SHARECOMMENTMORE

Columbia, S.C. (WLTX) -- Many major retailers are trying a new strategy this year to reach the holiday shopper, by offering special deals through a variety of new formats.

National retailers are gearing up for what is expected to be a hotly contested 2012 holiday shopping season, with not only Thanksgiving night opening plans, along with very early releases (or "leaks") of Black Friday ads, they're now taking a strong step in the tech direction for snagging customers.

Many of the national big-box stores like Kohl's, Sears,Best Buy, and Target, among others, are taking specials mobile by offering up store-centric apps, email alerts, and even text alerts when certain sales happen.

Some also plan to offer up special discounts or deals to their followers on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites.

The 2012 Holiday Shopping season might officially start for some on Thanksgiving night, but a number of these retail outlets are pushing the envelope further by already launching their Black Friday sales early. The truth of this marketing test will be in the final numbers at the end of December!