Getting ready for Christmas Gift Card Promotions

Christmas is coming, and that means it’s time to start thinking about gift card promotions! Gift cards are a great way to increase sales during the Christmas season. They are also a great way to attract new customers and keep existing customers coming back. But what are some of the best ways to promote your gift card this Christmas? 

  • Discounts and Deals 

One great way to promote your gift card is to offer a bonus card. For example, you could offer a €100 gift card for every €80 spent. This is a great way to encourage people to spend more at your store. You could also offer a percentage off on purchases made with a gift card. For example, you could offer 10% off on purchases of €100 or more. 

A gift card that allows self-purchase is a smart move, especially as each card has shown to increase cash flow – 72% of people spend 20% more than the gift card’s original value.

  • Sell the lifestyle – not the physical card.

Let’s talk about imagery! 

When it comes to marketing, it can be powerful to show, not tell. This is especially true when you’re selling a gift card. Rather than just showing the physical card, try to show how it can be used. For example, if you’re selling a gift card for a clothing store, you could show someone using the card to buy a new outfit for Christmas. If you’re selling a gift card for a restaurant, you could show someone using the card to buy a festive meal. 

Many hotel brands do this very well, showing images of the beautiful rooms, the tempting buffets, and the great experiences that people will be able to acquire – with a gift card! 

  • Sell the eco-friendly benefits 

Gift cards, especially recycle versions or digital deliveries have a unique position of offering an eco-conscious decision. When teamed with your sustainable ranges, pitching your gift card as an antidote to waste could attract consumers. Stats suggest that in the U.S., nearly 60% of consumers would switch brands to one that is more sustainable – and this could include a brand that delivers its gifting in a sustainable way. 

A survey on shopping habits and sustainability run by Nielson found that 62% of millennials are willing to pay more for sustainable offerings. 88% would be more likely to shop with a retailer that offered eco-friendly gift wrapping – and naturally, this will extend to the product itself. So, make the point. 

However, bear in mind the current climate. Zurich’s Youth Against Carbon initiative, revealed that 6 in 10 (59%) people say that despite wanting to make more eco-friendly choices, they’re forced to choose less sustainable but cheaper options as prices continue to increase.

Look at your key demographics and their purchasing power, income, and situation – and think about how you could best serve their interests right now. 

  • Find out if you customers want you to go festive with your designs

This is the season to get all snowy and suddenly your retail brand has been overtaken by candy canes and gingerbread men. There is some leeway with Christmas and it’s wise to start signposting to customers that you are ready for their Christmas orders. 

Nike is a huge business who opt out of Christmas styled designs. While their current campaigns are integrated into their gift card and digital gift card range, they don’t tend to offer the typical ‘snowy scenes’ – and you’re more likely to give or receive a card with a typical Nike orange or black with that ubiquitous swoosh. For a company that targets the younger generation like Nike, this makes sense, and it’s an interesting approach. 

On the flipside, brands like Starbucks typically have around 15 or more festive designs. It’s all down to brand preference. 

What you choose to do this year doesn’t have to be something you do every year either. As the founder of Nike once said of branding “we don’t want to be the best keepers of our own culture. We want to invent it and invite others to come in and take part in re-inventing it with us.” In short – test the market. 

When should you start promoting your Christmas Gift cards? 

This is all down to what you sell. If you’re a retail brand selling physical products, you have extra time over other businesses such as those in hospitality. That being said, we all know the social media groans when it seems Christmas has started too early (also called the ‘Christmas Creep!’)

Stats suggest that people start purchasing retail gifts for Christmas before November (38% of people) which jumps up to 70% of people starting their Christmas shopping before the 1st of December.

This is effectively a 3 month run up to Christmas (September, October, November) where around 70% of shoppers are open to purchasing.

You may wish to position some autumn/winter offers, before leaping into Christmas. 

Setting up a gift card programme ready for the new year is always an option. Perhaps while assessing your options for Christmas, you have discovered that you have restrictions in terms of deliverability, reload functionality or even the sustainability aspects of your designs. 

Let us help!

RLC Solutions has vast experience in setting up, managing, and developing gift card programmes for clients across Europe. We would be delighted to discuss your requirements further and provide you with a proposal outlining how we could support your business as we head into 2023, or even the peak festive season. 

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch. 

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