5 tips for driving revenue and audience with Mother's Day promotions

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Matt Coen
Mother's Day is one of the top gift-giving holidays of the year, with the average American planning to spend an average of $169 on their mothers, daughters, sisters, wives and friends. There are about 85 million mothers in the U.S., so this adds up to $20.7 BILLION in consumer spending!

Since this spending is increasingly happening online, the holiday is the perfect opportunity to run online promotions like Mother-Daughter photo contests, deals stores and spa cards. These promotions are incredibly effective revenue-drivers: in 2013 WXMI-TV made $15,000 with a Mother's Day sweepstakes and the Tri-City Herald brought in $13,000 with a Mother's Day deals store, and in 2014 the small-market Centre Daily Times generated $12,000 with a spa card!

To learn best practices and discover tips for planning and selling your own Mother's Day promotions, read on for our top tips for successful promotions.

1. Plan ahead. One of the best ways to succeed with online promotions is to create a year-long strategy and build an integrated promotions calendar incorporating contests, ballots, deals and cards.

2. Select your promotions. For Mother's Day, you could run a sweepstakesdeals storephoto contestvideo contestspa card, essay contest or any combination thereof to engage your audience and drive traffic to your site. Here's a list of advertisers to target to get you started no matter which promotion types you choose.

3. Diversify your digital revenue with deals. Run a deal store or theme week to generate new revenue or go after target businesses that might not be able to purchase traditional ad spots. Use an ROI Calculator to walk advertisers through the opportunities to grow their database and revenue by running a deal with you.

4. Run a spa card. A spa card that includes several treatments at an upscale local spa makes the perfect gift for Mother's Day, and the high price point ($99 and up) means plenty of revenue potential for your program, whether or not you regularly feature deals. Plus, cards align well with other promotion types! Consider making your spa card a prize in your photo contest and cross-promoting the two.

5. Sell a multimedia promotional package to your advertisers. When you put together a sponsorship package, make sure you are including online, traditional media, social media, and email in order to provide the most value to your advertisers. Here are a few things you should be sure to include:

  • Email to your promotional database (an average of 70 percent of contest submissions come on the day the promotional email is sent).
  • Email opt-ins for you and your sponsor(s) on the registration page.
  • Mobile ads.
  • Social mentions.
  • Facebook Like button on the registration page.
  • Bounceback offers.
  • Prize sponsorship.
  • Like-gate (for contests run on Facebook).

What promotions are you going to run for Mother's Day?

Matt Coen is the president and co-founder of Second Street, a leading provider of private-label online promotions platforms and partner success services for media companies based in St. Louis, Mo. He can be reached at (314) 880-4902 or matt@secondstreet.com.

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