The regular comments about how Christmas comes earlier every year (which, ironically, also come earlier every year) has got me thinking about how we can make social media work for us at this rather lovely time. This year I’ve been unusually organised with my presents, so I’ve got a bit more time to think about how different types of businesses can get festive online.
1) If you’re a retailer you’ve no doubt got your instore or online offers sewn up by now. Why not run a Facebook competition to highlight what you’ve got to sell? The prize could be a voucher or a free gift, and you can collect email addresses in the process. Plus promote your business across Facebook: when your fans enter, their friends will know. Just make sure you use a third party app to run your promotion, see why here.
2) Create a Christmas hashtag on Twitter which links to your business name (eg, #Xmasatyourbusiness) and tweet fun, seasonal stuff with it. Like what your favourite present was as a kid, or what part of your Christmas dinner you love (or loathe) the most. Make it relevant to what you sell if you can.
3) Plan, plan, plan. It’s not too late to start now, but you’ll need to get your skates on. And the further you plan ahead, the more time you’ll have to enjoy your own Christmas at home.
4) Create Christmassy design themes. You could spice up your Facebook profile picture with some festive snow, or add a lift to your website by decking it out in holly (in the best possible taste of course). Watch this space…
5) Get cuddly. Christmas is a time for friendship and family, so take the opportunity of the extra festive spirit to get super engaged with your followers and fans. You’ve got something new to chat about now.
6) If you’ve got products to sell, set up a shop on your Facebook page. That way people can buy your wares while they’re uploading their office party pics onto their profiles.
7) Many people change their shopping habits at Christmas and buy more online, so make sure you’re set up to capture email addresses to add to your new year mailing list.
8) Schedule your tweets and Facebook posts ahead of the bank holidays, so you can relax. Recent changes to Facebook’s Edgerank algorithm mean that scheduled Facebook posts won’t suffer like they used to. See this for more details.
9) Create a Christmas video from you and your team, and post it on YouTube and Facebook. It’s a great way of bringing the personal spirit into your marketing.
10) Charities important at Christmas and many people appreciate a way of giving at this time of year. Why not offer to give a small proportion of your profits to charity, and promote this on your social media profiles? If it’s done with genuine feeling it will be received as you mean it.
11) When the big day comes, resist the temptation to log on to check your accounts. It’s only one day remember, they will live without you. BUT the world of social media never stops for long; Christmas day is a huge day for ebay sales and while they’re online selling their unwanted gifts, your fans and followers will be active on social networks again, with lots to chat about. Make sure you’re part of it.
12) Enjoy! It’s supposed to be fun!