The Easiest Advertising Ever: Calendar Events

By November 24, 2015 No Comments

One of my roles at Limitless Interactive is advertising strategy — and let me tell you, it’s no spring picnic. The planning isn’t the hard part – I can tell you how things should run. But human beings are unpredictable, and trying to guess where they’re going to be two or three months down the road is pretty much impossible. The best that we can do is react quickly and strategically to capitalize on opportunities.

But what if I was to tell you that, even amidst all that, they were super predictable when acting in groups? I think you know where this is going — at certain times throughout the year, like holidays, you know that more people are going to be searching for specific things. Unlike the mad scramble to capitalize on once-off opportunities – like unexpected PR – you can plan your advertising around these calendar events. Christmas advertising isn’t exactly a revolutionary idea, but I’m constantly surprised how many of our new clients have simply ignored it.

I know I haven’t really added any value for you yet, so here’s the bit you didn’t consider: holidays aren’t the only events that are cyclical, and not all cyclical events are created equal. Things like Presidents’ Day (cyclical yearly with a very short window on that weekend), graduation (cyclical yearly with a medium window around May), renting an apartment (cyclical monthly with a very short window around the 1st), and travel (cyclical yearly with a very long window in summer) each can be opportunities to engage in calendar-based advertising.

Make a plan to create content this year

The most universal way to capitalize is during the content strategy planning stage. The goal of any good content strategy is to create and capitalize on content tentpoles, like we discuss in this article written for Ballantine Digital. Content tentpoles are specific content pieces that support the rest of your content platform. These tentpoles earn more traffic than other pieces, but by their very existence, they increase the number of traffic to all of the pieces they support, typically with links.

Some businesses, like air conditioner repair shop, won’t see a Christmas uptick in sales, but that doesn’t mean they can’t use this time to reach out to their existing customers and potential new customers with relevant, timely content by creating new tentpoles. For instance, Bob’s Steam Pipe Fittings company has a strategic narrative in place to increase knowledge about the cost of leaking steam in manufacturing. A great Christmas tentpole for Bob might be an article like “How much does a Christmas ornament cost to make?” Bob’s already got the industry knowledge of the manufacturing process, and he can make some educated guesses about how much steam those factories are wasting. We’re already back to our strategic narrative.

Who would read Bob’s article? Lots of curious folks who will never be customers (hopefully, they’ll share it on Facebook because it’s so interesting), a few people throughout the year who are interested in starting a business making Christmas ornaments (future customers), and most of the people who are actively engaged in doing business with Bob now (increasing branding and goodwill).

Now that we’ve shown how easy it can be to create content about events that have very little to do with your actual business, I’ll leave the possibilities to you to ponder. When you’re done, call Limitless Interactive, and we’ll help you develop and produce the content that you need to capitalize on the easiest type of traffic in the world: the kind you can predict.

Here’s a partial list of some cyclical events you could build a content strategy around:

Major U.S. Holidays (2016)

  • New Year’s Day (Jan 1)
  • Martin Luther King Day (Jan 18)
  • Valentine’s Day (Feb 14)
  • Presidents’ Day (Feb 15)
  • St. Patrick’s Day (Mar 17)
  • Easter (Mar 27)
  • Tax Day (April 15)
  • Passover (Apr 23)
  • Mother’s Day (May 8)
  • Memorial Day (May 30)
  • Independence Day (Jul 4)
  • Labor Day (Sep 5)
  • Columbus Day (Oct 10)
  • Yom Kippur (Oct 12)
  • Halloween (Oct 31)
  • Veteran’s Day (Nov 11)
  • Thanksgiving (Nov 24)
  • Black Friday (Nov 25)
  • Christmas (Dec 25)

Minor U.S. Holidays

  • Groundhog Day (Feb 2)
  • Chinese New Year (Feb 19)
  • Purim (Mar 24)
  • Take Your Kid To Work Day (Apr 28)
  • Father’s Day (Jun 19)
  • Juneteenth (Jun 19)
  • Eid al-Fitr (Jul 7)
  • Election Day (Nov 8)
  • Diwali (Oct 29)
  • Hanukkah (Dec 25)
  • Kwanzaa (Dec 26)

Other/Generic Events Observed

  • Spring/Summer/Autumn/Winter
  • Holiday Season
  • Wedding Season
  • New Year’s Resolution Season
  • Graduation
  • Back-to-School