I recently tuned in for Google’s Spruce Up Your Holiday Marketing Plan livestream. I thought it included so much valuable information for small business owners that it encouraged me to put this blog post together on Christmas Marketing tips! The livestream is a good 1.5 hours long, if you’re keen to watch it, here it is:
And if you’re busy (aren’t we all this time of year) then below you’ll find my key takeaways alongside some of my own tips. Whether you are an eCommerce business who booms over Christmas and the holidays or you’re a service-based business who closes down, everyone will pick up a tip or 2.
Google My Business
If Google My Business isn’t already part of your marketing plan, it should be. Especially if you have a business location which your customers visit. Google My Business is completely free to set up, and to really get the most of it you should be keeping it up to date and fresh as much as possible.
Over the Christmas holidays here are some Google My Business tips to help you get the most from this listing:
- Ensure your business and holiday hours are up to date and correct (here is a video on how to update your holiday and business hours on Google)
- Publish Google posts to show off your holiday spirit and let people know about holiday promotions
- Add new photos and videos – you may want to show off seasonal decor installations or special Christmas products
- Encourage people to leave reviews and ensure you respond to those reviews, even if it’s just to say thanks
- In the dashboard you can create a special shortlink, like this to give customers: g.page/grandcrudigital/review
- Create a welcome offer for people who follow your business profile on mobile
- Download the Google My Business app to make doing the above even easier
As we all know, SEO takes time, so getting to the first page of the search results in less than 4 weeks might not be realistic for you. Therefore considering Google Ads might be a good option.
With Google Ads you can get ads up and on the first page within hours or even minutes to help boost Christmas sales and business. However to ensure your money is not going down the drain, make sure you have a good idea what you are doing. Here are some of my top tips for small business owners who are running their own Google Ads.
For the Christmas period I would consider the below Google Ads marketing strategies:
- Set up remarketing ads, so you can remind people who didn’t purchase on their first visit to come back to your website
- If you have special Christmas promotions running, make sure to mention them in your ads
- If you sell physical products, you should seriously consider Google Shopping campaigns
This was the part of the Google Livestream linked to above that I enjoyed the most because I am just getting into email marketing myself. I also found many of the tips not just useful for the Christmas marketing season but for all year round. Here are some of my key takeaways:
- Let your database know your business hours over the holidays
- Let your database know of any special Christmas promotions and products
- Keep it simple – an image, paragraph and CTA (call-to-action) – people are busy so make sure your emails are easy to digest
- People aren’t always thinking about your business like you are, so if you have a special offer, make sure you announce this and then possibly send a 2nd reminder and maybe even a 3rd ‘last chance’ reminder
- Have a plan and schedule your emails so there is less stress
- Get creative with email subject lines, e.g.
- Yule adore our Christmas gift packs!
- Ho! Ho! Ho! Our Christmas Shop is Open
At all times of year your website should look good and function well. This includes on both desktop and mobile devices. If you’ve got this nailed, then here are a few extra things you can consider for your Christmas Marketing plan:
- Utilise a tool like HelloBar to draw people’s attention to a particular page on your site, promotion you are running or something you want to emphasise, e.g. ‘free shipping’ or ‘Christmas deliveries close on X date’
- On a side note, shipping costs and timeframes are one of the biggest frustrations for online shoppers – so make sure these are really obvious
- Add Christmas flair to your branding and images. It could be something small as updating your logo to include a santa hat. Or updating the main hero image on your homepage to something with a bit of a festive flair
- Don’t forget to set a reminder to revert these changes back post-Christmas though!
- Create new blog posts which tie into the season