-led marketing channels.

Noah’s Box: Back-to-College with a click

No self-respecting student will ever want to trail around after their parents buying life's little essentials, like pots and pans, cutlery, towels, and bedding. Why would they, when they can have everything they need home delivered to their new dorm or apartment as a convenient kit? Smart retailers like Noah’s Box are using the back-to-college opportunity to simplify the shopping process, allowing college freshers to get everything they need for their first year at university in just a few clicks.

Social media competition.

Ford: Spooky car wash

In 2014, the Ford Motor Company took an everyday chore and turned it into a nightmare. This campaign perfectly demonstrates how a marker can get people talking about their brand without being overly salesy, making it perfect fodder for a viral Halloween campaign that will continue to thrill audiences for years to come. After watching this video, you'll never want to take your car to the carwash on Halloween again.

Magic Spoon: Setting customers up for the fall season

Love it or hate it, there’s something about the fall that undoubtedly impacts consumer behavior. And, like Magic Spoon, you probably have some seasonal products you can package and promote during these autumn months. For Magic Spoon, it’s their customized Apple Cinnamon and Salted Caramel cereal boxes. For you, it might a special fall boxset with comfort food, clothes, or products that will help customers ease back into their routine and enjoy their time indoors as the weather gets colder outside.

Email campaign with product personalization.

Cadbury: A Diwali to celebrate

This 2021 campaign by Cadbury ticks so many boxes, bringing Diwali, the small business community, social media influencers, and chocolate together through a very innovative use of AI. While the AI technology featured will still be out of reach for many marketers, it demonstrates how the holidays are a time when we all need to come together and support each other. This campaign is all about community and effectively ties Cadbury's brand to all the small businesses that the campaign seeks to support.

Austin Eastciders: Bring the feeling with fall colors

Nothing says fall quite like the leaves turning from green to red. It’s a romantic sight that brings hordes of people swarming to New England every year. Austin Eastciders double down on the feeling of fall with their “fall flavors” email campaign. The use of brownish red as the background color is striking, yet not overwhelming. If you don’t know which color to choose for your campaign, our holiday email templates have been designed to bring match the feeling of each celebration this fall.

Carlsberg: Nostalgia always wins the game

The Danish brewers, Carlsberg, don't do anything else besides brew refreshing beer and create brilliant ads. This campaign from 2006 was voted the second-best World Cup campaign ever by Marketing Week. It demonstrates that influencers don't always have to be the bright young things we often see on social media and can, in fact, have a lot in common with the brand's target audience.

Adidas: Hit the streets with some good old FOMO

Holiday marketing campaigns don’t always have to be about Santa and snowmen. Sometimes a good old CTA reminding customers that they better move fast or miss hit is the perfect message. The kids in this Adidas email campaign might be too cool for Christmas, but they still want to find those new sneakers under the tree come the big day.

Website banner with order by date.

Design amazing email campaigns this fall with Mailjet

If you want to hit the ground running with your marketing campaigns this fall, before finishing the year with a sprint, you will need the right email service provider (ESP) in your corner.

Mailjet enables marketers to create, test, and send beautiful email marketing campaigns and newsletters without writing a single line of code. Mailjet’s simple drag-and-drop Email Editor allows you to customize a library of holiday templates or build one from scratch – give it a go in our demo.

Blink, and you’ll miss fall’s many marketing opportunities. So be sure to pin up all the events mentioned here today, create a free account, and let Mailjet help you finish 2022 on a high.

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