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November 25, 2013 | Maria Talley

4 Ways to Gear Up Your Social Media Planning for the Holidays

Social Media Planning for Holidays

As consumers, many of us will spend our post-turkey-feast time browsing through pumpkin dessert recipes on Pinterest, clicking on the occasional winter clothing deal on Facebook, or hunting for instant discounts and coupons on Twitter. While we discuss those awesome deals with our Facebook peers, brands and retailers will be listening and learning what ads and promotions make the most sense for different audiences.

The winter holiday season is an important time for marketers and business owners as we watch for trends in consumer behavior in order to find out what triggers decision-making along that sacred path to purchase. While looking for ideas on ways to establish a meaningful connection with our audiences, marketers will be engaging with potential customers and brand advocates across all social media outlets.

As a marketer, how will your social media planning for the holidays improve engagement and drive sales this season? If you don't know the answer, fear not! We've got 4 suggestions for you:

1. Redesign your cover photo to spread holiday cheer

Redesigning your social media artwork to reflect your holiday spirit is a great way to relate to your audience and join the celebration. It doesn't have to be anything elaborate: adding a festive pumpkin or a couple of snowflakes to your cover photo or avatar will show potential customers that you're as excited for the holidays as they are.

2. Engage your employees

Your people are your company's most valuable asset. Ask your employees to share what they are most thankful for in a blog post and/or on your company's Facebook or Twitter page, or by using a specific hashtag like #GivingThanks. They could also contribute by posting creative and fun photos of their holiday feasts on Instagram.

3. Ask questions and use specific calls to action

It's no secret that Facebook and Twitter posts containing the keywords "Like," "Submit," "Share," "Post," and "Tell Us" earn the highest rate of engagement with social media posts. Mix these keywords with some attractive holiday topics, and you'll notice the increase in interactions. For example, try something like "Tell us about your most memorable Thanksgiving dinner," "Share your own Turkey recipe with us," or "Like if you are excited about holiday shopping" to encourage your followers to interact with you.

4. Use the 50/50 cocktail party rule

If you've never heard of the "cocktail party rule," think about the last time you were at a gathering. There was probably someone there who talked only about themselves, and someone else who was the life of the party because they discussed interesting things and other people as well as themselves. The same is true in marketing - be sure to engage with your customers about their interests instead of just posting about your company's products and offerings. Try to spend 50% of your time talking to your audience about what you can do for them and other 50% posting other relevant and interesting content.

Easy enough, right? Even if you haven't started your holiday shopping yet, there's still time to get ahead on spreading holiday cheer through your brand's social media profiles!

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Maria Talley

Maria Talley

Maria Chueva Talley is a long-time friend of VIEO and guest contributor to our blog. She was VIEO's Internet Marketing Manager for several years, and has recently moved on new internet and marketing adventures.

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