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5 Do’s & Dont’s of Holiday Marketing Campaigns

Ask any marketer what their is goal for a holiday marketing campaign, and (besides increasing sales) most would have a similar response — to capture the target audience with a strong, and meaningful message.  Now, we all know in the end, the ultimate goal of any marketing campaign is to boost sales. But, in today’s business environment, the buyer’s journey is no longer a linear path, so marketing campaigns are no longer single layer campaigns. Smart strategies today are omni-channel, and built with layers that compliment each other across multiple channels such as social media, blog content, emails, paid ads and video. With so many touch-points within today’s campaigns, it becomes very easy to get caught up in the holiday sales hoopla, and make a marketing faux pas. So here are some best practices to consider when putting together your next holiday marketing campaign!

Tip #1:

DO SHARPEN YOUR VISION OF SUCCESS:
Take appropriate measures to define your interpretation of a successful campaign. Sure, everyone wants to increase sales, but there are endless means to get there. Being as specific as possible in setting up campaign goals will help you truly understand how well it performed. Maybe you decide to focus on setting up paid digital ads for one area of service, or maybe you’re promoting every area of your brand’s service organically on social media. No matter how narrow or wide your goals are, define them.

DON’T DIVE IN WITHOUT A GOAL:
Without a goal, your holiday messaging is very likely to get lost or confusing. It is REALLY hard to put together a marketing message when you don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish. Narrow down exactly what you want to achieve with your holiday marketing campaign and this can serve as a blueprint for putting everything else together.

Tip #2:

DO FOCUS YOUR MESSAGING:
No matter the holiday, there are always going to be many directions you can take your messaging. With so many options available, it’s easy for brand messaging to get lost in the clout of the holiday. Put some extra thought into your target audience and how they may react to your campaign. Are you going for a sentimental or emotional campaign? Are you going for entertaining or humorous campaign? Choose one tone, and then…

DON’T GO OFF SCRIPT:
The holidays are a great marketing opportunity, but only if you stay on brand. Mixing between different tones is one way marketers fail to hit a home-run. You want your holiday marketing to be purpose driven and brand compliant. So staying consistent with your holiday messaging is crucial to accomplish the goals you set up at the beginning of your campaign.

Tip #3:

DO BE GENUINE:
Before you think about being shoppable and shareable, you want to make your holiday marketing campaigns meaningful. The holidays are a great time to develop meaningful relationships, because it’s when consumers expect and appreciate genuine messaging. Don’t sell. Don’t push. Just be genuine, tell your story and let them know you care about and appreciate their business.

DON’T OVER DO IT:
Shoot for high quality content, not high quantity. Your audience is already getting bombarded with hundreds of messages from brands in all industries.

Tip #4:

DO “SEASONIZE” YOUR MESSAGING:
Okay, so we might have just made up a word  — but mixing your core brand message with any ‘of-the-season’ messaging really creates a smooth transition for your audience. Your campaign will seem more natural, and less like a marketing campaign, which is exactly what you want. Plus, you never want to lose your brand message, your holiday marketing should just be a new reflection of that message.

DON’T DISRESPECT THE SEASON:
Finding a balance between brand messaging and holiday messaging can be more difficult for some brands than others. Some of the biggest marketing “Oops” moments happen during the holidays. So it is important to proceed with caution when it comes to your verbiage, images or catch-phrases when it comes to the holidays.

Tip #5:

DO PLAN AHEAD:
Start planning for each holiday months ahead of time. It takes time to tweak and perfect marketing campaigns. Many companies require approval from up the ladder, so getting a head start is essential to a timely strategy. You want to have everything approved and ready to go a few weeks ahead of time so you can avoid any cringe-worthy marketing faux pas.

DON’T BE AFRAID OF HOLIDAY MARKETING:
It may seem daunting to step outside the box of your traditional marketing plan, but it is amazing what can be accomplished with a great strategy. Check out these successful holiday marketing examples for inspiration!

Emily Warner

Author: Emily Warner

As Chief Marketing Officer, Emily works closely with our clients to ensure project satisfaction and success. With a passion for creativity and strategy, Emily oversees all aspects of digital marketing from search engine optimization and content strategy, to social media management and on-going digital marketing campaigns. When she's not in #marketingmode, she's likely testing her luck in the kitchen, watching sappy animal videos on Facebook, or starting an impromptu dance-off in the office.

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