Guide

Thanksgiving marketing

Thanksgiving advertising ideas for 2023 that customers will gobble up

Thanksgiving weekend is one of the busiest shopping periods of the year—providing brands a unique opportunity to grow their businesses and engage customers. Learn tips and best practices from several successful global marketing campaigns to help maximize your advertising impact both in the U.S. and internationally.

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November marks the official start of the holiday season—and for many consumers, shopping is as much of a tradition as turkey and pumpkin pie. In fact, more than three-quarters of U.S. consumers said they shopped over Thanksgiving weekend in 2022, up from 70% the prior year, according to the National Retail Federation.1 Increasingly, customers outside of the U.S. are also shopping on Black Friday Cyber Monday (BFCM) weekend—including in Brazil, Canada, Colombia, France, Germany, Spain, and the U.K., which are all predicted to be coming up on one of their top five busiest shopping periods of the year.2

So what should brands be keeping in mind as they develop their Thanksgiving advertising plans? Read on for marketing ideas, best practices, and practical tips, based on stories from advertisers around the world.

3 Thanksgiving marketing ideas and tips

Case Study

SharkNinja, a housewares brand based in Needham, Massachusetts, sought to develop a seasonal marketing strategy that would capture incremental sales while also increasing brand awareness. Working with the marketing agency Marketplace Strategy, they leveraged the full suite of Amazon Ads products to reach customers at every stage of the buying journey. In particular, they used Sponsored Brands to help them get their products in front of new shoppers. They also focused on crafting Sponsored Brands page headlines and product detail pages that clearly articulated the exact savings being offered and the full benefits of their products, while using measurement tools to help ensure they were reaching relevant audiences.

The campaign was credited with a significant performance lift—including 250% more impressions, 200% more clicks, and a 17% increase on return on ad spend.

Related tip: If using Sponsored Brands, consider specifying the savings amount in the headline copy to capture the attention of shoppers seeking deals and special promotions.

Sharkninja

Case Study

Nissen, a fashion wholesaler based in Japan, significantly increased ad sales leading up to and during the November 2022 shopping season by building a step-by-step full-funnel marketing strategy across a range of ads products and solutions. As a first step, Nissen was able to secure budget and plan inventory appropriately by launching products for the season and identifying trending items a month in advance of BCFM. The company then used Sponsored Products to pique interest in their key products.

During the actual BFCM event, Nissen showcased key products prominently with Sponsored Brands video ad campaigns. And finally, leading out of BCFM, Nissen helped convert missed opportunities by remarketing with Sponsored Display. Nissen’s thoughtfully executed strategy was a clear success—with ad-attributed sales growing by 120% during BFCM, compared to the previous year.

Related tip: Brands can use multiple ad types together during the Thanksgiving holiday season—including both Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands—to help drive brand growth.

Nissen

Research

A German beauty brand sought to improve various aspects of their ad campaign performance leading up to, during, and after Thanksgiving weekend, including their detail page views, purchase rate, and new-to-brand purchase rate. Based on these objectives, the company worked with Amazon Ads to run an A/B test to determine the effect of advertising two weeks in advance of BFCM, versus advertising only during the actual event. The analysis found that activating a lead-up Amazon Ads campaign ahead of BFCM drives greater consideration and conversion during the event period, based on all three of the metrics being analyzed.

Related tip: Advertisers can generate customized insight by testing with their actual campaigns, helping inform their marketing strategies.

BFCM

Additional resources

Retail holidays and events can help brands engage shoppers and drive product sales all year round—anywhere and everywhere. Check out this global retail holiday calendar to search for key sales opportunities by country or event.

Learn more about how brands can build out effective seasonal marketing strategies around the world using this guide.

Consider these beginner courses for advertisers who want to start planning for the holiday season.

Find out how brands can make the most of major shopping events like Prime Day and BCFM to strengthen their marketing strategy, based on market research.

FAQs

When is the best time to start marketing for Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday?

Many brands begin developing their marketing plans in the summer (or even earlier) to help them fully take advantage of increased traffic and interest in the Amazon store during Thanksgiving weekend. Once a marketing plan is in place, brands may start to actively promote their deals and promotions up to one month in advance of Thanksgiving, or even offer sneak peeks and early-access discounts. Others choose to launch “surprise” sales and promotions, including flash sales, to help create a sense of urgency.

What is Thanksgiving?

The American version of Thanksgiving (also known as American Thanksgiving) is a federal holiday in the U.S., traditionally thought to mark the occasion of a harvest feast involving English colonists and the people of Wampanoag in 1621. In its contemporary context, American Thanksgiving is known as a time for people in the U.S. to express gratitude for life’s blessings, gather with family and friends, and enjoy a celebratory meal that often includes roasted turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and other homecooked recipes. Other countries around the world also celebrate seasonal holidays and shopping events (such as White Friday, in the Middle East) during this time.

When is Thanksgiving?

American Thanksgiving takes place annually on the fourth Thursday of November. In 2023, it will occur on Thursday, November 23. Similar holidays take place around the world at around this time—including in Canada (which celebrates Canadian Thanksgiving every year on the second Monday of October), Germany (which celebrates Erntedankfest annually on the first Sunday of October), and Japan (which celebrates Labor Thanksgiving Day every year on November 23).

Where is Thanksgiving celebrated?

American Thanksgiving is observed across the U.S. and many of its territories. Other countries also celebrate their own versions of Thanksgiving, including Austria, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Grenada, Japan, Liberia, the Netherlands, Saint Lucia, South Korea, Switzerland, the U.K., and Vietnam.

What is the average cost of a Thanksgiving dinner in the U.S.?

In 2022, the average price for a complete Thanksgiving feast in the U.S. in quantities sufficient to serve a group of 10 amounted to $64.05.3

What is Black Friday?

Black Friday is one of the busiest shopping days of the year, taking place the day after American Thanksgiving. It is known as a time when customers can take advantage of steep discounts and extended in-store shopping hours.

When is Black Friday?

Black Friday takes place the day after American Thanksgiving. In 2023, it will occur on Friday, November 24.

What is Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday is a popular time for online retailers to offer special promotions, discounts, and sales, building on momentum from Black Friday. Most Cyber Monday deals are offered exclusively online, rather than in physical stores.

When is Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday takes place the Monday after American Thanksgiving. In 2023, it will occur on Monday, November 27.