It’s Labor Day weekend, and that means, if you haven’t started thinking about your holiday content, you should!
While it seems a bit early, this is the time you need to be preparing for the upcoming holiday season. So if you’re one who gets upset when Target sets up its Christmas section before Halloween, take a deep breath, and just go with me.
Even if your business doesn’t seem like a good fit for holiday content, keep an open mind. Because while you may not be selling traditional gifts or services, it’s hard to ignore the fact that most people are in a spending frame of mind and have their credit cards at the ready during Q4.
Why create holiday content now?
There are lots of reasons to start prepping your holiday content well in advance. First, the holidays are a notoriously busy time of year for everyone, so it’s just good practice to get your content ready in advance. This way you have everything planned, crafted, and scheduled and have no excuse not to publish.
Beyond that, however, you’re going to want to strategize about how you’re going to utilize the holidays to grow your business, then craft content that will serve your goals. Just like brick and mortar stores put out holiday items well in advance, you want to publish and share your holiday content ahead of time, too.
Search engines need time to crawl and index your content before they can recommend it to people, and it takes a while for your loyal readers, listeners, or viewers to share, so putting out your post or episode earlier than you think it would be most useful is a good strategy.
Determine your holiday goals
Depending on what you sell, your goals for the holiday season are going to be different, so your strategy is going to be different. Of course, you might be working on a variety of different goals, in which case, it’s even more important to be strategic.
Sell your stuff. The most obvious goal for the holidays is to sell your products or services. Use this time to create content that is more directly sales based, share tips on how to use or gift your stuff, and include links to buy.
Sell other people’s stuff. If you’re an affiliate for a person or company that offers holiday specials, you can create content around those items or services and encourage your followers to purchase. You may also use this time to increase your rates for promotional content and ads.
Prep for what’s next. Maybe you don’t have holiday-related content that goes with the major end-of-year holidays, but you do offer products or services that are perfect for the new year. Use the last few months of the year laying the foundation for a new year’s sale.
Plan your content around your goals
Once you decide what you want your holiday content to do for you, you can start to plan your posts or episodes. Keep in mind the first rule of content marketing is to serve first. If your blog post, podcast, or video episode is not useful to your audience on its own (whether they purchase something or not), it’s not going to be consumed, engaged with, or shared.
With most posts or episodes, you’re going to want a single call to action. Choose a single product or service to promote, and craft your content around it. There are some exceptions to this rule, like round up posts or lists, but for the most part, one post = one promotion.
Promote your holiday content throughout the season
I’ve mentioned before (and I’ll say it many times in the future), it’s not enough to just create good content. You must have a strategy to promote that content and get people to read, listen to, or view it.
Even if you don’t have a lot of holiday content to promote, you will want to make a schedule on which to share it across various social media platforms, including in your email, and encourage others to share it as well.
If you’re new to holiday content, I suggest sharing one piece of content on each platform per week, even if you’ve already promoted it there.
Let’s say you create 3 holiday-specific posts this year, and publish one a week starting in mid-October, and for the sake of argument, let’s say you publish on Mondays and your social platforms of choice are Facebook and Instagram. Here’s an example of how you could schedule and promote your new holiday content.
October 11: Publish post #1, email list
October 18: Publish post #2, email list, promo post #1 on FB
October 25: Publish post #3, email list, promo post #2 on FB, promo post #1 on IG
November 1: Include a link to post #1 in your weekly email, promo post #2 on IG, promo post #3 on FB
November 8: Include a link to post #2 in your weekly email, promo post #3 on IG, promo post #1 on FB
November 15: Include a link to post #3 in your weekly email, promo post #1 on IG, promo post #2 on FB
November 22: Include a link to post #1 in your weekly email, promo post #2 on IG, promo post #3 on FB
November 29: Include a link to post #2 in your weekly email, promo post #3 on IG, promo post #1 on FB
December 6: Include a link to post #3 in your weekly email, promo post #1 on IG, promo post #2 on FB
December 13: Include a link to post #1 in your weekly email, promo post #2 on IG, promo post #3 on FB
It might feel like a lot of posting the same thing over and over, but remember that it’s likely that less than 5% of your audience is actually seeing your posts because of the algorithm. And you’ll be sharing other content, so don’t worry about people getting bored. Just mix up your graphics and descriptions, and you’ll be fine!
Start thinking about your holiday content strategy now, and you’ll be all set when the busiest time of year rolls around!
Next week I’ll be sharing different types of holiday posts or episodes you can share with your audience!