Start shining your apples and setting some savings aside. While many retail brands set their campaign sights on the Holiday season, we can’t forget about the second largest shopping season of the year: Back to School.
Key stats on this major moment for retailers
The volatile economy and inflation is having a year-over-year impact on consumer trends and spending reports. This is affecting how shoppers approach large annual "hauls" typically associated with back to school shopping.
Here are a few key stats on this year's shopping season:
- Most consumers start their K-12 back-to-school shopping between late-July and early-August, but the shopping season can span from July through September.
- Almost half (46%) of parents have started back-to-school shopping, largely because of Prime Day, during which 42% of parents said they were able to snag early deals.
- Americans in Fall of 2022 spent a total of $110.8 billion for back-to-school and back-to-college shopping.
- 80% of shoppers expect to see higher prices when back-to-school and back-to-college shopping this year. With inflation and price increases, savvy shoppers are looking for sales, doing more comparative shopping online, using coupons and discount codes, and buying more generic or brand products. (source: NRF)
- Back-to-school spending for K-12 students is expected to decrease by 10% to $597 per student due to inflation, according to Deloitte. However, Back-to-College is expected to see an increase of up to 40% compared to 2019 spending.
The bell is ringing for sales events like Prime Day and Labor Day -- all the more reason to set up influencer marketing campaigns to start talking about your Back-to-School deals now rather than later.
5 considerations for brands activating Back-to-School campaigns
Content themes that work
Quick, easy-to-digest videos on dorm room essentials are popular amongst many lifestyle and fashion influencers. Listicles are still a popular form of content, for example, '3 things you need for your dorm room this year.' On TikTok, these types of videos keep viewers engaged and deliver high watch times. Inspirational how-to content produced by influencers yield strong results for incoming freshmen, for example, 'How to Decorate a Stress-Free Dorm.'
Target audience ≠ platform strategy
It's an oversimplification to say Gen Z are on TikTok and Millennials are on Instagram. #Parenting has 38.2B views on TikTok, and some of the highest performing college students are killing it on Instagram. Effective audience targeting is about more than platform selection, so start with the platforms that make the most sense for your business needs (your target audience is there, we promise).
Prioritize parents with invisible influence
Demand is the #1 factor in influencer pricing, so putting time into finding under-the-radar folks is time well spent. Consider sourcing based on harder-to-spot metrics like blog traffic, audience testimonials, or average true reach (all available with our influencer marketing platform, Fohr Discovery).
You can also peruse parenting hashtags on TikTok to find creators who have likely grown their audience quickly and may have less demand (and lower rates) than heritage influencers.
Dance before you DJ with Gen Z
If you're targeting Gen Z, ensure you're already immersed in your category's trends, conversations, and content styles. 65% of Gen Z have purchased something based on an influencer's recommendation, and with #influencermarketing on TikTok clocking in at 340M+ views (and counting) they know when they're being sold. Gen Z is highly sensitive to inauthentic content, so get a feel for the vibe and then get dancing. Nobody likes the person who shows up to the party and tries to change the music.
Don't sleep on blogs!
With all this talk of Instagram vs. TikTok and the appetizing vanity metrics of both platforms, marketers tend to forget about bloggers. We all know blog traffic has fallen on average. But if we study the average, we remain average.
There are incredible bloggers, particularly parents, who still command hundreds of thousands of page-views per month from audiences who look to them for purchase recommendations. In fact, some of them are our top traffic drivers and sales converters.
Want us to run your back-to-school campaigns for you? Get to know us here.