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Keeping your content fresh, relevant and in top-form over the holidays is the best way to stay top of mind (and top of search results). So, how can you keep rolling out stellar content, while still leaving time to roll out the sugar cookie dough?
Tis’ the season to be — busy!
Most business owners are strapped for time every season of the year. But during the holidays, things really start to ramp up.
A lot of companies rely on Q4 to boost their profits for the entire year. But managing a boom in business and a calendar full of family and personal engagements can get tricky. Ultimately, some priorities in your company have to take a backseat. But don’t let your content marketing be one of them!
Customers will be actively searching for your business during the holiday season — possibly more than any other time of year.
And even though 2020 hasn’t been business as usual, online holiday sales are still predicted to balloon. The National Retail Federation forecasts that holiday sales during November and December will increase between 3.6% and 5.2% over last year!
So how can you keep things ticking away?
Enter our our top content marketing tips for this holiday season...
1. Plan and prepare
There are some kids out there who have had their Christmas lists written since March.
Follow their lead!
The key to staying consistent with your content marketing during the busy holidays is to plan and prepare in advance.
Is there a certain week, month, or quarter in your business that’s a bit slower than usual? Use that downtime for content marketing holiday prep. Create a holiday content calendar and begin to write as much as possible so you're already ahead when things get busy.
If you really want to get into the nitty gritty of it, look back on holiday seasons past (Scrooge style). Do some research on what keywords or keyword phrases your customers were searching for during those months and structure your new content around that.
Or, look back to see which of your blog posts performed best during previous holiday seasons, and do a refresh on them.
Just remember to mix up the type of content you’ll be posting. Try to include different mediums — blogs, videos, infographics, etc. — to keep things interesting.
2. Schedule your content in advance
If you’re able to get some of that pre-planned holiday content completed before the season begins, go one step further and schedule it in advance.
You can often schedule blog posts straight from your website or content marketing platform to publish on a certain date or time. This takes the entire process off your hands — and off your mind.
This isn’t just useful for blogs, either. If you can take the time to batch write some of your holiday social media posts, you can use a scheduling tool like Hootsuite to post them over the holiday period.
And if you want to get really strategic with it, you can schedule your blogs to post, and then schedule some social media to promote those blogs after they go live! This basically allows you to run your content marketing on autopilot, while you focus on all of your other priorities of the season.
3. Join in on the holiday spirit!
There's nothing worse than a brand that completely ignores what’s going on in the world around them. So, before you go scheduling all your content in advance, make sure that it will reflect the holiday spirit of the moment!
Make references to upcoming local or company events and celebrations. What’s more, keep your voice on brand for the season. It’s a jolly time of year and customers want to sense that from the companies they’re interacting with.
It’s also a great idea to give customers an inside look on how your company is celebrating (ugly sweaters, anyone?). Giving that feeling of personal connection is one of the best ways to stay on your customer’s wish lists.
So, is your sales team running that annual holiday 5K? Is your HR department volunteering at a food bank? Is your CEO doing a polar plunge? Tell your customers all about it!
But remember: things change quickly (especially this year). It’s a good idea to do a quick run-through of your scheduled content each week, just to be sure it’s still relevant.
For example, if you’ve scheduled some posts promoting a certain product that you’ve just sold out of, make sure to delete those posts before they publish.
4. Create a roundup post
One great idea to add to your holiday content calendar is a yearly round-up post.
This is basically a listicle that features your company’s most popular blogs of the year, and is packaged up nicely as a helpful resource. It allows you to successfully re-purpose content, and is also a fantastic way to wrap up your business’ year!
One of the benefits of a roundup post is that it can deliver a big punch, without taking up too much of your time.
These types of posts have become extremely popular for content marketers as end of year staples, so you may want to put in some extra effort to help yours stand out.
Be sure to use eye-catching images and informational summaries under each piece of content to give readers an easy preview. You could also consider adding a few more items to the blogs themselves to refresh them a bit: reader comments, tweetable quotes, new interesting stats, etc.
To get your creative juices flowing, here are a few other great end-of-year content ideas:
- Industry predictions for 2021
- Year in review posts
- Posts about lessons your company has learned in 2020
- Goals or new releases for your company in 2021
5. Thank your customers
We love the hustle and bustle of the holiday season — but we also love that it is complimented by periods of slow, steady reflection.
So remember, while filling more orders than usual may be a bit stressful, it’s also an incredibly wonderful gift! Don’t forget to thank your customers for making it happen.
Whether this is done as a heartfelt social media post, blog, or email, let your genuine thanks to your customers flow. Tell them what your business’ success has meant to you.
This has been one of the most trying years for small businesses on record. If your customers have supported and uplifted you during these trials, there’s no better time to show your appreciation!
Bonus tip: bring on some help!
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and struggling to keep up with your content marketing goals this holiday season, don’t fret!
Bringing on some additional help over the holidays is a pretty simple fix. It can help keep your stress levels down, while keeping customer engagement up.
At Scribly, our team of content strategists can help you to create a strategic content calendar, produce engaging content, and even assist with scheduling your posts in advance! Give yourself the gift of time this season, and fully enjoy your holidays!