As the year winds down, many marketers find themselves staring at a dwindling supply of new content for their owned channels. Despite all that careful planning and preparing, the content well has dried up and there’s still two months of blog posts, customer emails, e-newsletters and social media channels to fill.
What’s a worn-out marketing team to do? What content could be created quickly and meaningfully during the U.S. holiday season without it appearing too gimmicky and self-serving?
Here are seven content topics that don’t need to be written by a subject matter expert and will help fill out your content calendar through the busy end-of-year rush:
This is the time of year for cool gadgets and previews for new technology. Take advantage of your audience’s natural interest in high-tech products to highlight your most innovative features and promote what’s coming in 2016.
Collect and share trends of interest to your customers and create a few of your own. Ask your sales team for informal predictions for 2016, or review sales data and customer behavior patterns to create trends for your industry.
Hire a consultant or rely on your own team to share market and industry outlooks for 2016. If there are challenges ahead, start connecting the dots and show your customers how partnering with your company can help them through it.
Instead of boring your audience with year-in-review reports about what your company did in 2015, try highlighting your success through the eyes of the customers you helped. Focus on their achievements and celebrate their victories.
Charity and “doing good”
Whether it’s a special fundraising drive during the holidays or a recap of all your fundraising efforts from the year, share stories, videos and results from your company’s charitable acts. Forget the giant check photos, and instead feature the people behind the effort — those who raised the money and those who received it. Share the stories behind why you chose to help these organizations and people.
Your company doesn’t need a retail store to create a wish list of must-have products for the holidays. You know your customers and what they like — use that insight to create “Top 10 Best Gifts” for … heavy equipment operators … or finance managers … or millennials … or whoever your audiences may be. Survey your customers or employees for what’s on their wish lists, review sales data to find the most popular products you sold in 2015, or just offer fun and creative gift ideas.
Don’t overdo it, but your customers may enjoy seeing how their favorite brands celebrate the holidays. Whether it’s a show-stopping holiday light display at one of your factories, a gingerbread decorating contest among the exec team, or your annual holiday potluck recipe winners, it’s a great way to humanize your company and connect with customers.
Your goal with holiday content should not be to sell your company’s products or services. Use this time to show off the human side of your company. Connect with your audiences over shared customs and traditions, and set out to entertain them. There’s a lot competing for their attention, so your content needs to be visual and relevant to them.
Holidays around the world
Finally, a quick note about “the holidays.” Most companies that Two Rivers Marketing works with have a global footprint. Holidays here in the United States may not mean as much to customers in Mumbai or Frankfurt. If you decide to share your U.S. holiday customs, consider giving some attention to your offices and customers located in other parts of the world, too.
You can’t celebrate every single holiday with every customer, but you can take the time to research your top five or 10 global markets and better understand their holidays and customs. Use Facebook’s targeted promoted posts to share seasonal content with specific countries and regions. Ask your sales or marketing teams in those areas for local photos, stories and content ideas.