As we head into the last stretch of 2014, don’t forget to take advantage of the big seasonal opportunities for subscription sales.

Here are 10 ideas just to get you started.

Cyber Monday and digital December

The Monday after the United States’ Thanksgiving is the busiest online shopping day of the year, and that digital shopping enthusiasm continues throughout December. Tips for riding that wave:

  • Deploy a large e-mail campaign late in the morning on Cyber Monday so your offer is near the top of the inbox when the eager shoppers wake up.

  • “Today only!” Boost sales response with a seasonal, time-bound, deeply discounted offer to your best prospects and former subscribers in return for a credit card auto-renewing commitment.

  • Shoppers are trolling the Web, credit card in hand. Make sure your online affiliate and retargeting campaigns are fully deployed and pointing to pages with your best offers.

Last-minute gifts for the holidays

Gift giving is a great way to leverage our subscribers and target the most like-minded prospects. It’s also a way to create pricing discontent among our subscribers. But don’t dismay, here are a few ideas:

  • Get those gift offers in front of subscribers and readers of your Web site, but use premiums and sweepstakes as incentives rather than discounts. Provide “give a gift, get a gift” offers, promoting gift card premiums and sweepstakes to win event tickets.

  • Design gift offers and forms to remind subscribers who they still need to get gifts for. Magazine marketers do this well by providing address blanks that remind us of the family, friends, and co-workers who are yet unchecked on our holiday shopping lists.

  • Create and leverage partnerships with local advertisers to provide special offers and rewards that showcase your newspaper and provide you with qualified leads. Retailers can insert coupons into bags with offers or premium digital content access as a thank you for shopping.

The new year

We’re presented with so many opportunities as we turn the calendar page from December to January. Here are just a few:

  • Take advantage of lower cost broadcast media the week between Christmas and New Years Day to kick off a new campaign for the coming year.

  • Get working on a big direct mail campaign to take advantage of strong response to this channel in January and February. Borrow a trick from fitness clubs and capitalise on people’s desire to be better and do better in the new year.

  • Set the tone for the year ahead with a thank you e-mail to current subscribers. Provide them with a keepsake summary of the most memorable and important stories covered by the newspaper in 2014. Subscribers are reminded of the newspaper’s value and look forward to the coming year.

  • Establish a 2015 loyalty pricing or reward structure if there is concern and churn in your market related to disparities between introductory and tenured pricing. Use reduced churn to cost justify special loyalty pricing like “one month a year, pay only the introductory rate.”

’Tis the season to get shopping, circulation marketers!