Do You Hear What I Hear? Holiday Leads Are Ringing
A post in a series of '12 Days of Content', for marketers, by marketers
December 4, 2014
Ebenezer Scrooge, the indelible main character from Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, has shaped our culture’s ideas about work and the Christmas holiday. Early in Dickens’ book, the miserly and villainous Scrooge begrudgingly gives Bob Cratchit half a day off on Christmas but demands that his clerk come in early the next day to make up for not working on December 25.
Of course, after being haunted by three ghosts on Christmas Eve, the miser is transformed into Scrooge 2.0. Taking a positive view of Christmas, he happily gives Cratchit the entire day off to celebrate.
In the United States, there are very few Scrooge 1.0’s in existence. Work and Christmas do not go hand in glove. Most workers get the holiday off, and some companies shut down completely between Christmas and New Year’s Day.
With so many people not working at the end of December, should B2B marketers continue to spend on marketing during the holidays? The answer may surprise you.
There are, in fact, a number of compelling reasons to continue investing in your B2B marketing programs during the holiday season:
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Even if your prospects are traveling and vacationing away from work, their mobile devices keep them linked to the office. To reach these potential prospects, make sure your website, your landing pages, and your display and social advertising are compatible with mobile phones to reach as much as your audience as possible, even over the holiday break.
Budgets Are Expiring
Many marketers have budgets that expire on Dec. 31 and are in a use-it-or-lose-it situation. If budgeted marketing dollars aren’t spent by the end of 2014, they many not carry over in 2015. That’s a compelling reason to continue communicating with your audience this December. Perhaps even more importantly, your prospects may be in the same position. Your potential customers may have budget dollars earmarked for the products and services you provide, and these funds must be spent before 2015 arrives. Even if the calendar says December, work doesn’t necessarily stop for everyone in America. Projects can be up against year-end deadlines, and buying decisions are often still being made as a fiscal year draws to a close.
Own The Conversation
It’s unfortunate, but many B2B marketers sit on the sidelines during December instead of keeping their content strategy “always-on”. This gives you a chance to own the conversation and boost your share of voice during the holidays. Additionally, at LinkedIn our data indicates that targets are actually more engaged during the holidays, perhaps because they have fewer meetings and can focus on research and learning during the run-up to New Year’s Day. For example, engagement for LinkedIn’s own Thanksgiving Sponsored Updates last year delivered engagement that was higher by double digits than the previous Thursday.
Even if you and most of the rest of the USA aren’t working during the Christmas holiday, your prospects may be toiling away, especially if they’re in China or other parts of Asia where Christmas isn’t widely celebrated. Keep your international marketing programs going full steam, because the global economy is still in motion during Christmas.
You and your colleagues don’t have to be in the office for your marketing to function. Using marketing automation to send emails over the holiday and using retargeting techniques to reach prospects who are visiting your website are two simple and automated ways to keep your marketing swinging even if you’re not actually punching the clock.
It's An Always-On World
Would you think of shutting down your website over Christmas break? Of course not. Prospects may still be researching purchases during the holidays. You probably wouldn’t shut down your social media or your paid search program either. And if your prospects are still visiting your website, there’s ample reason to keep your multi-channel nurturing programs going by reaching website visitors with display and social media advertising.
The bottom line is your marketing can work even when you’re not, so you can reach prospects over the Christmas holiday -- without resorting to being a Scrooge and taking the drastic measure of making Bob Cratchit or anyone else in your department work on Christmas Day.
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This post is the 4th in a blog series helping marketers to celebrate the fact that the #HolidaysAreIn with others in their LinkedIn network. Check out more related posts in our ’12 Days of Content’ series below.