Black Friday and Cyber Monday (also known as Cyberweek) has been driving consumer behavior for decades and is one of the largest sales peaks of the year for most brands. Consumers are primed to purchase ahead of the holiday season and with the promise of deals in the air. And as you know, brands spend months preparing for this peak shopping moment – and we’re here to help.

When it comes to reaching Gen Z consumers, Refuel is the audience expert. With over 30 years of experience and proprietary consumer research, we’re equipped to help you drive results this Cyberweek season.

Read next: The Ultimate Guide to Marketing to Gen Z

When does Black Friday and Cyber Monday advertising start?

While technically Black Friday only spans the 24 hours after Thanksgiving, at this point, the advertising window has grown to span a much longer timeframe. Black Friday season can start at the beginning of November, if not sooner, and it stretches into early December with sales following Cyber Monday.

When you begin your Cyberweek advertising is largely dependent on your brand. Many brands launch ads early November to entice early holiday shoppers, in addition to accounting for unpredictable delivery times pre-holiday season. On the other hands, some brands stick to the traditional Black Friday through Cyber Monday sales period, running deals for a shorter amount of time. 

Read next: 6 Examples of Brands That Got Gen Z Advertising Right

Most Black Friday + Cyber Monday shopping will happen online

The COVID-19 pandemic left a lasting imprint on consumer behavior – one of the imprints being the massive shift to online shopping over in-store shopping. While brick and mortar stores still certainly serve their purpose, the days of never-ending lines starting in the wee hours of the morning may be over as more and more consumers opt for online deals according to recent eCommerce statistics

Read next: How to Reach Gen Z This Holiday Season

  1. Gen Z cares about causes – and supports brands who do, too

Recent research shows that Gen Z has fallen out of touch with Black Friday marketing that fails to show a brand’s sustainable practices. We know that this is a generation that truly cares about causes, the environment, and pressing social issues – and they view their consumption habits as a part of their personal brand. 

In fact, young shoppers are twice as likely to purchase from brands that advertise their sustainable incentives for purchases – such as charitable donations, offsetting climate impact, or supporting the community.

The truth of the matter is that this young generation is one full of conscious consumers who look beyond the surface when they’re making purchasing decisions.

  1. Offer student discounts to appeal to Gen Z holiday shoppers

College students are known for their knack for finding a discount. Eighty-six percent of students have said that they would shop at their favorite stores more often if they offered student discounts. And research from Refuel’s Gen Z Explorer Series™ shows that college students are actually loyal to brands that offer discounts to students. 

Our research found that 43% of Gen Z consumers report being loyal to brands that offer student discounts, and 29% are loyal to brands that offer rewards or loyalty programs. Personalize your college marketing strategy and let your college target market know that you’re tailoring your brand just for them. 

And bonus – verifying students’ identity and keeping track of student discounts used to be challenging, but now it’s not with SheerID. This company provides verification technology that makes offering student discounts simple, repeatable, and trackable. As Bill Schneider, VP of Product Marketing for SheerID, explains, “give your target market a seamless shopping experience, ensuring that only students are taking advantage of your student discounts. Marketers from hundreds of brands rely on SheerID to verify audiences among specific communities to ensure that only eligible consumers receive your gated and personalized offers for students.”

  1. Enlist the power of omnichannel marketing strategies

An omnichannel marketing strategy places the customer at the center of their shopping experience, ensuring a unified shopping experience at every touch point. While a multichannel approach views more marketing channels as more ways to reach the customer, the omnichannel approach views more channels as a way to remove friction and increase consistency – which in turn, builds brand loyalty. 

Research shows that companies that prioritize the customer experience generate 60% higher profits than their competitors. And, we know that companies with well-defined omnichannel marketing strategies achieve a 91% higher year-over-year increase in customer retention rate on average (compared to companies without this strategy in place). Take a look at our services to see how our omnichannel strategies can boost your return this holiday season.

Read next: Your Complete Guide to On Campus Advertising to College Students

Christina O'Toole

Christina is a data-driven, full stack marketer with over 20 years success leading marketing in technology, higher ed and publishing industries. Christina has developed hundreds of marketing campaigns and built all facets of programs including lifecycle journeys, creative direction and lead generation. She now heads corporate marketing at Refuel Agency.