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Holiday Marketing for Small Businesses

Updated on November 19, 2012

Engage With Customers During Holidays

Holidays are the perfect excuse for small businesses to market special discounts and unique product offerings to existing and potential customers. Whether it is the Winter Thanksgiving / Christmas season, Fourth of July, Labor Day or any other major seasonal holiday is an opportunity to reach out to people and attract business. The following ideas are proven holiday marketing techniques that have been successful at closing customers for small businesses. Communicating with potential clients on a regular basis is critical in order to be top of mind when they are ready to purchase and holidays are easy to plan for each year.

Business During the Holidays


Special Marketing Campaigns for Holidays

Here is a short list of holidays to put down on your calendar for creatine focused marketing campaigns every year.

  1. New Year's Day
  2. Martin Luther King's Day
  3. President's Day
  4. Valentine's Day
  5. St. Patrick's Day
  6. Mother's Day
  7. Memorial Day
  8. Father's Day
  9. Independence day
  10. Labor Day
  11. Columbus Day
  12. Halloween
  13. Veteran's Day
  14. Thanksgiving
  15. Christmas

Sending Annual Thank You's & Holiday Gifts

The winter holiday season is often a good time to send thank you messages and appropriate gifts to business partners, biggest clients and customers, as well as vendors and important individuals that contribute to the success of your small business. It is wise to take advantage of holidays to send out communications to your customers and other relationships. Whether this is just an email or a physical letter the special nature of the day allows for you to ping people so that you are putting your brand in front of them. The messaging does not need to be focused on selling unless you want to include a special discount or savings that is time sensitive around the holiday. Often the most successful holiday messages are just a simple note wishing them a great holiday.

While many people celebrate Christmas, there is chance you do interact with many individuals that do not. In order to eliminate any uneasiness, simply thank them for their business over the last year, with them a happy New Year and mention that you look forward to working with them in the upcoming year. If you have a more intimate relationship with specific clients and partners and want to wish them a Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas feel free to do so.

Plan ahead for sending out year end thank you's and have a special card printed with a general message and then hand write notes where appropriate. This level of detail helps convey the thought that they are special and not just receiving a computer printed message. Even if it means getting some help to work through all of your customer lists to jot down a simple note in the card it can be well worth the effort, if your business relies on repeat business throughout the year.

Special Discounts

If your business has a strong eCommerce presence you should be taking advantage of every single major holiday throughout the year to run specials and interesting product promotions. Planning specials around the holiday schedule helps eliminate the need to think about when to run a promo. If you stick to the main 15 holidays outlined above you will be marketing specials to your customer base throughout the entire year. Regardless if it is a flat percentage discount on all products or highlighting specific products or services for a holiday promo customers will become accustomed to your regular deals and appreciate them.

Affordable Holiday Marketing for Small Businesses

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Summer Small Business BBQ & Picnic
Summer Small Business BBQ & Picnic | Source

Hosting a Party

Hosting a winter party can be an excellent way to show customers and business partners appreciation for their support of your business. While many individuals end up spending a lot to through a holiday party, if you plan ahead things can be done on a very limited budget. Shopping at Costco and preparing food and drinks yourself can save significantly if you are having a party for under 100 people it is not difficult to serve that many people on your own. These types of business partner events can be a great way to generate business from your ecosystem of friends in the industry.

Fourth of July is often the perfect excuse for hosting a BBQ customer appreciation event at your location. Hot dogs and burgers and soda are relatively cheap and can easily pay for themselves with the business that is generated the day of the event. Labor day is another day that lends itself to being utilized for an outdoor small business event. It is still warm and you can set up the grills and provide food easily for customers that come to take advantage of your special holiday discounts.

Crafting a Holiday Newsletter Marketing Promo

When you are creating your next holiday marketing campaign include the following details in your emailed newsletter. An email should be short and sweet, be easy to consume by the reader, and provide a call to action to assist in closing the business.

Components of a perfect newsletter

  • Corporate branding - use your businesses logo
  • Include a video to send a message to the customers
  • Use no more than 2 paragraphs of text
  • Include a picture of the product
  • Include a graphic with the promotion displayed
  • End with a call to action to buy the product, register, pre-order, etc.
  • Allow social sharing of the promotion


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    • MKayo profile image

      MKayo 5 years ago from Texas

      Great advice and tips, especially about the Holiday gifts and thank yous. Good read. Voted up.