‘Tis the season! Have you adjusted your social media holiday calendar to account for this very special time of year? While planning for the holidays ideally happens months in advance, it’s not too late to hop aboard the festive train and tweak your approach as 2019 comes to a close. Keep following along for eight holiday social media tips you can act on right now.
8 Holiday Social Media Tips
1. Emphasize Family, Friendship, and Community
Part of what makes the holidays so special is that they’re about being with the people who matter most to you. This is the perfect time to take people behind the scenes of your business and show them something a little more personal.
Introduce members of your team. Interview staff. Let them share their holiday plans and traditions with your audience. Is anyone on your team dressing up or wearing a fun sweater for the holiday? Post it to your channels to breathe some life into them.
You don’t have to be strictly business 100% of the time, and it shouldn’t be all about pushing product and boosting revenue. The holidays are perfect for introducing your audience to everything happening behind the brand. (And by the way? This could ultimately make you more sales anyway. See how that works?)
2. Don’t Forget About the New Year
We tend to focus so much on the holidays at the end of the year that when the ball drops at midnight, we go, “Oh… yeah.” Don’t forget that December 31 into January 1 marks another important date: the start of a brand new year (and in this case, a brand new decade!).
The start of a new year brings with it a clean slate — new goals for you and your followers. Share your resolutions with your audience, and encourage them to do the same.
If you’re a clothing brand, maybe you vow to use less single-use plastic in 2020. Ask your followers about what they’re going to do to live more eco-friendly lives.
Or if you’re a grocery store, perhaps you want to partner with a local food bank to deliver more goods next year. Ask your fans for recommendations — organizations they’re passionate about.
Whatever route you take, the idea is the treat the end of 2019 as a springboard for something bigger and better to come in 2020 — and to share the journey and transformation with the people who follow you online. The best holiday social media tips don’t surround just Christmas.
3. Consider 12 Days of Giveaways or Sales
The popular holiday songThe Twelve Days of Christmas has served as much inspiration for brands everywhere, who do 12 days of sales or giveaways.
It’s easy to borrow for one of your own campaigns and gives you a clear start and end date to work with since it lasts only 12 days. It also gives your followers a reason to come back, since they know that the next day has something new and exciting in store for them. Additionally, it creates a sense of urgency since each sale lasts for only that day before it disappears forever.
Remember that while this is a holiday promotion, it should still cater to your brand. If you’re a cosmetics company, don’t give away free iPads. They have nothing to do with your brand and won’t bring you any potential repeat customers. This is still about attracting your target audience and growing your fanbase.
As with any campaign, you’ll want to collect people’s email addresses along the way. So, if you’re offering coupon codes, make sure you have a method for tracking who uses them and getting these people on your email list so that you can continue marketing to them.
One company doing this type of promotion is Detox Salon in Las Vegas, with its Merry Everything Sale.
Campaigns like this are also a great idea because you want to offer people more ways to save when they shop with you. Why? Simple. People are already spending more money than they’re comfortable spending during this time of year. You can help them out by offering your own goods and services at a discounted price (or free).
4. Recap Some of the Year’s Highlights
The holiday season is the perfect opportunity to look back on the previous year and celebrate all of your wins with your community. What does your highlights reel show? Did your brand donate to a charitable cause? Maybe you launched a new line of products that saw great success. Did you participate in local events, win a special award? Did someone on your team welcome a new child?
It can anything — professional or personal — that you’d like to share with your followers. And as we mentioned in previous examples, be sure to invite them to share their own “best of” 2019. You might even repost some of the more memorable ones, to create some extra buzz around your pages.
5. Keep Up Your Posting Frequency
Everyone gets insanely busy during Q4. For some brands, this is their biggest time of year — the season that literally the entire year hinges on. As a result, some brands let their social media fall by the wayside when ideally, the exact opposite should happen.
Don’t let the whirlwind of running your day-to-day business interrupt the flow of your holiday campaigns. In fact, drop what you’re doing right now and go schedule out a week’s worth of posts! You can do this within minutes using a social media management tool like eClincher.
We know everyone is stressed. Customer service teams are swamped. Warehouses are bustling. Everyone’s busy trying not to let things slip through the cracks. But this should include your social media. Don’t ghost on your followers, because they’re still frequenting your social media channels as much as they normally do, hoping to hear from you.
6. Update Your Pages With Seasonal Photos
This is one of the simplest holiday social media tips we can give you!
To keep things fresh and interesting, update the profile pictures and banner images of your various social media channels with a seasonal twist. You don’t need to entirely redo them. In fact, you shouldn’t. You still want your brand to be recognizable and familiar.
It can be as simple as adding a bow to the image or a tiny mistletoe. Target did a nice job with this. Check out their Facebook cover photo.
You don’t need to be an expert graphic designer to do this (although if you are, or if you have one on staff, that’s awesome!). Images like this are super simple to make using a tool like Canva, which fully integrates right into your eClincher account. Simply search under Elements for something like “holly,” “present,” or “snowflake,” and add it into your picture. Easy!
Canva has many, many free options, although you can easily pay for one, too.
7. Watch for Spiked Costs and Increased Competition on Your Paid Campaigns
Because many brands will be spending more money to compete for social media users’ attention during the holidays, you should be keeping an even closer eye on your paid campaigns. You might very well find that the costs for clicks, engagement, and traffic go up. Brands that have the budget will keep fighting for a bigger piece of that pie. Meanwhile, businesses with a more modest budget will be forced to adapt or drown in the sea of paid advertisements.
So, what can you do about this?
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach because it will very much depend on your brand, products/services, and countless other factors. But you will want to very closely monitor all of these metrics and your bidding costs and adjust keywords, audiences, targeting, and spending as needed.
For instance, if you have a Google PPC campaign running, and the bidding cost for a certain keyword is through the roof, your best bet might be to find a keyword with comparable traffic but lower competition. Think long-tail keywords or LSI keywords.
Don’t be afraid to play around with your Facebook targeting, either. Let’s say you’re a clothing brand, and you have an ad running targeting moms, with a projected audience size of two million. This might sound incredible, but if you’re not seeing any sort of return, it’s a moot point.
Instead, try targeting a much narrower audience. No, you won’t reach as many people, but there’s a good chance your conversion rate will go way up.
And as a general rule of thumb for paid ads, split testing is crucial! If you notice that a photo ad on Facebook is spending ridiculous amounts without providing a realistic return, consider trying a carousel ad or video ad. Simple revisions like this could be all you need to make your paid holiday campaigns a huge win.
These are just a few examples because there are too many to cover. The takeaway is this. Paid ads are not a “set it and forget it” situation. You should be checking up on them multiple times a day and optimizing as needed.
8. Go Local
Are you a mom and pop store? Do something local. Are you a huge brand with hundreds of locations? Do something local!
One of the biggest challenges with social media is that we’re all just strangers behind a screen. One way to counter this is to put yourself out there and interact with people face-to-face — you know, that thing we used to do before smartphones and Wifi?
Lush Cosmetics, as big as the brand is, posted on their Facebook letting their 1,000,000+ fans know that they can come to meet some of the team at Chicago’s BIDE Holiday Market. Even Lush isn’t too proud to get out there and mingle with the crowds.
Note that this doesn’t mean you have to host your own event or make some grand spectacle out of it, although you certainly can if you want to. Partner with another local business related to your own or sign up for a farmers market. Do something to take your brand from the digital realm to real life.
Which one of these holiday social media tips will you use first?
Don’t let the holidays escape you. There’s still time to leverage them, revise your digital marketing strategy, and sprinkle in some cheer using these eight holiday social media tips. Do something special to leave a positive impression on your followers, grow your community – even if you’re a small, local shop! – and set yourself up for a fantastic 2020.
If you need help managing your social media workload, don’t forget that you can sign up for a free trial of eClincher today.
This content was originally published here.