How will your business stand out online this holiday season?

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‘Tis the season for online holiday marketing and the competition is fierce! It’s not enough to send your regularly scheduled weekly emails, post updates when you think about it, share the same articles everyone else is or run a few brand awareness ads. If you want to stand out you need to put some thought behind your posts. If you put some thought into your online content, your messages will be seen and heard by the right people – and hopefully, they will also take action!

When thinking about your holiday marketing, think about how you are going to build momentum around your business and then come up with a plan for when you are going to post, where you are going to post, and what you are going to say.

Be online when they are

Do not randomly schedule or post your social media content. Find out when your audience is online and schedule your posts to publish based on this information.  You can find out this information using insight tools, such as Facebook Insights. You also want to make sure you are monitoring engagement and responding to comments and questions as quickly as possible (or designate a person to do so – this is a great task for a virtual assistant specializing in social media or community management).

Being active online when your audience is and responding to their comments will not only spark further engagement but tells your customers you care.

Be where they are

Just because you are good at Twitter doesn’t mean your customers are there or care what you are tweeting about. Do your research and find out what social media platform your audience is on. There are many websites that share demographic information based on social network, which is a good baseline for finding out where your audience is online.

If relevant, you should also check out the audience information that can be found using Facebook Analytics as well as Google Analytics. These platforms will help you find out where your website traffic is coming from and/or what other similar businesses your audience is interested in.

Once you know where your audience is online, focus on posting more to those social networks and less on the others, especially during a marketing-heavy season.

Post what people care about

The online space is noisy. Between personal posts, sponsored posts and paid advertisements, people are faced with more messages than ever before. So, if you want what you are saying online to be seen you need to appeal to emotions or nostalgia – and make it shareable. For example, if you are a children’s book author try appealing to the nostalgia parents may be feeling regarding their own childhood holiday memories and show them you relate and how what you are offering can help them create these memories for their own children using a meme.

If you’re not sure what kind of content your audience is responding to, check out what your competition is posting and see what is working (and not working) for them. Generally, content that contains high-quality visuals such as photos, videos, or infographics, will help to communicate information to your audience that will resonate with them.

Don’t bore your audience by constantly pitching “salesy” material to them. Instead, post tips and share articles or videos that relate to the holiday season. They can even be funny – appeal to your audience’s humanity and make light of the busy season, if applicable. Visual content is also easily shared on most social media networks. Engaging content will not only get your audience’s attention but will get them engaging with your content!

Finally, make sure you include a call to action with each and every post. You can lead them to take a look at more information on your website, leave a comment on a post, or respond to what you have posted. You want to encourage engagement and it’s easier for people to do that if you tell them how.

Make sure you have specific goals in mind when planning your content and remember it’s never too late to change your plan or add to it. Just make sure your plan is up and running when your customer base is! If you need help organizing or implementing your social media marketing, let’s chat!