Did you know that 64% of shoppers are visiting social media platforms to get inspired and find gift ideas? The leading inspirational social media networks during the Holidays are Facebook and Pinterest, and probably that is a reason why brands start producing content with might and main during the holiday season.
The Holidays offer you a great opportunity to create an engaging content that can drive traffic to your website, social media pages and even boost sales. However, a great content is not enough; first, you need to bring a holiday flavor to your social media.
- Create a holiday themed cover image on Facebook, Twitter and other social media
- Update your logos - add festive attributes (do not forget that it should be combined with your cover image).
- Or even turn your landing page into a gift card for your clients.
When the first steps are completed, you can update your content plan with these 100 content ideas for holiday social media marketing.
Winter Tips, Holiday Craft Tips and How Tos
- #12 Days of something. The idea can be implemented in every type of content mentioned here. Create a series of holiday tips posts on a similar theme to your brand. For example, a company selling paintings will get profit from publishing a series of "How to decorate home for Christmas" posts. Remember to hashtag your marketing campaign!
- DIY. Try to guess, what are the most searchable How Tos during the Holidays? Right. Show you followers how to do a Christmas trees and toys from scrap materials, how to decorate home, how to wrap gifts, etc.
- Christmas and New Year Eve ideas. Do not limit your fans with two-three tips; create an exhaustive list of 50-100 ideas for celebration. Are you B2B? Awesome, create a list of ideas for office managers and see how it fuzzes.
- Recipe posts. Even if your business isn't connected anyhow/in any way with the food industry, the Holidays is a great time to tap into the personal side of your business and show there're real people behind your brand who love good food as much as your followers do.
- Safety tips. Playing around the Holiday theme, remember about the accidents that happen every year because of careless handling of firecrackers, sparklers, candles and fireworks. Show that you do care about your users, clients, customers, followers and their families.
- Gifts ideas. One of the best ways to reach holiday shoppers on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Google+, etc. is to create posts or boards with unique gift ideas that include your products. These collections can be also promoted with Embed posts, tweets or pins on your website.
- Content ideas. If you are B2B and you know your clients are active users of social media, share your holiday content marketing knowledge with them on your pages.
- Contest ideas. Publish a post with contest ideas everyone can easily implement. Ask for your fans' opinion, what contest should be the most effective in your community. Run it (you audience is already engaged) and share results. Boom!
- Best Photo Tips. There are so many contests on the web during the Holidays; most of them encourage followers to share photos with hashtags. The winner is selected randomly or by the amount of upvotes (that's exactly what we need). Analyze winners of photo contests and create infographics on creating a photo that wins.
- Treat your followers with free eBooks, infographics or researches in exchange for a mailing address, subscription or friend invite.
- eBooks Giveaways. No doubt that the Holidays are the time of Sales and Giveaways. Then why not to take advantage of it? Gather 30+ sweet holiday offers on E-books (or anything) in one post and publish it.
- Gifts to your friends. Gifts are now exactly motivated by altruism. We give gifts in order to get something in return, even if it is simply the gratitude. Create an additional page on your website that would allow your followers to present a set of eBooks to their friends and colleagues and promote it on social media.
- Your eBook. If you think that writing an eBook is a labor-intensive and expensive idea, you are absolutely right. However, you have been working hard all the year and created tons of high-quality content. Gather and structure it into one eBook and offer it to your followers for a repost. It does not cost anything and does not take your valuable time.
- eBooks with influential people. If you do not have enough content for an eBook, encourage influential writers among your followers to create it with you. Announce it in your social media networks when it is ready.
- Holiday Craft eBooks. Collect and share eBooks that will teach your followers how to get their homes and offices holiday-ready with DIY Christmas decorations.
- The Santa's Brand Book. We were too serious in previous ideas. The Holidays are the time for fun. Create a brand book for your company (or just a set of illustrations) if Santa was a CEO.
Video & Audio content
- Play lists on YouTube. What is the first thing on your mind when you think about Christmas and New Year? For me it is Jingle Bells and other Christmas songs. I bet, as for 165,000 other people who are searching Christmas songs in Google every day in the US. No doubts that a playlist is a must.
- Holiday themed videos. People are very visually oriented, so photos and videos are more likely to capture their attention. Create a holiday themed video to boost it on Facebook (0.022 cpv) and promote on YouTube (0.07 cpv).
- Trends and expectations. Be ahead of time. Share recent trends in a compilation video with your followers and show what everyone is expecting to come for the next year in the same format.
- Movie your product. If you believe, your product could be a great gift, than show it in a holiday themed video and promote it on YouTube. The results depend on a quality of a video and its clear CTA. Up to 10% of views can convert into your website visitors.
- Video chat. The Holidays is the perfect time to drift together with your users, clients, customers, followers... anyone. Hold a video chat with your followers or even hold an online party using Google Hangouts or any other tool available on the web.
- Collection of holiday videos. If you have enough time and resources and your aim is to get more subscribers, then pay attention to the Lego's case: to get more followers on their Facebook Page, they featured a collection of holiday YouTube videos.
- Personalized video greetings. Create a short video greeting to any of your followers, and ask everybody else who wants to get a personal video greeting. Make these greetings spread around Twitter and Facebook!
- Hide a promo code. A text post is not the only way to grant a promo code to your potential customers. Spark interest of your audience with a hiding promo code in a video. Encourage people to view and share it.
Three more suggestions for creating a holiday themed video:
Focus on emotions. Publish your video early. Use a strong call to action.
- Holiday themed boards on Pinterest.
- Sweet holiday recipe calendar.
- Warm & cozy holiday pictures.
- Next year's trends and tendencies.
- Holiday decorations for home and an office.
- Humor, funny anecdotes about the holidays, designed to drive engagement.
- Content to download. Create a set of themed visual content templates, which your followers can use for their campaigns, and share some of them on your social media networks. Grant a full set of templates for a repost.
- Wish lists. Create a Pinterest board to which shoppers can pin products they would love to get on Christmas and New Year, let your followers create a content for you.
- Pinterest content on Facebook. When creating a content plan, think about all social media networks as about one social media marketing tool. Adding links to your holiday Pinterest albums to Facebook will help you to fill up empty spots in your content plan and drive traffic to your Pinterest pages.
- Mix visual content and life hacks sharing top creative ideas of creating/making? Christmas attributes and describing one of the cases as a tutorial.
- Stories in images. As has been already said, images on social media get more engagement than links or text. So try to use images with texts on them to tell your stories in the holiday season.
- Countdowns with a different daily message. One of the most popular hashtags during the Holidays is #24days. Businesses should take advantage of this by developing their own types of countdown with daily prizes, promotions and contests.
- Holiday themed memes. While memes are mainly for fun and entertainment, they can be interesting from a marketing perspective too. Why? They tend to go viral: they resonate and gain momentum and exposure.
- 'Caption This!'. This type of posts perform the best results in the holiday season. It will not take a lot of time to find a funny and odd image based around opening presents, cooking the holiday meal, playing in the snow, etc. If you like, you could even motivate your users to take 'Caption This!' photos and run a contest.
If you have enough budget, include an augmented reality game into your campaign. Here are smart ideas for your inspiration:
- A game that lets users activate their webcams to 'play their stripes' as part of a GAP partnership with musician Blood Orange.
- A game of Gismeteo that lets to cut snowflakes online and then publish to social media.
- A game that involves your customers in product design this holiday, just like Coke Zero Sweater Generator.
It is a well-known fact that people are more likely to participate in contests on the Holidays than on any other season of the year. Contests can be aimed at driving followers to your pages, increasing engagement or organic reach of your publications. Developing a contest with these 15 holiday contest ideas, a brand should focus on one of the above-mentioned aims and choose the idea that meets its primary needs.
The contest structure that works:
Call to Action + Incentive + Ending Time + Rules and Regulations
- Facebook like or share contest. Organic reach. It is the most popular type of contests that can be met almost in every community on Facebook. Encourage followers to share a post with an information about your contest on their pages and choose the winner randomly. Set a rule that only those who like the page can win a prize to get more followers.
- Holiday surprise to every contest participant. Organic Reach. An additional motivation can boost a number of participants and garner loyal followers.
- Refer a friend. Organic reach and engagement. Except an obvious personal participation in a contest, followers can be asked to refer a friend in comments who would be interested in receiving a prize.
- Instagram photo contest. Organic reach and followers. Encourage followers to share themed photos on their pages tagging your profile and using your holiday hashtag. Choose a winner randomly.
- Vote contest. Organic reach and engagement. Photo contests with fan votes get the most engagement, tied into the holiday season perform even better.
- Essay contest. Organic reach and engagement. Without any doubts, images are a most engaging type of content. But what about texts? On Facebook, 1000 - 1500 characters posts get the highest organic reach. Ask you followers to write a short holiday themed essay with an attached image and, just like in vote contest, invite friends to vote for the best story with likes or shares.
- Where would you like to be over the New Year's Eve? Organic reach and engagement. For most of people the Holidays is a great source of inspiration. Ask you followers where they would like to meet a New Year and tag a friend in their answer to pass the baton. Choose a winner randomly.
- Creative answer format. Ask you followers to tweet when and why they stopped believing in Santa in 140 characters or less. Put a question based on your business if you want to understand how your fans feel about your products and receive valuable feedback with this promotion.
- Reach a certain number of followers. Followers growth. Reward your "Nth" follower with a themed prize.
- Run sweepstakes on Facebook. One of the simplest campaigns you can run. It's easy for both a busy marketer to launch and a busy prospect or a fan to enter. At the same time, a sweepstakes' effectiveness can be poor if your aim is engagement. Use the sweepstakes to grow your fan base and reach a large audience.
- The last comment in the year. Engagement. Use this old-fashioned trick to provoke your fans and increase your Facebook page's engagement during the Holidays. Create one publication and encourage users to leave comments under it. The author of the comment that will be last in the year will receive a prize from you.
- Wish come true contest. Organic reach and followers growth. The Holidays is a time to share wishes. A great example of a successful contest is #DearTopshop, in which users could win various prizes by pinning Topshop items to their boards, brands can secure not only hefty amounts of traffic to their social sites, but also garner loyal followers and even customers.
- Pin it to win it. In a previous case the prizes where themed, but random. Run a contest, in which users can win your brand's items by pinning them to their boards.
- Coupons and group coupons. Create an additional page on your web site and offer your followers a coupon for a mailing address. To double results, encourage people to invite friends who will enter their mailing addresses too to help you to unlock a coupon.
- ... or ask fans to suggest someone to gift to.
- What inspires your users? Offer your followers to share their holiday stories, favorite songs, recipes, videos or even brand pages in comments.
- Holiday calendar. Let your followers know that you are working on a holiday content calendar, and invite them to participate in its development.
- This or That. Create a set of fun holiday themed quizzes for your followers that will increase engagement and accustom your followers to participate in your activities in the future.
- Letters to Santa. What questions would you ask Santa Claus if you had the chance?
- Guess the answer. Why do some contests get engagement while other don't? The reason is not in a quality of a contest you run (but, of course, it plays a great role too), but in how your audience is already engaged and prepared for a contest. Entertain and provoke your followers to leave comments. Ask fun holiday themed questions 12 days in a row treating participant with prizes.
- Secret Santa and gift exchanges. Secret Santa can be a fun way to spice up your holiday social media marketing by encouraging your fans to exchange random gifts with each other. That could help you to build a strong community around your brand without spending a penny... but you'd better choose other platform (a lot of available on the web) than Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.. Remember that your followers should share their personal information like home addresses in order to receive gifts. A huge responsibility. However, you can still use social media networks to promote your exchange and rekindle fans' interest.
This type of content is undeservedly forgotten when thinking about a content plan, but can be pretty effective though.
- Interviews. Interview people from your brand's sphere: ask about their plans on a new year, their recent achievements and things they regret they've done/haven't done.
- Hacks and tips. We've been already talking about various types of hacks and tips you can share with your followers in the very beginning. To stand out from a crowd, create short podcasts with a joyful Christmas music on the background instead of writing long text posts.
- Stories of your brand. Turn your corporate content into a podcast by sharing stories on how you get to a point where you're now, what the last year meant to your brand, and thank your followers and customers for everything they made for you.
Reviews of the best products / articles / competitions / events / webinars in your field
- Review the best products and gifts. Include your products in a list to generate leads and drive potential customers to your website.
- The year's top articles. Gather the top year's articles (30+ for Facebook) in your field into one post and mention their authors if possible.
- The best Holiday contests. Gather the best holiday contents available now in one post. Of course, this type of posts will draw traffic away from your page. The question you should answer before publishing it is whether organic reach can bring a greater benefit for you.
- The best online and offline events. If your page does not represent a local business, the best idea will be to share only offline events, so that anyone can join them.
- Lists of online classes and webinars available now & online classes, webinars and conferences that are expected in the coming year.
Followers' content and communications
- Repost holiday themed publications of your followers.
- If B2B, retweet and follow giveaways of your key clients.
- If B2B connected with social media, create sets of personalized content recommendations for your clients and prospects.
- Share holiday themed mentions of your brand.
- Share your clients' feedback on items that are on sale during the Holidays.
- New Year's resolutions with a hashtag. Offer your followers to create their New Year's resolutions and share them with your hashtag. Repost the best resolutions to your pages.
- Host a Twitter chat.
- Results of a Twitter chat. "Last night we hosted an awesome pre-holiday chat! Click "Like" if you were there with us (or wish you were here!) for a chance to win our T-Shirt"
- "Thank you" post. Social media is one of the fastest ways to reach your fans and thank them for being with you this year.
- Create a holiday photo album. Photo albums on Facebook actually get 180% more engagement than any other posts. Take advantage of them by creating albums with photos of your team, recent holiday activities, etc.
- Preparations to the Holidays. When building a community around your brand on social media, show people behind your business: allow your fans to take a glimpse at how your team prepares to the Holidays and make them feel part of the festivities.
- Movie your team. Shoot and share videos on social media on which your team members will be talking about 5 good things that happened to them this year and their expectations for the coming year.
- How do you celebrate a New Year? If you have a strong community, let your followers know where you and your team members could be found on a New Year (or a pre-New Year corporate party). Party hard with your fans and gather photos into a photo album afterwards.
- Closed events. At the same time, the Holidays is a great time to thank your followers for their loyalty and trust to your brand. If possible, organize local events for your fans and share info about it on social media.
- A year of changes. Complete videos, photos or screenshots of how your product (or a team) has evolved over the past year, where you're now and where you want to be the next year.
- Virtual office tour. If your office is decorated for the holidays, then images of the office decor can be turned into engaging social media content. This will have an effect similar to that of employee feature content as it will help to develop the connection that people feel with your business.
- New Year's Resolution. If you have dedicated fans and engaged users among your followers, then they expect a lot from you. Write a resolution for a coming year and share it with them.
- Charity. The Holidays is the best time not only to take, but also to give something to others. If your team members or the whole company support a charity, than create a content from it. Sell everything from a cocktail party to online lessons from the staff for charity. Or donate 1 dollar for each shared tweet that contains your hashtag. Do it!
- Show your products. Reserve a place in your social media content plan to show your products that can be bought during the Holidays. You're interested in sales, aren't you?
- Special offers. Get in the holiday spirit by offering special products or services or products at a discount. Even if you're unable to attract many buyers in the beginning stages, your special offers can resonate with prospects when they hit the stores in December.
- Ask for retweets. Use RT asks in your holiday coupon and contest campaigns. Spell out "retweet", to get 23x's more engagement.
- Ads during contests. Accompany your contests with holiday themed advertisement and promotions, and concentrate your efforts at the last hours of the contest. Run a new contest right before the end of the previous one to keep users on the page.
- 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways. Run giveaways every day to make people follow your news and engage in your other activities.
- Christmas Gift Guide. Create an illustrated gift guide and include your products into it.
- Promote holiday themed or relevant products.
- ... and run a big holiday sale!
What is the most important, share the joy of Christmas and stay with your users till the end. Even if you are planning a trip to Thailand on the Holidays, keep publishing your content or just schedule it in advance.