Prepping a marketing plan for the Holidays

The festive season is fast approaching, and it's time to start thinking about how you'll prepare your marketing efforts. Here are a few tips to get the ball rolling.

prepping-for-christmas

So you need a Christmas marketing plan? This is arguably the most important time of year for most brands – especially when it comes to gaming – so this is going to take a little more planning than usual. Here are a few simple steps to get you started with planning for the holiday season.

Step 1 – Draw up a calendar

The festive period isn’t just about Christmas. Along with other festivities celebrated by various cultures around the world (Thanksgiving, Winter Solstice etc), there are also relatively new ‘retail’ holidays that have become popularised in recent years. We’re talking about Black Friday and Cyber Monday – events in which customers will be intensely focused on social media in the search for bargains. Draw up a calendar with as many events as possible, and figure out which ones are relevant to your brand, so you can think about how your messaging and offers will play into these events well ahead of time.

Step 2 – Understand your audience

Firstly, segment your audience. Figure out who you are looking to target and optimise your search visibility to reach that audience. Think about how likely they are to be affected by seasonal marketing. Naturally, Christmas is a time when you will be looking to attract new customers, so think about how you can focus your plans around more accessible products, at entry-level price points. According to the Bank of England, British household spending typically increases by £700 during the festive season, so think about how you can encourage customers to take a chance on your brand with this extra spend.

Step 3 – Understand your business’s position at Christmas

If you have data from past holiday seasons, then your first port of call should be to analyse this data. Look at past marketing materials, sales strategies, and campaigns for clues about what can work for you again this year. This research will provide insights into determining your inventory, deals, promotional offers etc.

Step 4 – Flesh out the plan

By now, you should have the bones of your seasonal marketing plan – all that remains is to flesh it out. Think about how you can make your brand stand out, when other companies will also be looking to ramp up their marketing efforts. Think about how you can win interest with social media events, campaigns, and even competitions. Will you need extra creative support? Designers, writers, or video editors? Think about this well in advance, as freelancers will be busier during the holidays, so you’ll need to seek out help sooner rather than later. Get your content plan sorted along with any support you’ll need well ahead of time.

Step 5 – Decide your tactics

Every year, customer’s expectations get higher. You’ll obviously want to make sure that your website and social media destinations are suitably festive, but you’ll also want to make sure that the user journey is both positive and streamlined. Around the Christmas season, competition will be tougher, so consider whether pivoting to new forms of media would help your brand stand out. Does your product lend itself well to video content? If so, consider branching out into TikTok or Snapchat. If it’s more image-focussed, Instagram might be the way to go. Working out what your audience is most likely to use will inform your decision. 

Step 6 – Launch and learn

Once your plan is finalised, it’s time to launch. Be reactive and don’t be afraid to pivot and refine your plan as you go. A test and learn approach will help you maximise your success. Take note of any lessons you learn during this time – they will inform next year’s plan.

If you’re feeling the stress of Christmas planning and aren’t sure where to begin, why not get in touch with Project N and arrange a chat? Just drop us an email and we’ll see what we can do to help!