As we’ve traversed the holiday season this year, we’ve read some expert advice on how to make sure that you’re hitting the right marketing channels and messages. It seems like every time we blink, there is a new outlet popping onto the radar that is worthy of time and attention. No two platforms work exactly the same, and so optimizing holiday marketing can be a chore.
Our friends over at Constant Contact have gone to great lengths to write a guide that can help you plan for the holidays. But as we read through it, we couldn’t help but notice that there were loads of ways that you could use TextExpander to make your life even easier. We’re going to go point by point through their post, because it’s a brilliant method for planning out your holiday marketing messages.
Picking the Right Holidays
Before we dive in, it’s important to take some time to choose the holidays around which you’re going to run promotions. Some holidays make a lot more sense than others with how they align with a business. You should also be open-minded to branching out from holidays! For example, we might run a Spring Cleaning promotion that lines up with our productivity theme. Earth Day, Mental Health Day, International Dog Day, and Nurse’s Day are just a few of the non-holiday events that might be worth celebrating for your business.
Just as relevance is critical in your marketing messages, it’s also important to choose how you’ll run promotions. Jumping on the bandwagon will leave you with a promotion that feels contrived, and your customers are going to spot the lack of authenticity.
Preparation & Planning
Before you can begin optimizing holiday marketing, gather your ideas. This is the time to bring your team to the table and to brainstorm. For each holiday, you’re going to have to figure out a few pieces, at a minimum:
- What is your messaging?
- What URLs will you use?
- Which third-party channels will you use?
- What first-party channels will you use?
- Will you repurpose any content from one channel to another?
- Are you using hashtags? What are they?
Now is the time to do the hard work of writing out your messaging for each holiday. But don’t worry, you’re only going to do it once. When you’ve made your final decisions, you will load the messaging into a Snippet so that it’s handy, accurate, and shareable.
While we’re never ones to advocate for planning by committee, having the stakeholders at the table is important. But it’s equally important to know when to pare down the voices. Great messages can turn into cluttered messes when there are too many people involved. Remember, we’re going for optimization here.
While this preparation and planning stage is a great use case for TextExpander, it’s also an ideal time to look at TextExpander for Teams. When you add a member to your team, they’ll instantly have access to all the snippet groups they need.
Publish Those Updates
Updating websites, review sites, and listings is something that we should do all year. But facing facts, it’s a task that often gets pushed away until it’s more pressing. When you’re preparing for a big promotion, it’s critical that your messaging is on point. Use TextExpander to not only make the task faster, but to ensure that you’re keeping yourself on message as well.
As the original blog post points out, updating your website is only part of the battle. You also need to spend time on your Facebook page, your Google My Business profile, Yelp profile, and anywhere else that your business has a profile that you can manage yourself.
Load up your TextExpander account with your brand language, of course, but include your holiday promotional snippets as well. Now, while you’re updating your profiles, you can quickly include your promotions.
This is also an ideal time to dive into paid advertising. You spent some time brainstorming that ad copy and loading that into TextExpander too, right? Good! So head over to Facebook Business Manager, Google Ads, and your other usual suspects and get those ads prepped. The copy is already written, all you have to do is hit the shortcuts and add in your images.
Don’t Forget the Email
There seem to be two schools of thought for email as part of a larger campaign. One school takes a blog post and copy/pastes it into an email, calls it good enough, then presses send. The other school understands that every format is unique and is deserving of time and attention.
Snippets are especially valuable when creating email because email can seem distant from the rest of your messaging. It’s not on your website, it’s not included with your social media messaging, and it’s something that new customers are less likely to see. But being removed from your other messaging means that it’s more susceptible to errors. Also, by the very nature of email lists, it’s your existing customers who are likely to spot those errors.
As Constant Contact points out, the holidays are a great time to grow your email list so that you can stay in contact year round. But you have to make sure that your messaging is spot on, and using text expansion can help to keep you on track.
If you’ve already incorporated TextExpander into your daily process, you know the benefits. If not, Snippets and their many uses will blow you away.
If your plan included a coupon code, use a snippet to make sure that you’re including the code correctly. Remember when you chose a URL and created a snippet? Now you don’t have to flip tabs to make sure that your link is correct. Your core message? That’s in a snippet now too!
We’ve all seen the mistakes that get passed around the Internet. Don’t be next. Use TextExpander to make your email creation faster, easier, and more accurate.
Wrap It Up
No, we’re not quite done yet. When we say wrap it up, we’re talking about packaging it all together by following up after your promotion. It’s not uncommon for buyers to keep spending even after a holiday, so make sure you’re keeping in touch and on message. Since you’ve loaded all of that messaging into TextExpander, you won’t have to go digging to find past promotions.
Those snippets are also a great way to make your life easier when it’s time to do a recap email, blog post, or social message. Now you don’t have to dig through old postings, or try to find that piece of paper where you wrote your messages. Take a quick glance at your TextExpander and you’ll find every Snippet you’ve ever saved.
As noted in the original post, you should now have more great opportunities to add value, especially with newly added customers. As you gather their inquiries, remember to look for frequently asked questions you can answer via a snippet. Share those with your customer success team. Because your marketing efforts are often the first contact a customer will have with your company, it’s critical for the two teams to work together. Snippet groups make it simple to share the information of those answers as they develop.
There is rarely time to rest for a marketing team. By preparing holiday marketing in advance, and making use of text expansion, you can make this year your most effective yet. Even better? You’ll do it with more efficiency and less work than ever before.
We’d love to hear the unique ways that you use TextExpander. How have you added it to your workflow? We welcome your comments below.