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Creating GREAT content for the Holidays in 2020

| Bianca Nucaro |

Creating GREAT content for the Holidays in 2020

Welcome to 705 Creative’s guide to great content for Christmas 2020

Coordinating your social media content strategy for key holidays, such as Christmas, is a wise strategy for keeping your content fresh and engaging. However this year, creating content for Christmas will be a completely different experience full of new considerations and sensitivities.

With COVID-19 cases on the rise across the country, brands have the unique challenge of marketing for a socially distanced Christmas without the usual shopping, traditions or large gatherings. For many brands, these changes will mean a significant shift in their social media and online marketing strategies for the holidays. In today’s post, we’re going to be discussing our top tips and content ideas for Christmas 2020, a Christmas unlike any other. 

First and foremost, be sensitive. 

As a retail brand or eCommerce business, the holiday season is often the largest driver of sales. Typically, these remaining months of the year are geared towards finding the perfect gift for everyone in your life and identifying the “must-have” items for the holiday season. For service based businesses, the holidays can often mean additional clients and even shifts in customer priorities. Businesses are working hard to stay afloat during these challenging times and profit margins must be maintained to ensure your bottom line is protected. We totally get it! 

However, it is important for brands to remain sensitive this holiday season to all the challenges that COVID-19 brings to routines, traditions and holiday plans. For many people, the holidays this year will be very different as social distancing and travel restrictions further impede our ability to gather and be merry.

Folks of all ages will be hesitant to go to a busy mall for holiday shopping, visit friends and extended family or cater large meals. All of these changes are sure to bring significant stress and anxiety which is why your content strategy needs to reflect these feelings in your target audiences. 

Rather than your typical planned content of holiday sales and general merriment, we encourage our clients to think outside the box about what this year means for their primary audiences. It is important to emphasize these feelings in your holiday content to reflect the current global climate.

Some great ideas for Christmas 202 content could include:

  • Focusing on togetherness but socially distanced – video calls, unique ways to celebrate holiday traditions etc. 
  • Alternative shopping options for your customers – curbside pick up, online etc. 
  • Focusing on content that is easily adapted to different regions and anxieties around COVID-19 – we truly don’t know what the next day, week or month has in store!

Focus on togetherness – Video calls & unique ways to celebrate!

No matter how you choose to connect with your customers and audience this holiday season, it is important to remember that this year is not “business-as-usual” and your content planning should reflect that. 

Embrace VIRTUAL

Throughout 2020, we have adapted to virtual working, socializing and engaging like never before. Your holiday 2020 campaign is an excellent time to showcase the way your products, services or business can be adapted to fit these new virtual times.

Whether you have created new technologies to help make virtual social hours more enjoyable or have discovered  a unique way to use your products for a new virtual Christmas tradition, it is important to showcase your brand’s adaptability in your content. The possibilities are truly endless here and the more adaptable your products can be, the more likely you are able to maximize on a holiday content strategy this season. 

Create content that reflects the world we (currently!) live in

Another great rule of thumb when creating content for the holidays in 2020 is to ensure your content is accurately reflecting the world we live in. This type of content should include:

  • Content featuring customers wearing masks or practicing social distancing
  • Content showcasing virtual events or alternative holiday traditions
  • Photos or videos highlighting the ease of online shopping or curbside pick up
  • Behind the scenes of your team or brand engaging in (COVID-19 safe) holiday preparations

Photos or videos highlighting the ease of online shopping or curbside pick up

No matter how you choose to tell your brand story online, we highly recommend doing a thorough review of all previously created holiday collateral, branding and copy to ensure it is reflective of the time we currently live in. Unfortunately, this may mean additional investments in recreating classic holiday campaign content to ensure it reflects our current environment. 

Give back

This year has been difficult for many people from all different walks of life. Whether physically, emotionally or financially, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed many people’s lives dramatically and the holiday season will continue to be a reminder of that.

Support the community – Donate, Show Gratitude & Support Local

In the spirit of togetherness and support, the end of 2020 is an excellent time to start (or double down) on a social cause for your business. This type of involvement and support is a form of corporate social responsibility and you don’t need to look far to find examples of this social involvement in action. Most large brands (and many small ones!) often contribute or fundraise on behalf of various social causes. No matter the cause you choose, this effort keeps your brand top of mind for other socially conscious individuals looking to give back this holiday season. 

Even if your business is not in the position to donate funds or proceeds from sales, some simple content honouring the many front line workers of this pandemic can really show gratitude and appreciation, and will resonate with your audience.

If you are a business that employs front line workers such as servers or retail staff, this is also a great opportunity to honour their hard work during this challenging and unpredictable year. 

Creating a conversation through giving back is a great way to drive traffic to your social media or website and can lead to sales and loyal customers down the road. In a busy time like the holidays, make your content count!

Be ready to pivot

One of the best pieces of advice we can give when creating a content calendar for the 2020 holiday season is to create content that is easily adapted for changing conditions. For many places around the world, COVID-19 is experiencing a second wave and there is a heightened potential for additional restrictions, lockdowns and general anxiety over the rising case numbers. For many consumers, this will significantly impact their ability to shop for holiday presents, entertain with friends and family and even go home for the holidays if travel is restricted.

Given that these restrictions and precautions can vary greatly from place to place, it is important to have a COVID-19 strategy that can be easily adapted for these changes. If you are a local maker or small business, this is relatively easy to manage. However, if you are a national retailer or a small business with clients and/or locations in multiple provinces, this balancing act can be tricky. Stay on top of current news and recommendations from health officials in your area to ensure you are staying safe and presenting responsible and accurate content to your audiences. 

We recommend creating a bank of COVID-19 holiday content for all circumstances so you are able to adapt as needed to changes in varying regions.

This may be an initial investment in additional graphic design or copywriting that you wouldn’t normally need, but in COVID-19 times the businesses that can adapt quickly and communicate change effectively are often the ones consumers trust. 

Some examples of varying messaging and content you may want to consider creating include:

  • Various content outlining your alternative shopping arrangements should in-store retail no longer be available
  • Content that clearly outlines your shipping timelines and costs so customers aren’t left scrambling at the last minute when ordering online
  • Visual guidelines for COVID-19 safety protocols (make them holiday themed, it’s more fun!)

Want to learn more about unique holiday campaign ideas?

Put the experts at 705 Creative to work for you! Our team of dedicated social media management and digital marketing professionals have the pulse on all things Christmas 2020 including creating the perfect holiday content for your brand. This is a year unlike any other and you want your content to reflect that during the busiest time of the year. We understand that and want to help break through the clutter of holiday advertising to reach your customers. 

Our social media management team can help bring in new leads through data driven advertising and help to amplify your voice online. For more information on 705 Creative’s social media management services, visit https://705creative.ca/services/

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