When should the Christmas marketing season start for your brand? It depends on what products you offer, how you sell them, and whether or not you were throwing a Black Friday frenzy in November. However, according to Google Trends, Christmas-related keywords start gaining popularity in mid-November and lose it by mid-January. That’s the period you should pay attention to while planning your Christmas ad campaigns.
This article will help you schedule your offers and communication activities from the end of November to the beginning of February. You will also find tons of less-known Christmas marketing ideas so you will be able to have a competitive advantage this winter holiday season.
Christmas 2020 for marketers. Why is it so important?
In the first half of winter, the most important holidays take place for residents of many countries and adherents of different religions. In addition to the fact that these holidays are associated with joy, family and friends gathering together, as well as great celebrations and traditional decoration, there are also old traditions of exchanging gifts on those days.
These features of the winter holidays make them a great chance for brands to sell more products and be even more helpful to their customers. Here is a list of the holidays your target audience might celebrate at the end of December and January:
When: from 16th of December till 24th of December
Celebrated by: Christians in Latin America, Mexico, Guatemala, Cuba, Spain, and Hispanics in the US and other countries
When: can fall anywhere from November 28th to December 26th (based on the lunar cycle)
Celebrated by: Jews
When: 24th of December (Catholic) or 7th of January (Orthodox)
Celebrated by: Christians
When: from 26th of December till 1st of January
Celebrated by: African Americans
When: 1st of January
Celebrated by: everybody
Chinese New Year
When: on the first day of the first month of the Chinese calendar (falls between 21st of January and 20th of February and lasts for 15 days)
Celebrated by: Chinese, Chinese-speaking communities, and other people
Before you start preparing greeting cards for each of the holidays, analyze your customer base and target audience. Are you sure these people are celebrating Hanukkah and not Kwanzaa? Do they celebrate Christmas in December or January? Whenever possible, find out more about your audience (you can even organize a pool at the beginning of December) and plan campaigns based on personal holiday user journeys.
If it’s almost impossible for you to clarify which winter holidays your clients will be celebrating, avoid direct referring to particular holidays and focus on what all of them have in common. For example, they all give people the opportunity to relax, eat delicious food, spend quality time with family, and receive lovely gifts.
Read ‘6 Tips to Find Your Target Audience’ to boost your understanding of your clients.
Christmas ads planner
Below, we talk about what your marketing campaign planning might look like using the example of Christmas. Keep in mind that you can use a similar strategy while boosting Chinese New Year (or any other) sales.
Instagram and Twitter Christmas-related hashtags in 2020:
#christmas #christmastree #xmas #merrychristmas #christmasdecor #christmastime #santa #natale #santaclaus #christmaslights #christmasiscoming #christmasdecorations #christmasgifts
Classic Christmas symbols:
the star of Bethlehem (or just starry night), candles, bells, nice-packed gifts with ribbons and bows, green and red colors, candy canes, green wreaths
from Black Friday (last week of November) till 24th of December
The sooner you start your Christmas marketing campaign, the more chances you have to capture the attention of new customers and become recognizable to them. The main question you need to answer before planning your Christmas campaigns is how you can help your customers before or during Christmas. Here are some options.
— Your product can be gifted to friends and family members.
— Using your products or services, someone can decorate their home.
— You can arrange Christmas (provide clients with meals, cleaning services, entertainment).
— Your product saves people from being alone at Christmas.
— You responsibly solve customer problems even on holidays (insurance service, taxi, post office)
Depending on your answers, you can start a sales campaign already during the early Xmas season (right after Thanksgiving), or you can make a Christmas offer to your clients in the middle Xmas season (in December). Another option is to focus on the last-minute campaign. This will suit any business. More ideas find here — ‘A Solopreneur’s Guide to Holiday Marketing This Winter’.
Once you’ve decided on the timing of your campaigns and the business purpose of your communications during the Christmas season, it’s time for some practical action. How to stand out during the Christmas shopping season when all the brands are so vocal about themselves? Our answer: focus on reaching out to those who will benefit from your product mostly during Christmas. Here are some tips for you:
- Design online and offline gift guides. They will make life easier for your customers who need to buy gifts for many people.
- Create a branded advent calendar for your customers to encourage them to come back to you for new offers every day.
- Include your most popular products or services in your Christmas deals, and add those you want to clear the warehouse of free of charge.
- Make Christmas a free shipping or free exchange period, and emphasize the extended Christmas warranties on your products.
- Customize your products and services for Christmas. Explain to your customers why they should buy from you now. Highlight your idea with a festive design.
- If your product or service doesn’t have a ‘Christmas’ seasonality, match Christmas and your product in context. For example, if you are a real estate broker, show how cozy the houses from your catalog with Christmas decor will look like.
The benefit to your brand in starting the Christmas season early is that you can experiment with multiple marketing ideas to determine which works best.
An important tip: in December, it’s time to get in touch with those clients you first contacted on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It will be much easier for you to appeal to them with a new offer since they remember you well and have already made sure that you can be trusted. Create a separate offer for them.
You can find more tips on how to launch your Christmas campaign here — ‘How to Get Started on Holiday Marketing Campaigns’.
Sending holiday greetings and gifts
from 20th of December till the second week of January
Christmas can be a brilliant occasion to reach out to new and existing customers. But we recommend that you think a few times before sending a traditional greeting card to your users’ emails. Think about how many other brands will do the same!
So that your Christmas greetings will be noticed by your clients and leave a pleasant aftertaste as well as a desire to buy something from you in the future, be creative. Here are some options for reaching your clients with greetings at the end of the year:
— Share insights
You share the results of your end-of-the-year report. It can be a collection of interesting facts about the most and least popular products, a list of sad and funny moments your company received during the year, as well as individual customer stories. Perhaps your company has a significant achievement that you would like to share? At the end of such a letter, you can congratulate your clients and motivate them to take some kind of action appropriate to the concept of your campaign.
— Offer a charitable collaboration
Gifts for strategic customers for Christmas are a tradition. But this year, you might not just send your customers a gift card by email, but offer to choose if they want to use it or turn its money equivalent into a charitable contribution with your help. Invite clients to join your Christmas charity event in your greeting card. Doing this frequently will not only improve your image and the association of your brand with something good but also give clients a reason to keep using your products and services as you stand up for good causes.
— Christmas basket
Another traditional idea of how to wish important customers a Merry Christmas is branded Christmas treats that you send to their address in a beautiful gift box. This year, a gift like this is even more valuable than before. This year, many businesses migrated online and stopped physically interacting with customers. This type of gift will help make your communication more personal.
— A new format of corporate celebration
Loud corporate parties are definitely not happening this year. We encourage you to invite your clients to attend an online event. For example, a Christmas concert at the Metropolitan Opera. Another idea is to organize an offline street event where all your customers and subscribers can come and… be safe. For example, you can treat guests to drop-by Christmas drinks right on your office porch.
After Christmas sales
from 20th of December till the 2nd week of January
The days right after Christmas are a bit similar to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Retailers who have not had time to clear their stores and warehouses of products enter the market with ultimatum offers. The essence of such offers is usually that the remaining goods can be bought at the lowest possible price.
Why are post-Christmas sales an effective marketing strategy? The reason is that after Christmas many people have a few more days of rest. They spend this time with a mobile phone in their hands. Their mood is upbeat, which is why it is very easy to seduce them with a product at a bargain price.
Besides, there is one more insight. Some people may be unhappy with their Christmas gifts, while others may have received money or a gift certificate as a gift. Most likely, these people want to use them as soon as possible.
Christmas holidays are also a good time for photo contests on social media where people can share pictures of their Christmas food and decor without putting a lot of effort into it.
throughout January and beyond
Well, seasonal sales are almost never about selling as many items as possible at a low price. Christmas sales help attract new customers with low prices, and then it’s your chance to build a friendship with them and turn them into loyal customers.
Black Friday is the day when we likely acquire new customers and Christmas sales are an occasion to learn more about them and sell them more useful seasonal products. And in the middle of winter, it is time to remind those people about other advantages of your products, in addition to the favorable price and fast delivery. In January, start communicating with your customer intensely:
— Tell them about your new products.
— Offer a personalized product or service.
— Share tips for the care of the item you bought.
— Reach out to them to figure out if they are satisfied with your services.
— Keep them updated on your brand news like new store openings.
It is very important to collect information from your customers. Based on data about your customer’s tastes and behavior, you can figure out how you can make your business more client-friendly and profitable.
The first half of winter is the time when brands can take care of customers: help them to save time on choosing lovely gifts for their loved ones, save their money through personal discounts, and provide them with trouble-free services during holidays. So think about how you can help your customers and build your Christmas communication around this idea.
We also recommend that you launch your marketing campaigns now to be able to reach the widest possible audience with your offers. And regardless of which idea you are going to pick from our list above, keep in mind that you can find both trending images and ready-to-use templates for any purpose on Depositphotos.
Other articles to get ready for Christmas
Business and marketing
Depositphotos Blog Digest
Join a community of 160,000 monthly readers who are obsessed with
amazing visuals, useful tips, and great stories