5 Holiday Marketing Tips to Promote Your Brand

 In Branding, Reel Results

Last updated on October 17, 2019

Are you in the thick of developing your marketing plan and marketing budget for the upcoming year? As if that’s not enough, you also need to begin thinking about your holiday marketing strategies. I’m excited to share with you some holiday marketing tips, to get you into the holiday spirit and help with this process. This could be an arduous task for some, especially small businesses, due to time and marketing expertise challenges.

The holiday season is an ideal time to promote your brand because everyone is in the giving spirit and are likely to be more open to new partnerships, products and services. The other benefits include being able to play on holiday messaging and good vibes, which will make your holiday campaign memorable. Also, you’ll be hitting businesses right before the new year when they’re in a “new beginnings” mindset.

This is my favorite time of the year to share marketing strategies that have made the CMA annual holiday card a success. The firm has been creating its uniquely branded holiday themed card for more than 25 years and has received dozens of awards for its creativity. NJ Ad Club recently honored CMA for its 2018 holiday card.

There’s a different theme each year, which has included:

  • Journey through CMA’s solutions (last year)
  • Coffee break
  • Champagne pop to celebrate CMA’s 30th anniversary
  • Rock n’ roll
  • Superheroes
  • CMA staff’s favorite holiday ornaments

Fun photos of the company’s employees are intermingled throughout the design. The combination of creativity and people reinforce CMA’s branding and corporate culture.

Stay tuned to find out the CMA holiday card theme this year, when it’s unveiled in early December. To receive your digital holiday card edition, scroll down to the bottom of this blog post to sign up.

Here are 5 holiday marketing tips, to promote your brand:

1. Utilize email marketing and social media

If you have to choose one digital marketing channel, I recommend email marketing. It’s an effective way to reach your target audiences, not only throughout the entire year but especially during the holiday season.

OptinMonster recently reported that according to Mailcharts, email marketing is responsible for 20 percent of holiday sales. That means email marketing alone brings in billions of dollars in revenue for businesses each year. The Black Friday to Cyber Monday period is particularly lucrative. Mailcharts’ statistics show that 60 percent of all marketing emails sent over that weekend are promotional.

This impressive data and strategy don’t surprise me. Emails go directly to the intended user and can be shared simply and quickly. The user also can easily act on an email and contact you, if interested. Another advantage is the ability to bring the user to an interactive landing page, so the marketing piece can be viewed electronically. This page also presents an opportunity to engage in conversation and/or collect information, for future marketing efforts.

CMA follows up its printed holiday card, after it’s mailed, with a digital version that users can interact and engage with on their desktop. Each year, CMA strives to make the digital execution of the card interesting, dynamic and interactive, by producing a platform where users can be a part of the conversation. Some years, the digital email was an animation of the printed card.

Last year CMA created a microsite, which showcased its entire, full-time staff, so people had the opportunity to meet everyone at CMA that is a part of the communications, marketing and association management journey. This tactic made it easy to share on social media. It also gave the holiday campaign more of a personal and integrated marketing communications approach, which assures that your message is being delivered to your target audiences, regardless of how they interact with your brand.

Speaking of social media, be sure to share your holiday marketing piece on all of your social media channels, including the most popular ones for businesses, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. Utilizing social media is another beneficial way to reach your target audiences electronically and encourage social sharing.

2. Incorporate soft-sell messaging

The holiday season is a good time to incorporate more subtle, soft-sell messaging into your holiday marketing. Correlating your brand with the season will evoke a favorable emotional response. The premise of the soft-sell strategy is that decisions are based on emotions and feelings, which lead to a higher response rate.

CMA implemented a soft-sell message and design strategy into its holiday card last year. Since it’s the largest direct mail piece CMA produces all year—targeting more than 2,000 prospects, influencers and current clients—the company used it as an opportunity not only to offer holiday greetings, but also to showcase its services. They were subtly incorporated into the creative concept.

3. Employ a holiday gift and special offer

If it fits within your budget, think about distributing a token holiday gift along with your printed piece. Brainstorm different gift ideas, as it should complement your theme, reinforce your branding and include contact information.

The benefit of the gift is if it’s unique and something that can be used all year round, the recipient will have a “take away,” which can serve as a constant reminder of your business. When considering a gift, to keep costs down, choose one that can be mailed with the marketing piece and won’t require considerable additional mailing costs.

Another idea is to provide a special offer. Depending on your business, holiday promotions can include a holiday sale, free shipping, gift cards, discount code, free initial report/trial/consultation and more. Think about your USPs and how you want your prospects and customers to come through your sales funnel. Finally, be creative!

4. Coordinate the timing

Timing is everything. I’m sure you’ve heard that many times. In the case of holiday marketing, it’s especially true. The stretch between Black Friday and Christmas, is the busiest time of the year. The last thing you want is to have your marketing in the middle of that and get lost. As such, when planning your holiday marketing strategy, it’s best to time the launch for early-December. This also will avoid the last-minute Christmas and New Year’s rush.

5. Build excitement and anticipation

If you’re consistent and have successful holiday marketing campaigns under your belt, prospects and customers will look forward to receiving your holiday marketing piece year after year. Getting attention is half the battle for direct-response marketing.

If you’re able to get on their radar, especially during the busiest season, your response rate will increase. We’ve found that to be the case with CMA’s holiday card. Its target audiences ask staff months in advance if they will “spill the beans” and reveal what the holiday card theme will be for that year.

While a holiday marketing campaign might not be a business’s biggest initiative or selling proposition each year, it’s something that helps to make your business more relatable and memorable. It also can be a conversation-starter with prospects and customers, on top of offering an opportunity to show a different, more personal and fun side of your business and its staff.

Are you scheduled to begin working on your holiday marketing to promote your brand?

Contact us today, to begin the conversation.

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