Top tips for Christmas social media marketing
If you’re a small business, the Christmas season can be quite a daunting experience. Social media plays a crucial role in Christmas marketing. With wide audiences waiting for new offers and communication on social media, small businesses have easy access to lots of potential new customers.
In 2020, Christmas ad spend doubled compared to the same period in 2019, increasing by 31% in the UK alone. Given the impact of Covid, this may not be surprising, but with the trend set to continue in 2021, how can small businesses compete and succeed? Let’s unpack this a bit.
How important is social media in terms of Christmas?
Consumers go crazy over Christmas. The statistics are undeniable. As a small business, social media may be the least of your worries.
For social media marketers, Christmas is a goldmine. It’s the prime time for easy social media content to boost your organic presence. With customers actively searching online for products (it’s predicted that over 60% of consumers will purchase online this year), not making the most of the Christmas rush on social media is a death wish. Neglecting your social accounts over this period is the last thing you should do, regardless of how busy you are. With that in mind, here are some of our top tips for social media marketing at Christmas.
Plan your Christmas social media
Christmas marketing ideas are great, but without proper planning and execution, they won’t mean much. You need to plan out the content for all your social media posts, so now is the time, whilst there’s still time!
- What’s the purpose of your campaign? Of course, the main aim of any marketing campaign – Christmas related or otherwise – is to sell. And if you have gift-worthy products at your disposal, now is the time when you should be pushing them as Christmas presents. But if you’re offering a service, perhaps your campaign purpose is to raise brand awareness ahead of selling a service in 2022.
- Be clear about who you’re targeting. What do they like? What makes them happy? Get to know them now so you can use some of these things in your Christmas campaign. If your audience is more willing to see videos instead of images, you should create more video posts for them.
- Who are you competing with? Know what your competition is offering and find the thing that will differentiate you from them. What’s the value of your product(s) that’s going to make them buy from you and not your competition. Is your product handmade? Are you a local business instead of a national one? Think these things through as part of your planning. And DON’T copy your competitors – you’ll be spotted in seconds!
- Which social media channels are you going to target? Where does your audience/customer hang out? Remember, you don’t need to be everywhere, especially if your resources are limited.
- Change up your artwork. Just like a physical shop, it’s important your website and social media graphics reflect the Christmas season. Sneaking a little Santa into your profile picture or festive baubles on your cover photo shows that your business is getting in the spirit and encourages customers to get on board with the festive season too.
- Create a schedule for your Christmas posts. This is a significant step because if your audience is sleeping when you are posting, your engagement will not be high. Find out when your audience is active on social media and make sure your posts are scheduled to go live when they are most likely to engage.
Aside from social media content planning, you need to make sure the other systems and tools in your business are ready for the silly season. Make sure your website is optimised – from the homepage to landing pages and product descriptions. And are sure that the links you are using in your social media posts to direct traffic to your website actually work! You’d be astounded how often this is overlooked and, instead of retaining and engaging your potential customers, they lose trust and won’t visit again.
Engage, engage, engage
It’s not a secret that social media is all about engagement – it’s called social media for a reason. For social media marketing to be successful, you need to be engaging with your audience, and Christmas provides the perfect opportunity to do this.
If you are already engaging with your audience then this should be simple for your business. All you need to do is throw a bit of Christmas spirit into the mix. A little bit of personalisation can go a long way and can often result in a more successful campaign.
The more engagement on your posts, the more the platforms will push your content out to the masses.
Engaging with your followers should already be part of your social media activity, so in theory, this should be a simple tweak. But, if you aren’t already engaging with your followers, it’s time to start!
Use unique campaign hashtags
Creating specific campaign-related hashtags is a really good way to stay on top of everything. In addition to helping you find and engage with your followers, it also helps to track the results of the campaign. Lots of brands will use the Christmas period as an opportunity to run a tailored campaign and having a unique hashtag is an extra element that will help boost the success of your campaign. You only need to look at #KevinTheCarrot (Aldi) or #MontyThePenguin (John Lewis) to see how successful it can be!
Campaign-related hashtags should be part of your social media strategy throughout the year, but Christmas gives you the opportunity to get festive with them too. Choose a fun and festive hashtag but make sure it reflects your brand and the campaign you are running.
Test out paid Social Media platforms
It’s common knowledge that organic reach on social media is an uphill battle for small businesses. Which is why so many brands have taken to running paid ads on social media to combat the drop in organic reach (we’re looking at you, Facebook). However, for lots of small businesses, paid social media activity is still an underused area. Whether that’s creating full ad campaigns to simply boosting or promoting specific posts.
Ultimately, paid options are another option to ensure your content has the biggest reach possible. Surprisingly, Twitter has become a go-to social media platform for some brands. But it isn’t necessarily the ideal platform for finding new customers, so think carefully about whether it’s right for your business. Twitter Ads is a useful tool for promoting already successful tweets in order to boost engagement and reach.
Run a competition or giveaway
Running a Christmas social media competition or giveaway can be a really quick and easy way to boost your social media strategy. You can read our previous blog for detailed information on how to run a social media competition or how to run a successful competition on Facebook.
Christmas provides a golden opportunity to run a successful giveaway. It’s an expensive time of year so give something back to your customers by giving them the opportunity to win something of reasonable value. Running a competition is a win-win. With very little cost for your business, it help to boost the reach of your brand, boost engagement, and in some cases provide you with loads of priceless user-generated content.
Social media remains one of the most effective ways to connect with your audience all year, not just at Christmas. But the Christmas season offers an opportunity for your business to increase brand awareness and revenue. And if done well, you’ll retain those customers into the future too.
A good Christmas social media campaign doesn’t need to be tricky or complicated. Stay true to your brand and keep your eye on your goals. By doing this you’ll have an effective, authentic campaign that’s sure to drive sales during the busiest period of the year.
Still worried you’re going to make a right turkey of your Christmas social media campaign? Get in touch with Ignite Media Group. When it comes to social media, we’ll sort your Twitter from your tinsel, your Facebook from your frankincense, and we’re not just for Christmas either.