Top 5 Ways to Capture Holiday Dollars

By 1 December,  85% of holiday dollars have  been spent.

What month do people do their Christmas shopping?
Will your marketing efforts  capture the most holiday dollars?

Consumer Financial site Mint has a great infographic (above) with U.S. holiday shopping stats: who spends what (men versus women), and most importantly: when and where those dollars are spent.

5 Ways to Capture Holiday Dollars

#5. Put Scuba Gear on Their Wish List with an Equipment Specialist Course

Invite students to learn about the “care and feeding” of their equipment by attending an Equipment Specialist course. This is a non-diving specialty that can be offered rain or shine and counts toward Master Scuba Diver.

During the class, offer save a dive kit packages and showcase your latest and greatest gear. Invite equipment reps to help with demos, and/or show How It’s Made equipment/tank manufacturing videos from PADI’s Encyclopedia DVD-ROM (part no 70833).

Read course director Scuba Steve’s tips for teaching an equipment specialty course.

How to Buy and Use PADI eLearning gift codes

#4. Offer Electronic Gifts

74% of consumers say they will search online for holiday gifts, so you’ll want to put your goods and services where their eyeballs are.

Shoppers with a digital preference also planned to spend $440 more than shoppers who aren’t in the market for digital goods. As a PADI Member you can offer eLearning gift passes – read more about buying / using eLearning Gift Passes.

#3. Holiday Thank You Party

Invite your dive club members, staff and students certified during 2012 to a special party. Here’s an article on clever ways to do the invite.
The magic of experienced students and shop staff mingling with new divers typically leads to con-ed classes and charter spots filled! Honor Master Scuba Divers and/or present certificates of recognition for Most Improved Diver, Most Dives Logged, etc. Here are some ideas for Scuba-related gifts that cost $20 or less.
If you have easy access to a pool, tie in a DSD (Discover Santa Diving) activity. Your customers will have the most original holiday card.
Scuba Santa
DSD – Discover Santa Diving

 #2. Make Finding the Right Gift Easy with Packages

Figuring out what gifts to buy is a big challenge for most shoppers. Even scarier? Wandering into a dive shop as a non-diver.
Staff should not be shy about over-explaining scuba gear and accessories. For example: buying a new mask? How about some de-fog. GoPro cameras are a popular gift but for diving we need a housing, lights, red filter, clip, etc.
You can also help scuba spouses feel less intimidated by creating gift packages in a variety of price ranges: (under $25, $50,  $100, etc). See examples below…
Even easier?  A store gift card tucked into a mini-stocking, or other holiday-themed packaging.
Christmas stocking for gift cards
Some package ideas:
  • Equipment care / save a Dive kit
  • A “World’s Best Dive Buddy” training package with Rescue Diver and EFR courses
  • Dive traveler essentials package with defog, spring straps, etc.
74% of shoppers  will use the internet to research gift ideas – take a picture of your various packages and post one a day to your Facebook page, and include the images with your eNewsletter as well. This makes it easy for divers to share their gift preferences with friends and family.
small business saturday 2012

#1. Give Customers a Reason to Buy from You

Time and again, surveys show consumers are loyal to companies who share their values. To quote the TED talk, People Don’t Buy What You Do, They Buy Why You Do It.American Express’ Small Business Saturday is one example of appealing to consumers to “do the right thing” with their holiday dollars. Here are some other ideas:

  • A Giving Tree – decorate a tree with paper or glass ornaments tagged with a prize or discount on a future purchase. Invite customers to bring in five cans of food in exchange for selecting an ornament off the tree. Not into trees? Create a custom scratch its instead.
  • Brag About Your Conservation Activities – whether it’s an annual clean-up, or automatic donations to Project AWARE with every certification, draw the connection between money spent with your business and a cleaner, better underwater world.
    100% AWARE
  • Share Your Story – many of you reading this email have given up “regular” careers to open your own business and become ambassadors for the underwater world. You’ve done something most divers only dream of! The human side of your business (along with good customer service) gives consumers a powerful reason to do business with you instead of the competition. 
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