• Share

Back To School Advertising Ideas to Get You Started

Back to school time is the perfect opportunity for advertisers. They come up with these new and innovative products. These back to school advertising ideas will help you take your business’s marketing campaign to the next level! Back-to-school advertising is the best way for you to find new prospects.

Students in the US will be returning to school starting late August, but retailers need to start ramping up back-to-school and back-to-college marketing campaigns now.

Many students plan to return to traditional in-person classes for the upcoming school year. This is because they’re finally starting to understand that there’s more than just money motivating them.

A recent study by KPMG found that people are expecting to spend more on back-to-school shopping this year than they did last year. The survey predicts that consumers will pay $268 per child in 2021, up from the average $247 spent in 2020.

A recent survey by KPGM found that the most popular back-to-school items are:

  • footwear
  • core school supplies
  • non-footwear apparel

back to school advertising

As a way to help you make the most of back-to-school shopping, we’ve compiled back-to-school advertising ideas and real-life examples for how companies have been marketing themselves as successful BTS or BTC.

Let’s get started!


1. Begin with the suitable products.

back to school advertising

So what do you need to make sure is done before launching your back-to-school campaign? Well, first things first: make sure that the merchandise you’re advertising is on point. If it’s not in demand, then no one will be interested.

Before you start any marketing campaigns, be sure to decide which items are your best sellers and should go on the front page of your store.

The first thing you should do is look at your data to see the trends.

With the new school year right around the corner, you might be wondering what people were buying last back-to-school season. You can usually find this information using your POS or retail management system.

Vend is an excellent example of this. You can quickly see how many sales you made on any given day by selecting the date range and filtering your product or brand.

Another way to figure out what your customers want is by using a free tool from Google. The Trends tool will help you identify trends in the market and use that information for product development.

Go to trends. google.

If you’re interested in what people are searching for, head to Google and enter the information. You can also find out about trends by typing in products or brands.

This is why it’s essential to use words like “Herschel Supply Co.” or “Jansport” in your search. If you’re selling backpacks, for example, those are two keywords that would be great.

Then you can see what to sell in the store and online by using this info. It turns out that people are always looking for these terms around July-August, so it’s a good idea to stock up on those items before they’re gone.


2. Demonstrate how your items fit people’s school lives to increase revenue.

back to school advertising

You have all the excellent back-to-school supplies. That’s great, but what are you going to do for your products to stand out? If you’re putting them on a shelf or rack, then they won’t be unique.

Instead of just selling back-to-school products, take a step further and show customers how they can use your product in school. For example, if you’re selling pencils, tell them that graphite is perfect for drafting.

If you’re trying to sell pens and notepads, why not set up a desk in your store that displays the items with other school supplies? If you are selling furniture, consider showcasing them by setting up an area inside a dorm room.

If you can’t show your dorm room and desk sets in-store, use the back-to-school displays as a backdrop for your product photos. This will make them more relatable.

To give customers a better idea of how the products would work in an educational setting, photograph them with school props.

Or how about this idea? The buckle uses back-to-school clothing as a way of targeting its customers. They’re not just showing pictures; they’re showcasing relevant outfits.

It would help if you thought about how your product or service could fit into a student’s school life. Once you have that figured out, use it as the foundation for your marketing efforts. Click To Tweet


3. Consider offering limited-time deals.

back to school advertising

As the back-to-school season kicks off, retailers are struggling with increased customer competition. With 35% of consumers preferring discounts over other incentives like free shipping or rewards points, stores need to develop creative ways to get them in.

RIS News also reports that 41% of consumers “consider themselves to be practical purchasers; they seek to get the best price or least expensive option.”

Apple is a perfect example of how to cater to these customers. They offer education pricing for select Mac and iPad models and 20% off AppleCare+.


4. Get your back-to-school marketing relevant by aligning it with the hottest trends.

back to school advertising

Back to school is a big deal, and it should be for you too. What’s the latest trend in your industry?

For example, Pokemon Go was a great way for retailers to keep up with the latest trends. They would sponsor this app to sell more of their products.

The School Box is doing it. They just launched a Pokemon Go Back to School series that features educational creatures modeled after the classic game.

A back-to-school campaign is a good time for your business. Take advantage of the latest trends by doing some digging on Google Trends.

If you’d like to find out what people are buying and how popular it is, think with Google. We have a tool that lets you see the trends in shopping.

5. If you want to make your campaigns more compelling, involve the kids.

Getting kids involved in the back-to-school season is an excellent idea because it’s all about them. For example, if you want your sales team motivated by getting the help of children and teens for what they would like to buy or work on this coming year, there are plenty of ways that these ideas can be executed.

The retailer Target did something that ended up being pretty great. They let kids take over their back-to-school campaign in 2016, and the results were terrific.

This commercial was a collaboration between Target and the children. They all had to work together on writing, directing, props-making, and starring in this ad.

Here’s what happened.


6. Market your products on digital channels to reach more shoppers.

back to school advertising

In the age of smartphones and tablets, it’s no surprise that online shoppers are looking for ways to cut down on their back-to-school shopping time. Create a unique banner ad promoting your new campaign.

So if you can, try to create a back-to-school section on your website so that customers don’t have to hunt for school supplies.

Adidas makes it easier for people to find the proper clothing and shoes by putting back-to-school sections on their website.

Beyond the products, this page is focused on an empowering theme of “comeback season.”

The page reads:

This year, back-to-school clothes come in a variety of styles and colors. They’re the perfect way to make your style statement.

Don’t be afraid to take risks when dressing for school this year. Go with versatile cuts, lightweight layers, and iconic sneakers that will amp up your energy level.

One last thing, make sure to keep your site up and running smoothly this season. If you haven’t already done so, fix any issues that could be causing it to slow down.

Disable any unnecessary plugins and images that aren’t optimized. You should also check to see if there are too many elements on the page, as this can slow down your site.

With the rise of eCommerce, there are many more opportunities for businesses to increase their traffic and sales. Here are our top back-to-school advertising ideas on how retailers can improve online.

Do note that back-to-school shopping won’t just take place in-store and online. Mobile shopping is also on the rise this season. A study from The Rubicon Project found that 60% of parents surveyed are “planning to use mobile devices for some back to school shopping” and “30 percent plan to do at least a quarter of their total shopping on mobile devices.”

So, if you’re looking to maximize your online sales, then the first thing that you need to do is make sure that your website is optimized for mobile shopping. You also want to keep an eye out for any shortcomings in your customer experience and work hard at providing a seamless transaction across channels.


7. One way to generate buzz for your company is by having giveaways.

back to school advertising

There are lots of ways to promote your business during the back-to-school season. One way is through giveaways, which can generate excitement and buzz about what you’re doing.

You can use contests to get people talking about your brand, generate some PR or even capture their contact information.

What if you made a back-to-school pack with your best products and gave it away for free? Get creative.

With all the holiday season goodies being offered right now, it’s a good time to think about what you can do in your store.

To promote your contest, find a way to work with social media influencers and brands. Reach out by tapping into their audience so you can generate excitement about the opportunity for them as well.

You know how sometimes you have a nasty cold, and your nose is so stuffed up that it’s hard to breathe? Boogie Wipes are the solution. They teamed up with other brands, bloggers, and influencers in 2015 for an epic back-to-school giveaway.

The raffle winners walked away with a backpack full of school supplies, gift cards, and other goodies.


8. It’s always good to work with influencers, whether they’re mom bloggers or not.

back to school advertising

Back to school season is a great time to get into influencer marketing because parents and kids alike are on the lookout for shopping ideas, and you can bet that they turn (at least in part) to influencers. In 2016, a Rakuten Marketing study found that “Almost a third (30%) of parents are willing to spend more on an item of clothing for their child if an online influencer has endorsed it.” More than a quarter (27%) “of parents have bought an item after seeing a celebrity’s child wearing it.”

If you want to get started with influencer marketing, the first thing is to research teenage bloggers and Instagrammers. Once you find a few of them who have large followings in your target demographic, see if they’d be willing to wear or use any products from your company in their posts videos for followers. Click To Tweet

IKEA, already famous for its affordable furniture and home goods, has gone to the next level by using influencer marketing with Mitch Grassi (of Superfruit) and Scott Hoying. The two partnered up on a Snapchat campaign that features their dorm room products.


9. The more you push your products, the less appealing they become. Offer customers something that would help them solve a problem.

back to school advertising

The back-to-school advertising campaign should be about more than just making sales. You need to make sure you are providing good customer service.

As a back-to-school business, you can’t just rely on showcasing your products. Make sure that people see the value in what you have by providing helpful tips for them.

It sounds like you’re looking for ideas on how to help parents and students prepare for the new school year. You could offer tips that would make it easier or faster to get kids ready in the morning.

To make sales more enticing, consider providing tools to help them with their work. Calendars, planners, and templates are great for people who need these items at home or school.


10. You might want to think about running a unique campaign for educators.

back to school advertising

This year, we’re seeing many more teachers coming into our stores, and it’s time to find ways to keep them engaged. We might consider putting an “educators corner” in your store or website.

Grateful for your time? Consider gifting teachers with helpful resources such as calendars or lesson plan templates.

The promotions tailored to teachers, like Target’s Teacher Appreciation Weekends and other store-specific events, seem popular.

This year, Target is offering 15% off on classroom supplies if you’re a teacher. All you have to do is enter your code and email address.


11. With the shopping guides and checklists you created, your customers will never be lost in a sea of choices.

back to school advertising

It’s back to school time, and parents are feeling the pressure. If you’re looking for a way to make this year less stressful, try simplifying your shopping experience.

One way to motivate your employees is by ensuring they have the tools and knowledge needed for their job. A great example of this can be seen in Best Buy’s online Back-to-School Checklist, which makes it easy for people looking to buy school supplies.