Any decent marketing strategy should have a number of facets – the year-round plan that promotes regular, steady and always available services or product ranges; and the seasonal plan, that aligns with consumer behaviour shifts and capitalises on their interests and needs.
And it’s a common misconception that seasonal promotions have to be linked to sales of goods – service-orientated businesses are also able to tap into the spirit of a season to raise their profile, capture new audience or introduce new elements of their offering.
Timing is key
The easiest way to start planning a seasonal strategy is simply to pull up a calendar, and mark off particular days, occasions and holidays.
There are the obvious days – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Christmas and Easter, and the summer holidays for example. And while you should most certainly mark these down, they are traditionally quite ‘noisy’ periods, where lots of companies will be doing the same sort of marketing.
That’s not to say you should hold back – but you’ll need to start early to break through the noise, and you’ll need to amplify your efforts more than usual before the holiday or event day comes.
But there are many other lesser-known days (that aren’t necessarily holiday-orientated) where you’ll be able to align your products or services quite neatly. For example, did you know that in the UK, 2017 is the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development?
So if you’re a travel agency, you’d be able to align tailor-made packages that fit the bill of Sustainable Tourism to this campain, and market them accordingly.
Similarly, 5 September is Cheezy Pizza Day… think of all the possibilities if you’re a pizza restaurant or take-away joint…
What sort of content should you consider?
Well, that’s really up to you – what is it about the particular day or campaign that you’re identifying with? Is it serious, humorous, poignant? Create material that speaks to that element, and aligns your business properly with the purpose of the day, week or month.
Use design collateral that hints at the ‘specialness’ of the day – a tweaked logo, a new image, a clever strapline, for example.
From a digital marketing perspective, think about the search terms people might use around the time of year, and make sure your web copy, keywords and paid campaigns cover all the angles to ensure high-value SEO. Use Google Trends to give you extra insights into when you should start your campaign, and what search terms give the highest value return.
Think about ways to bring your campaign to life through different channels – perhaps a competition element that challenges consumers to post a photo of themselves doing something funny, with a particular hashtag that ignites the campaign on social media?
Ensure that you’re using all the channels available to you, and that your campaign is mobile-friendly – that’s where the bulk of search, engagement and interaction with the broadest range of channels is taking place, don’t miss out!
Seasonal marketing should form part of your annual marketing strategy and planning – over the course of time what you’d ideally like to achieve is that rare but remarkable status where consumers are expecting, and looking forward to your next iteration of a seasonal campaign they enjoyed the year before.
That comes with regular planning, consistent approach and execution, and continuous evolution to keep things fresh, unique and exciting.
If you’re looking for exciting, innovative ways to create digital marketing content, or help creating a year-round digital marketing strategy, please get in touch with Realnet.
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