8 Ways to Celebrate Military Customers on Veterans Day and Black Friday
On Wednesday, November 11, America will celebrate the 102nd anniversary of the end of World War I, popularly and officially known as Veterans Day. For companies and brands wanting to show their appreciation for current and past members of the U.S. Armed Forces, the month of November offers two ideal opportunities to do so: Veterans Day, quickly followed by Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend on November 27-30.
In this blog, I’ll run through eight ways that your company can honor active members of the military, their spouses, and veterans by providing discounts and offers claimed through digital group verification.
A market with $1.5 trillion in purchasing power
First let’s have a quick refresh of why honoring military members is much more than an expression of civic pride – it makes great business sense. In the US, the extended military community comprises 45.5 million members with a combined spending power of $1.5 trillion. Of that, spouses and family are the largest subgroups at 22 million, followed by veterans (21.3 million), and personnel on active duty, reserves, and the National Guard (2.2 million). Numerous studies have shown that military customers are loyal to companies and brands that offer a discount, and actively seek out those that do.
Here are eight tips to help your organization make its year-end military marketing efforts the most successful ever:
- Offer a special Veterans Day or Black Friday/Cyber Monday promotion: While year-round offers are best for increasing brand awareness and loyalty, exclusive seasonal promotions are a proven way to pull in new customers. This November, you can present separate offers for Veterans Day and the holiday shopping kickoff, or combine both into a month-long Military SuperSale promotion.
Why it works: By launching a targeted Veterans Day campaign with a special discount, a major technology retailer increased its daily new military customer acquisition number by 73%.
- Highlight military spouses as a way to differentiate your brand: 92% of US military spouses are women, who are also the predominant online shopper in the military family. Why not target a promotion at military spouses, the majority of whom are 18-42 years old and have two to three children?
Why it works: Military wives have a built-in affinity for promotions like yours; 79% of these families already use coupons when they shop.
- Promote widely on social media: While Facebook, Instagram and YouTube are daily destinations for many adults and are popular places to promote military discounts, so is Snapchat; In 2017 the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs began using Snapchat as a way to reach a significant portion of veterans, their families, and friends.
Why it works: The average age of a military spouse is 31.5, with 86% under 40 years of age; 48% of US internet users between the ages of 26 and 45 are on Snapchat, giving you a built-in platform for creative engagement.
- Leverage partners for an email blast: Building up your own mailing list can be costly. Instead, consider partnering with a media or technology provider that focuses on the military community. These providers have a critical mass of engaged subscribers, allow you to quickly reach multiple military audience segments – active duty, reserves, veterans, spouses, and more – with personalized, relevant email communications.
Why it works:A large database of registered users allows you to target multiple segments simultaneously. For example, over the course of two seasons, a major sports franchise sent promotions to the verified email addresses of 28,000 military members, plus first responders and teachers. Prior to the third season, the sports franchise proactively reached out to all of these audiences with ticket offers, driving over 50,000 redemptions from now-loyal fans.
- Engage affiliate publishers: Expand your reach by working with affiliate publishers. Strategize with their affiliate manager to build an email blast or campaign that includes offer details, qualification criteria, and a link to the landing page.
Why it works:Affiliate brands can create a strong pull-through for your offer. For example, three months after launching offers for military and first responders, Under Armour’s revenue across its entire network of affiliate publishers grew by 30%.
- Integrate a group discount at point of sale (POS): Consumers know that POS is the place to go for payments and promotions, both in-store and online. Integrate digital group verification into your in-store checkout flow and your digital cart to optimize the user experience and results across channels.
Why it works: The company that powers the e-commerce sites for all professional sports leagues realized customer conversion 4x higher than average by seamlessly integrating a discount for verified group members into its checkout flow, delighting customers with a fast, easy way to knock 20% off their purchase. Additionally, the average order value was 30% higher for these shoppers.
- Build a dedicated web landing page: Dedicating a landing page to explain your military discount policy not only improves SEO but also gives the user’s organic experience a more personal touch. Keep the content relevant to the military community, letting customers know why your brand honors this group with exclusive discounts.
Why it works: Recognizing an audience shows that a brand cares. Under Armour’s discount landing page immediately thanks military members for their service and displays the amount of the military discount, making strong use of bold imagery and clear CTAs above the fold. Scrolling down, the brand details other programs it has invested in to support the military community, providing evidence that the company stands by their words.
- Use a digital verification provider to confirm military affiliation: In addition to providing assurance that your offer will be used only by intended recipients, many of these firms offer marketing services that target the military community. At ID.me, these services start with a mailing list of millions of pre-verified military customers who have opted in to receive exclusive offers. Partners can also place their offers on ID.me’s Shop. This free service includes an SEO-friendly store page that features verified affinity-group offers, automatically pulling them in from integrated affiliate networks.
Why it works: Overall, ID.me partners experience a 300% ROI from a 3-8x increase in year-round traffic. During flag holidays like Veterans Day, our partners average a 25x return in revenues per dollar spent on ID.me marketing.
Get started today
Whether you’re pulling together a last-minute Veterans Day promotion or launching a high-impact holiday shopping campaign, you can reach military audiences most effectively through ID.me, an identity platform that simplifies how individuals securely prove and share their identity online. Learn more about how ID.me can help your company honor military members by visiting www.id.me.