Get the most out of the holiday season with these marketing tips

For small-business owners, the push to boost your marketing efforts and increase your brand awareness is a constant one. During the holiday season, when even the largest companies in the U.S. are beefing up their advertising, it’s more important than ever to make sure you’re doing all you can to get your voice heard amid the crowd of competitors.

While the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year, it’s also a great opportunity to incorporate some seasonal flair into your marketing efforts. Holiday-specific promotions across all your advertising channels can help you better connect with your customers, which may result in more business during this busy time. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Give your messaging a seasonal flair
By now you know that your brand depends just as much on your messaging and imagery as it does on your services. While it’s your skilled and professional staff that will keep your clientele coming back, it’s your promotional messaging that will get their attention in the first place.

Take a look at your competitors’ websites and you may notice them getting into the holiday spirit. This isn’t a bad strategy for you, either. Whether it’s changing up your website’s colors to reflect the classic red and green of the holidays or opting for a more subtle wintertime theme channeling snowflakes and fireplaces, a simple graphical overhaul can help you seem more relevant to your potential customers.

“Nothing brings people together like the holiday season.”

Join in conversation
Nothing brings people together like the holiday season. You need only take a brief tour through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest during November and December to see the extent to which seasonal cheer takes over people’s thoughts – and their social media feeds.

What better time to leverage a communication-driven marketing platform like social media than during the time of year when everyone seems to have so much to share? Real-time marketing strategies can be viable year-round, but there’s no shortage of thematic options during the winter holidays. Engage with your customers on Twitter or Facebook to let them know you appreciate their business. Consider sending messages directly to your recent customers indicating your gratitude. Even a general-purpose “Happy Holiday”-themed Facebook post can do lots for your seasonal brand awareness.

Get creative with your promotions
Every business under the sun will be offering a holiday promotion, so make yours stand out from the crowd of competitors. Your customers are likely inundated with generic “10 percent off” sales and similar promotions, so the trick will be making your name stand out.

Look to the holiday season itself for your inspiration. For example, you may wish to consider running a “Home for the Holidays” promotion, feeding off of the marked increase in air travel during the holiday season. It’s a little thing, but creativity in your marketing and promoting efforts can help humanize your small business and make it that much more appealing to clients, especially during the season that’s based on fostering greater human connection.