The holidays are officially upon us and as business owners and content creators there is nothing more terrifying than falling behind this time of year. So that’s why we’ve created the ultimate holiday check list for you!
In this blog we will cover:
- Dates you need to know
- Tips on types of content
- Ways to source inspiration
- Tips for creating engaging content
- Our favorite content creation tools
- Tools to keep you organized
Print this out, put it on your desk, whatever you gotta do. Let’s get this ball rolling!
Tips on Types of Content
During the holidays you are going to need to be promoting new items, sales, etc. and what better way to reach your die hard fans than through an email list. While you’re out at events, or networking – now is a great time to bring your trusty ipad with you and have people sign up for your email list or newsletter to stay in touch.
Blogs and SEO in general are the easiest way to garner organic traffic – in an almost set it, and forget it kind of way. Yes blogs are a bigger investment up front, but if done right, they can continue working for you year round.
Countdowns are a great way to create a sense of urgency and get potential customers to your website or through your doors. Consider create a social media graphic for your story or feed to mark a deadline on a promotion.
Giveways – who DOESN’T love giveaways! Giveaways are fun, sure – but if done right: follow, tag, comment (see example below) they can help you reel in new customers while also engaging current ones. It’s a win win with a very low investment. Something fun from your shop or a gift card should do the trick.
It is the season of giving! Be sure to create a video or even handwritten cards to thank the customers who have been with you over the years. A little personal touch like this goes a LONG way, especially in today’s fast paced world.
The fact that you remembered them may even score you a shout out on social media and a bigger audience of eyeballs than you could have expected.
Customer testimonials are a great way to gain trust with potential clients or customers. 92% of customers trust a peer or friend over advertising and 88% percent of customers research online before making a purchase.
These are just a few types of content that you can choose to create but it’s important to note that it’s not always possible to do them all. Pick a few to focus on, and execute them the best way you can.
See our tips below on ways you can source inspiration and curate content to work smarter, not harder.
Sourcing Holiday Inspiration
Need content ideas? You don’t have to create or brainstorm all on your own. Here are some surefire ways to spark some inspiration:
- Create a list of influencers to follow, share, and promote throughout the season
- Create a list of businesses you admire to get ideas
- Create a list of businesses that have the same audience as you to stay on top of trends
- Follow and engage with businesses in your industry
- Bookmark our calendar here for important dates you need to know, and fun holidays
PRO tip: Don’t smash all of your content into only the actual day of the holiday. Spacing and timing your content is important for long term engagement. People have already started shopping. Think about times when you are looking for holiday items…it’s the weekend right?
Step out of your normal strategy a bit and make sure that you are hitting those audiences and testing to see where engagement is the highest.
Tips for Creating Engaging Content
Pay attention to what your followers want
This is super important, and what a lot of business owners are terrified of – is just. getting. started. And really that is the most important part. When you are just starting out (and even after) there are plenty of learnings to be had.
You’re not going to hit the nail on the head on the first shot. So be sure to create different pieces of content to see what your users are engaging with. That will give you an idea of what type of content to lean into in the future.
Be a resource, not a sales pitch
Your followers don’t want to be talked at, or down to. If you provide helpful content (especially for free!) your value to them will skyrocket and they will become long term loyal customers.
Build excitement with exclusive deals
During the holidays this is the perfect time to jump on the bandwagon and offer incentives. Take advantage of our holiday templates here. Pay attention to what others in your industry are doing, and you can even take it a step further by partnering with other mom and pops to create a shop hop or virtual promotion to get potential customers engaged.
People shop local because of the personal connections you are able to provide. Lean into this. This is the perfect time when people’s hearts are full to share your story and bring your community closer together.
Source user generated content
This type of content is the leading source of authenticity these days and will allow users to share on their pages as well creating an even bigger splash. One idea is to create a brand hashtag (if you haven’t already) to easily follow along with what users are sharing. Another tip? Create a giveaway or a countdown with a specific hashtag so it will make it easier to track entries and share.
Content Creation Tools
Why we love it: Use Magisto (and our templates here) to create easy quick wins throughout the holiday season. These video templates are created by our uber creative video magicians here – and we’ve essentially already done the work for you!
Why we love it: Everyone knows Hubspot is known for incredible learning academy trainings and so forth, but did you know they had fun tools like this Blog Ideas Generator? If you’re stuck – this is an easy way to clear writers block and spark some inspiration.
Why we love it: Giphy is not only the best way to find gifs these days, but did you know you can also create your own? Pretty neat huh?
Why we love it: hello free stock photo alert! Unsplash is a great way to find festive holiday photos (for free!) Simply type in what you’re on the hunt for, and a plethora of options will come up for you to use from their gracious community members.
For more free stock photo sites check out this post.
Tools to Keep You Organized
Now, after you’ve collected all of this great content – you’re going to need a way to stay organized. Some tools that we would recommend:
Why we love it: Sprout not only lets you schedule your holiday content out in advance, but it is also a great tool for social listening, tasks and reporting. Our favorite part? The group reports that let you link all of your channels in one and also provides a sent messages report for the content you’ve created that: week, month or even year.
It’s a bit pricey but worth in our opinion to really have an all in one business tool.
Why we love it: Planoly is an instagram scheduler and grid planner. Now you might be wondering – do I really need to make my content look pretty? The answer is yes – people are drawn to aesthetically pleasing accounts that show consistency.
What’s important is this tool will help create consistency for your brand and schedule your content ideas out in advance so you’re not scrambling. Planoly is free for up to 30 uploads a month, but at $7-9 a month for unlimited – it’s a steal!
Why we love it: There is a free version! Schedule up to 30 posts a month free. Later helps you streamline your social media strategy so you can set yourself up for more sales and success. Their features focus on scheduling, media management, marketing and analytics. Their goal is to simplify Instagram marketing and make it accessible for all businesses.
We hope this article gave you some insight on how to gather inspiration, craft engaging content your followers will love, and schedule your holiday content this season.
Some other articles you might find handy:
Create Thanksgiving Marketing Videos in Minutes
Be sure to join our FB community here for more holiday inspiration and to see these tips in action.
Happy holiday planning all!