Preparing Your Marketing Strategy for the Holidays

The holiday season in the marketing world is a big deal. You have Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, New Year’s, and a bunch of other, smaller holidays thrown in there. Every holiday is marketable no matter what industry you’re in. People enjoy festive celebrations and therefore, they like festive marketing campaigns.

Make a list (and check it twice) 

  • Start planning your marketing campaigns much earlier than you think you should. The holidays creep up fast and B2B buyers are already prepared to spend before they get here. In between each major holiday comes Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. These events don’t have to be exclusive to B2C. Set up planning, creative, production, and deployment calendars to better execute your campaigns. Some experts suggest starting in September, while others recommend as early as July.
  • Outline your goals for the holiday season and for the start of the new year. Whether it’s to gain a certain amount of leads, increase your email list, or grow your social media following, you need to have measurable and time-sensitive goals.
  • Set your marketing budget. Calculate how much each holiday promotion is going to run you and how it will benefit you in the end. Consider how seasonally relevant content might factor into your budget. Some quarters may require a heavier spend.

Stuff Your Social Turkey

The holidays are the perfect opportunity to make your social media strategy festive and engaging. Prepare your content early, as there are endless opportunities to share over the next couple of months.

  • Make your promotions meaningful and heartfelt. Emotional marketing is especially powerful around the holidays. Even a simple holiday greeting can go a long way in building trust.
  • Consider using influencers to promote your content to the masses.
  • Use festive stock photos. I like to use Unsplash, if you aren’t up to creating your own.
  • Utilize SEO, know your keywords and be smart with your links. Many keywords are seasonal, so if you’re ranking well with your main keywords, you’ll pick up a lot of extra, free traffic.

Indulge in Gift-Giving

In addition to your promotions, try giving away something useful. Everyone loves receiving gifts and surprises. Whether it’s an ebook, a new community, something tangible, or even something unrelated but fun. It gets your audience in the spirit. If you sell a product, you could offer free shipping or a coupon code.

Re-Gift

And by re-gift we mean retarget. 96-98% of visitors that come to your website are not ready to buy. For the 2-4% of traffic you can persuade, that’s great but seems like a miniscule number. Retargeting allows you to target those visitors who didn’t convert into customers. It allows you to turn window-shoppers into buyers. Retargeting ads allow you to drive and maintain awareness and drive conversions.

Be Thankful

Share positive messages. As Buddy the Elf once said: “The best way to spread Christmas Cheer, is singing loud for all to hear.” Show customer appreciation and focus on them more than your sales agenda. Be charitable, whether that means donating directly, donating your time, or running a match campaign. Express to your audience what you’re thankful for or how you’re going to change in the year ahead. Ask your audience what they’re thankful for and how they’re planning to change in the upcoming year.

Unwrap

 At the end of the season, it’s time to unwrap the data from your holiday campaign. Analyze web traffic, check your social media engagement, look at email marketing results, evaluate which promos and offers were most appealing to your audience. Measurable data is a gift to yourself.

 

Enjoy the Festivities

Finally, enjoy the holiday season. Christmas (and Hanukkah, Thanksgiving, New Year’s, etc.) comes but once a year. Take a step back and admire your efforts. Reap the fruits of your labor. Never be too tired to be inspired.

Let us know what you think:

  • What does your holiday marketing campaign include?
  • Do you have plans to enhance your social media strategy?
  • What are you thankful for?
  • What do you plan to change in the year ahead?

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