I’m always surprised by business owners – they spend 50 weeks a year, cultivating and growing an engaged community online and then, right at the point where humans are most likely to engage and share, businesses literally pull up the shutters and stop communicating, and don’t tell their community when they will be back! Does this sound like a good way to develop the relationship with your customers, potential customers, friends, referrers and influencers? Let alone the journalists who will be looking for people to interview between Christmas and New Year, when there’s all sorts happening and up for discussion!
Thankfully, the question from our clients is usually,
“What should we do on social media over Christmas and New Year?”
There’s a short answer and a longer answer to this. Being a belt and braces kind of person, I’ll provide both!
1. Decide if / how you want to be online at Christmas and New Year.
2. Tell your communities as to what you have decided to do.
3. Implement 1 and 2.
1. Decide if you want to be online from 23 December to 2 January.
Things to think about: What content will you put out? Who will put it out? Will it be scheduled? Or live content? Or a mix of the two? Who will implement it – you, a member of the team, or a mix of the two? Who will engage and handle questions and queries from a customer services perspective? Who will engage from a community engagement perspective? (note the difference between the latter two questions…)
I’ve listed these questions to get you thinking. It’s all up to you – to do as much, or as little as you want to. Here’s my thoughts on different ways to ‘do’ social media over the Christmas holidays. You could:
– Tell your community that you’ve decided to take a break from being online to recharge your batteries / spend time with family / free up their news feeds so that they only see updates from friends
– Put out scheduled content and tell people that there’s not going to be anyone available to deal with questions or queries until 2 January.
– Put out scheduled content and tell people that someone will check in every two or three days, but you won’t be able to actually ‘fix’ anything as you’ll be out of the office.
– Put out scheduled content that’s purely social and isn’t about your business – and then engage with your community as and when you can, on a purely engagement purpose.
– Manage this all yourself or organise a rota for your team to support the business in any of these options
– Go ad hoc and share things that you like the look of, and engage when you can
2. Tell your communities as to what you have decided to do
There are lots of ways to tell your communities about your availability and activity – you can write a blog post, make an image using pic monkey, record an audio boo, tweet, facebook and post on google plus and share across all of them, at different times and on different dates.
Here’s some quick thoughts on how you could do this. You could:
– Take your favourite Christmas songs from YouTube and embed them across the platforms, along with info on your availablility
– Draw a Christmas card and put it up with your plans for the holidays
– Look for images on royalty free sites to use to share the details of your availability
3. Implement it
In terms of implementation, ensure that whatever you decide to, you share it across all your social platforms, and on your website. It’s a good idea to do this several times, using as many different formats as possible, as you want to reach as much of your community as you can.
I hope that I’ve shared my thougths and ideas in a way that’s going to give you food for thought, ideas and ways to make social media still work for you over the Christmas break.
What has this post made you decide to do? Whatever it is, have a good one!
Liz Weston and the Weston Communications Team.
PS. You’ll note that I’ve referred to Christmas as a break, holidays and with a range of other phrases – that’s because it means different things for different people. You may want to consider how you can acknowledge, in different ways, depending on your community and your business, that not everyone may celebrate this festival, or be feeling positive, or excited about what’s coming up over the next couple of weeks, and that you’re sensitive to that.
PPS. See the really cool image at the top of this blog post – it’s by Kelly Innes, who writes at Domestic Goddesque. She is a) a brilliant writer b) a talented crafted and artist type person and c) a very very good blogger to work with on your campaigns. So if you’re ever looking for someone to have a proper relationship with, I’d totally recommend her!! She’ll be very embarrassed that I’ve written this, but she is truly, a brilliant blogger.