There are times each year when marketers are thrown a bone – and the holidays are one of them… here’s why!
Seasonality is a part of life. Humans tend to act differently during each season of the year. For example, summer tends to foster outgoing personalities that start to repress during the winter months. It only makes sense that the seasons, and the holidays that accompany them, can influence the way marketers approach their target audience. Here are some of the reasons why marketers get really excited for the holidays.
You Can Show Your Fun Side
Marketers are often able to have more fun during the holidays, as the festivities themselves permit greater flexibility in message type, tone, and reach. Though it isn’t officially a holiday (yes, we know…some will fervently argue), the Super Bowl is the perfect time for companies to expand their boundaries and attempt a more spirited or lighthearted marketing approach. During the 4th of July last year, home improvement juggernaut Lowe’s used Vine to take normal household tools and animate them into shapes resembling bursting fireworks. The quirky, yet relevant videos helped Lowe’s to connect with their customers, all while eschewing traditional marketing techniques that are, at times, lost on today’s consumer.
People Are in the Buying Mood
Many prospective customers will be in the market for goods or services just because it is a specific time of year. It isn’t much of a stretch to think that turkey producers get excited around Thanksgiving, or that gift card manufacturers look at the Christmas to Valentine’s Day stretch as a great time to “get in the black.” But marketers are also able to capitalize on the inherent buying tendencies during the holidays. Money is being spent by consumers, so marketing groups are able to allocate a greater share of their budget to these high profile times of the year. That translates to more flexibility in terms of mediums used, and a greater opportunity to make a real difference in the marketing department.
UGC Is in Full Force
During the holidays, marketers are better able to ask their customers to create potent user-generated content (UGC) pieces to help create a compelling brand story. A year ago, Stouffer’s frozen foods took to Instagram to harness the power of its customers by creating a vibrant marketing opportunity that capitalized on the food items being served on user’s holiday tables. The campaign wove in YouTube and Hulu videos, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, and included tablescape images that visibly tied on the Stouffer’s brand with customer preferences. The results were powerful, yet all it took was a tie into the holidays and some creativity on behalf of the customer base.
Emotions Are Powerful
There really is something unique and emotional about the holidays. Hearing the National Anthem on the 4th of July, or visiting with family on a chilly Christmas Eve with holiday classics on repeat – it just tugs at our heartstrings. Knowing this, marketers can connect with their audience more easily and spread cheer and goodwill more readily, all without having to explain why they’re doing anything beyond the norm. It’s the holidays, plain and simple.
Brand Ambassadors Are Ready
There is no shortage of highly-visible social influencers and brand ambassadors during the major holidays, as these key moments throughout the year give celebrities and other influential people an outlet to reinforce their own brand – all while touting the benefits of another peripheral organization. You can take advantage of this time of year, too, by creating an influencer-based marketing campaign that ties in the particular ambassador’s vibe with that of your own business. For example, if you sell outdoor active apparel, consider using the holiday season to spotlight your brand by inviting several fitness industry influencers into the fold. They can provide real feedback and also instill a sense of credibility into the campaign.
As the seasons change and the holidays commence, keep in mind that these special times of the year will enable you to more effectively market your business or organization. The winter holiday season is generally considered to be the biggest and most lucrative time of the year for marketers everywhere, so don’t hesitate. Get going soon and make the next few weeks your strategic planning session to maximize the holiday season this year.