You’re making your list and checking it twice, you’re gonna find out what’s trendy and nice…Due to the constant increase in the number of active users on social media platforms, marketers are starting to be more and more interested in dedicating their efforts on targeting their customers through social media channels.
Especially as it’s not long to go until Christmas and New Years Eve, people are checking their smartphones and their social profiles even more. They are on a serious lookout for special gifts to give to their loved ones, the perfect dress for the new year’s party, and for the latest trends in terms of fashion, cooking and entertainment during holidays. So, what better way to make your brand stand out than on social media?
In this blog, we’ve collated five simple steps that you can implement today to start crafting your own festive holiday social media campaign this year.
What is a social media campaign?
A social media campaign is a well-planned marketing effort about your brand, your products or services, implemented on various social media platforms. Depending on your target persona(s) and your business offerings, you should know by now which platforms would be the most effective to advertise on.
Why should I have a social media campaign?
If your social media campaign is strategically put together and applied, it can have highly measurable outcomes, especially as it will influence your followers to feel or act in a certain way. If your audience has been positively impacted by your social media campaign, the main benefits for your brand will be:
- High target audience reach for a low-cost
- Increased engagement and brand visibility
- More website traffic and sales
Social media marketing is not just a trend, it’s been here for a while and it’s here to stay! Just take a peek at any big brand’s Instagram, Facebook or Twitter profiles, and you’ll see gorgeous images of gifts pilled in snow, Christmas lights and snowflakes everywhere – now that does catch your eye, right? These people know what they’re doing, and we want to help you with that too.
1. Set social media marketing campaign goals
Before even starting to get into the juicy stuff, you need to know your goal. So start asking yourself what are you trying to accomplish with your campaign, where and when. To give you a little bit more context and help you get a good idea of campaign goals for your social media platforms, some examples could be:
- Boost brand engagement
- Effective social customer service
- Increase your followers
- Drive traffic to your website
- Generate new leads
- Increase sales
Depending on your goal, your campaign will be able to start taking shape, however, try to focus on one big goal only and do your best to achieve it along with your marketing team. It’s a super easy step, so make sure you don’t skip it as your goals will guide the way you will schedule and create your whole strategy.
2. Research your competitors
Your social media campaign will greatly depend on your industry, platform and campaign type. A good starting point would be to have a sneak peek at your competition and see what they are all about on socials.
See which companies are offering similar services or products as you, and have successful social media accounts. From there, you can see their campaigns and their performance, and what exactly have they done – social contests, giveaways, live videos, etc. This will allow you to see what’s working and what’s not, a part in which you will come up with a unique campaign idea to impress your audience.
However, if your main competitors haven’t been quite keen on running social media campaigns during the holiday season, look further. Maybe other companies that are out of your industry and niche have specific campaign-styles, engagement, visual imagery or an interesting message that you could get inspired from. There are infinite sources of creative ideas that you can get your hands on, all you have to do is think bigger.
3. Plan your holiday social media content type, format and schedule
Now that you have a clear target audience, you know what works and what doesn’t, and what you want to achieve with this year’s social media holiday campaign, it’s time to get down to business.
Start with setting a theme or a single idea for your holiday campaign. This will allow you to create high-quality visuals and content around that idea, giving your campaign a natural flow and consistency.
The different content types you could opt for would be promotions, user-generated contests, hashtag campaigns, video challenges and giveaways. But for each piece of content, think about how they will reach the ultimate goal that you decided upon in step 1.
Tip: Besides Christmas day (25th of December) and New Year’s Eve which are over-flooded with promotional content on social media platforms, try to focus on other holiday days such as:
- The National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day (21st of December)
- Festivus (23rd of December)
- National Fruit Cake (27th of December)
But opt for these days only if they fit with your brand personality and target audience interests.
Holiday-themed content format
Now here comes the fun part – crafting and decorating your social media content! Add festive touches to all your social media accounts, such as cheerful cover photos that announce your Christmas sales and promotions, spice up the profile picture, and even edit your biography with some holiday copy.
Our favourite brand is Starbucks when it comes to their holiday imagery and holiday social media campaigns (let’s not get into their spiced lattes and Christmas muffins!). But there are many other companies out there that are worth having a look at that have the best social media christmas campaigns.
In terms of imagery, there are many stock photo websites with great holiday visuals for you to use for free, such as Pixabay, Unsplash and Pexels to start with. Don’t forget to edit these images to reflect your campaign’s theme and brand colours.
Our recommendation is to create at least 1 contest during the holiday season as people love them! In case you haven’t heard about it, WordPress has its own giveaway plugin and its super user friendly and effective. You can install Rafflepress and start turning your visitors into your brand ambassadors in no time!
The secrets for great content
Storytelling helps you create an emotional connection with your audience, so make sure your visuals and copy are able to catch people’s attention quickly and retain it. Once again, check out Starbucks for some inspiration, they never let you down when it comes to Christmas social media campaign ideas.
Relevance brings you closer to your target audience, as your social media campaign and what you have to offer isn’t about you, it’s about them, their wants and needs. It’s simple – relevant content means more engagement.
Relationship building is a winner in terms of creating great content. Don’t be the company that speaks in your audience’s voice only during the holidays. Transcend the selling perspective, and pay attention to what people want during the whole year. This will in turn enhance your brand credibility and authority too.
Choose a campaign hashtag to enhance your brand awareness and to get closer to your audience. By having a branded hashtag related to your social media campaign you will be able to create an online community from which you can repurpose your follower’s content on your own social media profile. Win-win!
Creativity will get you ahead of your competitors. In terms of content, don’t just settle for the classic photos, videos and boomerang types of content. Let your imagination wander, and make holiday-themed memes, funny holiday quotes, surprise countdowns with photos and messages on each day on social media, and even a merry puzzle with photos on Instagram. This fun game will let your followers guess the final photo by connecting the pieces of the puzzle together. Even more simple? Just ask your audience about their happiest Christmas memory, their favourite festive food or the best gift they’ve received. Be friends with them, and you will reap the rewards.
Set a clear timeline for your social media holiday campaigns including a start and end date, as well as specific dates and times when a post will go live. You could simply use an automatic social media scheduling tool such as Buffer or HubSpot.
4. Social media promotion
Now it’s time to start sharing your social media holiday campaign and promote your content. Start by promoting content that fits with your chosen social media platform. Once your followers will see consistency in your campaign’s message, it will be easier for them to remember it.
Next, make sure that you balance your promotional and non-promotional content to provide value and to be helpful. If you want to get more engagement, take our advice and see it for yourself!
Tip: Your content should be unique to your business, which means that any time someone lands on a page on your website should know it’s yours without reading the profile handle and seeing the logo. This will help you stand out from the crowd and give people a reason to come back for more.
In case you are looking for more useful tips, we have a whole article about how you can use paid advertising during seasonal sales, so make sure you check it out.
5. Track your social media holiday campaign success
You’ve set your goals, created some great content and now your social media posts are all planned and scheduled, and promotions are running. What’s left to do? Tracking your results!
So make sure you check out your social media analytics as they have tons of excellent information and KPI’s which will help you to identify if your marketing efforts have been spent well. Main metrics to track are:
- New visits
- Referral traffic
- Landing page views
But if you really want to go the extra mile in tracking your campaign’s performance, you can even set up UTM tagging. This is a small snippet of code added to your URL that allows you to track information about the source, medium and the specific campaign associated with the link. HubSpot have a great blog on how to create UTM codes to track your URLs, so have a look at it before starting. And here we are! You are now fully equipped and ready to create your own successful social media holiday campaign. However, if you still feel like you need a little bit of extra support or more advice, we can help you! Just contact our friendly team of digital marketing experts for a free 30 minutes consultation, or give us a call on 0116 218 4000.