The Holidays Are Coming! Businesses Pay Attention.
The winter holiday season is THE major shopping season of the year, there can be no doubt about that. Big brands will have had their holiday marketing planned out almost since the start of the year, but for small- to medium-sized brands, there’s still plenty of time to give your company an extra festive boost.
Let’s start with the easy bit—the look and feel of your site.
Give Your Site a Festive Makeover
Depending on your target market, your budget, and your own design skills, there are lots of ways you can spruce up your site to make it stand out over the holiday period. It can be as simple as adding some Christmas-related graphics to your header, or perhaps adding a festive touch to your logo. If it’s good enough for Google, after all, then why not?
The simple fact that your site reflects the imagery and excitement of the festive period will help to make a good impression on your customers.
Giving Gifts and Freebies
Whether it’s Christmas, Kwanzaa, the Winter solstice, or Hanukkah, the holiday season is a time when we like to give gifts to show our appreciation of others—so show some of that love to your loyal customers, too!
The festive period is the perfect time to run giveaways or to be more generous than normal with freebie downloads and offers. If you can get it organized in time, an ongoing promotion like an advent calendar is an excellent way to build brand awareness and loyalty. Offer your customers something for nothing each day (a recipe, a tip, a download, a mini game, a product sample, a discount coupon, etc.) to be revealed only on that day, with a bigger prize for one or a few lucky customers to be revealed on Christmas Eve.
Alternatively, this is a good time to run a festive email campaign offering customers discounts if they purchase before the holiday period ends. You know your own target market, but if you sell items that customers could reasonably expect to come down in price in the New Year’s sales, then getting as much revenue in before then is key.
While we’re on the topic of giving, it’s not only giving to your customers that you should think about. What better time of year could there be for supporting a charity of your choice? It’s been suggested that up to 90% of customers are willing to switch to a comparable brand if that brand is associated with a good cause and yours isn’t. While these figures will vary from industry to industry, being involved in supporting a charity is a win-win for you and a good cause. Consider donating a certain percentage of profits from each sale.
You can include a charitable element in any gifts you give to your own staff too—or perhaps work with a charity which makes disadvantaged children’s festive wishes come true, instead of spending on the usual Christmas staff gifts. Be sure to publicize your charitable efforts, too, especially on social media.
Goodwill and Gratitude
The holiday season is also about being thankful and showing gratitude. To this end, it’s a fabulous time to make a fuss of one particular employee who has gone the extra mile, or to invite nominations from your social media followers for customers who deserve something extra special.
Remember that 80% of your social media activity should be unrelated to sales—sharing who and what you are thankful for, and what you have done to say thank you is a great way to build brand awareness within the spirit of the season. Fort Lauderdale social media agency, Brandamos, wrote an interesting piece demonstrating 8 tips for website owners pertaining to the holiday buying season.
Tap Into the Fun Factor of the Holiday Season
Christmas in particular is the perfect excuse to showcase your brand’s fun side. From a series of Twitter jokes themed around your product or service (good fun for an office brainstorming session!) to simple-but-cute Christmas animations you can create, devise something funny, sweet, or nostalgic that you can share with your customers and followers.
Don’t be afraid to share pictures of your office decorations or parties, too, as this all helps to underline the fact that you are real people, not just a faceless company.
The holiday period is an absolute gift for companies who are skilled with social media and online marketing; let loose and have some fun with your ideas. The more memorable and unique you can be, the greater your chances of grabbing an extra slice of that huge festive pie.