Yes Virginia, There is an Easy Way to Promote Your Biz for the Holidays!

Retailers don’t have a lot of free time. And what little free time you DO have, goes out the window around the holidays! So when you’re strapped for time but need to market your store for the busiest time of the year, where do you turn? To social media! Social media is an excellent tool for retailers, no matter the season. Not only is it free or low-cost, but also it’s less time-consuming and more engaging than more traditional marketing techniques. And it allows you to have direct conversations with your customers and online audiences, building brand awareness and keeping you top-of-mind. Plus, it’s a great way to find new customers.

Many retailers shy away from social media or don’t fully leverage this marketing outlet because they didn’t grow up with the technology or they don’t make the time for it. But they are missing out on an amazing opportunity to engage customers and grow relationships. We want to make social media simple for you this holiday season with these tips!

Facebook Ads

The way to get exposure and be more frequently in front of your customers this holiday season is through Facebook Ads. If you’re not using Facebook Ads, you’re wasting time on Facebook. The good news is you don’t need a big-box budget, you can run effective ad campaigns for as little as $50/month. We recommend doing a Facebook Offer Ad during the holiday season, which gives customers a discount or deal, which they can bring into the store (or redeem online), which generates foot traffic. A good deal is a great reason to click an ad! A few other ads we recommend this holiday season are the Page Post Engagement Ad, advertising each post; Local Awareness Ads, especially if you have a lot of events going on in the area or during Small Business Saturday, and Event Ads for all in-store events like Holiday Previews, Open Houses, Ladies Night Out, etc. Here’s an example of a Facebook Offer Ad we ran for our clients Cloud Nine Pajamas during December 2014.

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Plan & Schedule

Often, failure is often the outcome of not knowing when to do something, not how to do something. That is why planning and scheduling are so vital to success -- even with your holiday marketing. If you only have an hour to spare, sit down and try to come up with social posts for the next month. If you have two, think of posts to get you through the holidays. Even more time? Focus on a more complex marketing strategy involving multiple emails and video. Use scheduling tools like the Facebook Scheduler and/or Hootsuite to “set and forget” your marketing while you manage your store. Once you have a plan, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to stick to it. Schedule time to schedule social media posts.

Use Multiple Channels

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Speaking of email and video, you should try to use as many channels as possible to promote your products during the holidays. I know what you’re thinking: “That sounds like a LOT of time and work. I thought this was supposed to be easy.” And it is! Using multiple channels doesn’t mean coming up with a ton of original content. Record a video on your phone highlighting your favorite holiday gifts, upload it to YouTube AND Facebook (directly uploading to your Facebook page) and share the video in an email and boom! One piece of content sent to three different places. All you need to do is write a quick message for each, customize with photos or graphics, and you’re done! Think about how to reuse useful content.

Let Customers Create the Content

Yes, your customers can be a fantastic selling tool! The holidays are a great time to remind customers to share feedback, reviews, and photos of the products they purchase from your store. You can then share these items on your on social media pages! Sharing five customer photos and reviews will save you from having to create five pieces of content. Another way to get customers involved is through a contest on Instagram or Facebook, where the rules are simple: Follow Us, Tag a friend in a comment on the contest post, and you both can win! This type of contest asks fans to share your page to their friends, which is a great way to get some viral exposure and new followers. Let your customers’ voices be heard, ask them to share, and everyone wins.

Holiday Marketing Bundle

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Still feeling like you could use a holiday boost? We’ve got you covered! We created our holiday marketing bundle with you in mind, giving you written-for-you posts and emails, graphics for social media and email campaigns, and our 12 Days of Christmas Promotion with easy-to-follow instructions on how to implement. It’s fast, it’s festive, and it’s designed to give you more of that elusive free time. You can access the Holiday Marketing Bundle at crystalmedia.co/holiday. The bundle is available to purchase until December 1st, 2015.

What is stressing you out most about the upcoming holiday season? We want to know!