Why You Need a Holiday Marketing Plan – and How to Get One Going Fast
Even if your business isn’t in retail or e-commerce, you still need a holiday marketing plan. Why? Because, like it or not, the holidays are what people are focused on in the latter months of the year. One piece of good news is about this is, even if you don’t sell a product that would go nicely underneath a Christmas tree, nearly every industry is impacted by fall and winter holidays in some way.
Another piece of good news? If you haven’t planned your business’ holiday messaging for your digital media channels, it’s not too late. Digital marketing and media channels like seasonal web pages or special online offers and social media posts and blog articles can be pulled together quickly, so your company’s holiday messaging is timely and fresh.
If your marketing department is just getting started with its holiday marketing strategy, consider the following steps to develop a quick plan for the next few, holiday heavy months.
- Take a look at what you’ve got. Assessing your current situation is an important part of developing any forward-moving plan. Before you do anything, take a look at your current marketing strategy for November through January or February.
If you haven’t factored in the holidays already, you may need to adjust your existing marketing calendar to make room for additional messaging. Is there room to add a few social media posts and at least one blog article each month that will allow you to address relevant topics related to your product or service and the upcoming holiday?
- Determine your message. For retailers and e-commerce companies, the relevance of their messaging will be fairly obvious. However, if you are a divorce lawyer or dentist, the relevance of your holiday marketing messaging may be less clear. Whatever your product or service, consider how you can make a connection to the upcoming holiday in a way that will resonate with your target audience.
For example, a client anticipating or going through a divorce during the holidays may need a blog article with a supportive undertone about getting through the holiday alone. Social media messaging might lean toward, “We are here for you.” And dentist might remind people how many pictures are taken over the holidays and promote an online offer for a teeth whitening during the fall and winter months. Their social media messaging might be, “Smile for the camera.”
As always, remember to honor cultural diversity. When you’ve determined your company message, take a hard look at it to ensure it is sensitive and inclusive.
- Decide how to communicate it. Once you’ve decided what you want to say to your prospective and current clients, decide what digital channels you’ll use to put your company’s message out there. Online offers and blog articles, obviously, will live on your company website, but social media messaging might vary by platform. For example, the language in a post on LinkedIn will be more professional than a more colloquial post on Facebook, and an Instagram post might align with the special offer on your website but will need to be entirely visual.
- Schedule, schedule, schedule. Finally, don’t wait to schedule these posts. If you are not already using a social media scheduler, most of them are quick to set up and will save you time in the long run – especially if your business is smaller, and you are both the service provider and marketing department. Take a quick look at platforms like Hootsuite or, if you’re already a Hubspot customer, look at the social media dashboard they provide as a part of their service. Then schedule all your social media messaging.
Remember, the best marketing is consistent and reliable not on-and-off, so follow the schedule you’ve been posting at as best you can. You will have more competition in your prospective clients’ inboxes and news feeds during this time of the year. While you can usually get away with stepping up the frequency with which you reach out to clients, your messaging should still be mostly inline with the the rest of the year.
Don’t forget to reach out to your writers and designers to schedule additional blog articles or visuals if you plan to post holiday-related articles or graphics for special offers. Set reminders on your calendar to cue you to post special offers and to remove them before the next holiday approaches.
Scheduling your messaging will help your holiday marketing efforts fit seamlessly into the rest of your marketing plan – even if they were added last minute.
Holiday marketing isn’t always intuitive, and this late in the game, it can feel overwhelming. But with digital marketing strategies, it can be done quickly. If your company needs help developing a plan, reach out. Above the Fold Media can help!