Today is Amazon Prime Day – a.k.a. Amazon’s way of beating the summer slump and creating a “Black Friday” type buying frenzy. While they had some bumps along the way last year, Amazon took their learnings and have grown Prime Day exponentially both in deals offered and how much it’s been promoted through various channels. Amazon is even leveraging its apps and Echo-based product line to help get in on the action.

Big Box retailers always seem to have various sales going on – especially for known holidays. But they could take a cue from Amazon in developing their own branded once-a-year sale that is designed to reward loyal customers and create new ones. Target, Wal-Mart, Macy’s, Costco, and a host others all have loyalty cards, a diverse inventory of products, and a massive online presence. What better way to increase sales and memberships than to have an annual blowout?  All of these retailers already have their own apps and push their membership cards (and perks) throughout the year – but not in a concerted effort.

There is a caveat, however. If brands are going to engage in a mega-promotion like Amazon Prime Day (or any well marketed event) – make sure the infrastructure is in place. Make sure there is proper inventory – and that the website can handle the influx of consumers. Amazon learned the hard way last year with the hashtag #PrimeDayFail going viral.

And it should be obvious, creating a strategic promotional plan that extends beyond the retailers’ own channels should be employed – especially when there’s the goal to attract new customers.