By Kelsey Jones
In Wal-Mart yesterday, they were already playing Christmas music. While I personally oppose Christmas music playing outside of November 25th-January 1, this is a great example of how merchants and businesses are already gearing up for the bustling Holiday season. Many started setting out their Christmas-themed merchandise in the beginning of October. This may be a little excessive, but any business should at least begin entertaining the thought of holiday marketing strategy starting in September or October (or even earlier, if you need to get items like custom gift cards printed or produced). The following are some of the ways that businesses can begin tweaking their existing marketing and advertising to promote their holiday offers and products without going overboard.
Squeeze pages are basically miniature websites that specifically promote one campaign or product. They usually tie into a postal or electronic mailing campaign. However, they could also be used to specifically promote a temporary holiday campaign. Squeeze pages that are sub domains of a business’ main website may be able to help the website with its overall SEO. Squeeze pages can have a unique domain that simply automatically re-directs to a subdomain. They are an easy way to promote a specific holiday, product, or sale without putting it all over the main website. This makes it much easier to take down after the sale is over.
Any content editorial calendars should include a few pieces of content that incorporate Holiday campaigns, products, or marketing efforts. Even announcing the campaign can help add unique content to a company’s blog, website, or article database, helping with SEO. Try to pull in customers’ activities with any content in order to drive engagement and conversation. For example, a home improvement store’s blog could ask customers if they are building anything for the holidays (e.g. a tree stand or gift for a relative) and offer gift cards to the most ambitious or creative product.
Tie-in holiday content marketing efforts and drive traffic to any blog posts or websites offering holiday contests or promotions. Additionally, posting holiday-themed content is always a great way to be involved in the community’s excitement about the holidays. Asking questions like, “What is your favorite holiday song?” or posting pictures of the company gift exchange can personalize a company’s social media profiles while also remaining top-of-mind for consumers. Additionally, presenters at the Facebook Marketing Bootcamp 2011 recommended offering unique discount codes or coupons solely on a company’s Facebook page. If customers enter the coupon code online or say it in the store, they can get a unique discount only Facebook fans are offered. This is a good way to get revenue in the door while also hopefully growing the number of Facebook likes.
No matter how a company is going to tie-in their holiday promotions this year, it’s important to remember to be thoughtful of all holidays during this season, not just Christmas (even though this post only has Christmas images). Promoting more general images of the season (e.g. snow or winter colors like blue and white) is just one of the examples of how companies are offering seasonal promotions without targeting a specific holiday.
The Social Robot was compensated for one link in this post.
Photos from the L Magazine, the National Autistic Society, About.com Weird News, respectively.