How to Use the Holiday Season to Brand Your Business
The holiday season can be a busy time for marketers and non-marketers alike, with many business owners writing off December as a marketing black hole. After all, people aren't really focused on doing anything but holiday shopping and attending parties, right? Why not preserve your energy for a time when people are ready to consider engaging your services? This kind of faulty thinking actually causes many businesses to miss a great opportunity to connect with your prospects.
It is true, people are overextended financially and time-wise, they are often cranky and over-shopped and are wondering how they're going to get it all completed with a million deadlines. But, miraculously, the spirit of the season also survives and gives people more hope, openness and willingness to try new things. Considering December is on the cusp of a great, shiny new year, the holiday season is a golden time to connect with people emotionally about what you do. So, instead of resigning yourself to wait until next year to redouble your efforts to get new clients, ask yourself instead how you can use this unique time of the year to get creative about communicating about your business.
Tie Your Work in to the Season
Ask yourself - what about your business is seasonal? If it's nutrition, talk up a fresh angle on how to eat nutritiously during the holidays. Do you provide accounting or legal services? Consider focusing on important end-of-the-year planning critical to ending the year strong. Divorce attorney? Send a tipsheet on how to enjoy your holidays as a divorced person, plus three important legal matters you should attend to first of the year. Virtually every profession can be tied into the end of the year/holiday theme. If you're in a profession that's easily tied into the end of the year (food, shopping, etc.), then your work is already complete. Ask yourself … what do people need from my firm and services during the holidays? Do they need more balance, a time to relax, a plan for how they're going to do something better in the coming year? New year planning and balance are great themes that can be carried across many different businesses.
Get Out into the Community
When you work primarily IN your own business rather than ON your business, you can easily forget to serve your local market and community. Most businesses can still benefit from traditional marketing on the ground. When was the last time you marketed your services in your community or to a city that's close by? Why not do it during the holidays? You can take advantage of the opportunities presented by the business associations, non-profit organizations and others who will put on holiday events.
Try to appear as a speaker, buy booth space or attend events with business cards and other marketing material ready to hand out. Network with the locals and remind them about your business removed comma or introduce yourself for the first time. The holidays are a perfect setting because you may get to meet many people at once.
Don’t Forget the Power of Electronic or Hand-written Holiday Cards
It's an effective, old-stand-by for good reason. Challenge yourself to come up with a great "next year at a glance" theme or perhaps another creative theme for your professional services? Perhaps a special bonus for new business referrals? It's a great time of the year to reach out and show people how much you appreciate them and remind them how your services can grow their business and their colleagues’ businesses as well.
Develop an Effective Email Marketing Campaign
Your holiday marketing efforts should include a solid email campaign to entice new clients to learn more about your services. If you don't already contact your customers on a regular basis with emails or newsletters, start doing so right away. Ask for email addresses at all points of contact through a newsletter subscription option on your website. Send your email distribution list solutions that will help make their holiday season go even more smoothly. Even businesses have needs during the holiday seasonsremoved comma and therefore holiday marketing can apply to business-to-business services.
Think about how you can target your email campaign to solve the problems of other businesses that are unique to the holiday season. A well-crafted email campaign during the holidays can bring greater peace of mind, which will gain the trust of new clients and make them want to do business with you.
Put Together an End-of-the-Year and "What's Coming Up" Report
Even as people are frazzled and engaged in other things, they are filled with the expectation of what next year will bring. Why not tell them how they'll benefit from your services? What's coming up for you - do you have a new product you're working on, a workshop they'll enjoy, an add-on service, or a new strategic alliance you want to announce?
Tie a Promotion in to New Year's Resolutions
New Year's Resolutions can be a great way to make your service real and immediate to your prospective and target clients. Consider tying in what your business offers to various kinds of resolutions people make and get creative about what kinds of tips, services and programs you can offer to help people meet their goals.
With a shift of focus, you can consider the holidays a wonderful time to build new relationships and breathe fresh ideas into your business. One last important tip: Don't overdo it! Remember, while you can build your business even through the holidays, it's good to tap into the spirit and focus on family and friends. When you do, the rest will come naturally. Follow these holiday marketing ideas and you'll be well on your way to keeping up with or beating out the competition.=
Does your company have an annual and strategic marketing plan in place? If not, let the Propel team create ways for you to drive new business throughout the year and even during the holidays. Visit our Capabilities page to see how Propel Business Solutions can enhance your brand and drive new growth in 2016.
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Wishing you and yours the very happiest of holidays!
- The Propel Business Solutions’ Team