The bright-eyed, idealistic marketer in me is not a fan of extending deadlines.
But the more practical, trying-to-be-honest-with-myself marketer in me has worried less and less about that tactic over the years.
Why? Let me see if I can explain.
In an ideal situation, would you want or need or have to extend deadlines? Maybe not. But, let’s be real, is anyone in an ideal situation? So let me explore explore those reasons why my tune has changed on this topic.
Drop in the Bucket
The first is a reminder that our perception of this stuff is skewed because we care much and think so much about it. I follow every resort in North America on Twitter and when I search for “extended” mentions from the people I follow, I see dozens of results from the last month. When I search among a list of non-resorts? That number is almost zero with the exception being a couple brands who extended Memorial Day offers.
In other words, it can feel like it happens all the time by everyone…but from the customer’s perspective, extensions are a very rare thing they encounter from one of hundreds of mostly non-ski brands they engage with.
Which is important because while some folks who watch the industry really closely have been able to guess with a pretty solid accuracy who is going to extend and who isn’t. But, again, that’s not the experience of 99.999% of your customers. To them, deadline extensions are not only rare, they’re also completely random.
And we know they work. They work because deadlines are often on holidays and weekends (when people aren’t watching their inbox). They work because people forget. They work because the day-after remorse of not buying is a thing. They work because they’re a tool some resorts consistently use, not the tool all resorts always use.
Source of Pressure
So if the above is at all true, where does the pressure to NOT use them come from? Well, each other. We put pressure on ourselves sometimes to do marketing that, yes, will work but also that our peers and friends won’t roll their eyes at. We’re humans after all and we want to fit in. But this is a great example of where its important to try to separate your needs from your peers’ ideals.
As I mentioned, it’s a tool. And all tools need to be used wisely.
But I hope that my idealistic view of things like this from yesteryear and that pressure to do sexy, popular marketing doesn’t prevent your team from turning to a tool like this when your situation and goals and constraints would make it a great fit.
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