We’re mid-way through October and it’s nearly my favourite time of year because just after Halloween, there’s the thrill of Bonfire night (I do love a toffee apple, crunchy leaves underfoot and a good firework display!) and then before we know it…Santa is on his way! Which leads me to ask the question, have you planned your Christmas social media strategy yet?

If you have, hooray! But this blog isn’t for you.

If you haven’t, I can sense you rolling your eyes at me and there’s perhaps some chunnering in an almost ‘bah humbug’ fashion coming from you! Am I right? Well fear not! I’ve put together a few tips here on how to create a social media strategy for the Christmas period.

Do I really need a Christmas social media strategy?

Well of course I’m going to say “yes”…I wouldn’t be doing my job properly if I said “no, it’s OK, you can wing your social media” for, what is for many, the most profitable time of the year. In fact, I’d really like you to have had this sorted back in the Summer months, but let’s not dwell on that, there’s still time for you to pull this out of the bag.

Grab a cup of tea or a gingerbread latte (ooh autumnal vibes!), a notebook and pen (I’m old fashioned like that!) and spend a little time planning. I’m hoping you’ll find this guide full of useful and practical tips to build the best social media strategy for the festive period.

Time to do some digging

Before you start creating your Christmas social media strategy, do some research. If you can, take a look at what your competition are up to (or what they did last year) and think about festive themes you can weave into your content. It’s best to create content that isn’t too ‘salesy’, don’t forget people are on social media to be social, not to be sold to. I like to use the Readly app for content ideas too as you can look through back issues of magazines – sometimes it just sparks an idea and then I’m well away.

Why am I creating a social media strategy?

Are you wanting to raise awareness of your brand with a particular key customer segment? Or perhaps you want to drive traffic to your website in order to convert those visitors into sales. Whatever your reason for posting on social media, be really specific about what it is your trying to achieve and set yourself some goals, it’ll really help to focus what to post in your content, when to post it and on which channels.

Plan it out

When it comes to Christmas social media (well actually any strategy), it can be useful to pop the details in a plan. I use a calendar and add key dates, themes, what I’m planning to post and where. It just makes life simpler and many of my clients actually enjoy this part of the process!

Christmas content ideas

With all the background work out of the way, you can start to focus on the fun bit – what you’re actually going to post! If you’re selling products, then obviously you’ll want to have some direct ‘sales’ product posts sprinkled through your plan, but what else could you post about. Here are just five suggestions:

  • Behind the scenes, getting Christmas ready
  • Which Christmas foods you love/ask which your audience love (food posts always have a great response)
  • Wrapping up cosy on a chilly day
  • Dropping parcels off/having them collected
  • Your favourite Christmas films

So what you’re doing here is helping your customer to know, like and trust you whilst also promoting products. There are also some subtle ways you can weave your products into posts with clever product placement.

What, where and how?

When it comes to which digital channel to use, think about where your customer is hanging out. Perhaps they’re on Facebook or Instagram, or Twitter and TikTok. Knowing this will mean that you are posting in the right place and not wasting your time and energy posting on irrelevant platforms.  

With channels decided, it’s time to think about the type of content and when you’re going to post it. Video is crucial in developing a social media strategy so make sure you have plenty of this planned in, whether it’s pre-recorded or live. You can make great use of Instagram Reels, Stories, Instagram TV, TikTok and even YouTube. And of course, there’s written and image posts too.

What is needed?

Content decided on, let’s get creating. It’s a good idea to prepare images well in advance so think about what props you’ll need to give images that Christmassy feel. I have built up a box of props which includes items like wrapping paper, twinkly lights and fake pine cones! These are great as you can you use them year after year.

Also have a think about colours you’d like to use. Are there any colours within your brand that fit with Christmas? If not, is it possible to create a Christmas colour palette that fits with your brand? Make sure whatever you use is consistent across the season so when customers see it, it is recognisable as yours.

Once your content has been created, I’d recommend scheduling in the posts so that you don’t have to worry about it (although do check your content is relevant and not outdated along the way). The advantage we have as small businesses is that posts can be changed at short notice.

Keeping things in check

And with this in mind, once your Christmas content is underway, make sure you’re keeping an eye on whether it is working. Remember the goals you set and check you’re on your way to achieving them. If you’re not, you may need to rethink or change some of your content.

When should I start using my Christmas social media strategy?

I would say, anytime now. This year is unusual as there is talk of shortages and supply chain difficulties. People may be thinking about buying early so that they have everything ready for the big day well in advance.

There’s also some key dates to consider in November:

26th – Black Friday

27th – Small Business Saturday

29th – Cyber Monday

so have a think whether there are any promotions or special offers you want to run over this weekend.

Just a few tips…

Have you got to the bottom? Phew! This blog was a lot lengthier than I’d originally planned, but I want to help you as much as possible with your Christmas social media strategy.

If you need any help with your planning, do get in touch (you know I love to hear from you) and let me know in the comments how you get on!

Gill x

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