Tune-Up Tips: Quirky Holiday Marketing Edition

December 09, 2019

(Editor’s note: This is the final installment a monthly series about tuning up different aspects of marketing activities.)

The upcoming New Year means it’s time to start thinking about new promotions for the next year.

Although all promotions take careful planning, the major holidays are easier to prepare for. That’s why this edition of our tune-up tips series is dedicated to quirky holidays like the upcoming National Cotton Candy Day.

Tune-Up Tip #1: Riff off an Existing Holiday

There are over 1,500 national holidays. Although many of these emphasize specific foods and beverages (National Candy Cane Day, National Hot Buttered Rum Day and National Hot Chocolate Day, to name a few), there are many others.

How can a business piggyback off one of these existing holidays? Outdoor recreation company The North Face closed its 113 stores in honor of Earth Day. The North Face leveraged this holiday to reinforce its brand, publicly endorse a message of environmental protection and get some publicity for its efforts.

Another approach is to pick a holiday and run a promotion in its honor. Dunkin Donuts offered free doughnuts on National Doughnut Day.

Where can you find these holidays to inspire your next promotional idea? We’ve listed a few of our favorite sources:

National Day Calendar

Days of the Year

Time and Date

Tune-Up Tip #2: Invent Your Own Holiday

Overwhelmed at the prospect of sifting through hundreds of holidays to find one that might work for you? There’s always the option to invent your own “holiday.”

American Express founded Small Business Saturday in 2010. This has caught on as a staple of the holiday season.

Other companies invented their own holidays, too. Amazon launched Prime Day in 2015 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the company’s founding. It was intended to serve as a summertime counter point to Black Friday. Like Amazon, Wayfair launched Way Day in 2018 with sales intended to act as a counterpoint to Black Friday. Both these holidays have turned increasing revenue year-over-year.

Way Day and Prime Day are such a major sales events that other retailers riff off of them to offer their own alternative Way Day and Prime Day deals.

You don’t need to be a major credit card or ecommerce company to invent your own holiday. The Balance Small Business has a great article detailing how to create your own holiday. You can take the informal route and declare your holiday on your advertising channels (social media, store signage, etc.). Or you can lobby a government entity to declare make your holiday official.

Tune-Up Tip #3: Make it Fun

Whether you’re riffing off an existing holiday or going with one of your own invention, you must make it fun! Holidays are for celebrating.

Find ways for your customers to have fun with the holiday. Develop contests, giveaways or quizzes. Use your channels to build hype about the holiday in advance and during the holiday.

Some of our favorite platforms to help make fun campaigns include:

Woobox: for creating contests, giveaways, quizzes and polls

Gif Maker: for making GIFs to share on social media

IMG Flip: for making memes to share on social media

Read the previous entries in our Tune-Up Series:

Tune-Up Tips: Social Media Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Email Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Digital Marketing Edition

Tune-Up Tips: App Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Websites Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Holiday Marketing Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Direct Mail Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Photography Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Data Analysis Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Digital Coupons Edition

Tune-Up Tips: Responding to Reviews Edition

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Direct Mail
Marketing Strategy