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Like anywhere in the world, Black Friday sales in Nigeria help many brands grow revenue and consumer engagement. I’m a living testimony of Nigerians who save all year round to go on shopping sprees during the Black Friday promo.

This piece will open your eyes to humongous opportunities in leveraging Black Friday to drive awareness, sales, and advocacy for your business, products and services. Also, you will learn about the most searched deals in Nigeria as well as brands that have made the biggest Black Friday sales globally.

First of all, what the heck is Black Friday?

It is a name popularly adopted for the Friday after Thanksgiving in the United States. Black Friday traditionally marks the start of the Christmas shopping season over there. As such, brands and businesses offer unusual deals and discounts that motivate consumers to buy in bulk. In some places, it is like clearance sales that are expected at that period of every year.

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When did it start?

By popular opinion, the term “Black Friday ” was first used to refer to the day after Thanksgiving by Factory Management and Maintenance journal in November 1951, and again in 1952. It was originally used to describe workers calling in sick on the day after Thanksgiving, to have a four-day weekend. This was short lived though as people didn’t buy into what it meant then.

Around the same time, the terms “Black Friday” and “Black Saturday” were used by the police in Philadelphia and Rochester to describe the crowds and traffic congestion accompanying the start of the Christmas shopping season. The Police in Philadelphia complained about an influx of people coming to the city to shop the day after Thanksgiving, calling it a “Black Friday” because they had to control crowds.

From there, the use of the phrase spread slowly as it also appeared in the New York Times on November 29, 1975. Black Friday was then specifically used to refer to “the busiest shopping and traffic day of the year” in Philadelphia. That was when it started gaining acceptance as arguably the biggest sales promo of the year.

Some fun facts about Black Friday

  1. Black Friday is the busiest day of the year for plumbers.
  2. Before Black Friday, there was the Santa Claus (Macy’s Thanksgiving Day) Parade.
  3. Black Friday wasn’t officially claimed to be the busiest shopping day of the year until 2001.
  4. In Mexico, Black Friday is called ‘El Buen Fin’ which means ‘the good weekend’.
  5. According to a survey by RetailMeNot, 12% of Black Friday shoppers get drunk when going to shop

Biggest sales in history?

  • Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2022 both broke spending records. With shoppers spending $9.12 billion and $11.3 billion, respectively. 
  • In 2021, from Nov. 1 to Nov. 29, consumers spent $109.8 billion online, up 11.9% compared to 2020. 
  • In 2022, there was a drop in curbside pickup (from 21% in 2021 to 13% in 2022), as shoppers didn’t hesitate to shop directly in stores. Meanwhile, mobile shopping increased in 2022, with 55% of sales coming in via smartphone, compared to 51% the previous year.
  • In 2022, spending on toys set new records. Top toys included Pokémon cards, Legos, Hot Wheels, Disney Encanto, LOL Surprise dolls, CoComelon and Hatchimals.
  • In addition to electronics and computers, spending was up on books, jewellery, appliances and sporting goods in 2022.
  • Black Friday 2022 in the US, best-selling categories included Home, Fashion, Toys, Beauty, and Amazon devices. The best-selling items were the Echo Dot, Fire TV Stick, and Apple AirPods.
  • Small businesses generated more than $1 billion in sales during Black Friday 2022 in the U.S.

How did Black Friday sales start in Nigeria?

Arguably, Jumia is the first company to introduce Black Friday sales to the mass market in Nigeria. In 2013, Jumia Nigeria campaigned heavily with various discounts via its website and many other relevant channels which attracted consumers from mainly Lagos and across the country. It successfully replicated the excitement of the post-Thanksgiving retail sales that had been well-known in the United States for decades. 

To date, Jumia Black Friday offers amazing discounts on various products ranging from mobile phones, electronics, home appliances, fashion, beauty products and more. For many Nigerians, Black Friday has become the most anticipated sales event of the year as they get to do all of their holiday shopping with mouth-watering discounts. 

In terms of commercials, Jumia broke online sales records in Nigeria. It also reported the biggest web traffic in its history of online shopping, with over a million Nigerians visiting its e-commerce website. Since then, it has grown to become a mainstream and probably the biggest retail campaign in Nigeria, and it keeps getting bigger every year as more businesses both online and offline participate.

Most Popular Black Friday Sales in Nigeria?

According to the most searched queries and other platforms in its network, the most sought-after Black Friday offers Nigerians look for include:

  • Jumia Black Friday promo
  • Amazon Black Friday deals
  • Shoprite Black Friday sales
  • Target Black Friday deals
  • Walmart Black Friday promo

When will the 2023 sales start in Nigeria?

Black Friday
Black Friday

Typically, Black Friday sales happen on the last Friday of November, that is Fri, 24 Nov 2023. However, many Nigerian brands launch their campaigns a month ahead. This means that you can look forward to interesting promo discounts and deals across online and offline stores starting from mid-October 2023. 

While some companies in Nigeria run Black Friday sales for an entire month for as many consumers as possible, some choose specific days of the week (eg: every Friday in November) to run the sales promo in their selected outlets. 

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Top 20 Black Friday Campaign Ideas for Nigerian Brands

  1. Launch a new (limited edition) product

The most innovative brands get the most sales and engagement during Black Friday sales promo. Introducing a limited edition of your product or offering is an innovative way to create buzz and deliver something truly unique. Consider unveiling a product that’s exclusive to Black Friday this 2023 and see how your customers will receive it, especially because of the urgency and scarcity that this offering will bring. 

This will not only entice shoppers with the allure of something fresh and limited but also set your brand apart in a sea of generic sales. By showcasing a novel product that is available exclusively during the promo, customers will most likely due to fear of missing out (FOMO). In an age where consumers are always seeking the next big thing, a limited edition Black Friday offering could be your visa to a memorable and successful sales event.

  1. Offer a Black Friday early-bird discount

The early bird catches the worm, or call it discount in this case. If you have an active newsletter with subscribers, use your email list to send out an update on your latest featured products or services that will be discounted strictly for Black Friday. To make the early bird discount feel special, give it a name like VIP early-bird discount, and ensure your email copy uses strategic wording that evokes a sense of urgency.

Using phrases such as ‘offer while stock lasts’ or ‘selling-out fast’ instils a perception of scarcity, making the offer seem even more exclusive. Research consistently shows that consumers are more inclined to act swiftly and decisively when faced with potential scarcity, often perceiving such limited-time or limited-stock offers as more valuable.

  1. Wet appetite with a ‘pre-Black Friday’ campaign

Revealing a sneak peek ahead of a campaign generally sparks greater curiosity among consumers. For instance, an e-commerce platform can consider teasing a selection of top products that will feature in your Black Friday sales. For a SaaS business, a short video or a GIF highlighting the core features of your product can be a tantalizing preview.

Regardless of your business size and scope, it’s essential to frame the sneak peek within the Black Friday theme, ensuring that your customers are aware of the impressive discounts that await them. This is great for building anticipation and driving traffic and interest as the main campaign approaches.

  1. Run a Countdown to Black Friday with short videos

Only a few marketing initiatives build anticipation as much as a countdown timer does. Use countdown videos or creatives to feature all of the products you will have on sale. Deploy these materials daily for at least 10 days before the start of the Black Friday promo. This will generate more hype that will get people lining up on Black Friday to make their purchases. 

Once you make fantastic promo creatives or short videos, go ahead and promote them on your Instagram as well as other social media pages. SPAR Nigeria did something similar for the 2022 Black Friday promo, which also featured a popular Yoruba Nollywood actress who amplified the content and campaign on her platforms. 

  1. Offer a Buy-One, Get-One 50% Off

One other Black Friday sales promo tactic that works wonders is buy-one, get one 50% off. This is upselling people to buy more products than they would have originally. You can also spin a variation of this Eg: 50% off everything on the morning of Black Friday, then buy one, get one 50% off during the afternoon. 

The more flexible you are with this tactic, the more bargaining power your customers have, which will motivate them to buy more to get more value at cheaper prices.

  1. Create a “Black Friday exclusive” post

Leveraging Facebook’s dynamic marketing features can significantly boost your Black Friday sales. One particularly impactful method is to create a “Special Black Friday” carousel post. This visually engaging format allows you to prominently display a selection of your top sale items for the biggest shopping event of the year. 

Ensure to emphasize that these deals are limited or available only for a short time to tap into the principle of scarcity mentioned earlier. Not only does this heighten anticipation for Black Friday, but it also makes consumers mark their calendars which automatically increases Top of Mind Awareness. 

  1. Offer different time-based deals daily (treasure hunt)

If your business has a good following across social media channels, take advantage of this adventurous tactic which offers different items for sale every hour. You can start at Midnight on Black Friday and have 24 separate sales. This approach keeps consumers on the alert as they look out for important items they don’t want to miss. This alone can potentially skyrocket the number of sales you get, especially if some products aren’t even available until a certain time.

  1. Deploy flash sales

Flash sales are a dynamic tool in the world of Black Friday promotions, essentially because they effectively instil a sense of urgency in buyers. By offering enticing deals that only last for a few hours throughout the day, you not only encourage prompt purchases but also sustain the adrenaline rush throughout the campaign. 

It’s vital to integrate your social media pages into this strategy. A timely post or story on Instagram or Facebook will alert your followers of the imminent start times, ensuring they don’t miss out on these exclusive Black Friday deals.

  1. Offer bundle deals

Bundling products together drives sales, referrals and engagement, as customers believe they’re getting a better value. For Black Friday 2023, offer a special bundle price for products that are typically purchased together. Make sure you highlight the amount to be saved with the bundle deal by comparing the bundle price to individual product purchases. This will drive home the value of the bundle offer.

Black Friday
Black Friday
  1. Leverage Referrals and loyalty points

If you do not have a loyalty program or a strategy to incentivize customers to refer new customers, use this Black Friday to create one. Offer enhanced loyalty rewards for purchases made on Black Friday. 

This will not only incentivize the immediate purchase but also encourage future shopping. A double or triple points day can make your loyal customers feel appreciated and valued.

  1. Run interactive Social Media challenges

Another interesting idea for 2023 Black Friday sales is to launch a social media challenge where followers can participate to win discounts or freebies. For instance, ask customers to share a post, create a Black Friday wishlist from your products, or even post a photo using your product.

This will drive sales as well as engagement for as long as there is something at stake for customers who participate. It will also increase reach as your customers’ followers will discover your brand when they share your challenge on their pages. 

  1. Collaborate with a social cause, foundation or NGO

This is an idea that is not so common as many Nigerian businesses rarely see Black Friday as an avenue for social enterprise. To stand out in your industry, partner with a charitable organization to promote a social cause during this year’s Black Friday promo.  

For instance, for every Black Friday sale you make, donate a small portion (5%) to the social cause. It adds a feel-good factor to the purchase and often sways buyers who are on the fence.

Teaming up with a charitable organization is an excellent strategy for your business to blend commerce with social cause. In the build-up to Black Friday, advertise your partnership extensively across all channels. 

Communicate emphatically to your audience that for every item they buy during the promo, they are donating a certain amount to the chosen cause. This is inspiring because many people will be glad to touch the lives of other people by buying what they need. 

  1. Offer exclusive (customer) member sales

Who doesn’t like to be treated like a very special customer? Offering a certain discount, especially to customers who have bought at least once before or bought a certain amount from you in the past will make your customers feel super dope. It rewards them for their loyalty and may incentivize many new customers to buy. 

Such exclusivity not only acknowledges and rewards their ongoing loyalty but also amplifies the perceived value of being a part of your membership community. By spotlighting these special privileges, potential customers can see firsthand the benefits that come with subscribing or becoming a member. 

Besides, it encourages existing customers or subscribers to renew or maintain their memberships, knowing that they’re privy to unique perks in future. This approach grows customer loyalty, ensures repeat sales, sustains revenue, and compels new customers to buy.

  1. Make use of VR or AR technology

Opportunities to integrate emerging tech like Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality into your sales campaign to offer immersive shopping experiences abound these days. For instance, fashion/wearable brands can introduce try-ons. For some other brands, immersive product demonstrations with VR will be cool.

This will not only enhance your customers’ shopping experience but also create buzz as you can also promote content made with these beautiful experiences across online and offline channels for more reach and awareness.

  1. Indulge customers with extended shopping hours or early access

This works best for businesses with brick-and-mortar outlets. Extending shopping hours will attract a larger crowd. Opening doors earlier than usual or keeping them open later can cater to different customer schedules which will signal to even regular passers-by that something unusual is happening in your store. 

For online platforms, offering an “early access” window for a select group or even the public can generate buzz and initial sales momentum. Make sure to promote these special hours or access periods well in advance through various communication channels, allowing shoppers to plan their day accordingly. Jumia Nigeria and Konga do this a lot. 

  1. Hold an interactive Live-Stream shopping event

Live video events are one of the most engaging social media content lately. Why not harness the reach and engagement of live streaming to have conversations with your audience in real time? 

For Black Friday 2023, host a live-stream shopping event on Facebook or Instagram, depending on where you currently get more engagement. During this event, showcase products, offer live demonstrations, answer customer queries, and provide exclusive flash deals only available to those who tune in.

This interactive shopping experience not only highlights your products but also personalizes the shopping journey. The experience will foster a stronger bond between your business and customers. To boost engagement and reach, consider having a popular influencer or a celebrity host the live session, making the event both informative and entertaining.

  1. Be Smarter with Your Ad Budget and Targeting

If you didn’t know, let me gist you. Digital and paid media ads are typically more expensive during the Black Friday shopping period because there’s tougher competition for consumers’ attention across all relevant channels, especially from multinational brands with deep pockets. You want to avoid throwing money away advertising to cold or overwhelmed audiences. 

So the most cost-effective way to utilize your advertising budget is to target audiences that have once visited your website, follow you or competitors on social media as well as those in your email list and sales pipeline. With remarketing, you can target users who have added items to their carts, and people who have engaged with your posts, videos, and other content recently.

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  1. Personalized Shopping & Gifting Services

Adding an extra touch of customer care can go a long way toward delivering value without discounting your products or service packages. Small businesses should consider offering personalized shopper services, complimentary gift wraps, or local delivery services to help busy customers get their shopping and gifting done conveniently. 

Imagine a vendor offering you free delivery or errand services that could deliver your order or personally deliver your gifts to loved ones. It will make a memorable Black Friday and present the vendor as very thoughtful and empathetic. 

  1. Deploy dynamic and interactive Ad formats

For many conservative businesses, Black Friday is generally a time to stick with tested-and-trusted messaging, but there’s room to experiment with the dynamic ad formats that audiences cannot ignore. Try out rich media ads, carousel ads on Facebook, or dynamic ads showing the items viewed or left in the cart by a particular user.

The major point here is that you should avoid using flat banner ads that look so casual or regular that your offerings won’t get the needed attention to drive sales and engagement, considering that there will be a higher volume of ads flying everywhere during Black Friday. And as such, your ads must be truly creative, innovative and interactive to stand out. 

  1. Double down on email marketing

Don’t just focus on selling during the promo, collect important details of audiences, web visitors and paying customers for future marketing efforts. Building your email list will pay off long after sales are over as you will have the opportunity to cross-sell new offers to your email list continuously. 

Ideally, your email subscribers have either bought from you or are currently considering it. Driving sales with email marketing is more effective when you can include sales triggers they will find valuable based on what you know about them already.

This is too big an opportunity to miss this year, as your competitors will be going all out to make a kill. Content Krush is a data-driven digital marketing consulting firm in Nigeria with major strengths in Search Engine Optimization, Growth Marketing, B2B Lead Generation, Content Marketing, and Website and Application Development. 

Our superpowers are helping you build lasting relationships with your target audiences through well-researched consumer insights and engaging content; both of which have consistently delivered the goodies across web, search and social channels for our clients.

Let’s help you find and sell to more customers during the forthcoming Black Friday, and beyond. Reach out now

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This article was first published on 17th October 2023

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