With every New Year comes the opportunity to review the past year, set new goals, and yes, revisit your marketing plan. To make it easier for you, we came up with a plan to help you start off the year on the right foot. Welcome to “calendar-based marketing”, the strategy to help you weather every season of the market.
The idea of calendar-based marketing is to stay on top of the latest seasonal trends with a holiday-oriented adaptive plan. Oftentimes, we’re so engrossed in the rhythm of holidays, we don’t even question why Easter candy and decorations come into stores in February. This is to a marketer’s benefit, but it raises the question: Do you really need two months to dye an egg?
Unless you’re raising the chicken. Probably not. But for a new online advertising campaign, certainly yes! When you create your marketing plan, make sure to budget time for researching the latest search trends, preparing store displays or advertisements, figuring out sales and promotions and ordering special themed packaging. Furthermore, don’t neglect to schedule evaluations after each special event.
Highlight the Holidays that Matter Most
An important part of brainstorming a calendar-based plan is to highlight the holidays most important to your target audience. Think about which holidays your current and desired customers observe, then dig deeper into the meaning of those holidays, whether they be joyous national festivals, moments of reflection, or religious observances.
For each holiday, brainstorm events, sales, or special offers that could bridge the meaning of the holiday with your product or service. Say you’re the owner of a flower shop; starting mid-January, you could advertise “love bouquets” and “rose petals” on your website, or you could hold a contest on Facebook for customers to post a picture of their most creative bouquet arrangement using only household items. By the time Valentine’s Day rolls around, you’ll have generated a friendly buzz (and it doesn’t hurt your SEO either).
Fill in the Blanks
Once you have a list of holidays and have started to develop your marketing around them, look for gaps in the calendar that might be good opportunities for non-holiday themed promotions. You might say, “Hey, July is kind of a dry month, what about doing a special summer event to generate traffic and sales?” And if you’re in the Southern hemisphere, you could create a winter wonderland “Julybilee”.
Whichever holidays your local calendar contains, building a marketing plan around seasonal events is a simple and effective way to organize your promotional efforts. This new year, make it your resolution to take advantage of search trends and product cycles with a markrting plan for those holidays for which you just can’t wait. If you’re excited, your audience probably is as well.