With Halloween over and the cold weather upon us, the holiday season is here. Retail companies are clearly taking advantage of their customers’ enthusiasm for Thanksgiving and Christmas – but how can your local business utilize the holidays? Here are a few suggestions for using the winter holidays to help grow your brand recognition and your business.
- Sponsor a local charity event. Thanksgiving and Christmas is the perfect time for nonprofits to host fundraisers, Santa runs, food drives, and more. Donate some of your products or services to their cause. If that’s not possible, ask your employees to participate or attend and give them company shirts to wear. Or host a food or clothing drive at your business, asking people to drop off donations. Becoming a sponsor for a charity creates brand recognition among local businesses and residents, and it also reflects well on your company.
- Send out a Christmas card to your clients. Your customers will like this show of appreciation. Christmas cards are relatively inexpensive, but they reach a large audience. It’s an easy and noninvasive reminder to your customers of your products.
- You can also create an email marketing campaign around the holidays, especially if you are offering any promotions or sales on your products. If you do send out holiday-themed emails, try to make them stand out above other companies doing the same; don’t saturate your emails with Christmas colors or holiday graphics, and don’t use cheesy wording.
- Up the ante on your online presence. 65% of customers plan to browse online before they go shopping in person. While SEO methods take months of advanced work, you can increase your social media traffic immediately. In 2012, 66% of Black Friday purchases came from social media interaction. If you’ve been waiting for the right time to buy paid advertisements on social media, try it out now. Organic engagement should not be neglected either – host contests, create images, ask questions about the holidays, and post relevant holiday articles.
- Jazz up your website a little. You can add holiday graphics to your home page, or add a new page for gifts to buy. Organize your products in categories like “gifts under $25.” Make it easy for your visitors to find gift cards that they can buy.
- Don’t forget local advertising! Traditional methods, like ads on the radio, in the newspaper, on buses, and etc., can still be beneficial, particularly during the holiday season when customers are looking to buy.
- Participate in local holiday events. If your area is having a winter carnival, set up a booth. You can sell your products or give out company swag. Bring a laptop or QR code so that visitors can “like” your business Facebook page.
How do you utilize the holiday season in your local marketing? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below!
Mason, Lisa. “Business Christmas Cards: How Can They Benefit Your Company?” http://voices.yahoo.com/business-christmas-cards-they-benefit-your-7184954.html?cat=55. (6 Nov. 2013).
Wilson, Pamela. “Beautiful Holiday Promotional Emails: 5 Design Rules to Follow.” http://blogs.constantcontact.com/fresh-insights/design-rules-holiday emails/?cc=SM_PIN_ConstantContact. (6 Nov. 2013).
Pinkham, Ryan. “30 Holiday Shopping Stats That Every Small Business Owner Needs to See.” http://blogs.constantcontact.com/fresh-insights/holiday-shopping-stats/?cc=SM_PIN_ConstantContact. (6 Nov. 2013).