Christmas and marketing campaigns can divide opinions across the piece - what might be wonderfully festive for one, may well feel naff and corny to another. Nonetheless, many marketers will run the gauntlet of jumping on the Christmas bandwagon for fear of missing an opportunity with their audience.
For B2C marketers, Christmas campaigns can be months in the planning and the roll-out of big budget, tear-jerking or hilariously witty TV advertising for big retailers is often hotly anticipated by consumers. For B2B marketers though, campaigns generally won't be looking to play on the sentiments of their audience. After all, it would be difficult - for example - for even the most adept of marketing professionals to make a connection between loneliness at Christmastime and the advantages of using a particular software solution for manufacturers...
But, that's not to say that some seasonal spirit - used with care - is not worthy of the attention of those seeking to engage with B2B buyers. The post below from Onalytica offers some tips for how to achieve this, without losing festive face.
They suggest you could use the Advent period to release a series of useful content pieces for your audience; in an online version, each virtual "door" of your calendar could reveal a blog post, video or tip sheet which could look to nurture people towards some New Year purchasing decision-making, for instance.
As Onalytica also point out, there are many that choose this time of year to write content that reviews the key events or developments in their industry, and/or ask sector experts for their predictions and opinions on what might be expected in the coming year. By using appropriately seasonal emails and social media campaigns, you could encourage discussion amongst your audience around this content and the themes it brings to the fore.
Lastly, some B2B folk might consider Christmas events suitable for their industry; these occasions might offer a chance to bring together customersin a non-salesy, social environment, providing an opportunity to engage face-to-face with those people that you are in regular phone and email contact with the rest of the year.
So, there may well be an opportunity for you to spread the festive joy this month as part of your marketing activity, but the less is more adage is probably a wise one unless your audience particularly likes their Christmas content served with hefty dollop of "cheese"!
Christmas has long been a very lucrative season for the B2C space and particularly in the retail sector, hence the time dedicated and budget pumped into Christmas adverts (which might I add tend to be published as early as November)... many of these consumer focused adverts either directly feature their brand’s products, or have a deeper message behind them; often harder for B2B brands to achieve. For example this year, John Lewis left us with a thought provoking message of ‘Gifts that everyone will love’, whilst Sainsbury’s tugged on our heart strings with a message of ‘the greatest gift you can give is you’. B2B brands typically do not leverage opportunities throughout the festive season in their marketing activities, simply because they’re not too sure what to do and whether it is really worth it.