How to Create Assets For Holiday Social Media Campaigns
It’s that time of year again! Not long now, and the holiday season will soon be upon us. For marketers, the holiday season begins even sooner than it does for everyone else. The holidays are a time in which content is consumed quickly, and new visual assets are always needed. Once all of the spooky decorations are packed away - it’s full on holiday-mode.
The best part? There’s no better time to get started - even if it means starting early! Shoppers are going digital - a trend that has continued to rise and shows no sign of slowing down. Last year, a massive 60% of consumers reported doing their holiday shopping online. For brands that use social media in their content marketing strategy, this means that the creation of visual holiday assets is more important than ever.
Creating visual assets for your holiday campaign can be time consuming, especially if you are integrating influencer marketing into your content strategy.
In this article, we’ll cover the ins and outs of visual content marketing, how to create assets for your holiday campaign, and how to get a head start with asset creation.
Let’s dive in!
What Is Visual Content Marketing?
Visual content marketing is referring to the practice of using imagery or graphics to convey a key message in a visually compelling way. These images could promote your brand, your website, a product or service - the list goes on and on.
The reason that visual content marketing is so important is because it engages the brain and adds another facet of interest to your website. Think about it - if you’re scrolling through paragraph after paragraph of text without a visual “break”, it can start to feel a little monotonous.
With so many messages from nearly every angle, being consumed every day, your target audience might feel overwhelmed with even more text-heavy messaging thrown at them. For the average person, words take longer to process than a visual does. In fact, the brain can process visuals about 60,000 times faster than a paragraph of text. This makes it an effective tool to utilize whenever you’re trying to connect with your target audience.
Why Build Creative Assets For the Holidays?
Did you blink and realize that it’s suddenly almost December? Don’t worry - you’re not alone. The holiday season is fast moving and a high revenue period - with tech-savvy shoppers moving online to skip the lines and the awful race of actually finding a parking space by their favorite stores.
You might be asking - what do creative assets have to do with no longer seeking out a parking space? The answer - everything.
With customers consistently moving online to shop, and social media usage increasing with every passing year, brands need to find ways to stand out online and catch the eye of their target consumer. One way to this is with a scroll-stopping holiday social media strategy.
Holiday social media images are different from images posted throughout the rest of the year for a few reasons, and not just because snow has been added to the mix. Rather, it’s the feeling that these images invoke when you see them - warmth, happiness, joy, excitement, that ‘I just want a hot chocolate and a fireplace’ feeling.
Often though, it’s not just one image and suddenly you’re feeling all of the warm and fuzzies, ready for the holidays to start. Instead, you need a collection of images, posted on a regular basis. But how are you supposed to manage the creation of all of your holiday social media assets? It’s pretty simple, really.
The only way to ensure you’ve got enough content is to make sure that you’re starting early.
How to Create Assets For Holiday Social Media Campaigns
One of the busiest times of the year, and one of the most exciting for brands as they begin to plan their holiday campaigns. One of the most important pieces, and perhaps one of the best pieces, of planning a holiday campaign are the social media assets that go along with it. Whether you’re working with influencers, third-party creators or creating content in-house - here’s a few tips to get you started:
It’s always best practice to begin early - especially if you’re looking to create assets for a holiday social media campaign. According to Statista, 60% of shoppers begin their holiday shopping before the 1st of December, especially as brands begin to introduce more sales and offers in the week-long timeframe known as Cyber-Week (derived from Black Friday and Cyber Monday). Last year, that week brought in $28.5 billion in the US, and brands are really beginning to take notice.
Another reason to start early for your holiday social media strategy is if you’re planning to incorporate influencer marketing into the mix. Some influencers are best found with a connection platform, but it’s important to note that social media asset creation can take time. For example, Cohley’s turnaround time from signing to publication is typically six weeks - and this is similar for other content creation solutions.
Here’s a few key dates to keep in mind for 2020 as you begin to plan your holiday content and deadlines:
Halloween: Saturday, October 31
American Thanksgiving: Thursday, November 26
Black Friday: Friday, November 27
Cyber Monday: Monday, November 30
Hanukkah: Thursday, December 10 – Friday, December 18
Christmas: Friday, December 25
Boxing Day: Saturday, December 26
New Years: Thursday, December 31
Review Last Year’s Holiday Campaign
Before you jump into all-out content creation mode - you should review the campaign that your brand created last year. This involves the review of images, copy and taglines used throughout the holiday season. Analytics are hugely important in this process. They’ll be able to tell you what worked, what didn’t and how you can better position your campaign for the coming year. Better yet, they’ll be able to help you better optimize your site for this holiday season.
Note: Analytics are a great tool in the review process. Another way to find out which piece of your campaign was most engaging is to look at the comments and feedback (if you have that feature enabled)! This gives you a direct link into the mind of your audience that is interacting with your campaign.
Identify and Hone in on the Brand Voice and Tone
Identifying the voice and tone in which you use to connect with your audience remains key as the marketplace grows more and more crowded with every passing year. Your tone of voice (and messaging as a whole) helps your customers connect with your brand - and it can also help you better establish an image style that is easily recognizable. Consistent style and tone across assets and platforms is not only essential for brand consistency, but also helps if you’re working with influencers when creating campaign briefs.
Be Specific in Your Brand Brief
Be crystal clear about what you want this campaign to look like - as well as what you want it to achieve. If you’re working with influencers, do you want their content to drive brand awareness? Product sales? Grow your email list or website visitor traffic?
Your goals could be different depending on which channel your campaign will be viewable on - so it’s a good idea to brief your creative team, as well as outsourced talent on what their content should strive to do.
Being specific within your brand brief will always pay off in the long run. The more specific you are, the less likely it is that you’ll have to re-shoot or re-create paid-for assets because the image or video style didn’t align with your campaign vision.
Choose Images From Creators that Work With Your Brand Voice and Tone
Every brand has a differentiator. Usually it’s one of two things. What they bring to the table (products, services, software, etc.) or how they speak to their target audience. How you speak to your audience, otherwise known as brand voice and tone, is vital to your brand. If you’re creating a campaign with the help of creators and influencers, you’ll want to choose images from creators that either match or fit in seamlessly with your tone of voice, rather than go against the grain.
For example, if you choose an image or pursue a partnership with a creator that doesn’t fit your brand voice - your audience will certainly catch on. It could feel inauthentic, potentially creating a disconnect between you and the customers you are trying to reach. Almost like a visual sore thumb.
Examples of Awesome Visual Content Marketing for Holiday
Hydroflask is a trendy, gen-z focused brand, but that doesn’t mean they have completely revolutionary visual content - in fact, it’s blindingly simple; Use the product in a way that resonates with the season.
The outdoor Co-Op REI has a wanderlust driven Instagram, with professional and UGC photography. Their holiday campaign follows the same lines - simple nature photography, right in line with their brand.
A classic brand, Levi’s does holiday right. Starting early in November, their holiday lead up was full of presents, family, and, of course, denim. The simple styling ran in line with the brand values and showcased a diverse selection of creators.
Using Cohley for Visual Content Marketing These Holidays
As you’re beginning to plan your holiday social media strategy, it’s important to note that searching for influencers or creators that fit your brand voice can take time. Working with Cohley, you’re able to create beautiful holiday campaign briefs and look through potential partnership applications with ease. If you’d like to make your search a little easier, skip the time-consuming search and create a shortlist of influencers before you’ve even begun to look at creator applications - working with us is only one click away. Happy holiday planning!
Written by Tom Logan
Our CEO and Co-Founder Tom is no stranger to the Cohley blog! With four years under his Cohley belt, Tom is our go-to on all company updates, new tech initiatives, and data focused trends. Tom helps to dictate our direction, monitor and emphasize our culture and put colleagues in the best possible positions to succeed. Tom is a self proclaimed Tech guy, Sports Writer and Lover of Rom-Com's.