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All of us have been called on to adapt to the rapid pace of change in 2020. Students are adjusting to new forms of school, more people than ever are working remotely, and just as one thing seems under control, something else redirects our attention and concern.

This unique and challenging year means marketing teams must work harder to measure performance and respond quickly.

Here are a few things to keep in mind to make sure your team is reacting to shifts in shopping season performance as they happen—and that your programs are set up for maximum success.

For a complete strategy and detailed tactics on what you can do to stay competitive this year, download our 2020 Holiday Retail Guide.

Know your audience

Marketing during this year’s holiday season demands an open mind when considering who your core audience is.

Throughout the holiday season, validate your audience insights in real time, and optimize with new information by analyzing daily performance and pivoting tactics as needed to drive sales.

Stay hyper-aware of your customers’ needs and wants, as they can change quickly. As we recommend in our CMO survey, use behavioral segmentation to understand when and how your customers end their journey, as well as the patterns they follow before purchase or abandonment.

Have contingency plans

A contingency plan allows for rapid, strategic pivots as audience behaviors fluctuate. Here are a few channels to consider for your holiday marketing mix.

Native advertising

As the fastest-growing ad segment, native has become an extremely effective mid-funnel channel. If you’re looking to diversify your ad mix, native provides a great combination of curated publisher lists, rich audience targeting, engagement-based bidding, and standard social creative specs.

Podcast and streaming audio advertising

Spotify leads the way in making podcast and streaming audio more targetable and measurable. Combine this with the ability to reach consumers via smart speakers with programmatic audio buys, and you gain another data-driven alternative to traditional media.

Dynamic display and video ads

Cut through the noise of banner ads and create a more tailored experience that users now expect on social platforms. With these ad types, you gain access to greater scale with ads relevant to audience interests, content they’re viewing, how they’ve interacted with previous ads, and even things like weather and time of day.

Keep your budgets agile

Be sure to shift your budget according to your performance objectives. These opportunities can materialize in many places.

We recommend reviewing performance on at least a daily basis and moving reviews to an hourly basis during Prime Day (in October this year!), Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other major promotions. Also be sure to tailor your performance goals based on funnel stages.

A plan for the 2020 season

Staying agile this holiday season is all about continually focusing your team on the right efforts that deliver value and drive sales. Because of this and with so many of us impacted by national and world events, it’s not a stretch to say, “We’re all in this together.” Know your audience, have a backup plan, and keep your budget nimble, and you’ll do great.

For more tactics and detailed tips on setting up this year’s marketing campaigns for success, check out our 2020 Holiday Retail Guide.