When you think of holiday marketing, what comes to mind? Probably sleigh bells, Santa Claus and snowballs with a reindeer or some eggnog thrown in for good measure. Everyone knows that Christmas is the hottest sales season of the year, and most businesses adjust their marketing budgets to hit the market full-force that time of year. Of course, Christmas isn't the only holiday worthy of your hard-earned marketing dollars. Holidays that were once simple traditional observations have become hubs for robust marketing campaigns that boost return on investment all year long. Easter, St. Patrick's Day, Independence Day and others now provide excellent marketing opportunities.
If you're new to off-holiday marketing, here are a few tips that will help you get started making sales year-round:
Set the mood
When launching a promotion around an off-holiday, it's a good idea to align the tone of your marketing materials with the traditional mood of the holiday. The Fourth of July and Cinco de Mayo, for instance, are festive holidays, while Grandparents Day is more reflective. Your promotion, and the design of your promotional materials, should match the holiday's theme in colors, shapes and icons, and also in text and overall message. Remember, the more relevance you can find between your business and the spirit, traditions and history of the holiday, the bigger the impact your promotional materials will have on prospects.
Know who your audience is
Where will your audience be on this holiday? If you're running a promo aimed at selling a home checkup service to senior citizens, your audience might be their baby boomer children. Fathers Day and Mothers Day would be excellent opportunities for this type of promotion, since we're already thinking about our parents (and starting to worry about their welfare). Think about how your audience can use your product or service, and how it relates to the upcoming holiday.
The early bird gets the worm (as long as the worm is out)
When marketing for a particular holiday, it's a good idea to get started early to make sure you get the word out in time. Start too early, however, and your prospects will forget they saw your postcard or brochure and miss the sale completely. Try a multi-level campaign complete with mailed postcards, flyers, door hangers or posters. Put posters up a month before the sale; mail your first postcard or flyer a week before the sale, and release the last two promotional pieces the week of the sale - one at the beginning of the week, the other the day before the sale itself.
Here are a few off-beat holidays your business could take advantage of. Keep in mind that off-holidays are not obscure; rather, they're just underutilized as marketing tools. Take advantage of your competitors' inattentiveness and boost your own profits by catering to your audience on these holidays.
- Groundhog Day (February 2)
- Presidents Day (Third Monday of February)
- St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
- Easter (First Sunday after the first full moon on or after March 21)
- April Fool's Day (April 1)
- Earth Day (April 22)
- Mother's Day (Second Sunday in May)
- Memorial Day (Last Monday in May)
- Flag Day (June 14)
- Father's Day (Third Sunday in June)
- Grandparent's Day (First Sunday after Labor Day)
- Independence Day (July 4)
- Labor Day (First Monday in September)
- Columbus Day (Second Monday in October)
- Veterans Day (November 11)
These are just a few examples of great marketing opportunities and a quick look at a robust calendar will yield plenty of others. See if you can find a way to market your products and services to niche segments that have national days, not just holidays. By recognizing sales potential such as this, you'll be on the fast track to high conversion rates all year long.