If there is one thing we know about strategic marketers, it’s that they take advantage of every opportunity to boost sales and incentivize purchases. Their bread and butter – or, in our case, their “cake and icing” – are the holidays and the secret ingredient to developing a holiday marketing strategy that is chef’s kiss!
But when the holiday hype dwindles, marketers face a new challenge. After the candy-cane dust settles, brands often see a dip in sales. Keeping conversions high during Q1 and Q2 calls for an extra dash of creativity and a sprinkle of festivity.
One way to keep the magic in the air is to incorporate Q1 and Q2 holidays into your marketing strategy. This is also a great way to embrace and spread awareness about some of the less widely celebrated – but deeply important and influential – holidays like Black History Month, Autism Awareness Month, National Women’s Day, and Earth Day. We often neglect these truly special days entirely.
But more and more brands are embracing these quirky, less popularized holidays by building campaigns around the occasions! The key: Think outside of the box. Hold on to your chef hats because we are diving into the first half of the year with a few fresh-baked ways to incorporate Q1 and Q2 holidays into your marketing strategy. CAUTION: They’re hot and may burn through your inventory!
Know the Holidays and Add Them to Your Calendar
There are, of course, a few major Q1 and Q2 holidays that you should have marked in your calendar and could weave into your marketing strategy, including:
- New Year’s
- Martin Luther King Day
- Black History Month
- Superbowl Sunday
- Valentine’s Day
- President’s Day
- Women’s History Month
- Mardi Gras
- April Fool’s Day
- Earth Day
- Cinco de Mayo
- Mother’s Day
- Memorial Day
- Father’s Day
But then, some are much less conventional. We will warn you some of these holidays are a bit unusual, but they can be leveraged to your brand’s benefit in ways you wouldn’t expect.
The complete collection of Q1 and Q2 National and World holidays includes a variety of some of the quirkiest yet most creative days for brands and customers to celebrate. There are plenty of quirky opportunities from National Pancake Day to Global Recycling Day, International Pisco Sour Day, Bubblegum Day, National Tartan Day, and even Don’t Cry Over Spilt Milk Day can be leveraged to market your business. While these days aren’t major holidays, they all celebrate something that brands can use with relevant products, services, or initiatives.
For example, Taco Bell celebrated National Taco Day in 2021 by giving away free tacos – and customers loved it! This is a super creative (and delicious) incentive to bring in new and repeat business while also embracing an unconventional holiday. So find one that relates to your business, appeals to your audience, and have fun with it.
Crafting a Campaign
When it comes to developing your campaign, you’ll need to craft a special offer around the holiday(s) of your choosing. For example, your brand could consider offering a flash sale only on that particular day. Or, perhaps, you offer a deep discount on a relevant product – like 50% off children’s books on “Tell a Fairytale Day” or 75% off protein powder on “National Protein Day.”
However you choose to market your brand’s products or services in this campaign, make sure your deal aligns with the holiday for a seamless user experience. This is where sticking to a theme is key – the little things do matter! Why? Well, take Christmas, for example. Because it’s a traditional and widely celebrated holiday, it’s not hard to get the marketing points right. All it takes is some holly-jolly designs, warm winter greetings, or Christmassy sentiments, and – in the spirit of giving – top it all off with a deal customers can’t refuse. But even with the big holidays, sticking to the theme is critical, and the small details contribute to your brand's overall performance and user experience.
So, play up the Q1 or Q2 holiday in your campaign. Because these holidays aren’t typically celebrated in eCommerce with sales and special deals, you’ll need to make it a big deal for maximum impact. The more hype you create around this campaign, the more excited customers will be to partake in it. So gear up your graphic design team and let the creative content writers handle the rest!
Promoting Q1 & Q2 Holiday Campaigns
Most years, Q1 and Q2 holidays come and go with little recognition. Most of the time, people don’t even know there’s a day worth celebrating. So, as we said, creating hype is critical. You’ll want to make your audience aware – first and foremost – of what they are even celebrating, then build excitement.
Leverage your social media channels and mailing lists to get your customers’ attention and make them aware of what’s coming. More than likely, you’ll be clueing them in on a holiday they’ve never even heard of or don’t typically celebrate, depending on how creative and quirky you get. Then, get your customers excited about these fun holidays, how they apply to your brand, and the special offers or incentives.
It’s likely that your shoppers will also identify with these holidays somehow or another, especially if they are relevant to their favorite brands! So, use this to your advantage and make them feel like part of the celebration with meaningful incentives.
Making the Incentive Meaningful
Because many of these holidays are a bit abstract and not so well known or widely celebrated, there needs to be a meaningful message behind your campaign. Appeal to your customers and how they may associate with the holiday. The keywords here are reach and resonate.
Find a sort of “pain point” where you can connect with your audience on a deeper, more personal level. For example, if you choose to launch a campaign for National Women’s Day, you could consider donating a percentage of the profits to a woman’s foundation or craft the messaging so it honors women who have served in the military. While women, in general, will want to support and can identify with this campaign, those that value feminism or have loved ones in the service will connect with this message. How you choose to market your campaign could dramatically impact its performance.
Here are a few other examples to pull from:
- New Year’s. Appeal to customers’ New Year’s resolutions. Consider offering a discount on plans or memberships, especially if they appeal to a healthy lifestyle. Craft your message to read something like, “Reach your New Year’s goals with” or “Stay on track with” and then feature your offer.
- Valentine’s Day. This is a versatile one. You can develop your campaign to appeal to singles, couples, or even Galentines! A great way to embrace this holiday is with gift guides and discounts on featured products. Play up the idea of matchmaking by introducing your customers to the perfect gift or product – a perfect match!
- Black History Month and Women’s Month. While it may be unrealistic to offer a month-long sale, one way to honor these holidays is to donate a portion of your profits to a women’s foundation (like Women Deliver, Equality Now, or the Malala Fund) or black organizations (like Black Lives Matter or the Loveland Foundation).
- St. Patrick’s Day and Superbowl Sunday. These are both fun holidays that are all about spending time with others and celebrating together over a shared adoration or culture. Embrace celebration, American culture, and community for these holidays and meet that vibe with something like enter-to-win sweepstakes.
- Earth Day. A sure way to boost sales on Earth Day is to show our planet some love. Offer customers sustainable and recyclable packaging with each purchase. Or, donate a percent of your Earth Day earnings to eco-friendly projects like beach clean-ups or nature conservation. You could even organize an event within your business! Take the day to volunteer planting trees or cleaning up the local park. Be sure to leverage your social media to publicize the event and connect with customers. You could even create a promotion for Earth Day. Consider something like this: For every 10 dollars customers spend, you’ll plant one tree.
- Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. Gift guides are the way to go! Help your customers find the perfect gift for their parents or guardians. You could even create an email campaign featuring this gift guide and a discount on these select products with a special code like “Save 10% with Code: MOTHERSDAY10.”
Let CAKE Take it From Here
Now that we’ve given you a taste of how to include the Q1 and Q2 holidays in your marketing strategy, let our team of eCommerce experts handle it from here. Make the most of 2022 with CakeCommerce for the sweetest marketing strategies. Contact our team to learn more about our services!