What you have to know if you want to do business with seasons like Valentine’s Day

Here we tell you what you have to consider so that you not only earn money with February 14, but with all the holidays of the year.

10 min read

The opinions expressed by employees are personal.

What you have to know if you want to do business with seasons like Valentine’s Day
What you have to know if you want to do business with seasons like Valentine’s Day

In a few more days we will celebrate on February 14 and that always arouses the interest of several entrepreneurs to find what to sell. It is no accident, as this date is the first commercial holiday of the year after the January slope and until last year it was estimated that the economic spill would reach 22 billion pesos in Mexico, according to the. It is attractive because it positions Valentine's Day as one of the three festivities that most generate economic spills, only below the Good End (November) and Mother's Day (May), according to information from.

In general it is an opportunity for many entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs, from the one who sells flowers and chocolates to the one who owns a restaurant. However, one of the challenges is that each holiday has its particularity in the type of products or services consumed. You will hardly be able to continue selling the balloons that say I love you for April on Children's Day , right?

A few years ago he was a partner of a company that dehydrated fruits and we sold them in various packaging presentations from healthy snacks to bulk raw material. Precisely one February, my team and I thought about packing our products and some complementary products for the season as decorative balloons, heart basket, Chinese paper, etc. We did everything right, the gift baskets looked great, but there were problems we were not considering. How were we going to distribute them? What price should we give? Selling directly to the consumer is not the same as selling through distributors and we generated 85% of sales through distributors.

Many of the entrepreneurs make the mistake of wanting to generate an extra profit taking advantage of these seasons and more than thinking about what consumers are going to look for, they make arrangements or improvised crafts to sell. Others, like me, do not consider that many of the supplies that we are going to require to assemble the seasonal product are only going to be used for that occasion during the year. In my company that year, although we did not lose money, we also did not win, but if we worked on a project that did not give returns instead of using the resources in another that would have given.

Over the years my team and I personally dedicated ourselves to learn to work seasonal projects to maximize the potential of sales with those peaks that offer festivities such as Valentine's Day, Children's Day, Mother's Day and until the Good End. Later as a consultant I learned that even the big automotive brands take advantage of this type of seasons. In my time at the Mexican mattress startup, we launched more than 12 products in a year with the help of a great team and I can say that they also take advantage of these dates regarding sales planning. So we share four things you have to know if you want to get the most out of your seasonal sales.

1. Look for trends

A basic rule of this whole process is that you understand that it is not about seeing what I am selling, but what the market wants and offering it to you. To offer it, we must first understand what problem the consumer has: How do you realize that you need something specific? How do you look for it? How do you buy it? What do you expect upon receipt? Actually, this is a universal basic principle of the theory and techniques of. Of these techniques, I strongly recommend using the “Customer Journey Map” for involving advanced market research techniques.

On the other hand, we cannot go unnoticed consumer megatrends. Megatrends represent long-term changes in the behavior or attitude of consumers that have a global impact and span multiple sectors, according to the market research firm. There is talk of 20 consumer mega trends by 2030 and the truth is that the most successful examples of disruption are led by companies that take advantage of one or more mega trends. The question is, is the product or service you want to offer going to meet the expectations of consumers?

One way to solve the previous question that I recommend is to investigate what were your potential customers looking for a year ago for the same holiday? Google offers us this possibility through its online tool. Looking for Valentine's Day in this tool we found that in 2019 the Mexicans who “googled the most” things focused on the State of Tamaulipas and in general they mainly looked for nails, cakes, cookies and gift cards Interesting not? What business could you do around these findings?

2. Anticipate important dates

If you are reading this article thinking about selling for Valentine's Day 2020 you are probably already too late, you should already have your product defined. The key to success to be a “crack” of seasonal sales is that you take the time to plan the development of your product differentiated from the competition, that it is ready for the promised date and therefore offers the possibility of placing orders for in advance to ensure sales.

The process of launching products for a possibly independent individual is very different than for a more consolidated company. When I made baskets of the dehydrated products we made, I had control of resources and equipment to focus efforts. When doing research and product development for, the product team depended on areas such as design and operations to launch them to the market. So, to launch products ready for the Good End in November, which is the most important season of the year in sales, we were already developing products since January.

No matter what your case, if you plan ahead.

3. Establish your channels and check your prices

We talked that selling directly to the consumer is not the same as selling through distributors. Selling through a distributor opens the possibility of accessing more markets and positioning your brand, but you have to consider that the distributor will increase its own profit margin at the price you give it. On the other hand, selling directly to the consumer can make you more competitive in terms of quality of service, sales prices, etc.

In this sense, the recommendation is to start from an analysis of the competition and set a sale price to the target audience. In the market you are competing with thousands of companies and entrepreneurs who also want to take advantage of these dates so ask yourself, how are you going to differentiate yourself from the rest? Maybe the price is not the only thing, but you will certainly want to be at the points of sale with more traffic from potential customers and you will probably end up adopting an omnichannel strategy that involves distributors and direct sales, both physical and online.

He stressed that the websites with the highest number of visits during the Good End of 2019 were Mercado Libre, Amazon, Walmart, Liverpool and Coppel. This highlights the importance of the digital channel since it represented 61% of sales this season, have you already analyzed these options? The profit margins that claim this type of marketplaces are around 50% so if you planned a retail price of $ 100 pesos per unit then your production costs should be around $ 25 pesos, can you achieve it?

You may be thinking that you do not need to be in these marketplaces or that it is very complex for a seasonal product. However, they are challenges that physical distributors will also present, and if you decide to take charge of selling and delivering the products directly, think that you are losing market. Finally, make sure that you can bear a loss for accumulated inventories with your prices (since they are not easily rotatable products the rest of the year) or that you can take out a special promotion or last minute offer to avoid it.

4. Lean on technology

As well as you can use web analytics tools such as the mentioned Google Trends or put your products in one of the digital marketplaces . Today social networks are an important means to spread our offer and reach more people. However, there are attempts to make conversions in sales and that is why it applies to anticipate dates.

On the other hand, it does not take more than thinking a moment in the entire value chain of our business to realize that we will almost certainly need logistic support for deliveries, some payment processor (even if you sell physically), etc. There are also online options that allow us to advertise for free and / or with a small commission only if sales are finalized. The question is to take advantage of technology to get the most out of not only Valentine's Day, but all the holidays that the year brings.

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