Sometimes, trying to find the right content week after week gets tiring. The holidays can breathe fresh air into your blog, 3rd party articles, social media campaigns, and more. However, you may want to think carefully about your audience to get the most out of a seasonal content marketing campaign.
Like the real or imagined drama behind Starbuck’s all red holiday cups, some content can stir up controversy. How do you enjoy the togetherness of the season without seeming overly PC or too narrowly focused? Use these tips to make your 2015 holiday content marketing campaign holly, jolly, and more!
1. Review the company mission. The holidays offer a wonderful opportunity to think about why your company exists – not just profit and daily operations, but the mission driving the business into the future. For some, it may have a clear connection with firm beliefs, like Chick-fil-A. For others, the mission may lend itself more to a wider focus.
2. Dissect your target audience. Knowing the beliefs of your core group of customers can also provide insight. You may cater to a true mix of people, people who prefer politically correct marketing, and those who prefer that a company messaging reflect respect and a clear sense of belief-identity. There are at least three ways you can direct your campaign to match your audience:
- General-holiday focus. Stay away from traditional symbolism and references to one recognized holiday in favor of generalities, snowy themes, and images of togetherness. You could also highlight a mix of belief system symbols and language in your imagery.
- Focus on inclusivity. If you flip through a seasonal book at a large hardware retailer, you’ll notice the company has chosen a mixture of traditions to include. They offer tips on creating homemade menorahs as well as how to pick out the right garland and Christmas tree for the home. You don’t have to always write about every holiday, but including multiple traditions can reach a wider audience.
- Stay true to your brand. Some companies lean more toward one belief system than another, and that’s okay. Don’t fear writing about your beliefs if it makes sense for your business! Stick with tradition and stay proud, but beware language that might come across as overly offensive or condemning of others.
3. Write about this year’s trends. Your company has unique insight into your market. Let the market know what you know with a list of the top trends in your industry from this year and a few of your projections about next year. Keep it short and sweet, focus on the headline, and try not to recycle what dozens of other writers have posted.
4. Focus on community togetherness and giving. Many companies dedicate their holiday seasons to giving back to the community. Write an article encouraging others to do the same, or try to offer some kind of value to the community that your business doesn’t normally do. You could even write about a nonprofit or other organization’s good deeds, using your online following to shed light on someone else.
5. Holiday shopping tips. Whether your business is local or wide-ranging, people love reading about shopping tips. Produce a guide for finding the right ingredients for holiday meals or how to avoid the crowds in a certain part of town. The more specific and niche-oriented you can be, the better.
6. Post often on social media. Social media posts and shares are just as much a part of content marketing as other types of content. Make a schedule for posting before the holidays and stick with it. Comment on how early stores start putting out Christmas supplies, or remind your followers of the local holiday activities.
7. Content isn’t just text. Many people get hung up on the association between content and wording. Content marketing actually includes graphic design, imagery, video, and text. Since humans process imagery faster than words, capitalize on that with some holiday images or videos. Capture the first snow of the year or your company’s holiday decorations, and share them! Stock photos can work, but real imagery will connect more with your audience. Try turning your trends list into a video.
8. Remember to post on multiple channels. If you don’t already do so, remember to post your blogs and other holiday content across all your social media accounts as well as newsletters and other forms of correspondence. Get as many eyes on your content as possible.
9. Quizzes, surveys, and polls. Use Twitter Polls or an easy survey to engage with your audience during the holidays! Find out their favorite reindeers or which areas of town they find easier to park. The insight may be silly, but it could also shed light on the needs and wants of your target market.
10. Tell a story – i.e., add value for your customers. The holidays offer a remarkable opportunity to tell uplifting and heartwarming stories. Instead of focusing on tips, tricks, and trends, appeal more to your audience’s emotions during this time of year with an internal or external interest story. All businesses are made up of people. Capitalize on the human connection.