Deck the halls and start promoting.
It’s not just retailers that pull out Christmas decorations in December (or even before). It’s literally everybody. And even if your decorations are only virtual, it doesn’t mean they should be less fabulous. Or less profitable (although your profit may not come right away – see below).
I don’t know how you’re spending these days, but at my firm we are extra busy putting the final touches for our clients’ social media campaigns, promotions and messages for the winter holidays. My staff is a bit overwhelmed, but also very excited.
A luxury car dealership in California, a high-end beauty clinic in Toronto, a couple of software companies – these are just a few of the clients we had to come up with jolly holiday ideas for. So boredom wasn’t one of our problems. But we were creatively challenged. Aside from spreading the traditional cheer, we had to find ways to make every tweet, Facebook post or Instagram photo mean something business-wise, too.
Here are a few of the secrets of how we made it happen.
3 secrets for flawless social media communication during the holidays
Let me start by saying that every brand is unique and has a unique tone of voice. And their social profiles should reflect that. But there are a few things that make for good holiday brand communication no matter what industry you are in and whether you are sassy or 100 percent professional.
1. Give the gift of relevance
Everyone’s trying to win consumers’ hearts this season. Someone will sell you the best decorations, someone else will be in charge of the perfect outfit or the perfect getaway and Tinder will make sure you don’t spend the holidays alone.
Of course you want to get in on that action. Both B2B and B2C companies hope to boost their sales in December and round up their numbers before the year is done.
So you hit clients with the easiest marketing tactics: freebies and discounts.
Who doesn’t love a bargain, am I right?
Well, today’s buyers have started to be a bit wary of discounts. They are everywhere. And they couldn’t possible afford to buy every “best deal” they see.
Your job: make sure the offer is relevant to them. I know you may feel tempted to add discounts to the least sought after of your products or services. But don’t do that. Choose something that your clients really appreciate instead.
2. Remember that you are building a community first and foremost
As the owner of an agency that offers social media marketing and management services among others, I have worked with hundreds of business social media profiles so far. Do you know what the one thing almost all of their owners have in common is?
They forget social media is about community.
“Facebook sells. We need to sell via Facebook.”
I’ve heard this more time than I could count.
And it’s 100 percent true. Facebook does sell. It is, however, easier to sell women’s shoes than auto parts on Facebook – we did both, so we can actually back that up with numbers.
But I digress.
Holiday sales aren’t made by shoving your products down people’s throats. They are made by reminding them that they are part of a community and that they mean something to you. [By “they” I mean your customers, the individuals, not their credit cards.]
One of the things we did for all our social media clients this year was advise them to reduce the size of the logo or the product in their holiday graphics. Maybe even delete them altogether and add a Christmas tree instead.
We wanted to use graphics and copy that are 100 percent customer-centric. We wanted to make them feel part of a family. For a few days each year, they shouldn’t be fans or followers. They should be people with actual emotions and expectations. And they should be spoken to as such.
3. Surprise your best customers
We all have them. Those customers who put a smile on our faces and who play a large part in keeping us in business. This is especially true in the B2B sector.
So why not be their Secret Santa this year?
Do a bit of social media spying (but don’t get creepy, OK?) and learn about their wants and needs. Then offer them something other than a huge discount for your products or services. Yes, it may be as little as a T-shirt or an ugly sweater accompanied by a hand-written message.
They (obviously!) won’t pay for it. So you won’t make any money directly. But you will have definitely won their hearts forever.
Wrapping things up
If all else fails when you put the final touches to your social media campaigns, forget about numbers or reports and use common sense. What would you like to receive? Yet another “best deal?” Would you like to see another photo that says “Merry Christmas! Buy our product because we took the time to create this design?”
Or would you rather be treated like an actual human being who may want to take a break from the commercial side of the winter holidays?