Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Want More Timely Marketing Content? Think Seasonally!

I'm writing this post about a week after Martin Luther King Day, and about three weeks after New Year's Day. Did these holidays offer particular opportunities for your business? Did they at least align themselves nicely with your organization's brand identity, mission, values or goals -- and if so, did your marketing content reflect or comment on them?

Of course you want to populate your blog, social media channels and other inbound marketing platforms with timeless or "evergreen" content that will always matter to your target audience (and always help you rank higher in search results). But national, state or local observances of all kinds make an impact on our daily lives. The seasons themselves can play a huge role in how consumers behave, what they search for and what they buy. Take Valentine's Day, which is coming up in just under three weeks. If you're a candy maker, a confectionary retailer, an upscale restaurant or a florist, does this holiday matter to you? Of course it does, so you'll advertise special discounts, storewide sales or other promotions accordingly. It would also make good sense to blog on the topic, if only to jog your potential customers' memories on the subject and push them into action.

But seasonal behaviors are often much less obvious than that -- which is where online analytic tools and savvy can come in handy. For example, if you have a particular product you want to promote, try running that keyword through Google Keyword Planner or Google Trends to see how the numbers for that product spike or drop at specific times of year. You may find that the search timing appears disconnected to the relevant time of year; people planning a June wedding, for instance, aren't going to wait until June to engage all the necessary services. Analytics help you understand when and how fast the "gears" of the consumer decision-making process actually turn -- and this enables you to time your marketing content to reach them at just the right moment.

Get imaginative with your seasonal approach to content marketing. Yes, Mardi Gras, Valentine's Day and President's Day tend to grab all the media attention in February, but what about Groundhog Day? Doesn't this goofy minor holiday have something to say about the advent of warmer springtime weather -- and might those weather changes (for better or worse) influence your audience's buying behaviors? If you're in the health and wellness industry, what about all the national health awareness days that occur in February, such as American Heart Month, National Children's Dental Health Month and African Heritage & Health Week? Or what about state and local holidays such as Texas Independence Day or Maryland Day? 

All of the observances mentioned above -- and many, many others -- represent golden opportunities for touching your target market with especially timely and relevant information. So get ahold of a skilled, experienced marketing copywriter and start seasoning your marketing calendar with seasonal content!