Christmas will be different in 2020, there’s no questioning that.
But the psychology of consumer spending won’t change all that much.
Your customers will still be actively searching for gifts, spreading joy, and finding ways to connect with their loved ones at an uncertain time.
With that being said, much of your marketing and sales activity will have to take place in the digital world. You’ll need to adapt.
To help you out, here are some Christmas marketing ideas for a year like we’ve never seen before.
#1. Product Gift Bundles
Sure, gift bundles are nothing new. However, now more than ever brands need to find ways to increase the average customer order size while simultaneously providing more perceived value to the end-user. Bundles are an excellent way to do so.
Dollar Shave Club, for example, offered a “Holiday Shave Set” back in 2016. Even though the products in this set were already available, bundling them together increases the perceived value and makes it look like more of a Christmas gift.
#2. Interactive Experiences
With people spending more time online, interactive experiences such as contests, quizzes, games, and calculators are a great way to increase engagement this Christmas.
Google, for example, has a “Santa Tracker” game, where you can explore, play, and learn with Santa’s elves. It’s a great attraction for parents.
Google’s Santa Tracker
Of course, not everyone has the resources to build a fully interactive gaming experience for their customers. A much easier, but highly impactful alternative, is to create a quiz, contest, or giveaway using one of ShortStack’s landing page templates. For example, there is a “Giveaway Calendar” template perfectly suited to Christmas:
ShortStack’s Holiday Giveaway Calendar Template
#3. Get Festive with Video
With fewer in-person events happening this holiday season, video content is the next best bet for humanizing your brand and establishing a personal connection.
Getting festive with your videos can take several forms, from a Facebook Live Christmas party to a series of Christmas Snapchats, or even a professionally edited YouTube video that doubles as an ad, like this Christmas video with over nine million views on YouTube by M&S:
#4. Bring People Together
Christmas time is synonymous with bringing people together – something that will be a little challenging this year.
But all that means is you need to get creative. For example, Sonos partnered up with Spotify in the campaign #PlaylistPotluck. Basically, everyone that plans to attend a party could contribute to the playlist in the lead-up, and it would be played randomly at the event.
This idea could still be replicated, perhaps with even more meaning, if family and friends are having Christmas parties in smaller groups and at different locations this year.
You could use a similar concept to collect Christmas recipes, crowdsource donations, distribute instant-win coupons, and much more.
#5. Get Collaborative
Everyone is in the same boat this Christmas – consumers and businesses alike. So why not find a complementary brand that you can collaborate with?
Partner collaborations will help you expand your reach and access a new audience without spending big on advertising. The Spotify and Sonos example I used above illustrates how impactful a brand collaboration can be at this time of year.
Start by creating a list of potential partners and open up a conversation with those in your inner circle to see if there is an opportunity to work together. Combined giveaways, co-branded product bundles, or co-hosted live streams are three examples of Christmas promotions you could get up and running in no time.
#6. Decorate Your Online Brand
Why not get in the spirit of Christmas by decorating your online brand?
A big part of Christmas spending comes back to the feeling people get from the colors and characters they associate with this time of year. The red, white, and green palette. Santa Claus and his Elves. Snowflakes falling on the ground. These are all symbols of Christmas that could give your brand that special twinkle these holidays.
Some brands decorate their whole website with a Christmas flavor, others add some color to their advertising banners, product photos, or even customize the brand logo to get in the spirit. Here is a unique logo re-branding from Target that captures the Christmas vibe perfectly:
Target’s Logo Rebrand
#7. Christmas Gift Guides
Your customers are actively searching for gift ideas at Christmastime, so why not give them the information they are looking for?
Christmas gift guides provide an in-depth look at product trends, gift ideas, recommendations, and of course, subtle promotion of your products. You could create a downloadable gift guide to capture leads, or instead, build a resource page on your website with everything a gift giver needs like Finder has here.
Finder’s Christmas Gift Guide
This example from Finder is particularly good because they have partnered with other big brands, such as Amazon, eBay, and Groupon to provide deals, coupons, and promo codes.
#8. Gift Cards
There is always that friend or family member that is impossible to buy for! They seem to already have everything, or rush to buy themselves a new gadget or outfit when it becomes available.
Gift cards are a great way to generate revenue at Christmastime from the people in your audience that are stuck for gift ideas. If they know your brand is high on their loved one’s wishlist, but they don’t know which product, color, or size to get, then they can just get them a gift card.
Gift cards are also a good way to break down that January slump because you’ll have customers coming back to your store with money to spend after the holiday season.
Sites such as Amazon provide Christmas-themed gift cards as an incentive for buyers:
Christmas Gift Cards from Amazon
#9. Seasonal Keywords
In a similar way that a Christmas gift guide attracts active shoppers looking for present ideas, you can research and create content for other seasonal keywords searched for by your customers.
“Christmas Gift Ideas” is just one very broad example of a phrase that your customers may be searching for. You can find low-competition gems if you dive deep into a tool such as KWFinder. Use the keyword search functionality to discover a huge range of potential opportunities that come with purchase intent from the searcher.
For example, in the screenshot below I have searched for “Christmas gifts for vegans” which has 1,900 monthly searches. KWFinder has suggested a list of other similar phrases that people are searching for, such as “vegan Christmas presents”, “vegan stocking stuffers”, and “vegan secret Santa.”
Christmas keyword examples
If you create resources for these terms on your website and update them annually, you could start to generate organic traffic from potential customers. Of course, this is just one very specific example of what you can look for. You’ll need to customize it for your target customer.
With the year that we’ve had, there is no better time to get creative with your Christmas marketing strategy.
I’ve listed numerous ideas in this article to get you started, but once you get strategizing, the world is your oyster.
While you may be limited in some respects by social distancing laws, the digital world presents phenomenal opportunities for all brands this Christmas.
How will you make the most of it?